Australian parents take a relaxed approach to parenting while on holiday

Brad Buzzard 6 December 2017 NEWS

Silhouette of family walking through airport with plane taking off in background

An alarming number of parents are leaving their children unaccompanied overseas.

More than 80% of parents said they would leave their children unsupervised while travelling overseas, according to research from HotelsCombined.

The study also found that 27% of Aussie parents would leave their 12 to 15-year-old children at home while they travelled.

What about leaving the kids unattended at a pool or beach? Well, 36% said they'd have no problem with leaving their kids alone for up to an hour.

And 22% said they would allow their children under 12 to go to the bathroom alone overseas.

School holidays are fast approaching, and many families are gearing up for overseas trips. If this sounds like you, now is the perfect time for to review your travel practices to make it safer for your kids.

One of the first things you should do is to look for travel insurance that covers your children.

The good news is if your kids are travelling with you, most adult policies cover them at no extra cost. However, claim limits for each policy vary, so it's important to pay read the fine print to ensure you're getting the cover you need.

Now if for some reason your kid needs to travel alone, they will need their own policy. This also applies if your kids are travelling with you for a portion of your trip, as the unaccompanied portion of the trip wouldn't be covered under your policy.

For unaccompanied children, there are basic policies that cover the essentials like overseas medical emergencies and personal liability, as well as comprehensive policies that provide cover for a broad range of incidents and events.

Once you've got your travel insurance sorted, keep in mind that there may be other legal requirements you need to satisfy for your child to travel alone.

In addition to a passport and relevant visas, many countries require your child to carry a range of additional documents in order to be granted entry. These could include proof of custody, a letter that gives the child permission to travel and/or a certified copy of the child's birth certificate.

Travelling overseas can be overwhelming and pose some unexpected challenges. But having the right travel insurance policy in place, combined with keeping a closer eye on children, will go a long way toward ensuring a safe, fun and memorable holiday for the whole family.

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