Travel Insurance for cancer patients in Australia

Yes, it's possible to find travel insurance if you have (or have had) cancer. But be sure to check if your specific condition is covered in each policy you compare.

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Important:

Travel insurance rules continue to change as a result of the pandemic. Some information may not be accurate at this time. It’s even more important to double-check all details that matter to you before taking out cover. Please note:
    • Some policies may not be available through Finder at this time
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    warningFinally, some good news! Travel is picking up, so some insurers have started offering cover again. Just remember, you won't be covered for any pandemic related claims if you do take out domestic travel insurance.

    We've found a host of brands that provide travel insurance for cancer patients in Australia, including one that considers any form and stage of cancer. Find quotes and compare policies from more than 25 brands, below.

    Are there any travel insurance brands that offer cover for cancer patients?

    Yes. For example, AllClear is a specialist medical travel insurer that considers all stages of cancer. Find out more about AllClear in our review.

    Which Australian travel insurance providers cover you if you've had cancer?

    We researched 25+ travel insurance brands and found that these can cover you if you've had cancer.

    Travel insurance brandCancers types that are automatically covered by travel insuranceApply
    Budget Direct
    • You may be able to get cover if you've been cancer free and haven't had any treatments or related tests in five years. Enquire with BudgetDirect to ensure you're covered.
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    • Medibank will cover you if your Skin Cancer isn't a Melanoma, and you haven't had chemotherapy or radiotherapy for this condition.
    InsureandGo
    • You may be able to get cover if you or someone you're travelling with on the same policy has not been diagnosed, had treatment or hospital tests for cancer in the last five years. Enquire with InsureandGo directly to ensure you're covered.
    Get quote

    Tick

    • You may be able to get cover if you or someone you're travelling with on the same policy has not been diagnosed, had treatment or hospital tests for cancer in the last five years. Enquire with Tick Travel Insurance directly to ensure you're covered.

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    Travel Insurance Saver

    • You may be able to get cover if you or someone you're travelling with on the same policy has not been diagnosed, had treatment or hospital tests for cancer in the last five years. Enquire with Travel Insurance Saver directly to ensure you're covered.

    Can you get travel insurance that covers cancer?

    Yes. Anyone who has cancer can or has had cancer in the past can get travel insurance. However, whether or not you’ll be covered for the condition itself varies both from insurer to insurer and from person to person.

    Typically, there are two types of insurers:

    Specialist insurers

    Brands like All Clear Travel Insurance specialise in medical travel insurance and are more likely to offer comprehensive cover, albeit for higher premiums. All Clear considers travellers at all stages of cancer for a range of cancer types including bowel cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, lymphoma and prostate cancer.

    In some cases, it will also provide cover for people with terminal conditions, so long as your prognosis is for six months or more, a doctor says you're "fit" to travel and your transport provider agrees to take you.

    Non-specialist travel insurer

    Most travel insurers outside of the specialist market fall into one of two categories; those that will provide travel insurance and cover cancer, and those that will provide travel insurance, but will not cover anything related to cancer.

    1. For those that will cover incidents related to the cancer itself, cover is normally conditional based on the following:

    • A medical assessment that determines that you’re fit to travel.
    • Whether you’re in remission and how long that has been the case (6 to 12 months is often a minimum requirement).
    • Whether you’re currently receiving treatment (in which case cover will usually not be provided).

    Keep in mind. If you’re able to get cover, you will pay a higher premium due to the greater risk to the insurer.

    2. Then, there are brands that won't provide any cover for claims arising from cancer. While these insurers won't cover you for your pre-existing condition they may still provide travel insurance that excludes your condition.

    While any claim related to your pre-existing condition is not claimable, the policy still covers everything else. For example, if you were walking down the street and you were hit by a car, the policy would cover your medical costs because it’s unrelated to your cancer.

    2 key questions to consider before settling on what's best for you

    • Do you want to pay more to cover your pre-existing condition? If you answered 'yes', look at a travel insurer that specialises in medical cover or one that will consider people who already have cancer.
    • Are you concerned about the high cost of travel insurance? Unfortunately, getting cover for a pre-existing condition can be costly. So, if you don't want to spend all that money and are okay with not having cover for your pre-existing condition, you can take out travel insurance. However, you will need to cover the costs if something happens overseas due to your pre-existing condition.

    Do travel insurance providers need to know I've had cancer?

    Yes, it's essential to disclose your cancer to your insurer that you have had cancer at the time of applying for your policy.

    If you have had cancer at any time in your life, it is considered a pre-existing medical condition. Letting them know ahead of time will save you the hassle (and, potentially, a lot of money) later on should something go wrong.

    Insurers generally have a list of pre-existing conditions they automatically cover in their product disclosure statement (PDS). Cancer isn't usually included, so if you're seeking the maximum insurance then you'll want to look for special cover where available.

    What happens if the insurer won’t give me cover?

    In general, insurers are not allowed to discriminate against people with cancer under Australian law. However, according to the Cancer Council of Victoria:

    “An exemption under the Commonwealth Disability Discrimination Act 1992 allows insurers to refuse insurance or change the terms of an insurance policy for a person affected by cancer so long as this decision is supported by statistical or actuarial data or other reasonable evidence.”

    What will I be asked for on my medical questionnaire?

    The medical questionnaire varies between insurers but you can expect to be asked:

    • What type of cancer do you (did you) have?
    • When was it diagnosed?
    • Have you received treatment for your cancer?
    • When was the last time you received treatment?
    • Are there any future treatments planned?
    • What stage is the cancer?
    • What grade is the cancer?
    • Has the cancer spread from another section of the body?
    • Has the cancer been removed or destroyed?
    • Are you taking any medication such as painkillers?

    Outside of these general questions you may also be asked more specific questions related to a particular type of cancer and also to provide supporting documentation from your treating physician.

    Tips for travelling with cancer-related medical conditions

    Cancer treatments can compromise your immune system, so you will need to take special precautions when travelling. These include:

    • Keeping your medication close by (in your carry-on luggage, not under the plane).
    • Carrying a letter from your doctor detailing your condition.
    • Practising good hygiene including regularly washing hands and only drinking bottled water.
    • Being sun smart, as chemotherapy and radiation make you more sensitive to UV rays.
    • Ensuring plenty of downtime between activities, as you may feel fatigued more often.

    Compare your travel insurance options: In summary

    Obtaining travel insurance for a pre-existing condition like cancer isn't easy. However, it's not impossible either. The best way to go about it is to declare your condition upfront and to shop around to find the insurer most sympathetic to your needs.

    Picture: GettyImages

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    4 Responses

      Default Gravatar
      RitaAugust 27, 2018

      Can I get travel insurance with myeloma that is diagnosed for abt 6 years with no treatment except a blood test every month and a intragram transfusion once a month . The consultation with the specialist every 3 months. I am approaching 74 years of age. I am on no other medication

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaAugust 28, 2018Staff

        Hi Rita,

        Thanks for getting in touch with Finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

        Yes, you can still get a travel insurance given with your condition. However, you need to remember a few points.

        Insurers have their own way of determining which situations they will consider as a pre-existing condition.

        Depending on the nature of your condition, the company will either automatically provide cover, provide cover at an additional rate or apply exclusions for the condition. If you do not declare your condition, it is likely the policy will be void in the event of a claim.

        You may want to start comparing your options from our travel insurance for cancer patients page. Use our table to conveniently compare policies. Once you find the right one for you, click on the “Get Quote” button to learn more.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

        Have a wonderful day!

        Cheers,
        Joshua

      Default Gravatar
      TongJune 30, 2017

      G’day, my son is getting married in Vietnam in November and I am in 2 and half years in remission of Multiple Myeloma. My Specialist is going to do up a letter explaining my medication and my current condition.

      My question is, can I get Travel insurance or do I just get ordinary Travel Insurance and inform them of my Pre-existing Cancer (leukaemia – Multiple Myeloma)?

        Default Gravatar
        JonathanJuly 1, 2017

        Hi Tong!

        It is recommended that you take a travel insurance designed for those patients who have been diagnosed with cancer.

        We advise that you study especially their pre-existing clauses and get a quote from more than one insurer for price comparison.

        Hope this helps.

        Cheers,
        Jonathan

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