Child on a plane travelling

Travel Insurance for Children and Under 18s

Are you looking for travel insurance that covers your kid at no extra cost? Read on to find out who offers this cover and information about unaccompanied minors.

If you’re over 18 years of age, finding an insurer willing to offer you cover shouldn’t be a problem. If you are under 18 (21 for some insurers) and looking to go travelling alone — i.e. without your parents — you will need to take out an individual “adult” policy. This will provide the same level of cover as an adult policy.

Most insurers will provide complimentary cover for dependent children under the age of 21 on the parent’s adult policy. There are certain terms and conditions for this type of cover that will be discussed below.

Who offers free travel insurance for children and dependents travelling with parent or guardian?

BrandDependent Children Covered Free?Maximum Age To QualifyApply
1 cover 1cover one cover onecover

1 cover
Yes21Get quote
AIG

aig
Yes25Get quote
AMEX Travel Insurance

american express amex
Yes21Get quote
Budget Direct Travel Insurance

budget direct
Yes18Get quote
Citibank Travel Insurance

citibank
Yes18 or 21 if full-time student
Columbus Direct

columbus
Yes18Get quote
CoverMore

covermore cover more
Yes21 if dependent childGet quote
Downunder

du insure down under
Yes21 if not in full-time employmentGet quote
Easy Travel Insurance

easy travel insurance
Yes25Get quote
Fast Cover

fast cover
Yes21Get quote
Go Insurance

go insurance
Yes18Get quote
InsureandGo

insure and go insureandgo
Yes18Get quote
iTrek

itrek
Yes21Get quote
MultiTrip Travel Insurance

multitrip
Yes18Get quote
No Worries Travel Insurance

No worries
Yes17Get quote
Simply Travel Insurance

simply
Yes21 if not in full-time employmentGet quote
Skiinsurance.com.au

ski insurance
Yes21Get quote
Tick Travel Insurance

tick
Yes18 if travelling with parent or grandparentGet quote
Travel Insurance Direct

tid travel insurance direct
Yes21Get quote
Travel Insurance Saver Logo

travel insurance saver
Yes25Get quote
Travel Insuranz

travel insuranz
Yes21Get quote
Woolworths Travel Insurance

woolworths woolies
Yes21Get quote
Worldcare Travel Insurance

worldcare world care
Yes21Get quote
youGo

yougo you go
Yes21Get quote

Is it possible to get travel insurance for a child travelling alone?

There are many reasons why a child (this means anyone under 18 years of age) might need to travel overseas without their parents. Perhaps they’re heading overseas for an educational school trip, or maybe they’re ready to start their ‘gap year’ and they’re still only 17 years old.

Whatever the case may be, it is possible to take out travel insurance cover for children travelling alone. The majority of insurers will require you to take out an adult travel insurance policy. You can find 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. You will also need to decide whether you want a single-trip policy or an annual policy to cover several trips during a 12-month period.

How old is an unaccompanied minor?

An unaccompanied minor is a child aged generally 5-14 years old who is not travelling with an adult parent or legal guardian.

What age can a child fly alone?

The earliest a child can travel as an unaccompanied minor is three months old. However, this is uncommon. Generally, your child will need to be a minimum of five years old. If you're looking for the unaccompanied minor requirements of a specific airline, the table at the end of this article lists all of the Domestic and International requirements of airlines flying to and from Australia.

Find out the age requirements for major airlines

So how do I get a quote for my child if they are travelling alone?

Simply enter their age in the quote engine and pricing for an adult policy will be displayed.

Does it cost more for a child to fly alone than with its parents?

It depends. Some airlines offer unaccompanied minors service free of charge while others charge upwards of $120 for your child to travel alone.

Does this mean I am paying more than I should for my child’s policy?

No. Travel insurance pricing is the same for travelers under 18 as it is for those aged 18. Pricing generally only increases for policyholders over the age of 59.

Do I need to take out travel insurance for my newborn baby travelling with me?

No, as mentioned previously. Dependent children under 18 years of age (some under the age of 21) are automatically covered under the adult policy. No additional cover is required.

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How do I get free travel insurance for my child?

If you’re planning to take an overseas trip with your dependent children, the good news is that most insurers provide free travel insurance cover for your dependent children. This means they will receive the same type and level of cover as you, although certain benefits may not apply. For example, some providers may not pay an accidental death benefit for your dependent children, while other benefits such as loss of income caused by an injury suffered during your trip simply will not apply.

Common conditions for complimentary child cover

  • Cover only applies to children or grandchildren
  • Child must be travelling with parents for duration of trip in order for cover to apply
  • Child must not be engaged in full-time employment
  • Benefit limits for family cover apply to total claims combined, regardless of the number of people the claim relates to

Read the fine print on your chosen travel insurance policy to make sure that cover is provided for your dependent children. Remember to specify that they will be travelling with you when you apply for a policy to ensure that you will receive the insurance protection you need.

What if my kids are travelling alone for some of the trip?

Your children will only be covered for the portion of trip that they are travelling with you. Cover will not apply if they take are travelling alone at stages of the trip. If your children are travelling alone, it is worth taking out a separate policy for them.

How do I include my children on my policy?

Simply add your children's ages when receiving a quote in form below and you will receive a quote for family policies that includes cover for you and your family. You will need to let your insurer know of any pre-existing conditions that your child has prior to purchasing cover.

Children Travel Insurance

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Child travelling alone? Additional documentation may be required

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 order to depart Australia, children travelling alone will need their passport and a valid visa for their destination.

But many foreign countries will require your child to carry a range of additional documents in order to be granted entry. These may include:

  • A letter that provides a parent or guardian’s permission for the child to travel
  • A copy of a divorce or custody decree that proves you, as a parent, have legal custody of the child
  • A court order that grants you guardianship of the child, or adoption papers (where relevant)
  • A certified copy of your child’s birth certificate

Contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country your child plans to visit for a full list of the entry requirements they will need to satisfy.

Finally, you should also be aware that many airlines impose a range of rules regarding unaccompanied minors, which are generally regarded to be children under 15 years of age who are travelling alone. A parent or guardian may be required to fill out a permission form in order for the child to board a flight, while a range of other airline-specific requirements are also in place. Check with your airline to see what you will need to do before you book any tickets for your child.

How old does child have to be to fly alone?

Compare various airline policies for unaccompanied minors from carriers flying Domestic and International routes.

Domestic

AirlineNot availableMandatoryOptional
Airnorth0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Jetstar0-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)n/a
Qantas Domestic0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Rex0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Tiger Airways0-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)n/a
Virgin Australia0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)

International

AirlineNot availableMandatoryOptional
Aer Lingus0-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)n/a
Aeroflot0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-16 years (inclusive)
Aerolineas Argentinas0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)n/a
Air Austral0-3 years (inclusive)4-11 years (inclusive)12-16 years (inclusive)
Air Canada0-7 years (inclusive)8 to 11 years (inclusively)12-17 years (inclusive)
Air China0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Air France0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)15-17 years (inclusive)
Air India0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)n/a
Air Macau0-3 months (inclusive)3 months-12 years (inclusive)n/a
Air Malta0-6 years (inclusive)7-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Air Mauritius0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)n/a
Air New Zealand0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-16 years (inclusive)
Air Tahiti Nui0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)13-14 years (inclusive)
Air Vanuatu0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)n/a
Aircalin0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Airnorth - International0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Alaska Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
All Nippon Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-16 years (inclusive)
American Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)15-17 years (inclusive)
Asiana Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)n/a
Austrian Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Bangkok Airways0-1 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)n/a
British Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
Cathay Pacific0-5 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
China Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
China Eastern Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-15 years (inclusive)
China Southern Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-15 years (inclusive)
Croatia Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
Delta Air Lines0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)15-17 years (inclusive)
Dragon Air0-5 years (inclusive)6-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Emirates Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Etihad Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Eva Air0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Fiji Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Finnair0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Garuda Indonesia0-6 years (inclusive)7-11 years (inclusive)n/a
Hawaiian Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Hong Kong Airlines0-5 years (inclusive)6-12 years (inclusive)n/a
Japan Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Jet Airways India0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-16 years (inclusive)
Jetstar - International0-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)n/a
Kenya Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)15-17 years (inclusive)
KLM Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)15-17 years (inclusive)
Korean Air0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
LAN Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
Lufthansa0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Malaysia Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)n/a
Philippine Airlines0-7 years (inclusive)8-11 years (inclusive)n/a
Qantas Airlines - International0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Qatar Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)n/a
Royal Jordanian0-5 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Scandinavian Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Singapore Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Solomon Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)n/a
South African Airways0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-16 years (inclusive)
Swiss International Air Lines0-4 years (inclusive)5-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
TAP Portugal0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Thai Airways International0-4 years (inclusive)5-17 years (inclusive)n/a
Turkish Airlines0-6 years (inclusive)7-12 years (inclusive)13-17 years (inclusive)
United Airlines0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-17 years (inclusive)
Vietnam Airlines0-1 years (inclusive)2-5 years (inclusive)6-14 years (inclusive)
Virgin America0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Virgin Atlantic0-4 years (inclusive)5-14 years (inclusive)n/a
Virgin Australia - International0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)
Virgin Samoa0-4 years (inclusive)5-11 years (inclusive)12-15 years (inclusive)

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William Eve

Will is a personal finance writer for finder.com.au specialising in content on insurance. While he cannot give personal advice to clients, Will enjoys explaining the intricacies of different types of protective cover to help individuals and businesses find affordable cover that won't leave them underinsured.

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