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The United States is a popular holiday destination for Australians, but it can also be an expensive one – especially if something goes wrong.
Travel insurance can protect you from a range of costs including lost luggage, cancellations and medical expenses. And when you consider that it costs $750+ for one night in a US hospital, but only $98.51* for a travel insurance policy, the difference of $652.61 is nothing to sneeze at.
The average cost of a policy for a two-week trip to the USA is $57.29* for a 26-year-old. This policy includes cover for unlimited overseas medical and hospital expenses.
*Travel insurance prices last obtained on April 2018. Prices subject to change.
Now that we've got your attention, let's talk about what's generally covered with travel insurance and what's not.
Policy costs depend on a couple of factors including age, length of travel and any risky activities you might be planning, for example skiing, skydiving or going on a cruise.
For example, if you're a 26-year-old travelling the US for a week, policies can start from as little as $45.56** which covers unlimited medical. Throw in cancellation and luggage cover and this can work its way up to $57.82** and with lite ski cover it can go up to $134.67**.
Below is a map of the average cost of travel based on age and destination.
Disclaimer. Please note that the prices above are designed to provide an average of the cost of all policies available on finder.com.au for the destination. For a more accurate quote, please use the engine above. Enter your travel details to view all available prices and policies.
**This based on the lowest cost obtained for a 14-day policy to the US as of August 2018.
The cost of travel insurance for the Unites States varies based on lots of things like how old you are, what activities you'll be doing and what level of cover you choose. But to give you some idea of cheap policies, we ran some real quotes using the profile of a 25-year-old Aussie going on a 14-day trip to the USA. Here are the cheapest we found amont the brands on Finder:
|Brand||Fast Cover||Online Travel Insurance||Kango||Virgin Money||World2Cover|
|Overseas Medical Expenses||Unlimited||Unlimited||$5,000,000||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Cancellation Fee Cover||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Luggage & Personal Effects||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||$2,000|
|Length of Trip||14 days||14 days||14 days||14 days||14 days|
|Age of Traveller||25||25||25||25||25|
|Total cost of cover||$47.50||$55.40||$56.15||$56.47||$57.32|
|Get quote||Get quote||Get quote||Get quote||Get quote|
*Prices shown are accurate as of November 2018. Prices are illustrative only and subject to change - for the most accurate pricing, use the quote engine above.
Generally, travel insurance policies for the USA are either single or annual.
With all these options, you can get cover for singles, couples, families and groups.
Types of policies are then further broken down into basic, standard or comprehensive policies. These are on a tiered system in terms of cover and cost, with basic policies generally only covering medical expenses and being the cheapest options and comprehensive policies including lost luggage, personal effects and cancellation for a premium.
General travel and sightseeing are included in most travel insurance policies, but there are exclusions you may need to consider adding on as extras before you leave. This can include the following:
If you rent a car in the USA, travel insurance can cover you in the following ways:
Make sure your policy has rental excess cover if you're driving. While the company you're hiring the car from will offer you insurance for third-party and motor damage, you will be charged the cost of the excess if the car is damaged, stolen or involved in an accident. Make sure you compare travel insurance policies with rental excess cover.
Some credit cards offer complimentary travel insurance if you pay for your trip with the card. This may sound enticing, but be aware that there are limitations to free credit card travel insurance. The following are some drawbacks of credit card travel insurance:
When applying for travel insurance for your trip to the USA, it's essential that you disclose any pre-existing medical conditions you have. If you fail to do so and a pre-existing condition results in a claim, your insurer will most likely refuse your claim.
Every year, you'll hear cases of travellers who have piled up huge medical bills in the USA because they weren't covered for a pre-existing medical condition. Check with your insurer to determine whether cover is available.
Some conditions, such as diabetes or allergies, are automatically covered, while others can be covered after assessing your individual circumstances.
Exercise normal safety precautions
17 March 2019 | Read more
While there's no such thing as one travel insurance policy that's best for everyone going to the United States, it's always a good idea to look at what a policy covers, and to what degree. To make it easier for you, we looked at all the policies in our database, ranked them according to how much cover they offer and gave them a score from 1-10 called the Finder Rating (10 being the most comprehensive).
Here are the individual policies that came out on top for a trip to the USA from 1-30 April 2019:
While these ratings are a good way to evaluate policies and what they offer, only you can decide which one is right for you.
If you find yourself in an emergency situation in the USA, some helpful contacts include the following:
*Disclaimer: The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your personal financial circumstances when comparing products.
Richard Laycock is Finder's insurance editor and has been wrangling insurance product disclosure statements for the better part of five years. His musings on insurance can be found across the web including on Money Mag, Yahoo Finance, and Travel Weekly. When he’s not helping Aussies make sense of insurance fine print, he is testing the quality of cocktails in his newfound home of New York. Richard studied Media at Macquarie University and The Missouri School of Journalism and has a Tier 1 Certification in General Advice for Life Insurance.
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