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New Zealand travel insurance

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Updated by Smartraveller on 11 Apr 2024

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Why do I need travel insurance in New Zealand?

  • It can cover you for emergency medical treatment.
  • It can cover medical expenses caused by injuries and accidents, unless it's from an excluded activity.
  • It can pay for transport to hospital by helicopter or ambulance, as well as medical evacuations back to Australia.
  • If you're renting a car in New Zealand, make sure you have car rental excess cover.
  • Travelling in a foreign country may put your valuables at risk and travel insurance can cover you for lost or stolen items.
  • New Zealand is home to active volcanoes. Travel insurance can cover travel disruptions caused by natural disasters.
  • Terrorism is a risk in New Zealand. A few insurers provide cover for medical and hospital expenses caused by an act of terrorism, including the cost of bringing you back home.

Looking for the best travel insurance for New Zealand? Check out our award winners in 2023

New Zealand travel insurance: Common exclusions

Every travel insurance policy has things you won't be covered for. Common exclusions include:

  • If you purchase cover after the incident has occurred. For example, if you take cover out after you've been injured and need medical attention.
  • Pre-existing medical conditions. If you have any major medical conditions, make sure you let your insurer know before taking out a policy. Otherwise you won't be covered for claims related to that condition.
  • You travel despite government travel advice. For example, if you travel to areas that have a warning from Smartraveller, travel insurance may not cover you.
  • Incidents that occur while you're under the influence of drugs or alcohol. For example, if you go out drinking in Auckland, get injured and need medical attention, travel insurance won't cover you.
  • Driving vehicles without a licence. Like Australia, you won't be covered for medical costs or personal liability expenses if you drive without a licence in New Zealand.

What add-ons should I look for?

  • If you're getting adventurous, a lot of policies will offer adventure packs which can cover you for loads of activities like horse riding, hiking and zip lining.
  • New Zealand is a popular destination for snow sports. Whether you're skiing, snowboarding or cross country skiing, you'll often need to add extra cover to your policy.
  • If roadtripping is your thing, including car rental excess cover in your travel insurance is a sure way to save money. Some policies even automatically include it.
Washing machine on fire
Did you know?
Natural disasters such as bushfires, earthquakes and tsunamis can occur in New Zealand.

Will I be covered for COVID-19?

Travel insurance can cover you for COVID-19 in New Zealand. A policy can cover you for the following:

  • Rearrangement costs if you catch the virus and need to change your plans. Lots of comprehensive travel insurance policies let you claim up to $5,000 towards these expenses.
  • Medical costs due to COVID-19. This can include hospital expenses and RATs if you catch COVID-19 while overseas (but you won't be covered for mandatory PCRs).
  • Expenses if you need to isolate. For example, if you catch COVID while you're overseas and need to push back your flight and stay in your accommodation longer.

How do I get cheap travel insurance for New Zealand?

  • Medical only or basic policies will generally be the cheaper policies on the market.
  • Use exclusive deals or promo codes to get a discount.
  • Opt for a higher excess. This will make your policy cheaper but more expensive if you have to claim.
  • Compare across a handful of travel insurers – they're not all the same.
  • Get the most value by buying your policy early. It means you're covered for longer while paying the same price.
Our best travel insurance policies

When I travel, I don't want to fork out a lot for travel insurance. I always get something above the bare minimum though which usually only covers medical-only expenses. Flight disruptions and delayed luggage are really common, so look for a cheap policy that covers me for these things.

What do I do in emergencies?

For emergencies: call 111 (police), 111 (ambulance) or 111 (fire).

In a medical emergency, call for help and then contact your insurer on their emergency assistance line.

What are the entry requirements for New Zealand?

You don't need a visa to enter New Zealand if you are an Australian citizen, unless you have a criminal record or if you've been deported from any country.

Australian permanent residents need to apply online for a New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority (NZeTA) to enter New Zealand.

Civil unrest, security risks, threat of terrorist attack and crime are a concern in New Zealand, but you should still be eligible for travel insurance. It won't cover all of these situations but it can help cover medical costs, stolen belongings and much much more.

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FAQs about New Zealand

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2 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    MichelleOctober 12, 2017

    My family of 5 is traveling to New Zealand for just over four weeks from early December to early January. I am wondering if we need to get travel insurance or not? I know basic medical is covered as we are covered by Medicare and New Zealand recognises that as cover for them.

      AvatarFinder
      JhezelynOctober 13, 2017Finder

      Hi Michelle,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Australians can access New Zealand’s public health care system in an emergency, but travel insurance is still essential. New Zealand and Australia have a reciprocal health care agreement, meaning that Australian travellers can access New Zealand’s public health service in an emergency, and vice versa. You’ll still have to pay some fees for treatment and medication (you’ll be charged the same amount as a New Zealand resident) and it’s important to remember the agreement isn’t a replacement for travel insurance – which is always a necessity. Remember to take your Medicare card with you – you’ll need it, along with your passport, to prove that you’re eligible.

      Please fill out the Travel insurance form to get quotes for your trip to New Zealand. Please ensure you review the relevant Product Disclosure Statements/Terms and Conditions when comparing your options before making a decision on whether it is right for you. You can also contact the provider if you have specific questions.

      Regards,
      Jhezelyn

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