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Travel insurance for backpackers

Save yourself time and money. Compare travel insurance quotes from 13 brands – that’s more than any other site in Australia.

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What you need to know

  • Travel insurance can cover you as a backpacker for medical expenses, trip disruptions and more.
  • A basic travel insurance policy can cover you for medical expenses for up to 24 monhts.
  • If you are worried about stolen items, flight disruptions or COVID-related cancellations, you should consider comprehensive travel insurance.

Do I need travel insurance?

Travel insurance is very important, especially for backpackers. The biggest reason is the medical insurance. You won’t be covered for medical expenses unless you are sticking to the 11 countries that Australia has a reciprocal health care agreement with. Smartraveller, the Australian government's official travel site, says if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel.

Basic and standard policies can also cover you for accidental death (e.g. getting your body home to loved ones), emergency evacuation if you get really sick or injured and personal liability if you injure or damage someone or their property.

More comprehensive policies can cover you for trip cancellations, lost or stolen luggage and personal items, rental car excess and more.

Countries Australia has an RHCA with

Australia has RHCAs in place with the following countries:

  • The United Kingdom
  • The Republic of Ireland
  • New Zealand
  • Sweden
  • The Netherlands
  • Finland
  • Belgium
  • Norway
  • Slovenia
  • Malta
  • Italy

I've spent a lot of time traipsing around countries when I was younger. I would always take out the most basic cover for medical expenses but it was almost never what went wrong on trips. It was usually cancelled flights and delayed or lost luggage. If you want cover for these things too, you should probably get comprehensive travel insurance.

Ski equipment
Plan on doing any adventure activities?
Travel insurance can cover you but you'll usually need to add adventure sports to your policy for a small fee.

Good value travel insurance for backpackers

Fast cover

Finder awards winner - Value

FastCover won the best value travel insurance award because you get a lot for your money compared to the 28 international policies we analysed, making it a good choice for backpackers on a budget who don't want to compromise on cover. This includes COVID cover, cancellations, unlimited medical, travel delay expenses, lost luggage and more. Head to our best travel insurance guide for more information.

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Cheap backpacker travel insurance

Tick Travel logo

Tick is hard to beat when it comes to price, making it a potentially good option for backpackers who want cheap cover medical expenses. Our research shows it's commonly the cheapest basic travel insurer for popular destinations including Bali, Italy and the UK.

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Travel insurance deals

Code

Save 10% on InsureandGo policies with Finder

Use this coupon code to save 10%. Ts&Cs apply.
Code exclusive

Get 10% off Freely travel insurance policies

Use this promo code to get a 10% discount. T&Cs apply.
Deal

Protect your next trip with Qantas Travel Insurance

Expires 28 May 2024
Plus, earn up to 10,000 Qantas Points. T&Cs apply.
Code exclusive

Get 12% off Kogan travel insurance policies

Use this promo code to get a 12% discount. T&Cs apply.
Deal exclusive

Get 8% off your Travel Protect policy

Use the promocode to get 8% off travel insurance. T&Cs apply.
Code

Get 10% off on Tick travel insurance policies

Use this code to get a 10% discount. T&Cs apply.
Deal

ahm and Medibank members get 10% off travel insurance

Get this discount if you're an ahm or Medibank Private member and save.
Deal

Earn Velocity Points with Cover-More

Get 3 Virgin Velocity Points for every $1 spent on travel insurance with Cover-More.
Deal exclusive

Get 8% off your Wise and Silent policy

Use the promocode to get 8% off travel insurance. T&Cs apply.
Deal

15% off travel insurance for Medibank Private members

Get this discount if you're a Medibank Private member and save.


Who offers long-term travel insurance cover for backpackers?

BrandMaximum length covered in one tripHow does it work?Enquire

Medibank

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Bonus
Get quote

Freely

6 monthsWhere your journey is necessarily extended due to an unforeseen circumstance outside your control, your period of insurance will be extended until you are physically able to travel home by the quickest and most direct route. The period of insurance will not be extended for any other reason.
Bonus
Get quote

Zoom

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Get quote
Fast Cover

fastcover

24 monthsYou can purchase a 12-month policy and apply to extend for another 12 months after your trip has started.
Bonus
Get quote

Insure4less

12 monthsYou can apply for up to a 12 month extension (maximum extension of insurance is 12 months. Note: There is no cover for any insured person who is in the USA for 364 consecutive days or more.
Get quote
Travel Insuranz

Travel Insuranz

12 monthsYou can apply for up to a 12 month extension (maximum extension of insurance is 12 months. Note: There is no cover for any insured person who is in the USA for 364 consecutive days or more.
Get quote
insureandgo

InsureandGo

12 monthsCover can be extended, subject to approval from InsureandGo.
Finder AwardBonus
Get quote
Tick Logo

Tick

12 monthsCover can be extended, subject to approval from Tick.
Bonus
Get quote

World2cover

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Get quote

Cover-More

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Bonus
Get quote

Southern Cross

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Finder Award
Get quote
Australia Post

Australia Post

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Get quote

Travel with Kit

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.More info

Travel with Jane

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.More info

Easy

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.
Get quote
Travel Insurance Saver Logo

Travel Insurance Saver

12 months

You can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.

Get quote
1-cover-new1

1cover

12 monthsIf you choose to continue travelling after your first 12 months, you may be able to get a further 12 months of cover by taking an "Already Overeas" policy.More info
Worldcare Travel Insurance

Worldcare

12 monthsYou can purchase the new cover subject to approval and duration of cover cannot exceed the total of 12 months.More info

Table updated August 2023

Travel insurance for people backpacking in Australia

Overseas visitors backpacking in Australia

You will need to buy non-resident travel insurance from an insurer in Australia. Travel insurance is not the same as Overseas Visitor Health Cover. If you're here on a visa and are required to have some form of health insurance in place, you will need OVHC.

Australian residents

If you are a citizen or permanent resident of Australia and you are backpacking here, your medical expenses are already covered via Medicare. Your best bet is to simply purchase a domestic travel insurance policy – either a single-trip policy covering the entire duration of your trip, or an annual multi-trip policy if you will be returning home periodically between travels.

Frequently asked questions

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