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Student travel insurance

Travel insurance for students can cost as little as $4 a day. Compare quotes from 13 brands – that’s more than any other site in Australia.

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What you need to know

  • There are affordable travel insurance options for students – most cover medical expenses as a minimum.
  • If you are studying abroad, long-term travel insurance is a good option.
  • Lots of travel insurers offer discounts of up to 15% off – they are open to everyone, not just students.

What is travel insurance for students?

There isn't a specific product called student travel insurance – but there are a bunch of budget-friendly travel insurance options out there. A very basic policy (sometimes known as medical-only travel insurance) will cover you for unlimited medical expenses and personal liability (e.g. if you get into some legal trouble while you're away) but that's about it.

If you want a little more, you can also get covered for trip cancellations, delays and theft.

Studying abroad

For longer trips, such as a semester or full university degree studying abroad, you should look at getting a long-term travel insurance policy. Some policies can cover you for up to 18 months. If you're staying longer, you will need to take out cover again after 18 months. This can cover you for the entire time you're away – for medical expenses, lost or stolen personal belongings and more.

To get covered for the entire year or longer, pop your details into the Finder engine to get quotes from a bunch of providers.

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Reciprocal health care agreement
Before you head overseas, it's worth seeing if the country you're travelling to has a reciprocal health care agreement with Australia. If so, you might be able to get some or all of your medical expenses covered.

What should student travel insurance cover?

These are some of the essential things it's worth having included in your policy:

  • Medical expenses including evacuation. A really basic policy will cover this. Sometimes it can cover repatriation as well if you get sick or injured and need to be flown back to Australia.
  • Accidental death. If the worst was to happen, travel insurance can pay to get your remains flown home.
  • Cancellation and amendment fees. For example, if you need to cancel or rearrange your trip for reasons outside of your control. Not all basic policies cover this.
  • Luggage and personal belongings. For example, if your luggage or personal items are lost, stolen or damaged during your trip, travel insurance can reimburse you to replace them.
  • Personal liability. This pays your legal fees and penalties if you accidentally injure someone or damage their property while travelling.

Travel tip for students

I spent as much time as I could travelling as a student. I was always on a very slim budget so travel insurance felt like an annoying additional expense. But it's really worth it if something goes wrong. It's worth noting too – you won't be covered if your insurer finds you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Study abroad travel insurance

If you're studying abroad, travel insurance can be helpful for a bunch of reasons. It can provide:

  • Cover if you get injured or become ill. Let's say you take a side trip to the Alps and break your ankle. Your travel insurance will cover your medical treatment, ambulance rides and daily spending money while you're in the hospital. It also includes dental cover.
  • Cover if you go exploring outside your host country. It's pretty common for students to go travelling during spring break or on the weekends when you're on exchange. Most travel insurance will cover these trips as well as long as you've let the insurer know. If you're lucky, you might be able to get this cover without additional costs as well.
  • Cover if your money or belongings get lost, damaged or stolen. Just as studying in a new city gives you invaluable memories and experiences, you're not a local, which can make you a little more vulnerable and less prepared. If a pickpocket takes your wallet, a storm damages your passport or an airline loses your luggage, travel insurance will pay for you to replace what's lost.
  • Cover if a family emergency calls you home. If a family member dies and you need to return to Australia, travel insurance will pay to send you home and even pay for you to get back to your new country.
  • Cover if you have to cancel your trip (or any side trips). Travel insurance will pay you back for any non-refundable tickets or fees if you have to unexpectedly cancel your trip. For example, if you fall ill with the flu before you are due to travel, you can get reimbursed for the money you've spent on booking the trip.
  • Cover if you damage something or injure someone. If you injure someone or damage something, you could be on the hook for thousands of dollars. Travel insurance will help cover your legal fees and any money you owe.

Gary Ross Hunter
Expert picks selected by Gary Ross Hunter – insurance and innovations editor at Finder

Best value travel insurance for students: Fast Cover Travel Insurance

Fast cover

Finder awards winner - Value

Fast Cover is a good option if you're looking for good value. It was the cheapest comprehensive policy out of 28 international policies we analysed. You get COVID cover, cancellations, unlimited medical, travel delay expenses, lost luggage and more.

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Cheap travel insurance for students: Tick Travel Insurance

Tick Travel logo

Just want cover for the basics? Tick does that. It's consistently one of the cheapest travel insurers on the market. It covers you for medical expenses and is highly rated by customers. Our research shows it's typically the cheapest basic travel insurance for popular destinations including Bali, Italy and the UK for under-30s.

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Travel insurance discounts and deals

These are all of the current discounts Finder has on offer to help you knock a little more off your student travel insurance.

Store Discount

Save 10% on InsureandGo policies with Finder

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

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Get 10% off Freely travel insurance policies

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

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Coupon code ends

Qantas Travel Insurance’s BIGGEST offer ever is on now

Earn up to 15,000 Qantas Points for every policy. T&Cs apply

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Deal ends

Get 17% off Kogan travel insurance policies

Use this promo code to get a 17% discount. T&Cs apply.

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Coupon code ends

Get 10% off on Tick travel insurance policies

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

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ahm and Medibank members get 10% off travel insurance

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

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Earn Velocity Points with Cover-More

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

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Get 8% off your Wise and Silent policy

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

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15% off travel insurance for Medibank Private members

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

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Frequently asked questions

Written by

Gary Ross Hunter

Gary Ross Hunter is an editor at Finder, specialising in insurance. He’s been writing about life, travel, home, car, pet and health insurance for over 6 years and regularly appears as an insurance expert in publications including The Sydney Morning Herald, The Guardian and news.com.au. Gary holds a Kaplan Tier 2 General Advice General Insurance certification which meets the requirements of ASIC Regulatory Guide 146 (RG146). See full profile

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