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Travel insurance with natural disaster cover

If you have travel insurance that covers natural disasters, you can get your money back for delayed flights, last-minute schedule changes, cancelled trips and more.

What you need to know

  • Travel insurance can cover costs related to natural disasters.
  • It will not cover you if the natural disaster is a known event (i.e. has been in the media).
  • It can cover you for cancellations, additonal accommodation and lost deposits for pre-paid travel arrangements.

Compare travel insurance brands with natural disaster cover

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How do different brands on Finder cover natural disasters?

BrandTravel insurance that covers natural disastersApply
Medibank Travel Insurance
  • You're covered for additional accommodation and transportation expenses as a result of natural disasters.
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FreelyFreely
  • Pays for reasonable additional accommodation and additional transport expenses, at the same fare class and accommodation standard as originally booked, if a natural disaster occurs.
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ZoomZoom
  • Reimburses you reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses if a disruption to your journey arises due to a natural disaster.
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Fast Cover

fastcover

  • Cover for cancellation fees and lost deposits for pre-paid travel arrangements due to unforeseen natural disasters. In addition, you will be covered for your reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses if a disruption to your trip is from weather or natural disaster.
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Insure4lessInsure4less
  • You are covered in the event your trip is necessarily and unavoidably cancelled prior to departure or curtailed before completion because of a natural disaster.
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Travel insuranzTravel Insuranz
  • You are covered in the event your trip is necessarily and unavoidably cancelled prior to departure or curtailed before completion because of a natural disaster.
  • Catastrophe cover provides a benefit for necessary and reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses incurred in the event that you are forced to move from pre-booked accommodation to continue your trip, or if the trip cannot be continued, to return home as a result of hurricane, storm or other natural disaster.
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insureandgo

InsureandGo

  • You're covered if you cannot travel as a result of a natural disaster for cancellation and trip curtailment.
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Tick Logo

Tick

  • As an optional extra you can get covered if you cannot travel as a result of a natural disaster for cancellation and trip curtailment.
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World2coverWorld2cover
  • Cover for additional accommodation, meal and travelling expenses including emergency personal telephone calls, equivalent to your pre-booked arrangements, if a natural disaster occurs.
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Cover-moreCover-More
  • Pays for reasonable additional accommodation and additional transport expenses if a natural disaster occurs
Bonus
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Travel with KitTravel with Kit
  • Cancellation - You cannot travel because a Natural Disaster, not known of at the time of purchasing this insurance, but only if that Natural Disaster occurs within 7 days of Your planned Trip date and has caused Your travel service provider to cancel Your pre-paid service and You are not entitled to a refund or compensation from any other source.
  • Cutting Your Trip Short- We will provide this cover if the cutting short of Your Trip is necessary and unavoidable as a result of the following: Because a Natural Disaster, not publicly known of at the time of purchasing this insurance and that occurs during Your Trip, and the advice on www.smartraveller.gov.au is to return to Your Home.
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Travel with JaneTravel with Jane
  • Cancellation - You cannot travel because a Natural Disaster, not known of at the time of purchasing this insurance, but only if that Natural Disaster occurs within 7 days of Your planned Trip date and has caused Your travel service provider to cancel Your pre-paid service and You are not entitled to a refund or compensation from any other source.
  • Cutting Your Trip Short- We will provide this cover if the cutting short of Your Trip is necessary and unavoidable as a result of the following: Because a Natural Disaster, not publicly known of at the time of purchasing this insurance and that occurs during Your Trip, and the advice on www.smartraveller.gov.au is to return to Your Home.
More info

Travel insurance saver

Travel Insurance Saver

  • If your pre-paid scheduled public transport services or pre-paid tour have been cancelled or restricted because of severe weather, natural disaster you may be covered for cancellation and additional expenses. Consider the PDS and TMD from TIS and if the product is right for you.
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EasyEasy
  • Pays for reasonable additional accommodation and additional transport expenses if a natural disaster occurs
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Stella travel insurance logo
  • Cover for Cancellation or restriction by the carrier of pre-paid scheduled public transport services, caused by severe weather, natural disaster, riot, strike or civil commotion.
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Australia Post
  • Under the "other circumstances" section of your policy, you're covered for claims resulting a Natural Disaster.
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1cover
  • If a natural disaster interrupts your pre-paid travel arrangements, you're covered up to the policy limit for cancellation fees and lost deposits.
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American Express
  • You will be covered for reasonable and necessary additional hotel accommodation and transport expenses that are the result of a natural disaster.
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Skiinsurance.com.au
  • Cover for cancellation fees and lost deposits for pre-paid travel arrangements due to unforeseen natural disasters. In addition, you will be covered for your reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses if a disruption to your trip is from weather or natural disaster.
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WorldcareWorld Care
  • Cover for cancellation fees and lost deposits for pre-paid travel arrangements due to unforeseen natural disasters. In addition, you will be covered for your reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses if a disruption to your trip is from weather or natural disaster.
More info

Note: This information was last updated August 2022

Finder survey: What is the biggest concern for people travelling?

ResponseFemaleMale
Flight disruptions/cancellations59.66%55.88%
Losing luggage/belongings50.85%41.43%
Being hospitalised48.64%47.01%
Crime - theft34.41%37.76%
Catching COVID-1919.66%21.97%
None of the above7.29%8.67%
Other1.53%1.35%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1112 Australians, December 2023

Does travel insurance cover natural disasters?

Yes - as long as you had insurance before the natural disaster occurred. Most comprehensive policies will cover:

  • Trip cancellation costs. Insurance can reimburse your costs if you have to cancel your pre-paid flights and other bookings if a natural disaster strikes your destination. It can also apply to natural disasters that strike at home before you leave (for example if you get injured or your home gets destroyed).
  • Additional travel expenses. This will cover unexpected travel expenses like brand new flights and alternative accommodation if you're completely rerouted due to natural disaster.
  • Travel delay expenses. This is similar to the above but applies to temporary inconveniences you suffer when your transportation is delayed. For example, if a storm delays your flight by 6 hours, your insurance can reimburse you for extras meals at the airport and even temporary accommodation if you need it.
  • Alternative transport costs. If a natural disaster delays your transportation and you're due at a special event like a wedding, some policies will pay for alternative transportation to the event.
  • Cutting your trip short. Some policies will pay for you to safely return to Australia Australia if a disaster disrupts your plans while you are travelling.
  • Resuming your journey. Some policies will pay for you to return to your travel destination when it's safe to do so.
  • Damage to your belongings. Insurance can replace your luggage, belongings, passport and other documents if they are damaged in the disaster.
  • Emergency medical expenses. International policies can help pay for your medical expenses including emergency evacuation or repatriation to Australia if you are injured in a natural disaster.

In rare cases, some insurers won't cover you for natural disasters at all unless you buy a "natural disaster" add-on. So without the add-on, you wouldn't be able to make a claim if a natural disaster caused you to cancel your trip – even if you had cancellation cover.

What is considered a natural disaster?

Most insurers have a fairly similar list of events they consider to be natural disasters. These natural disasters include the following:

  • Floods
  • Bushfires
  • Cyclones
  • Tornados
  • Earthquakes
  • Drought
  • Ice storms
  • Volcanic eruptions
  • Blizzards
  • Avalanches
  • Tsunamis
  • Landslides
  • Sinkholes
  • Heat waves/cold waves

The disaster also has to create significant obstacles to your travel, such as causing your destination to be uninhabitable or triggering a state of emergency.

Does travel insurance cover weather delays?

Yes, and it works similarly to the situations described above, with all of the same requirements. If your flight is delayed or your cruise ship is stuck in port because of bad weather, you're eligible to claim for any activity you need to cancel as listed under "cancellation" above, plus food and accommodation charges while you wait (depending on how long the delay is).

What else does travel insurance for natural disasters cover?

Travel insurance doesn’t just stop at paying you back for general travel expenses related to natural disasters. It can also cover you if you are injured in a natural disaster as long as your policy includes medical cover. Depending on your level of cover, this can include the following:

  • Medical treatment
  • Dental treatment
  • A daily allowance for everyday hospital expenses
  • Medical evacuation to the nearest hospital
  • Repatriation to Australia if necessary

What isn't covered by travel insurance for natural disasters?

All insurance policies will contain a list of situations where you would not be covered (called exclusions). Here are some common reasons you wouldn't be covered:

  • You take out the policy too late. You have to buy the policy before the disaster becomes public knowledge. This can even be before the disaster strikes. For example, experts know in advance when a cyclone is likely to hit. If you buy your policy after they name the storm, it's already too late and you won't be covered.
  • Your expenses are unreasonable. When you are covered for expenses as a result of a delay or for alternate travel arrangements, you will only be covered for a reasonable amount. They won't cover you for a last-minute stay in a 5-star penthouse suite.
  • Bad weather. Your destination will need to be uninhabitable for claims to be paid. Bad weather is not enough for an insurer to pay out.
  • Ignoring travel warnings. If you disregard governmental travel warnings and travel to a destination that has recently been devastated by a natural disaster, you run the risk of having your claims denied due to acting recklessly.
  • You waited too long to cancel certain arrangements. You may be denied if you were charged any cancellation fees that you could have avoided by telling the travel provider as soon as you knew you had to cancel.

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