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Travelling with expensive items? Get the right cover

Travel insurance can cover expensive items like a camera, laptop or jewellery (such as an engagement ring) – but you will need to add on "specified items" cover.

What you need to know

  • You can add on specified items cover when you get a travel insurance quote.
  • Most policies will cover expensive items up to a certain value – between $5,000 and $10,000.
  • It can cover you for the cost to replace or repair if your item is lost, stolen or damaged while you travel.

How does travel insurance cover expensive items?

Most travel insurers offer you the option of increasing item limits under the specified items benefit. You will need to pay a little more to get this included in your policy.

Travel insurers can cover you for specified items ranging from $1,500 to $10,000. They don't typically cover you for more than $10,000.

If you don't specify you want an expensive item covered, it will be considered an unspecified item. This means you will only be covered for items up to a certain claim limit. (A claim limit is the maximum total amount of money you can claim back if something you own is lost, stolen or damaged while you're travelling.)

These limits can vary between insurers. You can find them in each brand's product disclosure statement. Here's an example of what they often look like:

  • $3,000 for personal computers, video recorders or cameras
  • $1,500 for mobile phones
  • $1,000 for small mobile hand-held computers including tablet devices such as iPads
  • $750 for any other unspecified items

Travel insurers including Fast Cover and Tick can cover you for a specified item for up to $5,000. SCTI goes a little further than others – it can cover items for up to $10,000 – while others such as Cover-More simply state that 'you may be able to increase the item limit on a specific item by paying an additional premium' but doesn't say by how much.

What isn't covered?

There are some important exclusions that apply to travel insurance that you should be aware of. These include:

  • If you leave expensive items unattended in a public place.
  • Items with no proof of purchase (you will need an original receipt).
  • Unreported items (you must report theft or loss to the police and your travel insurance provider within 24 hours).
  • Claims that arise due to your reckless behaviour.
  • Claims arising because you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Finder survey: What features are important to Australians when taking out travel insurance?

    Response
    Luggage cover48.05%
    Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1112 Australians, December 2023

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