What can affect your travel insurance policy?

Whether you’re travelling overseas or interstate, for business or pleasure, a good travel insurance policy is one of the most important parts of your trip and can reduce the impact of some of  the risks when going away. But that doesn’t mean it’s completely fool proof. There are many factors that can affect your travel insurance policy which may lead you to paying a higher premium or being disqualified from cover altogether.

We’ve taken a broad look at the factors affecting your travel insurance policy and what to be mindful of when you’re selecting a travel insurance policy and a particular insurer before you leave on your trip.                          

What is travel insurance?

Travel insurance is designed to offer you cover for some of the hassles that often come with travelling such as delayed luggage and overseas medical emergencies. When choosing cover, always consider your specific needs and requirements as some things may not be covered                           

The Australian Government stresses the importance of travel insurance, and state the opinion that it is just important as a passport when you’re heading overseas. The Australian Government advises that you should consider purchasing a travel insurance policy as soon as you’ve organised your holiday, and some overseas destinations now require travellers to hold travel insurance as a condition of entry. 

What factors to consider for my travel insurance policy?

Just as no two trips are the same, when you’re purchasing a travel insurance policy every type is different and dependent on a number of factors. We’ve taken a quick look at the main ones to consider when purchasing a travel insurance policy, and what to be on the lookout for:

Length of visit –The longer you’re away on a trip, the higher the chances for something out of your control could go wrong. The length of your visit is one of the main factors that is likely to impact how much your travel insurance policy costs. It’s also important to be honest when you’re disclosing this information to insurers when buying the policy, otherwise you could find yourself caught out by something that happens when you’re not covered.

Places you’re planning to visit – The world is an amazing place, but unfortunately there are parts of it that aren’t as safe as others. It goes without saying that the need for travel insurance in countries where the likelihood of something going wrong is greater, and for that reason your policy is likely to be more expensive.

Pre-existing medical conditions - Any pre-existing medical condition that is agreed to be covered may incur a medical excess, meaning any claims made from an assessed medical condition will incur a medical excess instead of a base excess. Your insurer will have a list of pre-existing medical conditions in their PDS.

Your activities and behaviour – The activities you participate in and the manner in which you behave can also have a bearing on your travel insurance policy, and the likelihood of you being covered in the case of an accident. Certain activities are not covered by all insurers or policies, and should something unfortunate happen to you as a result of an activity you don’t have cover for you may find yourself in an unfortunate situation abroad.

Common exclusions you may not be aware of

There are also a lot of exclusions in travel insurance policies that travellers are not aware of, and some people do get caught out when they’re heading abroad. Again, the onus is on you to shop around when you’re selecting a policy and make sure you’re covered for as broad a range of events as possible. If you don’t, you may be caught out by these exclusions.

Not being aware of the certain factors that could potentially affect your travel insurance policy and how much you have to pay is not only negligent, but irresponsible. By taking the time to read the fine print of your travel insurance policy and shopping around to find the right one that fits your particular circumstances you’ll not only find the policy that best fits your circumstances, but you won’t be surprised by any unexpected exclusions of the factors affecting how much you can potentially be paid out.