Frequently Asked Questions
Below is a list of frequently asked questions that we have put together to help you with your travel insurance purchase. Please read this document before contacting us with any enquiries as we probably already have the answers in here for you.
- Are you an Insurer, a Broker or Underwriter?
No, we are strictly a RESELLER of Travel Insurance.
- Are the Underwriters reputable?
All the underwriters undergo an extensive screening process by us before becoming affiliated with our company. At times we may drop them if they fail to provide our clients with adequate service. This is not to impugn their integrity, just that, in our view, we believe they are not good enough for you, our client.
- Who underwrites the products we offer?
- Allianz, QBE.
Annual Trip / Frequent Traveller Policy
- Am I permitted to stay longer than the maximum stated length of journey on the policy
All insurers state the maximum length of any single journey commencing in and out of Australia - this is NOT negotiable so if the insurer, for example, states that the maximum days away is 37 days, you must be back in Australia within the maximum stated period
- Can I purchase this policy if I am overseas already
- Am I permitted to start my journey outside Australia or cease my trip overseas
- I am an Australian Overseas who will be doing multiple trips from overseas to other destinations and return, may I purchase this Policy?
- No. This policy is ONLY available for people who depart and return to Australia and are Australian Citizens or Australian Permanent Residents.
- Can I wait until I get home to make a claim?
Yes. Provided the incident you are claiming for took place while you were travelling overseas and your policy was valid at the time, if you want to wait until you get home to submit your claim then that's fine. Some insurers may state they require to be advised of an incident over a certain dollar value, please refer to the relevant Product Disclosure Statement for this information.
- What is "due care and attention" ?
Some examples are:-
If you leave your hand luggage unattended in a public place (outside the toilet at the airport, for example) and it disappears, your insurer may reject your claim, as you haven't paid due care and attention to your goods. Equally, if you leave your luggage with somebody you don't know - for example at the airport while you buy a cup of coffee - that, too, is not giving due care or attention. This duty of care spills over into your baggage and rented cars. Most policies will not pay out if your luggage is stolen from your rented car when it is in the boot overnight. Other insurance companies can refuse the claim if it is stolen from the main part of the car.
- Should I obtain police reports or doctors details for insurance purposes?
- I know it cuts into your valuable holiday time, but there isn't a lot of point in trying to obtain such vital information once you have returned to Australia. Get the information you need as soon as possible, and store it in a safe place.
- I need to make a claim. Who do I contact?
You should contact the insurer whose policy document was sent to you when you first applied for coverage - we ( as resellers) are unable to assist with claims. If the matter is urgent and you are overseas call the emergency contact number. If it is not life threatening and you may wait until you return from vacation to process your claim, or have a relative assist in processing it for you.
- If I decide to return home because I am ill, do I need the insurer's agreement?
- Yes, whatever the circumstances. If you intend to do something that you will claim for later, you first have to obtain your insurer's agreement.
Conditions, Forms and Applications
- What should I look for in a travel insurance policy?
- There is a very wide variety of travel insurance policies available. They all have their good features, and they all apply various restrictions. It's important that you know what you want covered, and understand what your policy actually covers you against. We've all heard the horror stories of travellers injured in places like the United States or Europe, where a hospital bill for a relatively minor condition can exceed $50,000. In such circumstances, that insurance premium is a worthwhile investment. Travel is one of the most hotly contested classes of insurance when it comes to claims. The Financial Ombudsman Service, the insurance industry's dispute resolution system, reported that the vast majority of disputed travel claims revolved around two areas: what the policy was intended to cover and how much goods claimed really cost
- Where can I get an application form?
The Generic/Basic application forms are built up by our system on your computer and then can be emailed directly to us by the single click of a button. (excludes Pre-existing assessment which is provided to you by us after lodgement of generic application)
- Which policy is the right one for me?
Our web site is structured to ensure that we get the most correct possible information to ensure our system provides you policies that we may offer for your consideration. For example we ensure we know exactly which regions you are visiting to ensure the policy offered for your considertion actually cover all your stated destinations. We cannot (nor have we ever done so since we started back in 1999) recommend one policy over the other however; we can provide you with a basic comparison layout of offers and all the information needed to make an educated decision by providing the Product Disclosure Statement for each policy.
- I need to speak to someone, is that possible?
We are always happy to talk to you about problems accessing the site or clarifying a point. We prefer however, all questions be in writing via e-mail so that we may seek the correct answer to your exact question from our insurer and also so you have a written record of our/their reply. We do not initiate calls to mobile/cellular phones or overseas. During weekday business hours we operate live chat and this may assist you.
- Do you have offices interstate or overseas?
NO - We are a 100% Internet operation based in Pacific Paradise, Queensland, Australia.
General Travel Insurance Questions
- I am taking a friends child/children with us on holidays - can they be covered on my policy like my own children?
NO- If the child is not your dependant child ( by law) or you grandchild they will not be covered by your policy. The child will need their own policy. The price is the same as if they were an Adult travelling.
- What is a duty of disclosure?
- Under the law, we as agents for our various insurers are required to inform you about your Duty of Disclosure. We have asked and will ask various questions of you. You have a duty at law, when answering them, to give us honest and complete answers and to tell us everything you know and that a reasonable person, in the circumstances, could be expected to tell us. You answer the questions for yourself and everyone else covered by the policy, because you apply on their behalf and with their consent. If you breach the duty, the insurer may cancel the policy or reduce the amount the insurer pays for a claim. If fraud is involved, the insurer may treat the policy as if it never existed and pay nothing. Forfiture of the total premium may apply.
- Who cannot purchase a policy off this site?
If the click selections on our site do not cover your circumstances, we are unable to assist you.
- I am an Australian overseas - can I purchase any policy?
- You may only select policies in the "Australians Already Overseas" listing.
- Why do I need insurance for medical treatment?
What would happen if you were run over in rural Thailand, broke your leg in Africa, or if you were injured in a car accident in the United States. The average hospital bed in the United States is approximately $4,293USD per night stay. The cost to repatriate you from anywhere in the world is at least $50,000AUD. Contemplate having no travel insurance if you take ill wherever you're planning to travel. Travel insurance is essential. If you can't afford the insurance, you can't afford to go.
- What is the situation for insurance for me and my children travelling with me?
Insurers allow dependent children, under 18 and some under 25 , to be on a policy at no extra charge. So if you are a single adult travelling with a dependent child, then you still just purchase a SINGLE policy. Two adults travelling with a dependent child purchase a Family policy and they are covered free on the policy. Please refer to the relevant insurers Product Disclosure Statement for their definition of 'dependent'.
- How do I know you are legitimate and not a con site?
- ANYONE selling travel Insurance in Australia MUST have a number issued in accordance with the Financial Services Reform Act administered by ASIC. Our Authorised FSRA number is 228753. This number may designate they are an referrer, Authorised Representive or a Distributor. The surest way is to look up the insurer yourself and simply contact the insurer direct.
- I have booked my travel with a Travel Agent, am I permitted to purchase my policy from you instead of them?
- The Financial Services Reform Act states that you may purchase travel insurance from whom so ever you choose. Should you be advised otherwise we urge you to contact the ACCC who are charged by the Government to administer the Act.
- Are dependent children travelling with me covered on my policy?
All dependant children to the age of 18 to 25 (depends on the policy chosen) are automatically covered; some insurers may limit the number of children. Please refer to the relevant insurers Product Disclosure Statement for their definition of 'dependant'.
- The length of time I am away is not stated on the Certificate of Insurance - the period shown is higher/lower than my length of travel?
Travel insurers layout their policy to show the periods covered in steps (eg 5 days, next 9 days etc). Our site calculates your trip dates, allows for bonus or free days (where available) and lists all the policies you may consider for the period you have indicated. So if you are travelling for say 6 days , the policy may state 5 days , but as there is one bonus day, it will cover your 6 day trip.
- I understand some insurers offer bonus days. Do your insurers do that too?
We automatically incorporate these bonus/free days wherever they are offered.
- General Insurance, Code of Practice
You may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) a free, and independent, national dispute resolution service that handles general insurance enquiries and complaints. The FOS can be contacted toll free 1300 780 808.
Parts of a Policy
- What are the Parts of a Policy?
As we sell for 4 different insurers the following information is General and may NOT apply to some of the insurers we represent. Please read the Product Disclosure Statement of the relevant insurerfor what they specifically cover
- Medical and additional expenses, including cover for the costs of medical, surgical, hospital, ambulance, emergency dental, medical evacuation and additional expenses.
- Cover for cancellation charges on prepaid arrangements.
- Cover for luggage and personal effects that are taken on the trip or purchased during it. Note that there is usually a limit per item, with an overall limit for electronic equipment like cameras and personal computers.
- Cover for travel documents, credit cards or travellers cheques that are lost or stolen. There is usually a limit - either per item or overall.
- Personal liability in case you accidentally injure another person or damage their property, this provides you with cover against the possible cost of the damage. In some parts of the world, the liability can be huge.
- Return airfare if you suffer an accident or need to return home due to a covered event outside your control.
- Travel Delays which covers you for additional meals and accommodation expenses if your journey is delayed for more than a certain number of hours. Delays due to industrial action and - even worse - weather are far more common than you might think.
- Emergency luggage which allows you reimbursement of your purchases for essential items if your luggage is temporarily delayed by the carrier.
- Accidental death: it won't make you feel any better (how could it?) but a payout to your estate should you be killed on your trip will certainly make things easier for your family. Limits usually apply, ranging from $10,000 to $25,000, depending on the type of policy.
- Resumption of journey if you have to return home early due to the unexpected death of a relative, some insurers will offer you cover for the costs of resuming your overseas trip. Note, however, the word "unexpected".
- Out-of-pocket expenses provides you with spending money for each day that you are confined in an overseas hospital.
- Loss of income because of the accident you had while you were overseas may prevent you from working on your return home, so some policies provide a benefit ranging from $5,000 to $25,000.
- Domestic pets; those kennel and cattery fees can accumulate rather quickly if you are caught up overseas by injury or an unforeseen delay.
- Rental vehicle excess provides cover for the insurance excess on your rental vehicle if it is involved in an accident or stolen. If you're planning to do a lot of driving on your overseas holiday, it can be a very handy cover to have.
- Free cover for children and dependants under the age of up to 25, accompanying the policyholder.
- Cover for Sport - if you're partial to skiing, ice sports, hot-air ballooning, scuba diving, bungee jumping, white-water rafting, para gliding and so on, look for a policy that offers specific cover for amateur or action sports. The policy will define exactly what is covered.
- How can I pay for the insurance?
You may pay by credit card, money order or cheque. When paying on line by credit card, we utlise the services of eWay(tm) a secure third party gate way that links directly to the credit card provider.
Payment by cheque or money order requires that they reach us well before your travel date as , in the case of cheque payments (unless it is a Bank Cheque), means that we will NOT issue the policy until the cheque is cleared.In order to utilise this service please contact us by telephone as shown on the Contact Us page.
- Which Credit Cards do you accept?
To further strengthen our security of your data, we have chosen to join eWay as our payment gateway, through this we accept American Express, Diners Club, JCB, MasterCard, Visa.
- Is there a fee to use my card?
No, we do not charge a fee.
If you wish to pay by Money Order or cheque such payment must clear and the policy can only commence (at the earliest) from the date payment is cleared - there is no back dating of policies.
- Who do I make Cheques or money order payable to?
- All cheques and money orders are made payable to, Travel Insurance Australia Pty Ltd Trust Account.
- Must I sign all the areas where a 'signature' is required?
YES - A tick in the relevant boxes signifies a signature of acceptance. Please note that persons under 18 may NOT 'sign' as the application is a form of contract.
- I am planning to take my video camera and sound equipment with me, are they covered?
The amount paid for loss of your video, camera or sound equipment will depend on your insurance policy and the insurer involved, refer to your individual policy wording. Should you require a higher coverage you may make the item a 'Specified Item' and it will be covered for a fee between 4%-6% of the value you wish to nominate.
NOTE you WILL need to have either a Receipt or Valuation, insurers require that they be no older than 12 months. A Quotation is NOT acceptable to the underwriters.
- What is the excess on a Travel Insurance Policy?
Most travel tnsurance policies have an excess on certain sections. These are in a range of $50 -$250 per incident. You will need to examine the insurers policy of your choice for the exact amount. Some insurers offer an option to buy out the excess.
In the case of excess for pre-existing Medical Conditions that may vary dramatically and any price will be provided after the relevant assessment of the conditions sought for cover are completed, but before your purchase.
- Can I buy out the excess on a policy?
In most cases you may pay a fee to remove the excess. This will vary according to the insurer chosen and you should refere to the relevant PDS supplied for/by each insurer.
- What part of a claim do I have to pay for?
- Policy excesses vary by product. Please check the PDS/ policy wording for specific details. For some products you can remove the excess by paying an additional amount.
- What other Extras can I buy for my Travel Insurance Policy?
Depending on the type of travel insurance you are purchasing and the insurer - Insurers offer increased Specific Item cover, Snowcover and increased Collision Damage Waiver (Rental Vehicle Excess). HINT: If you have some jewellery that exceeds the travel Insurance item limit, and you have Home contents insurance, check to see if your insurer covers it round the world under that Household policy.
Pre-existing and Medical
- What is a pre-existing medical condition?
The definition of pre-existing medical conditions varies between insurers. If you will be requiring coverage for a pre-existing medical condition, it is important to check each insurer’s PDS to ensure they are able to offer the cover you’ll need. Below are some EXAMPLES ONLY
- An ongoing medical or dental condition of which you are aware, or related complication you have, or the symptoms of which you are aware;
- A medical or dental condition that is currently being, or has been investigated, or treated by a health professional (including dentist or chiropractor);
- Any condition for which you take prescribed medicine;
- Any condition for which you have had surgery;
- Any condition for which you see a medical specialist; or
- Will I be covered if I am pregnant?
- Almost all insurers cover up to 26 weeks confinement. Some now require that you complete a medical appraisal form to assess if they will cover you for perhaps a longer period. You should, in all cases, refer to the relevant Product Disclosure Statement to ensure that your specific condition is covered, and/or if you are required to complete any additional forms.
- How do I print out a pre-existing form?
Today's insurers have progressed from requiring that you immediately complete such a form.
Firstly you must submit a full BASIC application (as if you had no condition) to us. During the basic application, when you tick you have an assessable condition (or your age requires that this form be complete) a set of instructions will pop up in another creen to advise you what will occur next.
This has many varieties now from telephone assessment after we issue you a quote number through to printing out a form that we will email you to be completed and returned to us by fax or email.
This process for pre-existing may take 24 to 72 hours for processing (excludes weekends), so applying at the last minute may mean we cannot offer you a policy at all.
- If I develop a medical condition after taking out the insurance, but before I leave Australia, am I covered?
You are covered for cancellation once your policy is paid for and you have been issued with a Certificate of Insurance. If you develop a medical condition after this time and are unable to travel as planned, you may be able to claim for cancellation or rearrangement costs. Please check the relevant PDS for more details.
- Should I suspend my private health cover while I'm away?
- If you are going away for a long period, it may be worth contacting your private health insurance. Some health insurers will allow the suspension for anything from two weeks, but the amount of time and effort would probably make this an expensive exercise. But if you're going away for two months, then it maybe is a worthwhile consideration. You need to prove you are out of the country for that period with documentary evidence such as your passport and your ticket. Refer to your private health insurance provider for more information.
- Which insurance policies cover medical evacuation/repatriation as well?
Where "Medical" appears on the quote char for your trip and there is an amount, this is covered.
Prices and Purchasing
- How much does a policy cost?
Prices vary, firstly by type of policy and depending on:
- Length of trip
- Age of traveller
to find out how much a policy costs, choose a product.
- What does Area or Region mean in the Policy label? Do I have to worry about it in my search for a policy
Area (1-7) or Region (1-7) is the geographical area that the insurer proscribes for the country/geographic area/region you are travelling. In some instances a specific city may be listed as well as the country especially if the city (eg Bali) attracts a lesser premium than the country (eg Indonesia). This is based on actuarial considerations.
You need not worry about this, other than to tell that it is one (perhaps) of a number of options offered by a specific insurer to you as a result of the data you have input in your search. Our system selects the correct policies based on your information provided.
- Can I purchase my insurance directly from the insurer over the Internet?
Yes and No.
Yes - We have added a link page to where you can buy a policy over the Internet directly from the insurer however, no discount will be applied at that time.
NO - If you are seeking cover for Pre-existing Medical Conditions which are not listed by the insurer as automatically covered, or you are over a certain age (where the insurer states they require an Age/Pre-existing Medical assessment). You will only be permitted to complete the generic form and print it out, and you will be presented with information about what you are required to do next. This may entail us emailing you a specific quote number and a telephone number for an assessment over the telephone, or us forwarding you a form to be completed and signed, required by the insurer.
- Can I get the Internet price from you by taking the application to any travel agent?
- No - We are not affiliated with any other operator other than the insurance companies themselves. The Discount is NOT the Insurers, but OURS.
- Can I get your Internet price by going direct to the insurer?
- No - The discounted price is only valid through our website.
- Can you quote me a price?
- Our site is designed to provide quotes right through to purchasing and as a result we do not give Phone, Fax or email quotes. You can receive a quote on line for all policies available for your trip. Prices on line exclude pre-existing surcharges, which are assessed individually by the insurer on lodgment of application form.
- What happens if I change my mind about the policy?
- The insurer provides a cooling off period if you change your mind. Within 14 or 21days (depending on the insurer - Please refer to the relevant PDS) after the issue of the policy , provided you have not started your journey and you do not want to make a claim under the policy, you will be refunded the full amount of the premium you have paid. However PLEASE NOTE - WE charge an administration fee for a cancellation if within the insurers Money Guarantee period. (see FEES on our home page).
- Can I cancel my policy and get a refund?
Yes, the insurers money back guarantee allows you to cancel your policy and claim a refund, but only if you cancel your policy within 14 days or 21 days of purchase (depending on the insurer) AND you haven't departed on your journey or made any sort of claim or intend to make a claim. However PLEASE NOTE WE charge an administration fee for a cancellation even if within the insurers Money Guarantee (Cooling Off) period. (see FEES on our home page).
- If I return home early, do I get a refund?
No. - for example if you buy a 6 month policy and return home after 2 months, the policy is terminated and you don't get a refund.
Prices Displayed on Site
- What currency are your prices?
- As we are an Australian Site, our prices are in AUD (Australian Dollars). Sites that take you to other countries MAY NOT be in Australian Dollars (example the US sites we are linked to are in USD).
Travel Insurance Australia 1st Floor, 644 David Low Way, Pacific Paradise QLD 4564 Australia