Travel insurance for Antarctica

Average customer rating: 4.3/5
Written by Tiana Lee-Collins
Reviewed by Adrian Taylor
Updated 21 May 2024

Do I need travel insurance for Antarctica?

Antarctica is very remote, so medical attention and evacuation can be extremely expensive if you don’t have adequate cover to protect you. Because of this, it’s unlikely that you’ll find a responsible tour operator who doesn’t insist that you get travel insurance.

While travel insurance isn’t mandatory for all cruises, there are some that may deny boarding if you don’t have an adequate level of coverage. The necessary level of travel insurance coverage may vary depending on your tour operator and your individual circumstances and needs.

Expert tips for choosing the right travel insurance for Antarctica

Our Executive General Manager of General Insurance, Adrian Taylor, has a few tips on getting the most out of your travel insurance policy for Antarctica.

Adrian Taylor
Executive General Manager – General Insurance

Make sure your insurer covers Antarctica

Some insurers may not cover losses in Antarctica, so check the coverage, terms and conditions of a policy before making any purchase. You may want to contact an insurer directly to ask about coverage for Antarctica. If you’re heading to South America to depart on a cruise from Ushuaia, Argentina or Punta Arenas, Chile, don’t forget to also list these or any other destinations on your travel insurance policy.

Consider what you need cover for

For such a remote destination, it’s crucial you’re covered for emergency medical evacuation and medical treatment, as transportation back to a country with the healthcare you need can be incredibly expensive. You should also consider cover for disruptions such as cancellations and luggage, as well as any additional cover you may need for cruise or ski holidays. You’ll need to buy a policy that suits all the requirements of your trip.

Consider increasing your excess to lower your premium

You might want to choose a higher excess to reduce your premium. But remember that your excess is what you pay out of pocket if you need to make a claim, so always choose a manageable excess amount.

What you should know about travelling to Antarctica

Why should I get travel insurance for Antarctica?

How do I get to Antarctica?

Is Antarctica safe?

What should my travel insurance for Antarctica include?

Antarctica is a unique destination that offers the ultimate adventure. A great way to start preparing for any destination (not just Antarctica) is with a comprehensive travel insurance plan, and here’s why.

Medical cover

Cruise cover

Adventure sports cover

Winter sports cover

Luggage cover

Trip cancellations, disruptions and delays

What is excluded from travel insurance for Antarctica?

All travel insurance policies have specific exclusions that may limit their cover. These will vary depending on your insurance provider and policy, but in general, some common exclusions may include:

  • If you didn’t disclose any pre-existing medical conditions. You may not be covered if you try to claim because of an incident related to a pre-existing medical condition that you didn’t disclose or that your insurer didn’t agree to cover.
  • If you leave your belongings unattended. Your belongings will only be covered if you took the necessary precautions to keep them safe.
  • If you go against the advice of your activity guide. If you ignore your cruise or activity guide’s advice, your insurer may not cover you in the event of an accident.
  • If you were intoxicated when you were injured. Drug or alcohol-related injuries usually aren’t covered.

Find out more about what’s not typically covered by travel insurance policies by visiting our page on common travel exclusions. Your policy’s PDS will specify any exclusions applicable to your cover.

Meet our travel insurance expert, Adrian Taylor

Adrian Taylor
Executive General Manager – General Insurance

As the Executive General Manager of General Insurance, Adrian Taylor believes in educating customers about the importance of travel insurance so that anyone can kick back and make the most of their time away from home. While no one wants a disrupted holiday, a suitable travel insurance policy can provide a financial safety net for yourself, your belongings and your trip in case things go wrong.

1 Australian Antarctic Program – Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water, Australian Government. Antarctic weather. Accessed May 2024.

2 Smartraveller. Severe weather. Last updated October 2023. Accessed May 2024.