Travel insurance for the USA

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A guide to travel insurance for the USA

Last updated March 19, 2024
Written by Tiana Lee-Collins
Reviewed by Adrian Taylor

Travel insurance tips for USA

Catriona Rowntree’s top travel insurance tips for the USA.
Catriona Rowntree

Why take out travel insurance for the USA?

If you’re heading to the USA, it’s important you get international travel insurance so you can travel with confidence and peace of mind knowing you’re covered. Further reasons to take out a suitable travel insurance company include:

  • You can be financially protected in the event of an incident, and your policy may include cover for illness, injury, theft and travel delays.
  • You won’t be able to access Medicare or your private health insurance overseas, which is why medical cover is crucial for your trip.
  • If an unforeseen natural disaster occurs, you may be covered for cancellations, unexpected accommodation expenses or the rescheduling of your trip.

Choosing travel insurance for the USA

If you’re looking to compare travel insurance quotes and choose a policy, there are a few things you should think about when you get a quote:

  • Choose a policy with high or unlimited medical cover that includes repatriation, as medical costs in the USA are much higher than in Australia.
  • Consider any optional extras you may need depending on your travel plans including adventure activitiescruising or winter sports.
  • Read the fine print of your PDS to understand exactly what you’re covered for before purchasing so you don’t get caught out if you need to claim.

Expert tips for choosing the right travel insurance for the USA for you

Our travel insurance expert, Adrian Taylor, has insider knowledge on choosing the right travel insurance for the USA.

Adrian Taylor
Executive General Manager – General Insurance

Declare your pre-existing medical conditions

Make sure you declare any pre-existing medical conditions so your travel insurance company can assess your application and whether your conditions can be covered. Medical treatment in the USA is incredibly expensive, so understanding any limits of your cover is vital.

Check if you’re covered for COVID-19

Many insurers will include cover for COVID-19 (coronavirus) as part of their top tier policies. However, always check the PDS to understand a policy’s inclusions, exclusions and limits regarding COVID-19 cover so you don’t get caught out if you fall ill.

Frequent travellers should consider annual cover

If you plan to visit the USA or other international destinations multiple times in a single year, it could be worth taking out annual multi-trip cover instead of a single trip policy. Travellers who venture overseas more than three or four times a year may experience greater value from annual cover.

All about travel insurance for the USA

Do I need travel insurance for the USA?

What should my travel insurance policy for the USA include?

What does travel insurance for the USA exclude?

Like any type of insurance, there are some things that travel insurance won’t cover. Specific exclusions in your travel insurance cover may vary between insurers, which is why it’s important to always read a policy’s PDS before purchasing.

Here’s a list of some common exclusions you might find in your travel insurance policy:

  • Pre-existing medical conditions. Unless you declare your pre-existing conditions and your insurer agrees to cover them, any medical treatment or hospital expenses related to those conditions will not be covered.
  • Unattended luggage. If your luggage was stolen while it was left unattended in public, your insurer will likely reject your claim for loss.
  • Illegal and reckless activities. If you knowingly acted illegally or dangerously, your insurer may reject any claims resulting from your actions.
  • If your claim was caused by an incident where you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it may be rejected by your insurer.
  • Extreme and winter sports. Your insurer may not cover you for claims resulting from participation in extreme sportswinter sports like skiing, snowboarding and other adventurous activities like surfing. However, your insurer may offer cover for these activities as an optional extra.

You can find a longer list of what may and may not be covered in our travel insurance FAQs.

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 Government: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Consular State of Play, 2021-2022. Accessed June 2023.

2 Smartraveller. United States of America. Last updated May 2023. Accessed April 2023.