Explore Travel Insurance

While there’s no doubt travel insurance is a necessary purchase for your travels, you should make sure the policy you take out is appropriate for your needs, budget and travels. When shopping around, consider looking for a policy that covers the type of traveller you are and what you’re doing on your trip

How to choose a travel insurance plan

Choosing which type of travel insurance is best for you will depend on your circumstances. Some considerations include:

Before deciding to buy travel insurance, read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) to understand the extent of your cover and any limitations, exclusions or conditions you might want to be aware of.

Levels of cover

Most travel insurance providers offer three levels of cover:

  • Basic/medical-only. Medical-only travel insurance covers emergency medical treatment while overseas, without the other benefits typically included in a travel insurance policy. Read more about Reciprocal Health Care Agreements and travel insurance for medical only.
  • Standard. These policies will typically have medical cover, along with a wider range of benefits including cancellation, loss of luggage and more.
  • Comprehensive. Top tier policies will include all the benefits of the lower levels of cover, but with higher benefit limits. They may also have more inclusions, such as COVID-19 cover.

What are the different types of travel insurance?

There are several different travel insurance types to choose from that may provide peace of mind while on your trip. When shopping around, consider looking for a policy that covers who you are and what you’re doing on your trip.

Firstly, depending on how often you travel, you can choose between:

Depending on where you plan on travelling, you’ll need either:

  • Domestic travel insurance, which covers trips around Australia but doesn’t include medical cover or domestic cruises.
  • International travel insurance, which covers any trips you take overseas.

If you’re travelling with others, there are the following options:

Two women holding hands with travel insurance for couples


If you and your partner are travelling together, you may be eligible for a couples travel policy. This can cover both of you under a single policy. It’s typically also available for any two travel companions who share an itinerary.

Happy family with cancellation cover on holiday in Norway


When travelling with family members, you have more belongings to insure, more people that could fall ill and more unforeseen situations you can’t pre-empt. Travel insurance for families may cover your whole family under one policy.

group of backpackers at the beach with travel insurance


Travelling in a group? With this type of insurance, everyone can be covered for the same activities and events, both before and after you depart, with travel insurance for groups.

Additional extras

You may want to add additional cover to your policy depending on what activities are on your itinerary. Many activities are not included under standard policies; however, you can purchase extras to cover you for those scenarios. Common add-ons include:

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Adventure cover

Not all activities will be covered by your policy automatically. In this case, you may be able to purchase an adventure pack add-on to still be covered. You can find the list of automatically covered activities in your policy’s PDS.

a couple on a ski trip in the snow

Ski cover

If you’re hitting the slopes on your holiday, consider ski insurance. This optional extra can cover things like winter sports, piste closures, ski equipment hire and medical treatment. If you injure yourself on-piste without ski cover, your medical costs won’t be covered.

Cruise ship holiday trip

Cruise cover

Domestic and international cruises can be covered by travel insurance, though you’ll typically have to purchase additional cover. See how you can be financially protected at sea and beyond with travel insurance for cruises.

Happy couple driving with rental car excess

Rental car excess

If you’re planning on renting a car to drive around on holiday, be sure your policy covers your rental car excess fee in the event of an accident. If it isn’t automatically covered, you can usually still purchase it as an add-on to your policy.

a couple riding on a scooter together through the streets of BIiza, Spain

Motorcycle and scooter cover

If you’re overseas and driving on foreign roads on a motorcycle, scooter, moped or Vespa, you should consider getting covered with travel insurance for motorcycles. This will help provide medical cover if you’re in an accident while driving.

Frequently asked questions

Is travel insurance compulsory?

No, travel insurance is typically not compulsory for Australians; however, we recommend always purchasing a policy before travelling to protect yourself from financial loss if something goes wrong. At a minimum, travellers should consider a basic, medical-only policy in case they’re injured or fall ill on their travels.

What should your travel insurance cover include?

A comprehensive travel insurance policy usually has higher benefit limits and more inclusions. These include cover for:

If you’re looking for travel insurance for a trip in Australia, remember that, unlike international travel insurance policies, domestic policies will not include medical coverage. This is because you’re typically covered by Medicare or your own private medical insurance while in the country.

Is cruise insurance different from travel insurance?

Cruise insurance, also known as cruise cover, is typically an add-on for a policy instead of a standalone product. A standard international travel insurance policy won’t cover cruise-related claims, just as cruise cover typically won’t cover incidents that happen on land at any port of call.

For comprehensive travel insurance coverage, we recommend having both travel insurance and cruise cover, so you’re covered both on land and at sea.

What about credit card travel insurance?

Credit card travel insurance is complimentary cover included with your credit card if you have fulfilled the activation criteria. While handy for some, be aware complimentary travel insurance coverage is typically limited and will not cover pre-existing medical conditions or cover typically offered in policy add-ons, such as ski or cruise cover.

Adrian Taylor, Executive General Manager

Top tips on choosing the right type of travel insurance from our travel expert, Adrian Taylor

  • Be sure to pick travel insurance that fits your itinerary. If you plan on skiing or driving around in a rental vehicle without the right cover, you will have to pay out of pocket if something goes wrong.
  • If you’re not travelling alone, a couples or family policy may have more value than purchasing multiple individual policies. As a bonus, most travel insurers will allow dependent children to travel at no extra cost.
  • Choosing the right level of cover is important. While medical-only cover may suit short, simple trips, a comprehensive policy can offer you cancellation cover, medical cover and more.

Compare travel insurance policies

Once you have an idea of what type of travel insurance you need, you can compare policies with our free online comparison tool. You can compare insurers, levels of cover and travel insurance benefits all in one place and in just minutes. Simples!

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