Do I Need Travel Insurance For Australia?

antoine fruchard Antoine Fruchard  updated on March 18, 2020

You are planning a fancy trip to Australia and travel insurance is the least interesting topic you may think about? But during one of your trips, have you ever found yourself in a situation where you had to get emergency treatment or where you lost your baggage at the airport?

Hence, you’re probably wondering how to find the best travel insurance for visiting Australia.

In the below ultimate guide for travelling from the UK to Australia, we will tell you everything you need to know about travel insurance for your trip: is it compulsory, key features, premiums, driving requirements in Australia? Let’s get started.

Why do I need travel insurance for Australia?

Involved in a car accident while driving abroad, injured while practicing sport, sick….

Unfortunately, those things happens much more often than we think, and it could leave you and your travel partners with significant expenses to pay if you didn’t apply for travel insurance before leaving.

Here is a list of the most common unexpected costs arising during people’s trips:

What if….How much will you have to pay without travel insurance?How much will you have to pay with travel insurance?
You need air rescue£5,000£0
until medical expense limit is reached
You need to have surgery and to stay at a hospital  £5,000£0
until medical expense limit is reached
You need medical repatriation £100 000£0
real fees paid out
Your baggage has been lost at the airport£800£0
until personal belongings is reached
Someone stole your money£200£0
until limit is reached
You need to cancel your trip£5,000£0
until cancellation limit is reached
Fees to be paid with or without travel insurance

UK residents visiting Australia will benefit from medical treatment at reduced-cost from Medicare. This has been decided under recriprocal agreement between the NHS in UK and the healthcare system in Australia.
That will not cover:

  • any care related to a pre-existing medical condition while being abroad
  • any routine care not urgent
  • ambulance transportation
  • repatriation
    That will not apply either to any UK resident in Asutralia for a long period of time (to work, to study or else).

For as cheap as a few pounds per day, “Comprehensive Travel Insurance” is a contract which fully covers you for your trip to the Australia and provides you with both financial compensation as well as assistance during your trip.

Travel insurance is not mandatory for anyone holding a valid UK passport but is, however, absolutely necessary to prevent you from significant medical or cancellation costs while travelling abroad.

What are the best travel insurance policies for Australia?

How can you choose between the plethora of travel insurance policies on offer and find the least expensive policy? Many insurers, even some small ones, offer very good value for money deals. We’ve come up with a selection of small and big actors offering tempting deals. 

Among them you’ll find:

InsurerOur reviewSee insurance offer
logo world first
  • Provides all travel insurance types with 4 levels of cover (all rated 5 stars by Defaqto): Standard, Premier, Exclusive, Superior
  • 4,8/5 on TrustPilot
  • Very good customer care according to reviews
  • Offers dedicated family travel insurance
  • No credit or debit card fees guarantee
  • Possibility to apply 12 months in advance
  • UK-based customer service and claim team
  • Reimburse within 14 days
Get quote
logo explorer travel insurance
  • 4,58/5 rate on Reviews
  • Provides all types of travel insurance with 2 level of protection: Gold and GoldPlus
  • Medical compensation for up to 85 years old
  • Dedicated customer service according to reviews
Get quote
logo travel insurance 4 medical
  • 4,8/5 consumers reviews rate on TrustPilot / 5 stars on Defaqto
  • Specialist insurer providing full cover for up to 1000 medical conditions (including Alzheimer’s, HIV, cancer etc.)
  • Includes cover for pregnant women
  • UK based-call center
  • 24/7 assistance team
  • Provides cover for people up to 100 years old
  • Provides all travel insurance types with 3 level of protection
  • Medical compensation limit minimum is £3M and max £10M
  • Also provides cover for cruise and winter sports
Get quote
Travel insurance comparison for Australia

Even better, use our comparison tool to find the best deal for you! At Safe, we’ve checked out hundreds of travel insurance providers and we are now able to allow you to compare dozens of holiday insurance deals in only a few seconds without giving any personal details.

Always remember to check limits and excess amounts, maximum number of days per trip and exclusions in an insurer’s policy terms and conditions booklet. 

What type of travel insurance do I need for my trip to Australia?

You can apply for different insurance types depending on your type of trip, from frequent luxury or business travel to cheap holidays to Australia.

You will most often have the choice to apply between different travel plan:

  • worldwide excluding USA, Canada
  • worldwide including USA, Canada
  • Australia, New-Zealand
  • Europe.

For Australia, as for any destination, travel insurance policy types are:

Travel insurance typeExplanationMain features per type of travel policy
Single trip insuranceThese travel insurance policies are for one-off holidays. 
You will be covered from the start of the journey until the end.
You can decide the number of days you want to be covered for. 
  • Covers for the period of the stay (can be up to 365 days)
  • Often an age limit to apply for policy
Annual multi-trip insuranceThese policies are made for frequent travellers going away for holidays, business trips or for any other reason several times a year. 
You would need to check whether it is more competitive to buy two or three single trip insurance policies or an annual multi-trip policy. 
  • 12 months policy
  • Length of each trip usually limited to 31 days (but can vary from 10 days to 90)
  • Age limit to apply for policy (66 years old on average)
Long stay and gap year insuranceThese plans are made for students or any british resident wanting to explore the world, including for backpacking,  gap year trips or for any other long stay reason.
  • Usually covers periods between 90 days for up to 18 months
  • Age limit to apply for policy (from 16 to 45 only usually)
Types of travel insurance for your trip to Australia

Most of travel insurers offers discounts for couples and group travel insurance policies for your trip to Australia.

How much is travel insurance to Australia?

For example, this is the cheapest price for a single trip policy of seven days (with an excess at £100): 

AgeSingle trip cover to Australia
18 – 35 From £18.65
36 – 50From £19.23
51 – 65From £23.14
66 – 75From £29.48
Single and annual multi trip cover to Australia cost per age range

It is, however, quite difficult to give precise ranges of how much a travel insurance will cost you for Australia, as prices are based on a wide range of criteria. It will mainly depend on:

  • If you’re going for a single or annual multi-trip as mentioned above
  • If you’re subscribing to upgrades such as cruise, business or gadget cover
  • If you have pre-existing medical conditions 
  • The length of your stay in Australia
  • If you’re travelling alone, with your partner, a group or your family
  • The financial limits you’d like to get in case of a claim
  • The excess amount you’re willing to pay
  • What will you be doing in Australia (e.g. winter or extreme sports)?

What does your travel insurance for Australia should cover? 

Each travel insurance policy is different, since it is the insurer who determines the content of the contracts it offers: guarantees, compensation limits, deductibles, travel insurance prices, etc. 

However, all contracts on the market must include at least the following guarantees, applicable in Europe and elsewhere abroad:

  • Medical expenses: compensation by the insurer for your health expenses during your stay (consultation, analysis, emergency treatment, longer hospital stay, etc.).
  • Repatriation assistance to the UK: financial and logistical support by a dedicated 24/7 team for your early return to your country of residence if it proves necessary. 
  • Trip cancellation and cover for delayed or missed departure: compensation if you need to cancel your trip for whatever reason or if you missed your departure.
  • Personal liability: compensation for any damage or injury made to a third-party (consider adding it as extra if not included in standard cover).
  • Baggage: compensation for any lost or theft of baggage while travelling (consider adding it as extra if not included in standard cover).

Most of the time, travel insurers offer different formulas. Cover types involved are usually the same, but the compensation limits and deductibles vary. 

Main guaranteesCover you should get for your trip to AustraliaLimit you should get for your trip to AustraliaGood to check
Medical travel insurance
  • Any emergency transport, medical procedures and treatments at the hospital
  • 24/7 assistance team and helplines
£1 million limit
on average
  • Are private or public hospitals included in your policy?
  • Will there be advance fees?
  • If you haven’t declared any pre-existing medical conditions or a pending diagnosis, any claim related to healthcare will be declared as invalidated by your insurer.
  • Are dental emergency treatments included?
  • Will any “accompanying person” fees be reimbursed?
Trip cancellation / curtailment
  • Illness, injury or even death of you or one of your relatives at the time of departure
  • Very bad weather conditions at your destination
  • Terrorist attack at your destination
£2000 limit
minimum
  • Is it included as standard or as an option?
  • Will you get compensation if you cancel your trip for “all justified reasons”?
  • Which reasons exactly are included to get compensation for your trip cancellation?
Baggage 
  • Compensation for baggage and belongings theft or loss up to the limit known
  • No receipt required
£1500 limit
minimum
  • Is it only valid during return transport or during the entire stay?
  • Do you need the receipts for any belongings for baggage claims?
Missed departure, delay 
  • Compensation if you miss your flight or train when it is beyond your control or if your journey is delayed
£500 limit
minimum
(£200 limit for delay)
  • Are all justified reasons for missed departure covered? 
  • How many hours delay to get compensation?
Repatriation
  • Cost of repatriation before or after your original ticket
Real fees
  • Is any transportation mode included (by alternative schedule flight or by air ambulance)?
Personal liability
  • Compensation for any damage or injury made to a third-party during your trip up to the limit known
£2 million limit 
on average
  • What is the limit by article and valuables (don’t focus on overall limit only)?
Legal expenses
  • Legal fees for claiming compensation to another person
£15000 limit
on average
  • Does it cover any lawyer fees (including appointment fees)?
Must-have features of your travel insurance to Australia

What are the nice-to-have features for your travel insurance to Europe?

Main guaranteesCover you should get for your trip to AustraliaLimit you should get for your trip to AustraliaGood to check
Money and cashCovers for loss or theft of money or equivalent such as cheques, pre-paid tickets£500 for money limit
minimum

£200 for cash
minimum
  • How long can you make a claim to the police to be covered? 
  • Is there a 24-hour claim limit?
Dental emergency Covers for emergency dental care£250
minimum
  • What is included in emergency dental care? 
  • Cosmetic will most of the time be excluded
Loss of passport or documentationCovers additional fees such as accomodation or travel replacement as a result of loss of documentation£250
minimum
  • How many nights are covered?
  • Do you need receipts of any additional fees incurred?
Nice-to-have features for your travel insurance to Australia

Which upgrades could you add as extras for your travel insurance to Australia?

Additionally, you may tailor your policy for your trip to Australia area with optional extras such as:

  • Business trip insurance for Australia
  • Sport, winter sport, extreme sport cover
  • Schedule Airline Failure (at least £1500 covered)
  • Gadget insurance
  • Cruise cover
  • Etc. 

What does your travel insurance to Australia not cover?

Most travel insurers will not give financial compensation for: 

  • Any claim made as a result of pre-medical condition or pending diagnosis undeclared at the time of purchase
  • Any claim made as a result of you being under drugs or alcohol
  • Difficulties due to natural disaster, war, civil unrest (watch out for strikes)
  • Any claim made as a result of a terrorist attack (except if you took this cover as an option)
  • Pregnancy and childbirth complications during travel

We would advise you to thoroughly check your policy booklet for the main exclusions before leaving home. 

What else should you pay attention to while shopping around for travel insurance for Australia?

While shopping around for travel insurance for your trip to Australia, always pay attention to:

  • The compensation amounts you will get for a claim by consulting our up-to-date reviews on each insurer (especially for medical expenses, trip cancellation, personal liability, baggage and personal belongings)
  • The deductible amounts you’ll have to pay in case of claim (don’t forget that you’ll need to pay the excess on each claim)
  • The exclusions you may have in your policy (strike, cancellation trip due to the carrier defaulting etc.)
  • Coverages included in policies or available as upgrades (winter sports, business trip etc.)
  • The claim process (100% online? How many days do you have to make a claim?)
  • The maximum duration of each trip included as standard (at least 31 days)
  • The upper age limit (if you are a senior travelling).

What should I know before travelling to Australia?

Is Australia safe to visit? 

This is what the Foreign Travel Office writes about Australia:

There is an ongoing outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Australia. The Australian authorities have introduced a number of measures to limit the spread of the virus. From midnight on 15 March, all passengers arriving in Australia from all countries are required to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival.
Over 700,000 British nationals visit Australia every year. Most visits are trouble-free.

There is an ongoing outbreak of coronavirus in China, but cases have been confirmed in other countries including Australia. The Australian authorities have introduced a number of measures to limit the spread of the virus. From midnight on 15 March, all passengers arriving in Australia from all countries are required to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival.

Australia is a vast country. You should plan journeys carefully, particularly if you’re travelling to remote areas, bushwalking or going swimming.

Australia is prone to seasonal natural disasters including tropical cyclones, flash flooding, dust storms and bushfires (forest fires). Tropical cyclones occur mainly in Queensland, Northern Territory and Western Australia between November and April. You should monitor the progress of approaching storms and follow the advice of local authorities, including the state emergency services and the Bureau of Meteorology.

You’ll need to get a visa before you travel.

If you’re on a working holiday visa you should be aware of your rights as employees in Australia and how to report any concerns about unfair or unlawful treatment.

Terrorists are likely to try to carry out attacks in Australia. Australia’s current national terrorism threat level is ‘probable’ (see the Australian national terrorism threat advisory system. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners. You should be vigilant and take sensible precautions.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. Make sure this covers you for all activities you plan to do while in Australia, including manual labour if you’re backpacking; and adventure sports like bungee jumping, diving and paragliding.

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.

How to contact the British Embassy in Australia?

Depending on where you are located, you can contact:  

British Consulate-General Sydney
Address

Consul-General and Director General UK Trade & Investment: Mr Michael Ward
Level 16, Gateway Building, 1 Macquarie Place
Sydney NSW 2000
Australia

Phone (if you’re in Australia)

+61 2 9247 7521
24/7 landline for both routine and emergency enquiries.

Phone (if you’re in the UK)020 7008 1500
Email[email protected]
British Consulate-General Sydney contact details
British Consulate-General Melbourne
Address

Consul-General: Mr Chris Holtby
17th Floor, 90 Collins St
Melbourne VIC 3000
Australia

Phone (if you’re in Australia)

+61 (0)3 9652 1600
24/7 landline for both routine and emergency enquiries.

British Consulate-General Melbourne contact details
British Consulate Perth
Address

British Consulate Perth
Level 12
251 Adelaide Terrace
Perth WA 6000
Australia

Phone (if you’re in Australia)

+61 (0)8 9224 4700
24/7 landline for both routine and emergency enquiries.

British Consulate Perth contact details

Comment's content is required.
Your name is required