Travel Insurance Direct

Backpacker travel insurance

What you need to know about travelling with your pack on your back.

Are you planning on backpacking the globe for long periods and want to be covered for multiple countries in one trip? Do you want the freedom of backpacking and having access to coverage for medical, baggage, volunteer and work, trip delays, and more?

Whether you do it in your 20s or 30s, backpacking provides some incredible and unique experiences. Whether you’re doing it cheap, in share accommodation, or glamping your way around the globe or around Australia, there’s a special joy to carrying all you’ll need with you on your back.

What TID covers

While we would love to cover you for everything and anything that may happen, unfortunately that’s not how travel insurance works. However, we think our travel insurance plans offer all of the travel insurance basics, and some handy optional extras just in case you need them.

TID offers a choice of four plans - Domestic, The Basics, The Works, and Annual Multi Trip, some of the cover highlights of our plans include:

  • Cancellation costs
  • Overseas medical expenses
  • Travel delay
  • Baggage and personal effects
  • 24 hour Emergency Assistance
  • Snow Sports cover (optional)
  • And much more…

How we can help you on your next backpacking trip

While travel insurance may be the last thing on your to do list it could be worth considering as it may come in handy. While you may see it as an added expense, it may be a life saver against unforeseen events.

Without the added benefit of travel insurance, you may end up spending much more on potential expenses due to a medical emergency or last-minute flight cancellation. Below we have included some of the top reasons why you may want to consider travel insurance.

Has your trip ended before it even begins?

TID offers trip cancellation cover if, for example, you’ve got a family member who is sick and you can’t travel. Similarly, if bad weather results in your flight being cancelled or delayed for more than 6 hours, or you’re called for jury duty, then you may be covered.

Cover for baggage, tech gear, and high value items

Its always important to keep an eye or two on your bags when backpacking, whether you’re on a plane, train or automobile. You may fall asleep or go for a surf and realize your tech gear is stolen or the airline loses your bags. To find out more check out our bags and personal effects cover article. You also have the option of adding additional cover by specifying your valuable items and paying an additional premium when you get a quote.

Cover for responsible backpackers who want to give back to the community

With TID you may be covered if you’re volunteering at an animal shelter during the day and working at a fancy restaurant at night.  When travelling you may want to immerse yourself in the culture, connect with people, and learn more about the places you visit by volunteering, or you may just need the extra money. If this is the case, TID offers cover for volunteer and paid work, but there are terms and conditions so always read your policy wording.

Cover when caught up in a tricky medical or non-medical situation

If you’ve gone on a trek and had a bad fall or decide to take up skiing and it went sideways, chances are the local medical facilities where you’re backpacking are not close to the mountain or may not be adequate to treat your condition. That’s when TID’s evacuation coverage may be helpful. It may pay for your medical transportation to the nearest medical facility, or even to your home, if necessary, which could cost thousands of dollars. TID also offers cover for personal liability in case you are caught up in some legal issues.

Handy tips for backpackers

Research your destinations: You should always research the places you want to visit as there may be do not travel sanctions in place, or they could be affected by severe weather or an outbreak of disease or  political unrest. The last thing you want to do is travel to a destination which is going through political or civil turmoil or has just been hit by floods or worse. TID won’t offer cover if you suffer a loss arising from travelling to, planning to travel to, or choosing to remain in a country or region that is the subject of a ‘Do not travel’ warning issued by the Australian Government. (see

Bring all required documents: Make sure when you pack your backpack to include any visas you may need and of course your passport. Always check with the embassy or consulate of the country you plan to visit for up-to-date visa information. Along with the originals you should make copies of any important documents when backpacking. Also take printed copies of your plane tickets, travel arrangements and any insurance documents, as well as details of any booked trains, hotels or hostels.

Backpack solo or with family or friends: You may be planning to go on a solo backpacking trip, which is great, however backpacking with friends or family may be a better way as it will mean you can save money as you can share the costs. Also, you may want to travel with a mate who has more experience backpacking, or who may know the language and customs of a specific country or region better than you. If you’re backpacking alone always make sure you keep in touch with your family and friends. If anything happens to you, they will know where you are, so you can be rescued. You should also give your friends or family a travel plan including where you will be going and when you will be returning in case you don’t return according to your plan.

Find the free Wi-Fi hotspots: If you’re travelling to a remote location, you’ll most likely have no Wi-Fi, or it may not be very reliable. You should always check where you can access free Wi-Fi before visiting a remote location. You may need to check it for public transport times, getting an uber, or you may need to find the nearest medical centre or a supermarket. Free Wi-Fi can be found in places like coffee shops, libraries, or even fast food restaurants.

Leave no trace: Backpacking can be a beautiful experience, especially if you  are visiting locations that are protected. With this in mind always make sure you leave no trace when backpacking and don’t go off the trails path – you could ruin the flora, don’t pick up plants or anything you see in nature – take photos instead, get rid of your waste responsibly, bring your water in a reusable water bottle.

Travel insurance FAQs

I am currently on my backpacking trip and my policy has ended; can I extend my policy?

If the return date on the policy has passed, we can no longer extend the insurance. You can however purchase a new policy while you are still travelling, but keep in mind that a 72 hour waiting period will apply before your cover begins. For information about extending your policy check out our article on how to extend your policy.

Does TID cover every country I am planning to go backpacking to?

Unfortunately, we don’t cover every single country. There are regions and countries that are not covered by TID, so make sure to check the details on your Certificate of Insurance and subscribe to Smartraveller for the latest travel advice. For more information on how to choose your destinations, information on stopovers, extending your policy and more, click here.

Can I drive during my backpacking trip?

Yes, you can, as long as you have a valid driving license of course. TID’s The Works, The Basics and Annual Multi Trip policies automatically offer cover for car rental excess. The standard amount of cover is $6,000.

Need further advice?

TID’s Customer Service team is available to help you to understand the policy and what you may be covered for. Our travel safety team at TID work to keep customers informed and publish information on major events and Travel Alerts on our website.

This is a brief summary of cover only. Cover is subject to the full terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions outlined in the Product Disclosure Statement.

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Ready to go?

As soon as you book your tickets you should be booking travel insurance to make sure you’re covered in the lead-up to, and during your trip. Start by getting a quote below.

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