What if's

Natural disasters and travel insurance

Reading time: 2 minutes

 

Mother Nature can be unpredictable at times. So what can you do if your travel plans are thrown off by a natural disaster like a volcano, typhoon or earthquake? Well, if you have travel insurance there are certain things you’re covered for both before and during your trip if you’re impacted by a natural disaster.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways travel insurance can help.

 

Pre-trip coverage

If a natural disaster prevents you from going on your trip before you even get the chance to depart Australia, there are two options you have: cancelling your trip or rearranging your trip – whichever is the lesser of the two costs.

If cancelling your trip you can claim the value of the unused arrangements, less any refunds due to you, if you have to cancel any pre-paid transport or accommodation arrangements due to any unforeseen or unforeseeable circumstances outside of your control such as a natural disaster.

Alternatively, you can claim the cost of rearranging your trip prior to you travelling because something unforeseen and outside of your control such as a natural disaster occurs, provided that this cost is not greater than the cancellation fees or lost deposits which would have been incurred had the trip been cancelled.

 

During trip coverage

Whilst on your trip if a natural disaster causes the cancellation or restriction of your flights, you can claim for the reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses. You must have done everything reasonable to avoid the expenses, and you must get the carrier’s written confirmation of your claim.

 

Medical expenses

Should you become injured or suddenly ill as a result of a natural disaster you can claim the reasonable cost of emergency medical, hospital, road ambulance or other treatment you actually and necessarily receive overseas during the trip because you suffer a sudden illness or serious injury. You must make an effort to keep your medical expenses to a minimum. You should contact our 24/7 Emergency Assistance team as soon as possible. Our team of doctors, nureses and case managers will help get the best course of treatment for you.

 

Known event

Travel insurance (like all insurance) is designed to cover you for events that are unforeseen or unforeseeable, this means in order to be covered for any of the benefits of the policy you need to have purchased your policy before the natural disaster became a known event.

We know car insurance won’t cover you if you buy a policy after you’ve been in an accident or how home and contents insurance won’t cover you if you buy a policy just after your house has burnt down after a fire.

Similarly, travel insurance won’t cover you for natural disasters if you buy a policy after the natural disaster becomes a known event.

Exclusions to cover do apply. Please ensure you read the policy wording for full coverage details. For full information on what’s covered and what’s not covered please read the PDS.


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