Basically, it's a policy that you buy the day before (or even the day of!) your trip. There's something really important to note here. If you buy your insurance after you started your trip, there is a waiting period of 72 hours for all cover. And when we say "start your trip", we mean leaving your home. So if you're connected to the airport WiFi here in Australia when you buy your policy, the waiting period applies. But as long as you buy it before you leave home, you're eligible for all the usual cover under your policy.
When you buy a policy last minute, the coverage offered is the same compared to buying your policy in advance, except for pre-trip cancellation cover and the waiting period. As mentioned before, if you've already left home, a 72 hour waiting period applies on ALL benefits. We count the 72 hours from the moment you purchased the policy, and we look at the time the event happened, not at when you contact us or when you lodge your claim.
If the event that causes you to claim occurs during that 72-hour period, there is cover for serious injury as a result of an accident within the waiting period - Medical Expenses Incurred Overseas (Section 1 in the PDS) and Additional Expenses/Medical Evacuation (Section 3 in the PDS) from the time of the accident. Also, it's important to remember that all cancellation cover, regardless of when you buy the policy, is only for unforeseen events! If something happens before you purchase your policy, and it causes you to cancel, then it's not covered. All the usual exclusions apply as well; existing medical conditions, breaking the law, drugs and alcohol, etc.
You can still buy a policy, but you won’t be covered for whatever happened, as you knew you would need to lodge a claim prior to purchasing your policy. The policy will only ever cover unforeseen events, and if you already knew about the problem, then it’s not unforeseen. Just like buying car insurance after you’ve had an accident.
Read the policy wording for full terms, conditions and exclusions and to ensure the product suits your needs.