It’s close to that time of year when Australia hits the breaks and Australians take their annual much deserved Summer holiday. Those of us lucky enough to be heading overseas are in final preparation mode, sorting out things like your travel money options, travel insurance and who is going to feed the goldfish while you’re away.
Mozo recently launched a travel insurance comparison service and we thought it was a great opportunity take a look at some of the travel insurance policy options and see just how much these, and the price of the coverage, differs between travel insurance brands.
For our comparison we have taken the average Aussie family of four: Dad 54, Mum 49 and two kids (15 and 10 years old) planning a two week getaway to Bali. When we entered these details into the Mozo travel insurance comparison engine, there were 81 policies from 36 insurers that matched our results. Not all of these had price quotes but of the 30 that did, the cheapest coverage we could get was just $71 for all 4 travellers with iTrek, and the most expensive was with American Express at $164.
So what’s the difference between the cheapest and the most expensive. Well, here’s the main points of what the two had to offer.
Both offer unlimited emergency medical assistance and emergency hospital expense which as a family travelling internationally you’re most likely to want. Accidents can happen anywhere and at anytime (have you seen the Smart Traveller TV ad with the bungee cord that broke?). Needing medical assistance or even emergency surgery overseas can quickly add up to a lifetime of financial repayments. This is not an option you want to cut corners on.
But what about luggage and personal effects? If the family is heading on a two week getaway to escape everything, relax, soak up some sun and culture, what kind of luggage are they likely to take with them? Possibly not much more than everyday hygiene items, clothes and possibly a camera or ipad.
Altogether, it’s probably not $30,000 worth of personal effects that’s offered with the American Express deal, although it’s likely that you do want some cover which is not offered with i-trek.
The same issue goes with cancellation fees. Flights to Bali are relatively cheap compared to much further destinations and the accommodation also not nearly worth an arm and a leg. All in all, the prepaid cost of the trip is likely to cost between $5000 – $10,000. Much cheaper than the family’s previous trip to Europe but still, they wouldn’t want to lose it all if they suddenly had to cancel the trip.
So exactly what should this family do for their travel insurance? The cheapest cover is too basic and the most expensive is a bit overboard. The obvious solution is to select an option somewhere in the middle. The family wants to be covered for important things like medical coverage and trip cancellation but why pay for things that they are not likely to need like rental car cover and rock climbing coverage?
Here’s the 3 best price options for this family’s trip
Although this family’s trip may be quite different to the next journey you have coming up , the same principle applies. Make sure to choose a travel insurance that applies to your circumstances. There would be nothing worse to think you are fully covered for an incident only to find out mid journey that your specific incident was not covered and your loss could have been easily avoided when you were choosing your travel insurance.
Here’s a couple of other points to consider when selecting travel insurance.
– If you have a gold or platinum credit card, your credit card may already cover you for certain travel insurance incidents such as rental car excess, luggage and personal items. Check with your credit card provider as they will have their own terms and conditions. You’ll likely find your credit card only covers a few points and you will still need to search out stand alone travel insurance for what’s not covered.
– The same product is not the same price everywhere. It might seem easier to take insurance with your travel agent or from airline you purchase your tickets with. But these agents can often add a whopping commision onto the price (see our earlier blog: Buyer Beware: the great travel insuance rort).
– and lastly as we hope this blog has proven, shop around and compare as not all travel insurance deals are created equal.