Cleared for takeoff: Aussies say travel is their top savings motivation

An image of some of the first international arrivals at Sydney Airport.

Overseas travel is back on Australia’s agenda, with the demand for flights taking-off in the last month, according to statistics from flight comparison site, Skyscanner.

Skyscanner saw a 111% increase in bookings for outbound flights through their platform over the past month. They also noted that 51% of Australians are planning to take longer trips this year, and that overseas travel is now more important for 66% of Aussie travellers than it was in pre-pandemic times. 

Similarly, many globetrotters are now keen to visit Oz as borders reopen to international travellers this week. Skyscanner reported a significant 107% monthly increase in global travellers planning Aussie getaways, with the UK and Germany leading the latest week-on-week booking increases at 175% and 200% respectively.

Research from the Commonwealth Bank reports a similar trend for outbound Australian travellers. Over half (51%) of those surveyed said they were saving to travel in 2022, this attitude proving consistent across all age groups. 

If you’re planning an overseas holiday right now, there’s a couple of key considerations you’ll need to mull over before you board the plane.

Travelling during COVID-19

While the pandemic seems to be a shrinking figure in some people’s imaginations, it’s still hanging around. With the latest variant of concern to hit supermarket shelves, Omicron, purportedly causing a steep rise in cases around the world, travelling during the outbreak must be done with some caution. 

There are some simple steps you can take to offer yourself better protection, like wearing a mask in enclosed spaces and sanitising your hands. This is especially important on an aeroplane, where people from different places are confined in a small space.

It’s also vital you understand what your travel insurance policy covers when it comes down to COVID-19, as travel insurance providers differ in their approach to the matter.

The majority of travel insurance providers won’t cover Covid-related claims when your destination is listed on the Australian Government’s Smartraveller website as a high-risk country. Usually, that will be countries where the advice is at the ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ levels. Some providers offer no benefits related to COVID-19. It’s important to read the product disclosure statement (PDS) for your policy, as that’s where details live.

Important policy benefits to check out include whether you’re covered for overseas medical and hospital bills, as well as travel delays and cancellations, as these could easily become issues due to the pandemic.

International travel insurance

As the ancient proverb goes, if you can’t afford international travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel internationally. 

If you’re heading overseas, it’s a good idea to get yourself a travel insurance policy that covers the types of benefits you might need. Generally, you’ll be looking for overseas hospital and medical, cancellations and delay, luggage, and personal liability cover. 

From there, there are more comprehensive travel insurance policies which offer benefits like increased cover amounts and even domestic pet care, if your return home is delayed due to unforeseen circumstances. 

The kind of policy you choose will depend on the type of traveller you are. For example, you might be looking for a policy that covers your pre-existing medical condition. Or, maybe you’re travelling around Europe on a shoestring budget, instead preferring the essentials that  backpackers travel insurance might provide. 

There are plenty of factors to consider when choosing the right policy for your needs, including what kind of holiday you’re after. Travel insurance providers will often offer optional add-ons to their policies that cater to different types of activities. These can include adventure activities packs, cruise travel insurance, and snow sports travel insurance.

Compare travel insurance policies - last updated 17 May 2022

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