Packing priorities: What’s at the bottom of the Aussie traveller’s list?

Recent research from Allianz Global Assistance has shown that 90% of Aussies consider travel insurance non-essential to their holiday plans and could be heading overseas unprotected.

When packing for holidays, the research showed that money topped Aussie’s priorities, with 37% of people considering it a travel must-have. Next most important on the packing list was clothing (24%) followed by toiletries (15%). A travel credit card ranked just below at 12%.

Chief Market Manager at Allianz Global Assistance, Damien Arthur said, “Our data shows that for many consumers, travel insurance is an afterthought and is often booked as late as the day before departure. In some cases, travellers choose not to purchase it at all, running the gauntlet and leaving themselves open to potentially disastrous consequences.”

RELATED: Top travel insurance tips

Over half (51%) of the people surveyed failed to take out travel insurance policies when they went overseas, leaving themselves open to unexpected emergency costs that could potentially stack up to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“Issues such as delayed flights, lost luggage, medical treatment or repatriation could have a huge impact your holiday, with the costs for each varying drastically from country to country if you’re not covered. In reality, travel insurance is the one essential item you can’t live without,” Arthur said.

The US was a popular holiday spot for Australians travellers in 2015, but is also one of the destinations where travellers can be hit with some of the highest medical costs in the world. From broken ribs at $2,500- $5,000, through to complex head injuries costing as much as $450,000, medical costs for unfortunate travellers are steep and those without travel insurance were left to foot the bill themselves.

These potential costs well outweigh those of travel insurance premiums, considering Mozo’s travel insurance database shows that Aussies could take out a week-long travel insurance policy that would provide unlimited emergency medical assistance in the US and Canada for as little as $37.90*.

Arthur urged Aussies to start thinking of travel insurance as an essential part of travel, and an “...extremely small price to pay when you consider the consequences of being caught in an unfortunate situation without cover.”

Planning an overseas holiday? Use Mozo’s travel insurance search tool to find the right policy to cover you.

*Based on a single, 25 year old traveller taking out a medical only policy.