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Can't afford travel insurance? Here's what you can do

An elderly couple of tourists holding a phone, a map, and the credit card which offered complimentary travel insurance.

If you can’t afford travel insurance and you have a credit card, it’s worth taking a peek at your bundled rewards to see if there’s a complimentary travel insurance perk. 

By activating the travel insurance which comes with your card, you could save yourself the added expense of purchasing a standalone policy. 

Some credit cards offer domestic travel insurance (typically only flight delays), while others offer international travel insurance policies. 

However, complimentary travel insurance policies might not always provide the cover you need if you get into strife on holidays, so make sure you’re aware of the difference between standalone policies and the ones that come with your card.

How do you know if your credit card comes with complimentary travel insurance?

To check if your credit card has a bundled travel insurance policy, you’ll want to head to the website of your card issuer and find the section that covers rewards, perks, and bonuses. 

Otherwise, a good way to check is to search Google for the name of your credit card, followed by the phrase ‘travel insurance’. For example, “Commonwealth Bank Platinum Awards credit card travel insurance’. Usually, you’ll be able to find the information you’re after in the first few results. 

From there, you’ll want to have a look through the product disclosure statement (PDS) of the complimentary travel insurance policy. That’s where the real meat of the policy can be found, which details what inclusions and benefits you might get with it. 

If you couldn’t find definitive answers on your provider’s website or on Google, then your best bet is to give your card issuer a call. Sometimes the old fashioned way works best!

RELATEDHow to activate free travel insurance on your credit card

What is included in a credit card travel insurance policy?

The complimentary travel insurance which comes with your card usually won’t be as  comprehensive as standalone policies. That being said, not all policies are created equal, so some complimentary policies will have more inclusions and benefits than others, as well as higher sub-limits.

Generally, credit card travel insurance policies may provide cover for some of the following:

  • Overseas emergency and medical assistance 
  • Overseas emergency dental
  • Medical evacuation and repatriation
  • Hospital cash allowance 
  • Accidental death 
  • Loss of income 
  • Cancellation
  • Travel delay expenses
  • Alternative transport expenses
  • Luggage and personal goods
  • Travel documents, cards, and cash
  • Personal liability.

However, keep in mind that not all credit card travel insurance policies will cover these benefit areas, and that the sub-limits which apply to them (a.k.a the maximum dollar amount a provider will pay) may not be enough to cover your expenses. 

It’s safe to assume most people aren’t considering their complimentary travel insurance when they compare credit cards, so it’s likely a lucky-dip for many when it comes to their bundled policy.

Do credit card travel insurance policies have Covid cover? 

As part of the world’s efforts to live with Covid, many travel insurance providers have included some level of coverage for Coronavirus in their policies. 

We’ve compiled a list of which credit card travel insurance policies come with Covid-cover, and which do not, which you can find here.

Is it worth getting a standalone travel insurance policy instead?

A standalone travel insurance policy may provide higher limits on cover, as well as give you the option to add on extra activities to your policy – such as snow travel insurance, cruise travel insurance, or even adventure activities insurance.

So, it’s really a matter of deciding how much financial risk you want to take on yourself. 

If you’re not taking out a standalone travel insurance policy, you may as well activate your credit card travel insurance if you have it. That way at least some level of cover is applied – plus it’s effectively free! 

If you’re looking to compare travel insurance policies, then you can start right here at Mozo. Have a look at some of the policies in our database below.

Travel insurance comparisons on Mozo - last updated 25 May 2024

Search promoted travel insurance below. Advertiser disclosure Important information on terms, conditions and sub-limits.
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    International Travel Insurance
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    $5,000 limit per policy with option to increase limit

    Get protection in a few simple steps with Freely travel insurance all in the palm of your hand. Freely Travel offers 24/7 emergency and medical support, 24/7 customer service. Plus, you can tailor your policy so you only pay for what you need, and adapt your cover in near real time. Add-ons such as car rental excess, snow sports or other activities also available. Receive 10% off your travel insurance policy with promo code: MOZO10. T&Cs apply, go to site for full detail.

    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    Comprehensive
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    No
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Unlimited

    Enjoy unlimited medical cover and 24/7 emergency assistance services when you travel. Get unlimited cover for cancellation fees and prepaid travel expenses. Cover for luggage and travel documents. $5,000,000 personal liability cover.

    Details
  • International Travel Insurance
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Optional Extra - up to $40,000

    Be prepared for the unexpected on your adventures with Butter Travel Insurance. Emergency medical and hospital cover. COVID-19, accident and personal liability cover. Optional trip cancellation & interruption cover. Customise your cover with added extras like Motorcycle and ski cover (T&Cs apply).

    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    Comprehensive
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Choose $10,000 to Unlimited

    Backed by the NIB, one of Australia’s largest travel insurance providers, Travel Insurance Saver brings you peace of mind on your travels. Compare three tiers of insurance cover, featuring benefits like 24 hour emergency assistance, emergency medical cover, luggage cover, cancellation cover and more.

    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    International Comprehensive Single
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Choose $2,500 to Unlimited

    Enjoy the security of single trip cover on your next holiday with Southern Cross Travel Insurance. Get 24 hour emergency assistance, cover for cancelling or changing your journey before you leave, protection for lost, stolen or damaged goods as well as cover to replace lost or stolen cash, banks or travel documents. Be in to win 1 of 5 $1,000 cash prizes! T&Cs Apply. Offer ends 30 September 2023.

    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    Top
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Unlimited

    Be covered for international overseas and medical expenses. Emergency medical assistance 24 hours/365 days a year. Cover for cancellation fees and lost deposits. Cover for luggage and personal money. Dependents covered free of charge (conditions apply). Limited COVID cover available. Cancellation cover for COVID claims limited to $3,500.

    Details
Jack Dona
Jack Dona
RG146
Money writer

Jack is RG146 Generic Knowledge certified, with a Bachelor of Communications in Creative Writing from UTS, and uses his creative flair to cut through the financial jargon and make home loans, insurance and banking interesting. His reader-first approach to creating content and his passion for financial literacy means he always looks for innovative ways to explain personal finance. Jack's research and explanations have been featured in government publications, and his work is regularly featured alongside major publications in Google's Top Stories for Insurance.