Travel Insurance which covers COVID-19?

MEL_Traveller

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I am quite surprised at how slow insurance companies have been to respond to the opening of borders... Insureandgo for example only has 'domestic' as an option, with 'international' greyed out. Credit card insurance policies seem stuck in March 2020. Perhaps they are waiting to do a risk assessment? Although as most are underwritten by large multi-nationals you'd think they'd have data by now?
 

asterix

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I am quite surprised at how slow insurance companies have been to respond to the opening of borders... Insureandgo for example only has 'domestic' as an option, with 'international' greyed out. Credit card insurance policies seem stuck in March 2020. Perhaps they are waiting to do a risk assessment? Although as most are underwritten by large multi-nationals you'd think they'd have data by now?
I contacted Insureandgo earlier in the week and they told me to check back around November 15th.
 

Virgin Bart

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I am quite surprised at how slow insurance companies have been to respond to the opening of borders... Insureandgo for example only has 'domestic' as an option, with 'international' greyed out. Credit card insurance policies seem stuck in March 2020. Perhaps they are waiting to do a risk assessment? Although as most are underwritten by large multi-nationals you'd think they'd have data by now?
Same, very surprised.

Having a look at Heymondo now
 
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GaryLG

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By way of an update. Expecting Heymondo to be the cheapest option and it was for my trip but when my daughter checked it covermore was the better deal.

The surprising reason was Heymondo count the baby as a second person so the cost doubles!
 

Jenya

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just consider Heymondo is Spanish based business not Australian, and provided its cheapest on the market I think it would be hell of a pain to claim anything from them.
 

MEL_Traveller

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just consider Heymondo is Spanish based business not Australian, and provided its cheapest on the market I think it would be hell of a pain to claim anything from them.

I think it's right to be cautious, but price isn't necessarily an indicator. Credit card insurance is free and yet I've had fantastic service and zero problems in making a claim. In fact one time with ANZ card insurance I decided not to put in a claim and they wrote to me reminding me to submit! I suppose ANZ being in Australia would make it easier to take legal action if it came to that.
 

anchew

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I think it's right to be cautious, but price isn't necessarily an indicator. Credit card insurance is free and yet I've had fantastic service and zero problems in making a claim. In fact one time with ANZ card insurance I decided not to put in a claim and they wrote to me reminding me to submit! I suppose ANZ being in Australia would make it easier to take legal action if it came to that.
I'm comforted that you had a good experience with ANZ card insurance MEL_Traveller. I'm going to the USA in December and paid my flights using my ANZ credit card. Looking at their COVID-19 FAQ, it appears that if I need medical attention due to COVID-19 (even though I'm double vaxxed), I'll be covered as they don't have a general exclusion for pandemics.

Also, it appears that if I catch COVID-19 and therefore unfit to tavel, then I may be covered for any reasonable accommodation expenses. In section 3.1.1:

Additional travel & accommodation expenses due to your incapacity
a) If you cannot continue your journey because of an injury or sickness or pre-existing medical condition that we have agreed to cover, which occurs during the period of cover provided for your journey and needs immediate treatment from a medical adviser who certifies in writing that you are unfit to travel, we will reimburse your reasonable additional accommodation and travel expenses.
I'm planning to get confirmation closer to my trip directly from ANZ (or their insurer Allianz).

Am I missing something here? I'm just a bit concerned by all the talk about not being able to find COVID insurance.
 

MEL_Traveller

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I'm comforted that you had a good experience with ANZ card insurance MEL_Traveller. I'm going to the USA in December and paid my flights using my ANZ credit card. Looking at their COVID-19 FAQ, it appears that if I need medical attention due to COVID-19 (even though I'm double vaxxed), I'll be covered as they don't have a general exclusion for pandemics.

Also, it appears that if I catch COVID-19 and therefore unfit to tavel, then I may be covered for any reasonable accommodation expenses. In section 3.1.1:


I'm planning to get confirmation closer to my trip directly from ANZ (or their insurer Allianz).

Am I missing something here? I'm just a bit concerned by all the talk about not being able to find COVID insurance.
Unfortunately the date on the link is for March 2020. At that point in time, with the pandemic just starting, passengers already on their journeys would possibly have had cover. The borders were not yet closed so ANZ was also saying that while they didn’t exclude pandemics at that time, if you travelled against government advice, you may not be covered.

Since then, most insurance providers ceased to sell international policies, and covid was pretty much excluded for domestic policies.

I suspect ANZ cards will follow other providers in giving some sort of cover as long as you are vaccinated, etc. Asterix in post 62 above relayed that ANZ was going to update their CC policy in mid november.
 
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Annie48

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Hoping to do two trips next year
Feb to USA
Dec to UK
Pre covid we would just take out our usual year long insurance declaring all medical issues (have a few )
Has anyone applied for insurance for international travel recently ?
Has it changed much ? Cost or coverage wise ?
Hoping to head to UK in June next year, recently took out insurance with Covermore, period of cover is 9 weeks, cost just over $900 (this is with a couple of pre-existing conditions).
 
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Thank you Matt for such a thorough, timely and well set out article on travel insurance. Super helpful. PJ
 

Nouflyer

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Usually I rely upon AMEX card travel insurance - which Matt reports is underwritten by Chubb, who have excluded Covid cover.

But my Commonwealth Bank card insurance is underwritten by Cover-More. Does that mean that it includes Covid cover like the policies that Cover-More sell direct to the public?

By the way, separately with my doctor's hat on I would emphatically warn anybody to carefully weigh up travel to the UK or Singapore currently.

Both countries have sky-high infection rates currently. In Singapore if you test positive on arrival or (more likely) 72 hours prior to departure you are detained at your own expense in a Raffles Medical facility.

Meanwhile the UK has become the poster-child for explaining why High Vaccination Rates Alone Are Not Enough. They have identical vaccination rates to France, and lower density housing, yet for the last 3 months the UK has had an infection rate 10 times higher, hospitalisation rate 5 times higher and death rate 4 times higher than their identically-vaccinated neighbours.

The bottom line is that if you go to the UK, and you use public transport and go to pubs or shows or restaurants you have a highly significant chance of catching Covid. Hopefully you will only get a mild case, but Bernal et al's study published in August 2021 showed that AstraZeneca-vaccinated people only have 67% protection against symptomatic Delta infection (compared with 88% for Pfizer) so be prepared for the eventuality of failing your Covid test prior to your intended return to Australia. You could find yourself scurrying around finding somewhere you can stay as a positive case, and you could find yourself denied boarding to return to Australia for some time.
 
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Hoping to do two trips next year
Feb to USA
Dec to UK
Pre covid we would just take out our usual year long insurance declaring all medical issues (have a few )
Has anyone applied for insurance for international travel recently ?
Has it changed much ? Cost or coverage wise ?
Hi, can you give me some leads for annual insurance providers, admittedly the scene will change now with COVID. Thanks
 

VPS

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Usually I rely upon AMEX card travel insurance - which Matt reports is underwritten by Chubb, who have excluded Covid cover.

But my Commonwealth Bank card insurance is underwritten by Cover-More. Does that mean that it includes Covid cover like the policies that Cover-More sell direct to the public?

By the way, separately with my doctor's hat on I would emphatically warn anybody to carefully weigh up travel to the UK or Singapore currently.

Both countries have sky-high infection rates currently. In Singapore if you test positive on arrival or (more likely) 72 hours prior to departure you are detained at your own expense in a Raffles Medical facility.

Meanwhile the UK has become the poster-child for explaining why High Vaccination Rates Alone Are Not Enough. They have identical vaccination rates to France, and lower density housing, yet for the last 3 months the UK has had an infection rate 10 times higher, hospitalisation rate 5 times higher and death rate 4 times higher than their identically-vaccinated neighbours.

The bottom line is that if you go to the UK, and you use public transport and go to pubs or shows or restaurants you have a highly significant chance of catching Covid. Hopefully you will only get a mild case, but Bernal et al's study published in August 2021 showed that AstraZeneca-vaccinated people only have 67% protection against symptomatic Delta infection (compared with 88% for Pfizer) so be prepared for the eventuality of failing your Covid test prior to your intended return to Australia. You could find yourself scurrying around finding somewhere you can stay as a positive case, and you could find yourself denied boarding to return to Australia for some time.
Friend in UK just went to France to finalise the sale of her property. She said the French are very hot on checking in and wearing masks - the English are 🤷‍♀️
 
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Hi, can you give me some leads for annual insurance providers, admittedly the scene will change now with COVID. Thanks
Cover More offer multi-trip annual cover with max duration of 60 days each trip.
You would need to nominate USA on your quotation request. You would also need to discuss your medical issues to declare with them. A contact number is indicated in the quotation request.

I've gone with Cover More for an annual multi-trip for several reasons. Including, current cover for DFAT Level Three destinations, and recognizing they may change during the year. Point in question given @Nouflyer's comments, above, about current COVID-19 situation in the UK and SIN.
 

PineappleSkip

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I mentioned Heymondo in my post upthread and took it out for my current trip. It was one of a very few providers that Australians could use at all for overseas travel when the travel ban was afoot. An American mob was another that based its cover on State.gov and CDC travel advice rather than Australian.

Now that the travel ban has been lifted obviously some Australian insurers are providing cover, outlined in the excellent article from @Mattg. As has been noted here, Heymondo is pretty cheap, and cheap always makes me a bit wary that low price may translate into claim pain. But Heymondo is no longer the almost only option! haven't researched this but I suspect if you went with an offshore insurer you wouldn't have recourse to places like ACFA.

ACFA has an FAQ about COVID-19 and travel insurance here.

Cheers skip
 

There'sOnlyOneJimmy

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But my Commonwealth Bank card insurance is underwritten by Cover-More. Does that mean that it includes Covid cover like the policies that Cover-More sell direct to the public?

I notice that the current CBA PDS includes this General Exclusion:

“We will not pay for…
28. Claims caused by, or claims arising from, an epidemic, pandemic or outbreak of a contagious disease or any derivative or mutation of such viruses. Refer to who.int and smartraveller.gov.au for further information on epidemics and pandemics.”

For the full PDS, refer to this link:
 

MEL_Traveller

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Usually I rely upon AMEX card travel insurance - which Matt reports is underwritten by Chubb, who have excluded Covid cover.

But my Commonwealth Bank card insurance is underwritten by Cover-More. Does that mean that it includes Covid cover like the policies that Cover-More sell direct to the public?

You need to check the PDS for the specific policy. They will not necessarily be the same.
 
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I have cards with both ANZ and Westpac, both of whom use Allianz for travel insurance.
ANZ lays out its full PDF as if coverage is provided. Westpac quotes Allianz as ceasing sale of insurance as of March 2020, with no update that I can see. Is there a more up-to-date Westpac travel insurance notification?
 

MEL_Traveller

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Thanks matt for the article!

worth noting the limitations of policies that will pay for quarantine or travel disruption due to covid…

While some policies will cover mandatory quarantine if you catch covid, this might not actually cover you if you were say in London, tested positive, and simply had to wait out the 14 days until you could fly. The UK doesn’t force you into quarantine, and any hotel could possibly be at your own expense.

The other issue is ‘denied boarding’ due to the identification of covid. If you fail your PCR test at 72 hours, it may not be that this is considered ‘denied boarding’ by the airline. It could be a failure to meet the arriving county requirements. So cover may not apply. Anyone considering a policy might want to explore those issues.
 

MEL_Traveller

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I have cards with both ANZ and Westpac, both of whom use Allianz for travel insurance.
ANZ lays out its full PDF as if coverage is provided. Westpac quotes Allianz as ceasing sale of insurance as of March 2020, with no update that I can see. Is there a more up-to-date Westpac travel insurance notification?

I think the ANZ CC page is well out of date, written as of March 2020.
 

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