Family Travel Insurance

Did you know you can take your kiddly-winks with you on overseas holidays virtually for free? 

Okay, you still need to pay for flights and accommodation – but their travel insurance should be automatically covered by any policy you buy for yourself! Heck yes.

Most travel insurance providers will allow your family travel insurance policy to cover up to 3 kids per adult, no matter if you’re single or partnered (and partnered can be a grandparent, not just a life-partner). Some providers will allow up to 10 kids per family!

Age restrictions can vary between providers, so you’ll find that some will cover your kids up to 18 years old, while others cover your kids till they’re 21. But that’s a huge saving depending on where and when you’re travelling, as most basic travel insurance policies for adults vary between $50-$80 per person for ten days' cover.

Curious to know more? Read on to have your family travel insurance questions answered.

Do you need travel insurance?

A father carries his cheerful daughter on his shoulders.

These days, travel insurance is an absolute must-have – equally as important as your luggage or passport. No matter if you’re travelling domestically or internationally, travel insurance can cover you and your family for medical expenses, flight cancellations, loss/theft/damage of your personal belongings, and personal liability. No one wants to get stuck footing an unexpected bill while on vacation abroad. Holidays are already expensive!

What kind of travel insurance coverage should I get for my family?

An interracial family grin and laugh on the beach.

Generally, there are two different levels of cover for travel insurance: basic, and comprehensive. The difference between them has a lot to do with all the extras. 

Basic is great for standard emergency medical cover or personal liability, but not necessarily for pre-existing medical conditions or expensive electronic devices like smartphones.

Comprehensive insurance will cover more complex family needs and accidents, so it’s important to consider your family’s individual situation before purchasing a policy.

You can find out what’s covered in your specific policy by reading the product disclosure statement (PDS).

You can also read up on common travel insurance exclusions to get across what may or may not be covered in the average policy. (We’ve even written a kid-friendly version about their favourite movie characters). 

Smartraveller also has a guide on travelling safely with children abroad for additional information.

What is covered by family travel insurance?

A father and child wearing COVID masks look out the terminal window at a taxied airplane.

Medical expenses

Basic travel insurance will usually cover emergency medical expenses (including dental), provided you meet at least the following conditions:

  • You’ve declared any and all preexisting medical conditions (this includes asthma, diabetes, allergies, etc.). Most disabilities, such as cognitive or sensory impairments, are automatically covered by basic travel insurance, but others such as mental illness are not, so it's important to check your policy’s PDS first. Pregnancy also has variable coverage, and will usually cap off after a certain number of weeks.
  • You can showcase you weren’t acting recklessly, dangerously, or unlawfully at the time. This includes not undertaking extreme activities (like snow sports or diving) without an instructor, breaking the law (like speeding), or being intoxicated when the injury/accident occurred.

Comprehensive coverage can help fill in the gaps, so it’s important to consider your family’s needs when choosing travel insurance.

Loss, theft, or damage of personal belongings

A comprehensive travel insurance cover is better than basic when it comes to protecting expensive items that get lost, stolen, or damaged on your adventure. In fact, these events make up some of the most common claims on travel insurance.

As such, providers will try to worm out of paying out by assessing whether you were at fault. Leaving your valuables unattended – even if you were just looking the other way – counts as unnecessary risk in the eyes of insurance and will likely get your claim rejected.

Moral of the story: take responsibility for your things! Photograph what you’re taking with you to prove it was yours in the first place, and if it gets lost or stolen, lodge a police report immediately. You’ll need this as evidence to assist your travel insurance claim

NOTE: Your travel insurance provider won’t usually cover stolen cash. For travel policies that do, you may only be covered up to $200. You can compare some of the top travel credit cards if you’d prefer to go cashless on your holiday, instead.

Cancellation and delays

We know it, you know it – cancellations and delays are in the hands of the gods, which is why it’s important to have the right travel insurance to reimburse your lost time and funds. There are some things to keep in mind, however.

It’s your responsibility to make sure you at least got to the terminal on time, even if the plane didn’t. Your provider likely won’t take poor traffic conditions as a valid reason for missed flights – or that you spent an extra hour looking for Sally’s favourite blanky.

Similarly, your provider will assess whether the delay was caused by previously known events. So, if you booked your flight after a travel restriction went into effect and was circulated in the news, your insurance provider likely won’t give you any payouts for subsequent flight cancellations. This is especially important for pandemic-related cancellations, since many providers these days aren’t covering COVID-19 claims at all.

Accidental death and injury

Can your family financially manage without you? It’s scary to contemplate, but if you die or are severely injured while travelling overseas with your family, the right kind of travel insurance will take care of things for a while. Remember to read the fine print in the PDS, and that alcohol/drug-related medical emergencies and preexisting conditions may affect the overall outcome.

Personal liability

You don’t want to be remembered as the parent who crashed the rental car into a national monument. Luckily, most basic travel insurance policies will cover you for personal liability, which includes causing accidental injury, death, or property damage while abroad. Some personal liability coverages can also reimburse legal expenses if you need to defend yourself overseas.

Rental car

Congrats – turns out most comprehensive travel insurance policies will cover rental car excess, so you can drive the fambam around in style (provided you have a valid international driver’s permit).

How do I file a travel insurance claim?

Kids run towards the beach at magic hour.

We’ve got you covered for all steps of the process on how to file a travel insurance claim, including how to improve your travel insurance claim to get the payout you deserve. 

If it’s a medical emergency, you should seek help from medical authorities first. Your insurance provider will have an emergency international support hotline you’ll need to call once you or your child is out of immediate danger.

If it is a non life-threatening situation, you will need to get the appropriate official documentation as evidence to support your claim. This can include a medical certificate, hospital report, airline report, or if you’ve had your goods lost or stolen a police report. This report will need to contain all the details of what happened and any treatment sought. You will also need to hold onto any receipts if you’ve made any purchases toward the incident.

When you arrive back in Australia, you’ll need to complete a claim with your travel insurance provider within 30 days. If your claim involves something that was lost or stolen, be prepared to provide evidence of ownership. This could include:

  • A copy of the warranty.
  • Any packaging.
  • Credit card statements or receipts.

The basic idea whenever lodging an insurance claim is to honestly prove what happened and why you weren’t at fault. Make sure you avoid common insurance traps so that you increase your chances at getting your claim approved.

Beware excess fees

Whenever you make an insurance claim, you will need to pay an excess. The amount of excess you’re required to pay will depend on your policy. Some policies will have a higher excess for medical claims than claims related to cancellations.

Generally you will also need to pay an excess for each claim you make, so if you are making multiple claims (one for you, your child, etc.) you will need to pay the excess multiple times. Often insurance policies will be cheaper overall if you’re willing to pay a higher excess, but bear in mind that the excess might be more expensive than the claim you’re trying to make.

Going on a holiday? Browse family travel insurance policies below.

Compare and save on family travel insurance - last updated 18 August 2022

Search promoted travel insurance below. Advertiser disclosure Important information on terms, conditions and sub-limits.
  • International Travel Insurance
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    $5,000 - Option to increase in lots of $1,000.

    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.

    Details
  • 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
  • Comprehensive
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    $25,000

    Easy and cost-effective travel cover with Covid-19 cover included. With 4 base plans, 4 packs and cover for specific medical conditions. For Australian travellers, couples and families up to 99 years young. Add optional extras. 24/7 worldwide emergency help and unlimited medical cover. 14-day cooling-off period, money back guaranteed.

    Details
  • Comprehensive
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    Unlimited

    Get peace of mind with Fast Cover with worldwide 24 hour emergency assistance. Enjoy cover for emergency medical and hospital expenses. Get cover for cancellation costs as well as for luggage and personal belongings. No medical assessments required. 25 day money back guarantee. Cancellation cover for COVID claims limited to $5,000.

    Details
  • Mozo Expert Choice Badge
    Comprehensive
    covid medical cover
    Yes
    covid cancellation cover
    Yes
    overseas hospital
    Unlimited
    cancellation cover
    $25,000

    Travel insurance with Covid-19 cover and made for women. Choose from 4 levels of cover so you only pay for the insurance you need. Cover comes with unlimited emergency medical cover worldwide. Kids travel free. Tailor your travel insurance with extra cover for activities and special gear. 14-day cooling-off period, money back guaranteed.

    Details

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Travel Insurance Awards

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