It was always risky to travel without insurance, but with COVID there’s a much higher chance of disruption to your trip. 
It was always risky to travel without insurance, but with COVID there’s a much higher chance of disruption to your trip. 

The question everyone's asking about New Zealand

My friend's mum once wisely said, 'if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel'. It was always risky to travel without insurance, but with Covid there's a much higher chance of disruption to your trip. 

A relative could get Covid, you could be forced to quarantine after being in contact with someone at a cafe, or there could be an outbreak. 

It's never been so important to take out travel insurance. Make sure you buy it at the same time you're paying for your flights and accommodation. Travel insurance covers you from the second you buy the policy to when you come home.

See also: Everything you need to know about flying Air New Zealand

See also: New rule to follow when booking a flight

Which insurers are offering cover?

When Covid hit and Australia shut down its borders, many insurers stopped providing international policies and went domestic only. For Aussies travelling to New Zealand, there's a handful of insurers. Your go-to brand might only be offering domestic insurance and some insurers have policies for overseas travel, but without Covid cover.

For travel insurance to New Zealand with Covid cover, check out CoverMore, Easy Travel Insurance, Qantas Insurance, Medibank Travel Insurance and Webjet. 

What kind of cover should I get?

For New Zealand with Covid cover, insurers are offering up to three options: medical only, comprehensive/premium, and annual multi-trip. Medical only is self-explanatory and comprehensive will be everything beyond medical such as loss of luggage, having an accident on the ski slopes and losing travel documents. 

This isn't the time to go no frills. Things go wrong at the best of times, let alone with Covid outbreaks. Go comprehensive.

It's likely the new norm in 2021 will be for insurance providers to offer some form of cover for COVID-related disruptions. Picture: Getty
It's likely the new norm in 2021 will be for insurance providers to offer some form of cover for COVID-related disruptions. Picture: Getty

How much will insurance cost?

Without a pre-existing medical condition you can expect to pay from $60 to $113 per adult for one week in New Zealand. This is based on an excess of $250. 

What am I covered for with Covid?

When you jump onto the insurer's website, there will be a disclaimer about how Covid changes their policies. Make sure you read this very carefully. 

Next, to be covered for a medical incident with Covid, the diagnosis must be made after policy purchase. This is why you need to buy travel insurance at the same time you book your holiday. 

The insurers mentioned above are offering cover for Covid if it's related to a medical reason. This applies to you and your travelling party. 

For example, a week before you're due to fly out, you catch Covid and you're forced to quarantine at home. Your insurer should cover costs associated with you cancelling your trip. You will need to provide documentation from a qualified medical practitioner showing that you have Covid.  

If you are individually contacted by a public health authority because they have identified you as having been in contact with someone who has Covid, your cancellation costs should also be covered. But again, you must ask for documentation to provide to your insurer.

If your business partner or a relative are diagnosed with Covid and their illness is life threatening, your policy will cover you if you need to stay in Australia or cut your trip short and return home. 

Insurers will also cover you if your accommodation gets shut down due to a Covid outbreak or the person you're due to stay with in New Zealand is forced to quarantine.

See also: Is it worth buying frequent flyer points?

I'm a health care worker, what if I'm called into work?

If you are a nurse, paramedic, doctor, pharmacist or health care professional and your leave is revoked, your insurer should cover the non-refundable costs of your trip. You will need documentation from your employer stating you've been called back into work. 

NEW ZEALAND5-DAY SKI PACKAGE, $599 (PER PERSON) Hit the pristine powder runs of Treble Cone and Cardrona Alpine Resort, two of New Zealand’s best ski fields, on a five-day ski- and- stay package from $599 a person twin share. Includes four nights’ accommodation in Wanaka, and a three-day lift pass for both ski fields. Travel on dates from June to September, 2021. Six, seven a
NEW ZEALAND5-DAY SKI PACKAGE, $599 (PER PERSON)

Hit the pristine powder runs of Treble Cone and Cardrona Alpine Resort, two of New Zealand’s best ski fields, on a five-day ski- and- stay package from $599 a person twin share. Includes four nights’ accommodation in Wanaka, and a three-day lift pass for both ski fields. Travel on dates from June to September, 2021. Six, seven a

What if I get Covid in New Zealand?

If you took out a policy with Covid cover before you left Australia, you should have your medical costs covered.

What am I not covered for in relation to Covid?

Your insurer will not cover you for any loss arising from government intervention such as travel bans, border closures or quarantine requirements. Likewise, if the government puts New Zealand back on the 'Do No Travel' list, you won't be covered for anything - Covid related or not. 

For example, there's an outbreak in Melbourne airport and all flights are grounded. Your insurer will not cover the money you've lost on your flight or accommodation in New Zealand. Instead, call your airline and see if they can organise a refund or credit. You will however, likely be out of pocket for your prepaid accommodation. 

See also:

4 countries that have opened up to vaccinated travellers

'Disgusting' habit to avoid on a plane

Advice for senior and disabled travellers

The worst travel advice we've ever heard

Originally published as The question everyone's asking about NZ



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