Travel Insurance to USA from Australia

Written and researched by Michael Kays (Travel Insurance Expert) | Fact Checked by Danya Kristen (Insurance Agent).

Hitting the tarmac and heading from the golden sands of Bondi Beach or the stunning beauty of the Great Barrier Reef to the towering skyline of Manhattan or the soothing waves of the California coastline?

There’s a checklist you’ll want to tick off before jet-setting across the Pacific, and trust us, travel insurance should be on top of that list.

With this guide, we’ll delve into the nitty-gritty of travel insurance for Australians travelling to the United States, ensuring you’re well-informed and prepared for the journey.

A Shield for Aussies in the USA: Why Travel Insurance Matters

Why do you need travel insurance while sauntering down the streets of San Francisco or exploring the hidden gems of Chicago?

The answer revolves around the steep healthcare costs that the USA is infamous for. A mishap leading to a medical emergency could leave you with a bill that will have your jaw drop faster than a thrilling roller coaster ride at Disney World.

To keep those unexpected costs at bay, equip yourself with travel insurance before you start packing your bags.

Recommended Plans

✅ Atlas America

Up to $2,000,000 of Overall Maximum Coverage, Emergency Medical Evacuation, Medical coverage for eligible expenses related to COVID-19, Trip Interruption & Travel Delay.

✅ Safe Travels Comprehensive

Coverage for in-patient and out-patient medical accidents up to $1 Million, Coverage of acute episodes of pre-existing conditions, Coverage from 5 days to 364 days (about 12 months).

✅ Patriot America Platinum

Up to $8,000,000 limits, Emergency Medical Evacuation, Coinsurance for treatment received in the U.S. (100% within PPO Network), Acute Onset of Pre-Existing Conditions covered.

Unveiling the Coverage Cloak: What’s Included in Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance works like your personal financial bodyguard while you are far from home. It tackles a multitude of potential pitfalls.

Let’s break down its usual components:

  1. Emergency Medical Care: From sudden illness to accidents, your policy covers the cost of emergency healthcare and hospitalization. Severe cases might even warrant a medical evacuation back to Australia, and the right insurance policy will cover that too.
  2. The Unplanned Goodbye: Trip Cancellation or Interruption: If circumstances outside your control compel you to cancel your trip or pack your bags sooner than expected, your non-refundable expenses will be reimbursed.
  3. Luggage Protection: Misplaced, stolen, or damaged baggage can be a real downer. Travel insurance to the rescue again, offering compensation for your personal belongings.
  4. Delayed Travel Plans: If your flight decides to take its time, your insurance might step in to cover the extra costs for accommodation and meals.
  5. Personal Liability: Accidentally caused harm to a person or their property? Your policy can cover the associated legal liability.
  6. Round-the-clock Assistance: Many insurers offer 24/7 assistance services to navigate through any emergencies you might encounter on your trip.
  7. Rental Vehicle Excess: If your rental vehicle bears the brunt of damage or theft, your insurance policy can cover the excess costs.

Remember, while these components are commonly found, the specifics can differ between insurers, making it important to scour through the policy document with an eagle’s eye.

Choosing Your Travel Insurance: A Walkthrough

Selecting your travel insurance requires a careful analysis of several factors. Here’s how you can navigate through it:

1. Know Your Needs: Understand what you’ll be doing on your trip. If you plan to go wild with adventure sports or indulge in a road trip, make sure your policy covers these. Your health also matters – any pre-existing conditions need to be covered.

2. Shop Around: Use comparison websites to analyse different policies. Look at the level of coverage, the cost, the exclusions, and the limits.

3. Decode the Fine Print: Ensure you know what your policy covers and what it leaves out. Pay particular attention to medical coverage.

4. Budget It: While cost is important, it shouldn’t be at the expense of necessary coverage. Look for a sweet spot between coverage and cost.

5. Peek at Reviews: Scanning through customer reviews can give you an idea about the insurer’s customer service and how they handle claims.

Prominent Travel Insurance Providers for Aussie Jet-Setters

Australia has a vast array of insurers providing travel insurance for your American escapade. Here are some you might want to consider:

  1. Cover-More: A popular choice among Australians, Cover-More provides comprehensive and customizable travel insurance plans.
  2. World Nomads: A favourite among backpackers and thrill-seekers, World Nomads has flexible plans covering a wide array of adventurous activities.
  3. Southern Cross Travel Insurance: Offering competitive pricing and comprehensive coverage, SCTI also has an easy-to-use online claims process.
  4. QBE: With three levels of coverage, QBE caters to different budgetary needs and requirements.
  5. InsureandGo: They offer affordable policies with unlimited medical coverage and a seamless online claims process.

Wrapping Up

Securing travel insurance before embarking on your American adventure is a critical step in your travel planning. It provides peace of mind, allowing you to immerse yourself in your journey without worrying about potential risks.

Just remember to assess your specific needs, shop around for different policies, and read the terms and conditions carefully before you sign on the dotted line.

Have a fantastic trip!


1. Is travel insurance compulsory for Aussies heading to the USA?
While it’s not a legal requirement, it’s a practical necessity, considering the hefty cost of healthcare in the USA.

2. What price should I anticipate for travel insurance?
Your travel insurance’s cost will depend on factors like your age, trip duration, level of coverage, and any existing health conditions.

3. Does my travel insurance cover issues related to COVID-19?
Some insurers do provide coverage for COVID-19 related scenarios, but the specifics can vary. Always verify the insurer’s COVID-19 policy before purchasing.

4. Is it possible to purchase travel insurance after my departure from Australia?
Some insurers do offer this service, but it’s advisable to purchase insurance before departure to ensure you’re covered from the get-go.

5. How does pre-existing medical condition affect my travel insurance?
Pre-existing conditions could affect your coverage. Some insurers might exclude them from coverage, increase the premium, or require a medical assessment. Always declare these conditions and discuss them with your insurer to ensure adequate coverage.

6. What should I do if I fall sick or meet with an accident while in the USA?
In case of a medical emergency, contact your insurer as soon as possible. They can guide you through the process, which often involves visiting an approved medical facility and keeping all medical reports and receipts.

7. Are high-risk activities like skiing or scuba diving covered?
Some travel insurance policies cover adventurous activities as standard, while others may require additional premium. If you plan to partake in such activities, ensure they are covered by your chosen policy.

8. Does travel insurance cover stolen or lost luggage?
Yes, most travel insurance policies cover lost, stolen, or damaged luggage and personal belongings. However, there are usually limits per item, and high-value items might require additional coverage.

9. I am traveling with expensive photography equipment. Will that be covered?
Standard policies often have limits on coverage for high-value items. You might need to purchase additional coverage for expensive equipment. Always discuss this with your insurer to understand the specifics.

10. If my travel provider or tour operator goes bankrupt, will my insurance cover me?
Some policies offer coverage for financial default of travel providers. However, this isn’t standard and may need to be added to your policy.

11. Can I cancel my travel insurance policy if I decide not to go on my trip?
Many insurers offer a cooling-off period, during which you can cancel your policy and get a full refund, provided you haven’t started your trip or made a claim.

12. Can I extend my policy if I decide to extend my trip?
Yes, most insurers allow policy extensions. However, you should notify your insurer before your current policy expires.

13. What should I do if I need to make a claim?
Contact your insurer as soon as possible, and they’ll guide you through their claims process. Generally, you’ll need to provide evidence such as medical reports, police reports, receipts, etc.

14. What is an excess in travel insurance?
The excess is the amount you agree to contribute towards a claim. Depending on your policy, you might have to pay an excess for every event or claim you make.

15. If I am a victim of a terrorist attack during my trip, will my insurance cover me?
This depends on your insurer. While some policies cover incidents of terrorism, others exclude them. It’s critical to read your policy documents carefully.