Travel Insurance & Safety

What is the point of travel insurance?

So, here you are. You’ve spent months researching your destination and planning your holiday, you’ve booked your flights, nabbed an adorable villa to stay in overlooking the coast and have marked out a slew of fabulous bars to sling cocktails at while the sun sets. With inflation at dizzying heights – making the cost of living, travelling and flying a lot higher than we remember pre-pandemic – you can’t help but think, “Do I really need travel insurance?”  

Well, according to Australian government website Smart Traveller, yes, you probably do. In fact, they consider it “as important as a passport” if you're heading overseas!

When surveying the Freely crew to see if anyone had any travel misdemeanours worth digging up to share, we landed on a solid story from a guy who did his first snow season overseas in the U.S. at 18 years of age. Whilst his decision-making skills weren’t spectacular thanks to a barely-developed prefrontal cortex, his mum made him promise to wear a helmet whilst snowboarding (and also made him take out travel insurance, of course).  

One afternoon, while trying to impress a cute co-worker, he took a jump way too fast. He distinctly remembers a sinking feeling in his stomach with the realisation that he’d grossly overestimated his skill level, then also had a very brief moment of in-air gratitude at the fact that his mum made him protect his skull before he came crashing to the ground.  

In that instance, the good fellow was lucky to escape with a bruised tailbone and a crushed ego, but it could have been much worse had he not been helmeted and also insured – especially considering how outrageously expensive healthcare is in the United States (we’re talking tens-of-thousands of dollars expensive).

So, consider travel insurance to be like a helmet: an extra cost, and sort of annoying to deal with (although we’re doing our best to minimise this!) – but if things do go awry when you’re on the road and you’ve got coverage, you might end up grateful you decided to take out a policy.

Photo by Yaroslav Shuraev

Here are a couple of situations where you will be glad you decided to use Freely when travelling. Also, do make sure you check out our PDS (that’s product disclosure statement) for full details of what is and isn’t included as part of your coverage when you take a policy out with us.

Medical Emergencies

There isn’t much that is more important than your health. If something goes wrong when travelling – say you have an accident, acquire an injury or come down with an illness – you want to be able to concentrate fully on your health, safety and recovery without worrying about the cost. Whilst we are lucky enough in Australia to be covered by a socialist health system, heaps of countries aren’t, meaning fees can be unfathomably high if you don’t have adequate medical cover.

With Freely, our travel insurance offers unlimited* coverage for both overseas medical and dental expenses – and there are benefits that may also offer cover for any additional expenses you rack up if you become sick while travelling.  

Check out the PDS (that’s product disclosure statement) for different situations where you may or may not be covered – for example, your policy may exclude coverage for certain pre-existing medical conditions, or if you're involved in accidents when intoxicated (don’t get on those scooters in Bali after a few Bintangs!).

In any case, if you suffer a disabling injury, sickness or disease requiring emergency repatriation back to Australia, cover under a Freely policy may help you out. Also, if your prescription meds are lost, stolen or damaged during your journey, your insurance policy may help cover the cost of replacement up to $500. Make sure you check out the ‘Booster’ section of the PDS to understand how you can include medical coverage for stuff like snow sports, too.

Photo Nandhu Kumar

Trip Cancellations

The next instance where you will be glad to have travel insurance is in the case of trip cancellations outside of your control – which Freely may be able to help you out with, offering up to $5000 coverage as standard.
Now more than ever, travelling is being disrupted by pandemics, political instability and severe natural disasters as a result of climate change. If, due to unforeseeable circumstances outside of your control at the time, you have to rearrange your journey, there may be provision to claim the reasonable cost of doing so. If you have to cancel your trip, there may also be coverage for non-refundable and unused travel and accommodation costs, along with the value of any airmiles or frequent flyer points you might lose. Note that this doesn’t cover situations where your airline cancels the flight – as then it’s up to them to sort you out!

Greater Protection

Although a privilege and often a lot of fun, travelling can also become stressful very quickly if and when something does go wrong. We have enough to worry about these days, so lighten the load by thinking about taking out Freely travel insurance – it’s quick and easy, and you can get a policy and make a claim from the palm of your hand in literal minutes.

There you have it, folk: considering taking out a travel insurance policy is like strapping the proverbial helmet to your noggins. Hopefully, like a helmet, it’s not needed… but if it is, you will be glad you made the responsible choice!

Photo by NEOM

* On approved claims only, and cover will not exceed 12 months from onset of the illness or injury.

Disclaimer: Limits, sub-limits, conditions, and exclusions apply. For full details on exactly what’s covered by Freely travel insurance always refer to and read the Combined FSG/PDS. The information contained in this article is indicative only and provides general information regarding likely coverage under the relevant terms and conditions of a policy. All claims are assessed in accordance with your level of cover together with the terms and conditions set out in the policy of insurance. Insurance is administered by Cover-More Insurance Services Pty Ltd (ABN 95 003 114 145, AFSL 241713) on behalf of the product issuer, Zurich Australian Insurance Limited (ABN 13 000 296 640, AFSL 232507). Any advice is general advice only. Please consider your financial situation, needs and objectives, and read the Combined FSG/PDS before deciding to buy this insurance. Visit for a copy of the Target Market Determination for our products.  

A community of travel-obsessed individuals with a lust for life and adventure in our souls.