If you're planning to go on a cruise for your next holiday, you're not alone. More than one million Aussies took a cruise holiday last year, research from Cruise Lines International Association recently reported.
In a country of around 23.8 million, it's a fair proportion of people taking to the seas. And why not? Many enjoy the relaxed and all-inclusive nature of the modern cruise ship getaway.
However, not everything is always smooth sailing, and many holidaymakers don't realise that travel insurance is rarely a default part of the overall holiday package.
So, to answer the above question: yes, you are likely to need travel insurance on a cruise if you wish to be covered for a range of potential financial upsets.
What cruise holiday insurance should I consider?
Your luggage and personal belongings should be protected for damage or loss – after all, there's no saying that items won't break or go missing on any form of holiday.
Travel insurance will often also cover you for expenses accrued due to a delay or cancellation, as well as reimbursing you in the event your travel provider goes out of business after you've paid for the holiday.
Am I covered by my health insurance benefits overseas?
It's important to remember that you are still taking a trip out of the country. As soon as the cruise ship weighs anchor and leaves port, both Medicare or private health insurance benefits are no longer active.
A travel insurance policy for a cruise holiday should include medical cover in case you fall ill or get injured and require medical attention, hospital treatment or emergency evacuation.
If not, it's likely that a holidaymaker's medical bill will set them back more than the cost of the trip. According to P&O Cruises, "hospital bills can cost as much as $5,000 per day [and] all consultations, treatments and medications are charged at private rates".
How much does travel insurance cost?
The price of your travel insurance depends on a number of factors, including the length of time you'll be away, where you're travelling to and whether you have any pre-existing medical conditions. Your choice of single- or multi-trip travel insurance will also determine the amount you pay.
Similarly, the cost is likely to rise if you plan on taking part in any extreme sports while away from home.
If you'd like to find affordable travel insurance, our experts at HICA have the ability to find the right coverage for you while also saving around 30 per cent on the final cost.
To find out more, give us a call on 1300 44 22 01.