Credit Card Travel Insurance

Information verified correct on September 27th, 2016
anz-insurance

When it comes to travel insurance, credit cards are one of the cheapest and hassle-free ways to go about it. However, there are requirements and prerequisites involved before most credit card travel insurance becomes activated.

While the majority of gold, platinum and travel credit cards offer ‘Complementary Travel Insurance’, each will vary in cover. You’ll need to compare insurance policies till you find the perfect one for yourself. For instance, a family going on an overseas skiing holiday may compare the following two cards.

  • Card A offers 6 months international cover with up to $20,000 cover for yourself and your belongings.
  • Card B offers 3 months international cover with $10,000 cover for yourself and your family, which includes all types of injuries.

Card B would therefore be a more suitable cover if you were travelling with your family, while Card A would almost be obsolete for the example above when travelling with a family.

HSBC Platinum Credit Card

Credit Card with Complimentary Travel Insurance

Enjoy a range of platinum privileges with the HSBC Platinum Credit Card with the freedom of higher credit limits, complimentary international travel insurance and more.

  • $149 p.a. annual fee
  • 19.99% p.a. on purchases
  • 0% p.a. for 15 months on balance transfers
  • Cash Advance Rate of 21.99% p.a.
  • Up to 55 days interest free
  • Minimum Income Requirement of $40,000 p.a.

Comparison on travel insurance credit cards

Rates last updated September 27th, 2016.

American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card

Standard 10,000 bonus points offer has replaced the 30,000 bonus points exclusive offer.

September 1st, 2016

Commonwealth Bank Business Platinum Awards credit card

First year annual fee waiver has been extended until 31 October 2016.

September 2nd, 2016

Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer

Balance transfer offer has been extended until 31 October 2016.

September 26th, 2016

View latest updates

Jonathan Choi Jonathan
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
Receive a full annual fee refund and save $149 if you meet the $6,000 spend requirement. Enjoy a balance transfer offer and platinum card benefits such as complimentary insurances and concierge services.
19.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months $149 p.a. Go to site More info
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 18 months and also earn 2 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months on everyday spend.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Qantas Credit Card
Receive 60,000 bonus Qantas Points on eligible spend within 3 months. Enjoy access to premium benefits and complimentary insurance.
19.99% p.a. $199 p.a. Go to site More info
Citi Qantas Signature Credit Card
Earn up to 70,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the spend requirement plus stay secured with a complimentary international travel insurance.
20.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 6 months $99 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($395 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
Receive $200 back when you spend $500 in the first 3 months. Also enjoy a $0 annual fee for the first year.
19.74% p.a. $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
Receive 10,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement. Enjoy 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers and receive a complimentary Virgin Australia domestic economy return flight every year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $195 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Platinum
A platinum card with a balance transfer offer of 0% p.a. for 20 months and an introductory purchase offer of 1% p.a. for 12 months with an annual fee waiver for the first year.
1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 12.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 20 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
Citi Rewards Credit Card - Platinum Card
Enjoy a reduced annual fee on the first year, 0% p.a. for 24 months balance transfer offer, Citi Reward Points on eligible spend, plus a complimentary travel insurance.
20.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 24 months with 1.5% balance transfer fee $199 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($249 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Travel Adventures card
Pay no overseas transaction fee on purchases and receive complimentary domestic return flight and lounge passes each year you hold the card when you spend $500 on eligible purchases within the first three months.
20.24% p.a. $225 p.a. Go to site More info
David Jones American Express Platinum Card - Qantas Rewards
Receive complimentary travel insurance when you use this card to book tickets for flights and earn 30,000 Qantas Points when you spend outside of store 3 times in the first month.
20.74% p.a. $295 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Frequent Flyer Black
Receive 75,000 bonus Qantas Points after your first eligible purchase is made within three months of card approval. Special privileges include complimentary travel insurance and concierge services.
19.99% p.a. $425 p.a. Go to site More info
Virgin Australia Velocity High Flyer Card - 30k Bonus Points offer
Receive 30,000 bonus Velocity Points and earn 1 Velocity Points per $1 spent. Receive an exclusive $129 Virgin Australia Gift Voucher and two complimentary Single Entry Virgin Australia domestic Lounge passes each year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 6 months $144 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($289 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Premium Card
Earn as much as 30,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement. Enjoy frequent flyer benefits including uncapped Qantas Points per $1 spent, complimentary travel insurance and Qantas Club lounge invitations.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $249 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Low Rate Platinum Credit Card
A low interest rate on purchase with up to 55 days interest free. Cardholders are also covered for emergency medical and dental care while traveling overseas, and travel cancellations or lost luggage while travelling inside of Australia.
13.49% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months with 3% balance transfer fee $99 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Card
Receive 80,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement and earn up to 3 points per dollar spent. Gain access to travel insurance, $300 Platinum Travel Credit every year and access to 800 VIP airport lounges.
$1,200 p.a. Go to site More info
NAB Velocity Rewards Premium Card
0% p.a. on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months and 20,000 bonus Velocity Points when you make an everyday purchase in the first 90 days of opening your account. You gain both Visa and American Express cards which are linked to one single account and annual fee.
0% p.a. for 15 months (reverts to 19.99% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 15 months with a one off 2% balance transfer fee $150 p.a. Go to site More info
Bank of Melbourne Vertigo Platinum
A platinum card with a low balance transfer offer of 0% p.a. interest for 20 months and 1% p.a. for 12 months on purchases combined with complimentary insurance covers.
1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 12.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 20 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
BankSA Vertigo Platinum
Enjoy 0% balance transfer rate for 20 months and 1% purchase rate for 12 months if you apply and are approved by 29 September 2016.
1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 12.74% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 20 months $99 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Platinum Card
Enjoy up to 50,000 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum required spend and earn up to 3 rewards points per dollar spent. Also receive a complimentary return flight every year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $349 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Black Credit Card
Earn 75,000 Reward Points after your first eligible purchase within the first three months. Up to 3 reward points per dollar spent and unlimited access to airport lounges with complimentary travel insurance.
18.79% p.a. $375 p.a. Go to site More info

General information about credit card travel insurance

Insurance policies covered

These are ‘complimentary’ of credit cards with travel benefits, and are generally covered in the cost of the annual fee. The types of policies and extent of cover from credit card travel insurance tends to range from:

  • Extent of cover. Tends to range from 3 months to 12 months, dependent on the status and annual fee of your card. Can also refer to the value of which property and payouts will be made up to.
  • General overseas travel insurance. Average cover sits at about $20,000. This will cover flight cancellations, luggage loss, delays, and medical. Look out for the reach of the cover for this as well – some policies don’t cover cash loss in baggage for example.
  • Purchase security insurance. whenever you make a purchase domestically or internationally on your card, your insurance will either cover the product from theft or damage from 30-150 days. Note that cash, items for the purpose of resale, business products, animals or plantlife are generally not covered among other items. Like any insurance policy, go over the fine print very carefully to avoid getting stung by a lack of cover.
  • Extended warranty cover – Most popular and common household, entertainment and luxury items that come with a warranty will be extended from 6 months till up to 24 months.
  • Rental vehicle excess insurance – Credit card insurance policies occasionally cover any rental vehicle access. Cover ranges from $1000 up to $6000+. Be wary that for this insurance to apply, you’ll most likely have to take out the full comprehensive insurance plan with the rental company. If you’re interested in this insurance and it doesn’t come complementary with your current card, some ANZ credit cards offer rental insurance for a fee.
  • Transport accident insurance – If you or your family should get severely injured or die in a transport accident while overseas, you may be compensated from $100k to $1million. This is an important feature to go over, as family cover is not always present. The severity of injury may also come into question.
  • Property and personal belongings insurance – If one of your items is lost or stolen overseas, your insurance will pay out equal to the product value, minus depreciation. There are mitigating factors and circumstances to take into account – if your belonging is stolen from an unmanned vehicle for instance, coverage may be severely limited. Some policies will not even cover the item if it’s stolen from a public place.

If you’re interested in a credit card with travel insurance, browse the some of the platinum and gold credit cards on offer to Australians. Complimentary travel insurance is an easy way to bundle your insurances together, and may be less expensive than taking cover out individually. The only thing you’ll have to be wary of is the general inflexibility of travel insurance policies on credit cards.
Learn more and compare Platinum, Gold and Black Credit Cards here

Pitfalls and benefits

The pitfalls are fairly clear – high interest rates on unpaid balances not paid can lead to high interest costs. Conversely, if you use your credit card wisely then you can enjoy the finer things in life when you like. One other great benefit of credit card usage is what is called credit card insurance. Essentially, credit issuers link insurance benefits to credit card usage. But how legitimate is this practice? And how does credit card insurance compare with regular insurance claims? The aim of this article is to answer these and other questions surrounding credit card insurance.

What is credit card insurance?

Qualifying for a credit card

Qualifying for a credit card is not the simplest process. You need to have an adequate, stable income, which promises that you will be able to pay back all of the money that you borrow, with added interest. You need to make bigger investments, be it in the form of assets such as vehicles, or homes, which will improve your credit rating.

Exploring credit card insurance

Credit card insurance is linked to your credit card account, which is in one name and attached to one person but this is already problematic as most credit card users have strong family obligations. And secondly, what are the hidden pitfalls of this insurance? It seems like the most comprehensive way to go – after all, the bank knows all about your financial status, and they’ve just offered you ‘free’ insurance. But be warned that the list of terms and conditions is extensive and different for each bank, and all is not as idyllic as it may seem. Keep reading for an in-depth analysis on the benefits and disadvantages of credit card insurance.

Advantages of credit card insurance

Let’s take a look at the advantages associated with this kind of insurance.

  • It’s a complimentary feature of the card

    The most obvious advantage of credit card insurance is that you do not have to pay a monthly premium. That’s right – no more subscription fees, excesses, and limitations. This is a powerful factor in the defence of credit card insurance. The bank is able to offer such insurance for two reasons. Firstly, banks handle massive amounts of money, and are thus able to back up such extensive schemes. And secondly, credit card insurance, although offering minimal cover for family members, is essentially aimed at covering individuals, that is, the card holder himself. They are only providing significant cover for the cardholder.

  • Great benefits

    When you compare credit card insurance to standard insurance policies, you will be struck by the massive discrepancy in payouts should something happen to you. In general, credit card insurance will pay out as much as ten times the amount that your standard insurance company would, for the main cardholder. This is particularly true of gold, platinum or black level credit card insurance. If you were to choose an insurance option based purely on the magnitude of cover they offer you, then credit card insurance would be the winner hands down. Even the secondary cover that is offered to your spouse and family is extremely competitive. Medical and automotive cover is particularly good.

  • Diverse coverage

    Credit card companies really do try to cover all bases with their coverage schemes, and everything falls under one policy. For example, you can receive life cover, medical insurance, travel insurance, salary protection, and theft coverage. Ordinary insurance companies would make such covers extras, and you would be expected to customise your plan so that you covered all possibilities, but this would raise your premium exponentially.
    The great thing about credit card insurance is that credit cards are accepted globally, and so you will also have the benefits of the scheme with you regardless of where you are in the world. Let’s imagine that you plan a family trip. If you buy the flight tickets with your credit card, you will receive full cover, and your family will be covered to some extent. You will also automatically receive up to three months worth of travel insurance in some cases. If you chip a tooth upon arrival, the treatment will be covered. Should your wife lose her purse, this will be looked after. And most importantly, should something unforeseen happen to you, your family will receive a huge death payout.

The disadvantages of credit card insurance

The safety and security offered by credit card insurance can put you at ease when travelling, but there are many pitfalls and exceptions linked to this kind of scheme, which need to be discussed here before you take the credit card plunge.

      • ‘Free’ is relative

        As has been previously mentioned, credit card insurance is directly tied to your credit card account. The schemes are generally only activated when you use your card. For example, you will receive travel insurance and coverage on your rental car if, and only if, you put the costs on your credit card. So, you have to use the card before you get any benefits, and that may cost you a lot of money in the long run if you do not manage your credit card wisely paying off debt as it falls due.

      • Long-term implications

        Paying by credit card, while convenient, may raises the price of any purchase that you make if you ultimately do not pay off your balances and therefore pay interest charges.

      • Loose definitions and legalese

        By law, banks and insurance companies alike must inform you of all of the rules and limitations on insurance plans, but often they choose to do so in as vague a way as possible so that they can avoid payouts. Unfortunately, this is highly evident when you encounter the documentation that accompanies a credit card insurance plan. Let’s just take two terms that are commonly thrown about in said documentation:
        Dependent
        Reasonable

      • Redefining dependent

        Credit card insurance, as discussed above, is designed to cover one person, but they do cover your family. The term for someone who is covered under the blanket protection of a policy is called a dependent. Credit card companies twist this term as they see fit, and no two seem to agree on what constitutes a dependent. For example, your spouse is automatically considered a dependent, but what about your children? When do they become in-dependent?

      • Age factors

        Companies seem to create criteria at will, with some considering age a factor (anything between 16 and 19), as well as education level – ironically, university students are dependent despite their advancing education, whereas those who do not pursue tertiary education and are thrust onto the job market with no skills are fine to fend for themselves.

      • Redefining ‘reasonable’

        ‘Reasonable’ is another term that seems to take on different meanings depending on the context of the credit card company. If you think that spending $5000 on emergency medical treatment is reasonable, then make sure that your credit card insurance issuer agrees, otherwise their cover will simply fall away. There are strict terms about what will be covered, so make sure you know these beforehand.

General tips and conclusions

There are loopholes in any insurance policy, and credit card insurance policies are no different. Research is the key. You need to be a savvy customer and go through all of the fine print in detail. Ask questions, present possible scenarios, and make sure that you are well informed about all of the possible realities associated with your credit card insurance. You should be up to date, well-informed and prepared at all times.

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12 Responses to Credit Card Travel Insurance

  1. Default Gravatar
    | April 23, 2016

    My question is regarding the excesses that apply to claims.
    I have the Bankwest Zero Platinum MasterCard as my credit card.

    My policy, it states that “you must pay the first A$250 for each claim” for travel insurance, extended warranty insurance, product security insurance and interstate flight inconvenience insurance.

    Does this mean that if I’m losing less than A$250 (e.g. my international medical bill is less than A$250, or the product that is getting extra warranty cost less than A$250), I should not bother making a claim?

    • Staff
      May | April 26, 2016

      Hi Jessie,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Please note that finder.com.au is a financial comparison website and general information service and does not represent any credit card company like Bankwest.

      Unfortunately, yes, you may only use the insurance if it is a very costly medical or travel expense to ensure you get your monies worth. You’d be best also if you can get in touch with Allianz Global Assistance directly if you need further clarification on the terms and conditions that pertain to the complimentary travel insurance cover attached to Bankwest’s credit cards.

      For your convenience, I’ve sent their phone number to your email.

      I hope this has helped.

      Cheers,
      May

  2. Default Gravatar
    Mads | April 9, 2015

    I have a Platinum ANZ credit card.
    Do I need an additional policy for a trip to Europe for 6 weeks, or, does the complimentary insurance policy cover what the other paid policies cover?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | April 10, 2015

      Hi Mads, thanks for your inquiry!

      The ANZ Platinum credit card comes with a complimentary travel insurance policy of 6 months. To be covered by this policy you will need a return ticket to Australia and have purchased at least $250 of your prepaid travel expenses using the ANZ Platinum Credit Card. For more details on this policy and the inclusions please refer to this page.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  3. Default Gravatar
    Ken | February 13, 2015

    Hi there can you tell me if there are any credit cards that will cover the owner and partner with travel insurance without having to pay for any of the associated flights?

    Thank you!

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 13, 2015

      Hi Ken, thanks for your inquiry!

      For a list of cards which include free complimentary insurance please see this page.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  4. Default Gravatar
    troy | February 9, 2014

    can you tell me the best card overall for travel insurance

    • Staff
      Marc | February 10, 2014

      Hi troy,
      thanks for the question.

      Unfortunately there’s no such thing as the best card for travel insurance. Many cards offer similar policies from Zurich, so the main difference is the amount of cover they offer and their fees and other benefits. Generally speaking platinum cards will have better policies than gold cards, but will come with higher annual fees. You may wish to carry out a comparison of the cards on this page, and compare the fees and cover limits they come with.

      Sorry I couldn’t be of more help,
      Marc.

  5. Default Gravatar
    troy | February 9, 2014

    if your credit card has more money in it to cover the trip with out using the banks money are you still covered for instance you have a $4000 limit and have $1200 extra in it and the trip costs you$1100 are you covered

    • Staff
      Marc | February 10, 2014

      Hi Troy,
      thanks for the question.

      The requirements of many credit cards when it comes to travel insurance is that a certain amount of the prepaid costs of the trip such as accommodation or airfares are paid for using the card. The amount of funds loaded onto the credit card in a credit type situation aren’t usually part of these requirements, but I’d definitely call your card issuer to find out how this could affect your situation.

      Cheers,
      Marc.

  6. Default Gravatar
    niels | May 2, 2013

    does the Commonwealth gold card free travel insurance cover cancellation

    • Staff
      Jacob | May 2, 2013

      Hi Niels. Thanks for your question. The international travel insurance benefit provided with the Commonwealth Bank Gold Credit Cards does cover unexpected cancellation of travel arrangements and other unexpected expenses – look at Part C Point 3 in the policy terms and conditions (page 38). I’ve sent the policy terms and conditions to your email. Jacob.

Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated September 27th, 2016
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer Card - Balance Transfer Offer
Enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 18 months and also earn 2 bonus Velocity Points in the first 3 months on everyday spend.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 18 months $64 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ME Bank frank Credit Card
Enjoy a low and consistent interest rate on purchases and cash advances, combined with no annual fee.
11.99% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
St.George Vertigo Visa
Introductory offer of 0% p.a. for 18 months on balance transfers and 1% p.a. for 12 months on purchases, plus a low annual fee.
1% p.a. for 12 months (reverts to 13.24% p.a.) 0% p.a. for 18 months $55 p.a. Go to site More info
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
Receive a full annual fee refund and save $149 if you meet the $6,000 spend requirement. Enjoy a balance transfer offer and platinum card benefits such as complimentary insurances and concierge services.
19.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 15 months $149 p.a. Go to site More info

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards CreditCardFinder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

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