Travel Insurance Analysis: Westpac Credit Cards

Information verified correct on October 1st, 2016

Insurance companies are often blamed as having so called ‘loopholes’ inserted in their policies that gives them a way out to avoid paying out on claims. However, these claims often result in the policy holder not understanding the terms and conditions and hence, exactly what he or she is covered for. An insurance policy is after all a legal document and something that you must make yourself fully aware of before you agree to the conditions it contains.

Travel insurance is no different. There are many companies which offer travel insurance and most of these differ from each other in one form or another. This makes it even more important that you fully understand what you are actually covered for in the particular policy you have chosen. Some travel insurance is offered as a complimentary feature to entice you to sign up for a specific credit card. In these cases the main objective of the financial organisation which owns the credit card is to have you purchase the card. The offer of travel insurance is the enticement although the travel insurance itself will be underwritten by a legitimate insurance company that specialises in this type of product.

One bank that offers travel insurance with its platinum credit card is Westpac. We have put together the results of a thorough analysis to help you decide whether the Westpac Earth Platinum travel insurance is what you have been looking for.

Westpac Credit Cards with Travel Insurance

Important Points Regarding Westpac Platinum Travel Insurance:

  • The Westpac Platinum credit card travel insurance is available to insure the actual card holder, his or her spouse and any dependent children who undertake travel overseas for a period of three months.
  • The insurance cover begins automatically when you purchase your airline international return tickets but you must pay the full cost with your Westpac Platinum card, or Westpac rewards points. You will not be covered if you purchase your flight tickets any other way.
  • You can not pay by direct debit, BPAY or by cheque if want to take advantage of your Westpac Platinum travel insurance, even though you will be taking, and using, such a card with you on your travels.
  • It is important that you check with Westpac to make certain you are covered before you leave on your travels.
  • You can’t even pay a holding deposit to your travel agent.
  • You must pay the whole cost of the return travel with your card before you will receive any travel insurance.

These are all very important points to keep in mind otherwise you will only come to learn you card’s travel insurance will be absolutely useless to you when you come to make a claim. Another point to keep in your mind is that you will be subjected to an excess of $200 on any claim you make other than when you have to obtain a replacement credit card, emergency clothing, travellers cheques or travel documents should your luggage be lost.

Events That are Not Covered

Before we get started on what the Westpac Platinum credit card travel insurance does cover we should look at some of the events that are not covered, these include the following:

  • Situations that could have been avoided if you had taken the advice of any government warning, officials or public news reports.
  • Items stolen that had been left in a car overnight or if left in full view of passers by, whether the car is locked or not.
  • Items not personally owned by yourself or your family but owned by a business.
  • When you knowingly put yourself in danger.
  • When you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • If injured in a professional sport and most adventure sports.
  • Clothes damaged whilst being laundered.
  • When you have not taken adequate precautions against any event from occurring.
  • Any items left behind, misplaced or forgotten.
  • There is no income protection included

Events Covered by Your Westpac Platinum Credit Card Travel Insurance

  • Delays while travelling. Although there is no cover offered for any missed flight connections you are covered if you have been delayed through no fault of your own for six hours or more. In this case you will receive $500 a person to a maximum of $900.
  • Car rentals. An amount of $5,000 will be paid on all rental car accidents occasioned while you are driving overseas.
  • Theft or damage. You are not covered for anything that you carelessly lose but you are insured up to an amount of $15,000 if you are the card holder or $20,000 for the family as a group against loss through theft or damage. This cover is limited to $3,000 for any one item apart from a laptop computer with is covered for $5,500 for any personal items. You can also claim up to $500 for each person (maximum of $1,000 for a family) for any lost baggage to replace clothing and toiletries in an emergency. Items stolen from a locked car are covered for a total of  $2,500.
  • Death cover. If a death occurs in a transport accident the card holder, spouse or child are all covered for $250,000 each. If the death results from a non-transport accident (paid up to 12 months following the incident) an amount of $15,000 will be paid on the cardholder’s life and $10,000 on the spouse’s life, Children are not covered under these circumstances.
  • Medical cover.  Emergency dental treatment up to a maximum of $1,250 will be paid if the treatment is to ease urgent pain. You will also be able to claim $100 a day while hospitalised up to a maximum of $12,000. Pre-existing medical conditions that flare up again while you are travelling can still be insured against if you inform the company before departure and pay an assessment fee as well as any loading on your premium if that is required.

Does Your Trip Require an Extra Level of Cover?

You may feel that your situation requires a travel insurance policy with an extra level of features and higher level of cover than what is available on complimentary travel insurance from credit cards. If this is the case it might be worth considering a standalone policy from an Australian travel insurer. While you will have to pay a little extra for the cover, you can benefit by being able to tailor your cover to your travel needs and receive protection for a greater range of losses that may be suffered while travelling.

Compare Travel Insurance from Australian Insurance Providers

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22 Responses to Travel Insurance Analysis: Westpac Credit Cards

  1. Default Gravatar
    Les | December 30, 2015

    In the 1 June 2015 booklet the condition of eligibility for overseas travel insurance criteria page 30 answer 2. You spend at least $500 on your prepaid travel costs (i.e. your travel costs that you pay for before leaving Australia) and you charge these costs (e.g. return overseas travel ticket; and/or airport/departure taxes; and/or your prepaid overseas accommodation/travel;and/or your other prepaid overseas itinerary items) to one of your following eligible credit cards issued by Westpac: I refer to the second paragraph above and would like your comment.

    • Staff
      Ysa | January 1, 2016

      Hi Les,

      Thanks for your inquiry.
      To allow us to assist you further, could you please specify your question about the Westpac travel insurance policy?

      Cheers,
      Ysa

  2. Default Gravatar
    Mel | August 2, 2015

    Hi!

    We purchased tickets for our family of 4,return to the USA. We have booked car hire for a week during that time, also paid for on our credit card? Should we take out extra cover through the car hire company or does our complimentary insurance cover us?

    Kind regards, Mel

    • Staff
      Jonathan | August 3, 2015

      Hi Mel,

      Thank for your question

      Depending on the credit card you are using the level of excess cover available will vary. Black cards, Platinum Plus cards and Platinum A cards all have rental vehicle excess cover for domestic and international car hire, while Platinum B and Gold Cards have international rental vehicle excess cover only.
      Please see this page for more details on this travel insurance component.

      I hope this has helped.

      Jonathan

  3. Default Gravatar
    Christine | June 29, 2015

    Upon payment of my flight, is the travel insurance still valid if I make the payment through my PayPal account which is linked to my Westpac credit card?

    • Staff
      Sally | June 30, 2015

      Hi Christine,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you meet the other eligibility criteria, than yes, the travel insurance should still be valid.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Sally

  4. Default Gravatar
    Glenyss | February 20, 2015

    We have bought flights to USA with westpac platinum card. I know medical is expensive there do u think the travel insurance with paying for trip with card is enough cover for USA? Not planning any medical emergencies and we not doing extreme sports and we not hiring a car just doing the tourist stuff in NY, Vegas and San Fran.
    Also looking at what card to get that has no foreign trans fees and no annual fee to use whilst away have you got any recommendations
    Thanks

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 20, 2015

      Hi Glenyss, thanks for your inquiry!

      The preferences of the individual will determine the most ideal travel insurance for a trip, depending on the inclusions of the complimentary travel insurance you will need to evaluate whether you need extra cover.
      For a list of cards that have no foreign transaction fees/ currency conversion fee please see this page, the annual fee component can be compared in the table.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  5. Default Gravatar
    gary | February 18, 2015

    I have purchased a return ticket from Brisbane to London using my Westpac credit card. The travel insurance will cover my time in the UK, but if I visit Europe will I still be covered by the insurance policy?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 19, 2015

      Hi Gary, thanks for your inquiry!

      The complimentary insurance cover ends six months after the date of departure shown on your return overseas travel tickets for Black card, Platinum Plus card and Platinum A card cardholders and three months after the date of departure shown on your return overseas travel tickets for Platinum B card and Gold card cardholders.

      “Platinum A card” means a
      • Singapore Airlines Westpac Platinum credit card; and
      • 55 Day Platinum credit card.

      “Platinum B card” means an
      • Earth Platinum credit card;
      • Altitude Platinum credit card (including Altitude Qantas Platinum).

      “Platinum Plus card” means an
      • Earth Platinum Plus credit card;
      • Altitude Platinum Plus credit card (including Private Bank Altitude Platinum Plus credit card); and
      • Altitude Qantas Platinum Plus credit card (including Private Bank Altitude Qantas Platinum Plus credit card).

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

    • Default Gravatar
      gary | February 19, 2015

      Hi Jonathan,
      Thank you for your reply. I am a platinum B card holder and therefore I am covered as you said for 3 months after departure. But to my original question – If my return ticket I purchased is from Brisbane to London, and then during this time I take a side trip to Europe before returning to the UK for my return trip home, does this insurance still cover me for this part of my trip, even though I have not paid for this side trip with my credit card? Or do I have to purchase separate travel insurance for this part of the trip?
      Thank you Gary

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 19, 2015

      Hi Gary, thanks for your inquiry!

      As long as the other trips are within the 3 months and you have not returned home in that period you will be covered. The complimentary insurance is inclusive of all other destinations.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  6. Default Gravatar
    Lea | February 4, 2015

    If I apply for a Westpac credit card with complimentary travel insurance, will that travel insurance cover an unexpected cancellation of my trip?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | February 4, 2015

      Hi Lea, thanks for your inquiry!

      Please refer to page 39 or the terms and conditions I have sent to your email.

      I hope this has helped.

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  7. Default Gravatar
    Amiro | January 22, 2015

    We travel to see family in UK every two years, and stop off for a week or so in Asia or Europe or US or South America on the way out and back. Time away is usually around 6 or 7 weeks.

    I make all flights and bookings using Westpac 55 day Platinum VISA card.

    Time and again travellers warn me that we should take out “proper” travel insurance, not rely on “credit card insurance” for big trips. I claim there is no difference.

    Am I right?

    • Staff
      Jonathan | January 22, 2015

      Hi Amiro,

      Thanks for your inquiry,

      Travel insurance needs vary depending on the individual and the desired level of cover for different circumstances. Certain travel insurance products provide more specific types of cover for example vehicle insurance or extreme sports medical cover.
      For a comparison of different types of travel insurance products please see this page. Please also refer to the full PDF I have sent you with the terms and conditions and inclusions for Westpac’s Credit Cards Complimentary Insurance Policy.

      I hope this helps!

      Cheers,

      Jonathan

  8. Default Gravatar
    Ian | October 19, 2014

    I purchased all My Air Travel from Air Asia for an upcoming trip to Singapore & Thailand on My Credit Card. Total cost $670.88
    All these were paid for using my Westpac 55 Day Platinum VISA Card via PayPal .

    Does this mean I am eligible for the travel insurance

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | October 20, 2014

      Hi Ian,

      Thanks for your question.

      If this is a return ticket you will be eligible, as it meets the $500 minimum of prepaid travel costs required to qualify.

      I hope this has helped.

      Thanks,

      Elizabeth

  9. Default Gravatar
    Pam | October 7, 2013

    I have booked my overseas trip through a travel agent. I will be paying the travel agent with my platinum card. Will I still be eligible for travel insurance?

    • Staff
      Jacob | October 8, 2013

      Hi Pam.

      Thanks for your question.

      The policy terms and conditions require that among things, you pay for at least $500 worth of your prepaid travel expenses with your eligible Westpac credit card. Travel agent services used to book your flights would be included in this amount. It’s advised that you have a look at the policy document – I’ve sent a copy to your email.

      I hope this helps.

  10. Default Gravatar
    Jane | May 30, 2013

    We have paid for 2 return flights to the USA using our visa gold card. What are we covered for in the travel insurance. Do we need to contact visa before we go to register or is it all automatic
    Regards
    Jane

    • Staff
      Jacob | May 30, 2013

      Hi Jane. The cover is automatic provided you meet the requirements set out in the terms and conditions (I’ve sent the document to your email). The terms and conditions also provide a list of insurable events and excesses. Jacob.

Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated October 1st, 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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