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Travel Insurance for Korea

Travelling to Korea for a much-needed holiday? Compare your travel insurance options with Savvy.

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, updated on July 27th, 2023       

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Compare travel insurance for Korea

Whether you’re wanting to soak up some of the sights in Seoul or browse some of the bustling street markets, it’s a good idea to take out travel insurance on your holiday to Korea. If you’re searching for the right travel insurance cover for your next international journey, Savvy can point you in the right direction.

By comparing with us, you can find a policy which offers you the right protection, whether your flights are delayed, your luggage goes missing or you fall ill while overseas. We provide instant quotes from our partners, so you can consider their pros and cons and compare the cost of each policy. Before you take off overseas, compare your travel insurance options with Savvy today.

Do I need travel insurance for a holiday to Korea?

You don't necessarily ‘need' travel insurance if you're taking a holiday to Korea. However, it's strongly recommended that you purchase a policy before you jet off on your next holiday to East Asia, whether you want to explore the touristy area of Insadong or wander along the Cheonggyecheon Stream.

The Korean Peninsula, separated into North and South Korea by a thin strip of land, is home to a rich cultural heritage and stunning natural scenery. While there are hidden treats when visiting Korea, there are many dangers lingering for tourists and visitors to look out for, so it's paramount you compare with Savvy and get the best travel insurance before leaving.

If you’re eager to experience all of what The Land of the Morning Calm has to offer, some of the incidentals to watch for include:

  • Regional tensions: the security situation and escalation of tensions on the Korean Peninsula might worsen rapidly and with little warning. Tensions are likely to rise whenever there are incidents or military activity on or near the inter-Korean border, or when North Korea conducts nuclear or missile tests or military exercises. So, keep an eye on things, be cautious, and do what the authorities tell you.
  • Crime: in most areas, the crime rate against tourists is minimal. However, cities, tourist destinations, and public marketplaces are all familiar places for petty crime. Be careful when you go into busy places like theatres, nightclubs, and shopping malls. Never go out after dark on your own. You must always keep your passport and other travel papers safe.
  • Protests: protests and marches on political, labour, and student issues are possible. Protests, even those that start peaceful, may quickly become violent. They may cause significant delays in vehicular and public transit. Stay out of the way of protests and other significant crowds.
  • Pollution: during March, April, and May, pollution levels are very high. Yellow dust is carried to the Korean Peninsula by strong winds from Mongolia and China during this time of year. It may irritate the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, and throat. If you're having trouble breathing or your heart isn't functioning correctly, you should seek medical attention.
  • Road safety: the fatality rate from car accidents is alarmingly high in Korea. Be very cautious while crossing the street as vehicles are not required to stop for pedestrians. If there are pedestrian underpasses or overpasses, use them. Buses, cabs, and motorcyclists are more prone to reckless driving behaviours such as speeding, rolling through red lights, and switching lanes without signalling. On occasion, motorcyclists will ride their bikes on the sidewalks.
  • Monsoons: late June through August is the monsoon season. In these months, typhoons are likely, and there is a chance of flooding and mudslides. Find the nearest shelter and do as the locals say.
  • Earthquakes: tsunamis and earthquakes pose a threat. It's a good idea to prepare for a tsunami by learning the warning signals and immediately seeking higher ground. Don't hold back for official warnings or sirens.

What’s covered by my travel insurance for my holiday to Korea?

One of the reasons you need travel insurance is to protect you if you become ill or injured while travelling, lose your things, or suffer flight cancellations or delays. Some of the benefits travel insurance covers you include:

  1. Overseas medical bills: travel insurance is a great idea if you are harmed or ill in Korea and require medical attention while you're there. Health care in Korea is generally high quality, albeit few doctors or nurses are fluent in English. Expect to make an upfront payment.
  2. Evacuation or repatriation: you may need medical evacuation back to Australia if you are in a critical condition due to illness or injury. Luckily, your insurer can pay for your evacuation and repatriation, including if you need to disembark a cruise ship, which may cost up to $100,000 without insurance.
  3. Cancellation: many travel insurance carriers may refund pre-paid deposits on hotels, flights, or excursions if you cancel your trip due to a covered occurrence. Illness, injury, or a sick or dying family member are among the valid reasons for cancelling a trip.
  4. Lost, stolen or damaged bags: most travel insurance companies will compensate or replace lost, stolen, or damaged baggage up to an agreed claim amount, which can reach up to $15,000.
  5. Individual items: taking a mobile phone or laptop on your overseas or domestic getaway? Many insurance plans offer sub-limits for lost, damaged, or stolen property.
  6. Travel delays: most travel insurance coverage includes hotel, food, and other expenses if your flight is delayed longer than 24 hours. This includes delayed luggage owing to a delayed airliner. Most insurers have limits on how much you can claim if your travel arrangements are delayed.
  7. Personal liability: legal issues abroad may be costly. If you're held directly accountable for damage or injury, most travel insurance companies, including Tick travel insurance, may cover you up to $5 million.
  8. Accidental death: if you die overseas in a covered accident, your insurance company can repatriate your remains. They may pay up to $25,000 for funeral or cremation fees.
  9. Optional extras: planning to bungee jump off the Gapyeong Top Land or hike up Mount Bukhasan? Most travel insurance plans don't cover these activities automatically, but they do offer supplementary coverage for an added premium.
  10. Pet cover: if your return home is delayed due to sickness or travel disruptions, your travel insurance can cover the additional boarding costs for your pet.

However, most travel insurance companies won’t cover you for the following incidentals:

  1. Unapproved pre-existing medical conditions
  2. Lost personal items left unattended
  3. Breaking local laws and road rules
  4. Travelling for medical tourism
  5. Accidents caused by drug or alcohol use
  6. Travelling to a country against Australian government advice

What factors should I consider before buying travel insurance for a trip to Korea?

It might be difficult to figure out which policy provides the most beneficial coverage for your next trip to Korea. However, by comparing with Savvy and getting a few travel insurance quotes, you may be able to make the experience of searching for the perfect policy a whole lot easier.

Premium cost

It is, of course, in your best interest to keep your insurance premium costs to a minimum. To avoid overpaying for your travel insurance, it is crucial to shop around and get the best possible policy at a price that works for you. If you’re over 70 and planning a trip to Korea, you’ll likely be paying a higher premium based on your age, so it will be worth shopping around to find the cheapest seniors’ cover.

The type of policy you need

Numerous options exist for travel insurance, whether you're looking for single-trip, annual or one-way cover, so it’s important to consider your travel requirements. For example, if you’re travelling to Korea but also taking a holiday to America within the year, it might be good to find a multi-trip policy may be more suited to you than single trip. Take a look at your itinerary, think about how often you’ll be flying and compare it with Savvy so you can get the best insurance for your trip.

What you’re doing in Korea

Carefully consider which insurance company provides the greatest value and level of protection if you’re looking to partake in high-risk pursuits before signing up. If you want to zipline to Nami Island or paraglide at Yangpyeong, make sure you get a policy that covers you.

Claim limits

In most cases, the amount you may claim from your overseas travel insurance policy will be capped. Check if these limits are enough for your trip and the items you want to take with you by doing a side-by-side comparison with Savvy. For example, most comprehensive policies allow you to claim up to $7,500 if you lose your luggage or have it damaged while on holiday, compared to some other providers who only let you claim $3,000.

Inclusions and exclusions

When searching for the best international policy for your trip to Korea, make sure you opt for a policy that best suits your needs. Before settling on one choice, do your homework and weigh what's included and what isn't. For example, a pre-existing condition you suffer from may not be automatically included under one policy, while it could be covered by a competitor.

Top tips for saving on your travel insurance to Korea

Combine policies

You can get group policies from providers covering you and your partner, your extended family, and even your children or grandchildren. Most travel insurance providers allow you to include up to 25 people under the same policies, which, if the costs are divided among the travellers, can save you money.

Consider increasing your excess

You can take out cheaper travel insurance by increasing the excess you're willing to pay if you need to file a claim. A higher excess can help you save money in the long term, but it shouldn't be so high that it causes you financial hardship to pay it.

Only pay for what you need

There's no point paying for cover you're not going to use, whether you’re travelling for business or leisure. Before you purchase a travel insurance policy, read the PDS and make sure you aren’t paying extra for add-ons such as rental car hire or cruise coverage if you don't have any intentions of either hiring a car or sailing across the international seas.

Compare your travel insurance options

Using Savvy to help you decide lets you easily see which travel insurance provider gives you the best travel insurance coverage for the lowest price. You can compare policies side by side so you can weigh what's included, what's not included, the price of your premium, and any other essential factors.

Frequently asked questions about travel insurance to Korea

Does travel insurance for Korea cover me for COVID-19-related costs?

Yes – most travel insurance policies cover any COVID-19-related expenses, such as medical treatment while you’re in Korea and the need to cancel your holiday if you test positive before you leave. However, cancellation due to COVID-19 isn’t usually available on basic policies. The risk of testing positive for COVID-19 is still quite high if you’re travelling to Korea as of October 2022, so it’s best to wear a mask when possible if you’re worried about contracting the disease.

Can I take out travel insurance if I’m already in Korea?

Yes – you can buy travel insurance online if you’re already wheels up and headed to Korea for your holiday. You won’t need much to take out travel insurance, only the details of your trip and some other important information. You’ll be afforded the exact coverage you would usually get if you purchased before departure. It’s never too late to purchase travel insurance, however, these policies have waiting periods of between 48 and 96 hours. This means that if you suffer a claimable incident inside this period, you won’t be able to make a claim.

When is the best time to buy travel insurance for Korea?

Most people in the know will tell you the best time to purchase your travel insurance is when you know your travel dates. That allows you to be covered for the maximum amount of pre-paid bookings, such as those for hotels or tours if something unforeseen happens and you need to call off your holiday. There are also often sales on around holiday periods, such as Easter, Christmas and the End of the Financial Year, which means you could snap up a policy at a discount.

How do I make a claim on my travel insurance if I’m in Korea?

When you do it online, claiming on your travel insurance is a pretty easy process. When you go to your insurance company's website, enter your policy number and the email address that goes with it. From there, you can do the following:

  • Fill out your claim form with plenty of detail
  • Attach any documents, such as receipts, medical evidence, or proof of purchase
  • Submit your claim

 
The majority of the time, you should hear back from your travel insurance company within about ten business days. It's best to quickly answer any requests for more information to avoid slowing down the process.

How much will my travel insurance to Korea cost?

There’s no average cost of travel insurance per se. instead, the price of your premium for a trip to Korea will be determined by a range of interchangeable variables, including:

  • Your age
  • The length of your trip and destinations
  • Whether you suffer any pre-existing conditions
  • If you need optional extras, such as adventure sports cover
  • The insurance company you’ve chosen
  • The level of cover you have purchased
  • What part of Korea you’re travelling to (for example, you may not be able to receive cover if you’re travelling somewhere experiencing a natural disaster or terrorism event)
Should I just use the free travel insurance offered on my credit card?

The complimentary travel insurance offered on your credit card can be a simple and easy solution to safeguard you on holiday. However, these deals generally have fewer benefits and more constraints than the policies you can purchase yourself online or buy through a broker. It’s best to see which choice best fits your getaway by comparing with Savvy today.

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