HCF Travel Insurance Review

Learn more about HCF’s travel insurance policies to find out about their coverage and fees and compare them with other insurers today.

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, updated on June 26th, 2023       

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The Hospitals Contribution Fund of Australia (HCF) was founded 90 years ago and has since become the country’s biggest not-for-profit private health insurer. The Sydney company not only provides health cover but extends its insurance products to pets, life and travel plans.

If you’re searching for the best travel insurance for your next holiday but want to know HCF stacks up against other providers, compare with Savvy. You’ll be able to compare policies side-by-side based on claim limits, inclusions and more to see which offer is best for your trip.

Find out more about HCF’s policies, compare them with Savvy and get a quote today.

*Please note that Savvy does not represent HCF for its travel insurance products.

More about HCF travel insurance

What travel insurance policies does HCF offer?

HCF offers several different travel insurance policies, including:

  • International Comprehensive Plan: this policy covers you for a wide range of benefits on your international holiday, including overseas emergency assistance and hospital costs, your choice of cancellation cover, luggage and personal items and stolen cash. These policies are available to travellers of any age.
  • International Essentials Plan: this streamlined travel insurance policy covers you for the bare necessities when you’re taking a holiday overseas. While you’re covered for unlimited medical expenses and emergency assistance, you won’t be covered for the loss of travel documents, stolen cash, accidental death or the cost of organising alternate travel arrangements. Seniors over the age of 75 won’t be able to take out this policy.
  • Domestic Plan: holidaying a little closer to home? HCF offers a domestic travel insurance policy which covers you for accidental death, cancellation, emergency expenses and travel delays. You’re also covered if your bags are stolen or damaged, the excess on a rental vehicle and personal liability.
  • Multi-Trip: planning a few holidays over the year? HCF’s multi-trip policy is designed with frequent flyers in mind, offering cover for multiple holidays across 12 months. You'll be able to travel for between 15 and 45 days per trip and must nominate the duration of your longest holiday.
  • Non-Medical Plan: this type of policy covers you for most incidentals except for overseas emergency assistance and medical expenses. You’re still covered for cancellation, travel delays and additional expenses, however.
International Comprehensive International Essentials Domestic Plan Non-medical Plan
Overseas medical
Chosen limit
Chosen limit
Chosen limit
Chosen limit
Luggage and personal items
Accidental death
Personal liability
$5 million
$2.5 million
$5 million
$5 million
Travel delay
Theft of cash
Luggage delay

However, whether you’re flying to Cambodia or Canberra, comparing with us allows you to shortlist the policies which suit you so you can find the best travel insurance for your next trip with more confidence.

What optional extras are available through HCF?

HCF provides optional coverage to cover travellers taking a range of different domestic and international holidays. Some of the options you get include:

  1. Adventure pack: some of the covered activities include abseiling, battle re-enactment, flying foxing, motorcycle or moped riding, moving target shooting and tandem parachuting. You’re also covered if you travel to Asia to trek the Kokoda Track. HCF limits this policy to those under 75.
  2. Cruise pack: this add-on offers medical cover, evacuation and a raft of other benefits if you’re taking a domestic or international cruise. Some of the other areas of cover include cabin confinement, pre-paid shore excursion, formal wear and marine rescue diversion. You won’t need to purchase a policy if you’re taking a river cruise or sailing on a vessel that doesn’t have onboard accommodation.
  3. Snow pack: if you’re under the age of 75, you can purchase this snow pack which allows you to be covered if you’re taking part in a range of winter sports, including skiing, snowboarding, tubing or tobogganing. You’re only covered along groomed terrain and marked slopes and won’t be covered for racing, stunting or jumping.

HCF also gives you the option of paying a higher premium to increase the claimable limit on valuable goods, such as laptops, cameras or mobile phones. The top value you can insure your goods for is $7,000, or $14,000 if you’re taking out a family travel insurance policy.

What exclusions should I be aware of when buying travel insurance through HCF?

Travel insurance doesn’t cover absolutely everything and policies usually feature some general exclusions. Some of HCF’s include:

  1. Flying in a privately-charted aircraft
  2. Taking part in activities outside of the Adventure Pack cover
  3. Undisclosed pre-existing medical conditions
  4. Intentionally acting recklessly or putting your safety at risk
  5. Being admitted to a clinic for substance abuse issues
  6. Ignoring Australian government ‘do not travel’ warnings
  7. Elective surgery
  8. Travelling against doctor’s advice
  9. Accidents caused by alcohol or drug consumption

If you’ve found an international or domestic travel insurance policy that draws your eye, ensure you review HCF’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) before you set your decision in stone.

What we think of HCF travel insurance

What we like

Your choice of cancellation cover

HCF gives you the option of coverage between $2,000 and $20,000 for needing to unexpectedly cancel or reschedule your trip. You can also opt for unlimited coverage in this area.

Plenty of extras

As far as optional extras go, HFC allows you to take out a range of add-ons for cruises, adventure activities and snow sports.

Substantial base-level coverage

In most cases, travel insurers offering ‘the essentials’ scrimp on the benefits. However, HCF offers many of the same benefits as the comprehensive policy albeit with lesser claim limits.

What we don't like

Limited pregnancy cover

Pregnant travellers are only covered up to their 24th week of gestation, whereas many other providers will cover you up to your 26th or even 30th week.

Caps on age

If you’re over 75, you can purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy with HCF, but you won’t be able to purchase a lower level of cover or the adventure or snow add-ons.

Short cooling-off period

Many travel insurance companies on the market will allow you a cooling-off period of up to three weeks. However, HCF only provides you two weeks to cancel your policy at no cost.

Types of travel insurance

Why compare travel insurance with Savvy?

Frequently asked questions about HCF travel insurance

Does HCF’s travel insurance cover me for COVID-19-related costs?

HCF’s PDS stipulates while it doesn’t cover epidemics or pandemics, it does cover you for certain COVID-19-related costs, such as medical expenses overseas or the expense of rearranging your travel plans.

How do I make a claim through HCF?

If you need to file a claim on your travel insurance, HCF allows you do to this online or over the phone. If you have your policy number and personal details at hand, HCF requires you to provide copies of receipts, medical or police reports and your travel itinerary. HCF says it can take up to ten working days to process a claim.

How much will my HCF travel insurance cost?

How much you’ll pay for your travel insurance varies depending on several factors, including:

  • Your date of birth
  • Your chosen destination
  • The level of coverage you buy
  • Any optional extras you need
  • The policy excess you choose
  • The type of insurer and insurance policy you buy
What’s the difference between single-trip, multi-trip and one-way travel insurance?

Single-trip policies cover you for one holiday while an annual multi-trip policy provides you with cover for several holidays over 12 months. Annual multi-trip policies, such as those offered by HCF, include up to 45 days of travel per trip. On the other hand, one-way travel insurance policies cover you for taking a holiday when you don’t have a return ticket booked. Under these policies, you can usually opt for an extension of a year on your cover.

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