Non-Resident Travel Insurance

Are you travelling overseas? Looking to explore your travel insurance options? Savvy can help!

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, updated on September 4th, 2023       

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Compare Travel Insurance Quotes in 30 Seconds

Finding the right travel insurance for your next getaway when you’re a temporary Australian resident doesn’t have to be a head-scratcher. Many travel insurance providers offer policies for non-residents and Savvy can help you compare them.

By considering your options with us, you can weigh up the advantages and drawbacks of each policy to find one which suits your next holiday to a tee. Before you pack your bags and jet off, compare with Savvy.

What is non-resident travel insurance and how does it work?

Non-resident travel insurance is a type of policy tailored to temporary residents and non-citizens of Australia who want to take a holiday or visit their home country for a short trip. These travel insurance policies aren’t suited to travellers who want to take a domestic holiday.

Certain providers require you to be under 75 years old to take out a policy and to have been in Australia for at least three months. Most insurers will require you to hold a return airfare and that your holiday begins and ends in Australia.

In most cases, your journey must begin and end in Australia and you must have access to Medicare to take out a visitors’ travel insurance policy. You also must have a valid visa which allows you to leave the country and return. These can include any of the following:

  • Working holiday visa (subclass 417)
  • Work and holiday visa (subclass 462)
  • Visitor visa (subclass 771)
  • Student visa (subclass 500)
  • Various working and skills visas

If you’re already living in Australia as a non-citizen, you will likely already have some level of healthcare or health coverage. If you’re taking out a domestic policy, this will apply across the country, not just in the state or territory you live.

Certain countries extend your Medicare coverage when you’re travelling outside of Australia. This is because we have reciprocal healthcare agreements with a range of nations which allows travellers from Australia (including some temporary residents) to gain access to Medicare. These countries include:

  • Belgium
  • Finland
  • Italy
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Ireland
  • Slovenia
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom

You can still obtain travel insurance if you don’t have access to Medicare; however, you may be required to have a private health policy that covers your stay in Australia.

If you’re a non-permanent resident who will be arriving in Australia but is stopping off at some destinations along the way, you can also take out a policy. You just have to be spending the majority of your trip in Australia. For example, if you’re flying from the US but also travelling to Sri Lanka on the way to Australia, you can get non-resident cover.

What is covered under non-resident travel insurance policies?

Travel insurance policies for non-Australian residents cover similar benefits to standard international and domestic insurance policies. These benefits help protect you and your back pocket during your time Down Under. Some of the benefits of these policies include the following:

  • Medical expenses: if you’re travelling outside of Australia, your travel insurance provides you with unlimited medical expenses cover. Most policies also cover you for emergency dental work, which usually has a sub-limit of between $300 and $1,000.
  • Cancellation: you can cancel your trip and recoup the costs if a relative becomes ill or dies, there are complications with your pregnancy or there’s an emergency at your home or work.
  • Delays: if your flights and bags are held up, your insurance company can cover the accommodation cost and some essentials while you wait for your plane to turn up.
  • Lost or stolen luggage: insurers can cover you if your luggage is stolen, damaged or goes missing during your visit to Australia. Many insurers will allow you to claim up to $15,000 if there is an issue with your bags.
  • Personal items: mobile phones, cameras, and computers can all be costly to replace, especially if you lose them while on holiday. Many insurance companies allow you to claim back the cost of replacing or repairing these essential gadgets up to a set limit of around $15,000.
  • Stolen money: if a pickpocket strikes on your holiday to the United Arab Emirates, for example, you can claim back $250 through your insurer. Remember to file a report with authorities, as insurers will need evidence of the theft.
  • Accidental death: if you meet an untimely demise while on a holiday, your insurance will cover the cost of flying your remains back to Australia and any associated funeral costs (often up to $50,000).
  • Pet boarding: from time to time, you can be away from home longer than expected. If you’re stuck at your destination longer than planned, you can claim the costs of boarding your dog or cat back in Australia.
  • Rental vehicle excess: a road trip can be the perfect way to soak up the open road. If you need to hire a car, your insurance provider can cover the cost of your excess if you have an accident.
  • Permanent disability: if you’re involved in an accident which results in your permanent disability, most travel insurers will pay out your policy up to $25,000.

If you're up for a spot of skiing or scuba diving when you’re on your travels, insurance companies consider these activities as ‘high risk’ for travellers and will require you to take out additional coverage in case of an accident, which will cost you extra on top of your original premium.

How do I compare travel insurance policies for non-residents?

If you’re looking for a travel insurance policy which is tailor-made for you and your domestic or international trip, the best way to find it is to compare your options, which you can do right here with Savvy. This will allow you to do some quick side-by-side comparisons and find a policy that’s most suitable for you and your holiday. Some of the factors to consider when purchasing non-resident travel insurance include:


Comparing the costs of specific policies which catch your eye can save you money and plenty of hassle down the track. Get a few quotes from different providers and compare them to find one which is affordable and offers you a wide range of benefits for your trip.

Inclusions and exclusions

Travel insurance benefits for non-permanent Australian residents vary depending on who you decide to purchase your policy through. For example, some policies may include rental car excess cover automatically, while others will make you pay extra. Comparing will ensure you get the coverage you want for your travel plans.


While non-resident travel insurance policies tend to follow the same requirements, providers have some differences. For example, some will cover you without a Medicare card, while others won’t. In addition, certain providers allow New Zealand passport holders living in Australia permanently to take out policies, so it’s crucial to find a set of terms that suit your circumstances.

Available policies

Think about the holiday you’re taking and make your travel insurance policy work. Providers offer single-trip and multi-trip policies and options for those wanting to take a cruise. These options vary, so it pays to do your homework before settling on a selection.


If you’re embroiled in an incident and need to make a claim, you’ll be required to pay an out-of-pocket excess. The value of excesses see-saw between $100 and $500 depending on where you’re looking and the events being covered. However, by comparing with Savvy, you may be able to find a policy which has an excess that best suits your needs.

Benefit limits

How much you can claim for various incidentals differs between providers, so it pays to shop around to get a set of limits sufficient for your travel plans. For example, some insurers allow you to claim $15,000 if you lose your luggage, while others will only let you claim a maximum of $6,000.

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Frequently asked questions about non-resident travel insurance

What documents do I need to buy non-resident travel insurance?

If you find a policy which ticks all the right boxes, you’ll need to supply some relevant documentation before you can sign on the dotted line. Some of these documents include:

  • Your passport and birth certificate
  • A copy of your Medicare card or private health membership
  • Documents proving your non-permanent residential status
Can I access COVID-19 coverage as a non-resident?

Yes – many insurers can offer cover for COVID-19-related expenses, such as medical treatment and cancellations. However, these can differ between providers, so it’s important to compare to make sure you have the cover you need.

How do I make a claim on my travel insurance?

Making a travel insurance claim is pretty straightforward when you do it online via your insurance company’s portal. Essentially, you’ll need to supply some standard details which usually include:

  • Provide your policy number and email address
  • Complete the claim form with plenty of detail
  • Attach your supporting documents (police and medical reports and receipts)
  • Submit your claim


Most insurance companies will tell you it can take up to ten days to process a claim. Remember to respond to any queries promptly to avoid any delays with the claims process.

Am I covered if I have a heart condition?

Yes – however, most travel insurance companies won’t provide you coverage automatically under their standard policies. In most cases, you’ll need to pay a higher premium to be covered for a heart condition, including if you have a pacemaker fitted.

Can I get travel insurance if I’m pregnant and a non-resident?

Certain travel insurers will cover you if you’re up to (or over) 30 weeks pregnant and have had no prior birthing complications. If you’re expecting multiple children, this may be revised down to 20 weeks, but it’s best to shop around so you can find a policy that suits your situation.

Do non-resident travel insurance policies have cooling-off periods?

Yes – like most standard policies, non-resident options come with cooling-off periods ranging from 14 to 30 days. Cancelling your policy during this period allows you to get a full refund on your premium, as long as you haven’t made a claim. If you cancel outside of the cooling-off period, you may only be eligible for a partial refund on your policy.

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We do not compare all travel insurance brands currently operating in the market. Any advice presented above or on other pages is general in nature and does not consider your personal or business objectives, needs or finances. It’s always important to consider whether advice is suitable for you before purchasing an insurance policy.

Savvy earns a commission from our partners each time a customer buys a travel insurance policy via our website. We don’t arrange for products to be purchased from these brands directly, as all purchases are conducted via their websites.

Before purchasing your policy, we recommend you refer to the provider’s PDS for any further information on the terms, inclusions and exclusions.