Travel Insurance for Seniors Over 85

If you’re a senior over 85 taking a holiday, weigh up your travel insurance options with Savvy. 

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, updated on September 4th, 2023       

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For many seniors, travelling the country or the world is the perfect way to spend their twilight years. Whether it’s grey nomading cross-country or taking in the sights overseas, age can be no barrier. If you’re over 85 and looking for the best travel insurance, Savvy can help you compare your options.

Comparing with us allows you to take a deeper look at policies suited to those over 85, letting you consider the advantages and disadvantages to find the perfect blend of price and benefits. Before you take off on your trip, compare with Savvy today.

Can I take out seniors’ travel insurance if I’m over 85?

Yes – there are travel insurance companies who can offer you a policy if you’re over 85 years old. It's important to note, though, that insurers generally deem senior travellers to be more at risk of injury or illness when they are on holiday because of their advanced age. As a result, they increase their premiums or make you pay a higher excess for a medical-related claim.

While you’ll be able to take out travel insurance as an 85-year-old or older, this won’t always be the case. Providers usually impose age limits on their policies, which generally start kicking in around the age of 65. However, these vary widely among insurers and there are even some who don’t put age restrictions on their products whatsoever. For example, some providers restrict coverage access for those over 80, while others set their limit at 130 years old.

If you’re over 85, most travel insurance providers give you the option of basic or comprehensive policies. There are certain companies which require you to take out top-level cover if you’re an elderly traveller, though you’ll normally get the luxury of choice. You should be able to take out a multi-trip travel insurance policy with most providers, though they tend to reduce the period over which you can travel from 365 days down to 30 to 90 if you’re over 80.

What will travel insurance cover me for if I’m a senior over 85?

When you’re shopping around for the best travel insurance policy, you’ll no doubt be taking a close look at what benefits each can provide you. If you’re over 85, you’ll be looking out for policies that cover the following:

  • Overseas medical expenses: whether you require an ambulance ride, a stay in hospital or some medical treatment from a doctor, travel insurance covers the cost of all of this and much more. They’ll also cover the costs of medical evacuation and repatriation. For example, if you’ve travelled to Vietnam and injure yourself while walking the streets, your insurer can cover the cost of bringing you home. Remember: if you’re staying in Australia, Medicare or your private health provider covers the cost of your care.
  • Cancellation and travel delays: if you or a loved one falls sick right before you’re due to travel, your travel insurer covers the cost of pulling the pin on your plans, such as getting you a refund on any pre-paid bookings. They’ll also cover the cost of accommodation, food and essentials such as personal care items and clothes if your flight is delayed by more than 24 hours.
  • Loss or damage of your bags: losing your luggage on holiday is a traveller’s worst nightmare. If you’re separated from your baggage because it gets lost or stolen or is damaged, your insurer can cover the cost of having your personal items repaired or replaced.
  • Around-the-clock support: your travel insurance comes with the ability to call your travel insurer day or night if you have a query about your policy or you’re embroiled in a medical emergency whether you’re in Australia or overseas.
  • Special event transport: if you’re taking a cruise or catching a flight and your pre-booked mode of transport doesn’t show up, your travel insurance will get you to the airport on time.
  • Personal liability: if you’re found to be personally liable for the injury to another person or damage to property, the expenses can be costly. If you have travel insurance, they’ll cover the cost.

Providers will also offer you a bunch of optional extras, including cover for valuable personal items, motorcycle riding and protection for the excess on a rental car. Skiing and snowboarding cover is usually off-limits to those over 70 years old, as are some forms of adventure cover such as protection for activities including scuba diving, quad biking and water skiing.

What pre-existing conditions can I be covered for as a senior over 85?

Age is just a number. If you’re only as young as you feel and you want to fit in as much travel while you still can, you’ll no doubt be looking at the pre-existing conditions which are covered by your policy.

Insurance companies will provide automatic coverage for a handful of pre-existing conditions including:

  • Certain types of diabetes
  • Cataracts
  • Congenital blindness and deafness
  • Glaucoma
  • High cholesterol and blood pressure
  • Hernias
  • Incontinence
  • Osteoporosis

While asthma is usually covered, it won’t be if you’re over 85. Insurers will also likely make you pay an extra premium to take out cover if you suffer from any of the following:

  • A diagnosed heart condition, including palpitations
  • Lung disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Any condition for which you’ve had recent surgery
  • Non-terminal cancer

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Frequently asked seniors’ travel insurance questions

Can I get cruise travel insurance if I’m over 85?

Yes – you can get cruise insurance if you’re over the age of 85. Most insurers either automatically include cruise cover in their policies or make it available as an added extra. Remember that even if you’re taking a domestic cruise, you still need travel insurance, as many foreign-owned ships won’t have a Medicare-registered doctor onboard.

Can I get hire car travel insurance for a motorhome if I’m over 85?

Yes – you can tack rental car cover onto your policy if it isn’t already included, even if you’re over 85. Most providers will allow you to hire a caravan or a motorhome and be covered under your policy, as long as it doesn’t weigh more than six tonnes.

I’m travelling with my grandchildren. Can I include them under my policy?

Yes – many providers allow you to roll any dependent children into your policy free of charge. However, there are conditions on this. For example, if you’re taking your grandkids on holiday to Greece and you want them under your policy, they must be no more than 20 to 25 years old, not working full-time and staying with you for the entire trip.

Are mobility aids covered by travel insurance?

Most travel insurance providers will let you purchase additional coverage for hearing aids, walkers and wheelchairs. As these aids tend to be quite expensive, it’s a good idea to compare with Savvy and find claim limits suitable for what you’re taking.

What happens if I lose my medication while I’m on holiday?

If you lose your prescription medication while you’re away from home, your travel insurance can cover the cost of replacing these at a local pharmacy or doctor’s office.

Does travel insurance for over 85s cover golf clubs?

Most providers require you to take out extra coverage if you’re planning to tear up the fairway on your getaway. Some of this coverage is included in providers’ adventure packages.

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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.