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Credit Card Travel Insurance & COVID: August 2022 Update

Last updated

Which travel insurance policies cover COVID-19-related changes to travel, especially if you test positive just before your trip? We’re getting asked that question every day. So, here’s an updated list of credit cards that include COVID-19 and pandemic-related coverage in its insurance policies.

August 2022 Update: Credit cards with included COVID-19 cover

Only a few banks have released updates to include pandemics and epidemics. Click to see the details of cover for each brand:

Until recently, no credit card travel insurance covered events caused by COVID-19, meaning you had to cross your fingers and hope borders stayed open and you stayed well.

Now, more credit card providers are jumping on the COVID-19 bandwagon, which is great to see since it gives a little more peace of mind around travelling. We’ve put together a rundown of each credit card and its coronavirus policy, but always check the card’s PDS since it can change quickly.

Interestingly, some providers like ANZ and St. George have changed their terms to include all pandemic/epidemic disruptions from now on. Let’s hope we don’t need that anytime soon.

Remember, terms, conditions and exclusions apply to travel insurance. Check the PDS for more information.

American Express 

Amex has included a clause in its credit card travel insurance PDS that provides limited cover related to COVID-19:

Domestic return trips:

  • you can change, curtail or cancel your return trip if you, your travel buddy or the person you were visiting test positive for coronavirus.
  • You aren’t covered if you need to cancel or reschedule because borders closed or travel advisory warnings are put in place.
  • If you become unwell with coronavirus while travelling, you can claim under Medical Emergency Expenses cover (not valid while a ‘do not travel’ warning is in place)

International return trips:

  • you can change, curtail or cancel your return trip if you, your travel buddy or the person you were visiting test positive for coronavirus.
  • You can be covered if borders close or a travel advisory warning is issued for the country you’re visiting.
  • You won’t be covered if Australia issues a ‘do not travel’ warning.
  • You won’t be covered if the borders at your destination are already closed.
  • If you become unwell with coronavirus while travelling, you can claim under Medical Emergency Expenses cover (not valid while a ‘do not travel’ warning is in place)

Amex credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including COVID-19 cover:


ANZ

ANZ credit cards with complimentary travel insurance now include coverage for pandemic and epidemic disruptions and illnesses, including COVID-19.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • if you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive to COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Cancellation, Additional Expenses, Evacuation & Repatriation, and Overseas Emergency Assistance cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover is available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • There is no mention of coverage if you’re prevented from travelling by border closures or travel warnings.
  • You aren’t covered if you travel to a destination with a travel advice warning by the Australian government.

ANZ credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including COVID-19 cover:


NAB 

NAB has updated its complimentary travel insurance to include some coverage for COVID-19, effective as of June 30, 2022.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive to COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Overseas Emergency Assistance, Overseas Emergency Medical, Medical Evacuation & Repatriation, Cancellation, and Additional Expenses cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover is available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • You aren’t covered if you don’t follow advice or warnings when travelling to a destination; for example, a ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ alert from the Australian government, or published by a reliable media source.
  • NAB’s travel insurance policy specifically states there are no other pandemic or epidemic-related circumstances covered, which likely includes border closures or other travel restrictions.

NAB credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including COVID-19 cover:


Latitude 28° Global Platinum Mastercard 

Latitude 28° had a limited-time travel insurance offer that included COVID-19 cover for its Global Platinum card. The offer ended 31 July 2022, and we’ve kept the information here for customers.

Claims related to COVID-19:

  • Cover applies to you and your ‘family’, which includes you, your spouse and up to 3 eligible children
  • You can claim up to $700,000 per person in medical costs if you need treatment for COVID-19 during an overseas covered trip
  • You may be covered for travel and accommodation deposits if you contract COVID-19 on a covered trip and a doctor certifies you’re unfit to travel
  • If you have to quarantine just before departure because you’ve tested positive to COVID-19, you may be covered for administrative costs (but not any other additional costs related to your quarantine)
  • You’re not covered for any additional costs such as accommodation or flights because of borders closures or travel disruptions

Bendigo Bank

Bendigo Bank credit cards with complimentary travel insurance now include coverage for pandemic and epidemic disruptions and illnesses in its PDS, including COVID-19.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive to COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Cancellation, Additional Expenses, Evacuation & Repatriation, and Overseas Emergency Assistance cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Emergency Medical cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover is available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • There is no mention of coverage if you’re prevented from travelling by border closures or travel warnings.
  • You aren’t covered if you travel to a destination with a travel advice warning by the Australian government, even if you have an exemption or permission from the Australian government to travel

Bendigo Bank credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including pandemic cover:


St. George 

St.George Amplify Signature Credit CardSt. George has updated its complimentary travel insurance to include some coverage for COVID-19, effective as of June 30, 2022.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive for COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Overseas Emergency Assistance, Overseas Emergency Medical, Medical Evacuation & Repatriation, Cancellation, and Additional Expenses cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover is available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • If you or your companion become so sick with COVID-19 that can’t continue travelling, you may be reimbursed for additional accommodation and travel expenses.
  • You aren’t covered if you don’t follow advice or warnings when travelling to a destination; for example, a ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ alert from the Australian government, or published by a reliable media source.

St. George credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including pandemic and epidemic cover:


Westpac 

Westpac has updated its complimentary travel insurance to include some coverage for current and future pandemics and epidemics, including COVID-19, effective as of June 30, 2022.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive for COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Overseas Emergency Assistance, Overseas Emergency Medical, Medical Evacuation & Repatriation, Cancellation, and Additional Expenses cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover is available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • If you or your companion become so sick with COVID-19 that can’t continue travelling, you may be reimbursed for additional accommodation and travel expenses.
  • You aren’t covered if you don’t follow advice or warnings when travelling to a destination; for example, a ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ alert from the Australian government, or published by a reliable media source.

Westpac credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including pandemic and epidemic cover:


Bank of Melbourne

Bank of Melbourne Amplify Platinum Credit CardBank of Melbourne has updated its complimentary travel insurance to include some coverage for current and future pandemics and epidemics, including COVID-19, effective as of June 30, 2022.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive for COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Overseas Emergency Assistance, Overseas Emergency Medical, Medical Evacuation & Repatriation, Cancellation, and Additional Expenses cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover may be available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • If you or your companion become so sick with COVID-19 that you can’t continue travelling, you may be reimbursed for additional accommodation and travel expenses.
  • You aren’t covered if you don’t follow advice or warnings when travelling to a destination; for example, a ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ alert from the Australian government, or published by a reliable media source.

Bank of Melbourne credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including pandemic and epidemic cover:


BankSA

BankSA has updated its complimentary travel insurance to include some coverage for current and future pandemics and epidemics, including COVID-19, effective as of June 30, 2022.

Claims related to pandemics/epidemics:

  • If you or any dependents covered by the travel insurance test positive for COVID-19, or any illness recognised as a pandemic/epidemic, you may be able to claim the Overseas Emergency Assistance, Overseas Emergency Medical, Medical Evacuation & Repatriation, Cancellation, and Additional Expenses cover.
  • If you become ill with COVID-19, you may be able to claim Overseas Medical Emergency cover.
  • If your travel buddy becomes ill with COVID-19, cover may be available under Cancellation and Additional Expenses.
  • If you or your companion become so sick with COVID-19 that you can’t continue travelling, you may be reimbursed for additional accommodation and travel expenses.
  • You aren’t covered if you don’t follow advice or warnings when travelling to a destination; for example, a ‘Reconsider your need to travel’ or ‘Do not travel’ alert from the Australian government, or published by a reliable media source.

BankSA credit cards with complimentary travel insurance including pandemic and epidemic cover:


Other credit cards with complimentary travel insurance

At this stage, only a handful of credit providers have started including COVID-19 in their travel insurance policy. But, more updates are rolling in and it’s likely more banks will come on board in the next months.

You can find and compare credit cards with free travel insurance here, but always check the terms and conditions to see what you’re covered for.

Tips for using complimentary travel insurance

First, always read the PDS carefully. I know, it’s like a broken record, but insurances come with a lot of ‘but’s and ‘only if’s that could leave you high and dry – and out of pocket – if things go awry. Clauses regarding COVID-19 are new, so make sure you understand what you’re covered for.

Second, make sure you activate your credit card’s travel insurance. You’ll usually be able to check that it’s active via the card’s website or by calling customer service.

💡 TIP: Accommodations, airlines and tour operators may have their own COVID-19 policies that are worth checking before you book, too. 

Pauline

Pauline Hatch

Pauline is a personal finance expert at CreditCard.com.au, with 8 years in money, budgeting and property reporting under her belt. Pauline is passionate about seeing Aussies win by making their money – and their credit cards – work smarter, harder and bigger.

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28 comments (showing the latest 10 Q&As)

Wayne

Wayne

15 July 2022
Great article on credit card travel insurance, I’m in a bit of a twine, I hold a number of these cards, but I’m under the belief that the Amex Platinum card, being the most expensive, gave the best coverage, would this be right?
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    19 July 2022
    Hi Wayne, the “best” coverage will come down to what you intend to use and/or claim for. You’ll need to work out the coverage types, limits, inclusions and exclusions that will work best for you when you travel.
Susi Bayes

Susi Bayes

15 July 2022
With international insurance ,( when using card for travel payment) is COVID covered?
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    19 July 2022
    Hi Susi, it actually depends on the card issuer’s underwriter’s coverage and exclusions. On the page your left your comment, we’ve gone into detail on the coverage that is provided. Hope this will help.
Pat

Pat

1 July 2022
What age is Citibank complimentary travel insurance covered to?
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    4 July 2022
    Hi Pat, that’s a great question! Actually, not all insurance covers are available to Citi cards or cardholders as different conditions apply. You can check Citi’s official complimentary insurance booklet PDF for information about eligibility coverage per card.
sandy

sandy

6 June 2022
Im after the same information as a previous query. Could you please specify a company that provides standalone COVID insurance for international travel. I must use the travel insurance have purchased, but it doesnt offer covid cover. WHo will provide standalone covid cover. I cannot find anyone.
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    7 June 2022
    Hi Sandy, unfortunately it looks like most of the travel insurance providers that include COVID-19 cover include it with a policy. If you booked a trip with one of the credit cards listed at the top of this page, you might be eligible for complimentary cover including COVID through your credit card.
keith graham

keith graham

31 May 2022
If we book a 18 day European/Cruise combination does credit card insurance cover this if we pay by credit card?
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    2 June 2022
    Hi Keith, each insurance underwriter treats cruises differently. I suggest digging deeper into the policy with the card you intend to purchase tickets with to see if cruises are covered. Have a great trip!
Aleksandra Trpchevska

Aleksandra Trpchevska

12 May 2022
Hi I was just wondering what's covered in travel insurance when you buy the tickets with credit card
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    13 May 2022
    Hi Aleksandra, it actually depends on the card that you have. I strongly recommend reaching out to your card issuer directly for specifics. Have a great trip!
Graham

Graham

14 April 2022
Iam travelling to Thailand in 2 weeks and I need a print out of my travel insurance for customs. Can you send to me by email? Thank yoy
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    19 April 2022
    Hi Graham, you’ve actually reached Australia’s leading credit card comparison and information site. I strongly suggest reaching out to your card issuer directly for your request. Have a great trip!
Alan

Alan

7 April 2022
We are travelling overseas on 4 May 22 through to Sep and have coverage with a Citi World Mastercard which has never covered pandemics, virus' etc. and still doesn't. I spoke with Allianz (insurer) who confirmed that there is no Covid coverage. Your article states that there are companies that will provide Covid-only insurance, but you didn't name them and I can't find any. I'd be pleased to know, as taking out another comprehensive policy that covers everything (including Covid) will cost me around $1,200 and makes my complimentary policy worthless.
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    8 April 2022
    Hi Alan, thanks for your question. As Citi is underwritten by Allianz, there’s no COVID cover. This is taken from the Allianz PDS “Where the group policy contains a General Exclusion for an Epidemic/pandemic, it will be applied to all claims arising from COVID 19 and will apply to all policy sections.” There are some providers recently who have updated their policies, these include(but not limited to) Cover-More, Fast Cover and World2Cover. Australia also has a RHCA agreement with 11 countries that covers the cost of medically necessary care. We hope you have a safe and enjoyable trip!
julie

julie

31 March 2022
We have travel due in August 2022 with the travel paid for in March using a Bendigo Bank Platinum Rewards Card (Allianz). We have held the card from pre-covid times. I have spoken to Allianz and been advised the PDS dated 31 Mar 19 is still current and that there are no specific exclusions for Covid, epidemic or pandemic. They have provided an electronic copy of this PDS with a letter of eligibility. There are no exclusions for warnings or interference as detailed in your writings. The PDS also predates Covid and they have provided no addenda or updates to it. The phone call indicated Covid should be covered but they cannot (of course) advise if a claim will be accepted without a claim in front of them. I am inclined to think I have done my homework. Your thoughts please.
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    31 March 2022
    Hi Julie, it sounds like you have done your due diligence here. We are only providing general information in our article and the exclusions around pandemics, endemics and other specifics can vary greatly between each card, and each underwriter. As with any form of insurance, other exclusions have the potential to apply. We hope you have a safe and enjoyable trip!
roxygog1@bigpond.com

[email protected]

18 March 2022
Does my Platinum Mastercard cover COVID-19 travel insurance.
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    23 March 2022
    Hi, when it comes to Covid-19 pandemic situation, each insurance underwriter has varying exclusions . As the pandemic continues, I strongly suggest reaching out to your bank directly for your specific requirements and see if there are any exclusions on the insurance coverage. Have a safe trip!
Angela

Angela

16 March 2022
Hi Pauline. I have an Amplify Credit card with BankSA and it comes with complimentary travel insurance, will there be a COVID cover for internatonal travel ?
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    17 March 2022
    Hi Angela, the response from each insurance underwriter varies when it comes to the Covid-pandemic situation. I checked BankSA's Travel insurance terms and it looks like there are some exclusions mentioned. As the pandemic continues, I strongly suggest reaching out to BankSA directly for your specific requirements. Have a safe trip!
paul kruger

paul kruger

24 February 2022
My wife is traveling to Spain on the 1st March 2022, she will pay for a business class ticket and all costs on our ANZ platinum visa card, will she be covered for travel ins. and covid under the visa card
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    25 February 2022
    Hi Paul, I checked ANZ Platinum’s terms and it states that complimentary travel insurance coverage is included. However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, there have been some changes to the policies. It’s worth calling ANZ at 13 13 14 to check before the trip. Please note though that terms, conditions, exclusions and eligibility apply. Hope this has helped and happy safe travels to your wife!
Sibel Reiter

Sibel Reiter

10 February 2022
What options do you offer for international travel/ health insurance
    Pauline - CreditCard.com.au

    Pauline

    11 February 2022
    Hi Sibel, there’s no cards that offer health insurance right now. But there are a range of credit cards that offer complimentary travel insurance. You can read our detailed reviews of each card before making a decision. It’s important to read the PDS and T&C’s of any insurance policy before travelling too! Happy and safe travels!
Sandra

Sandra

28 May 2021
I have booked a cruise to New Zealand in December 2021 for my partner and self which I have paid a deposit on my Amex card. Full payment is due in August. Do I need to activate my credit card travel insurance before departure?
    Roland B Bleyer - CreditCard.com.au Founder

    Roland

    31 May 2021
    Hi Sandra, thanks for your question! If your American Express card has complimentary International travel insurance, then according to the Amex T&C’s the cover is “effective when You pay the full fare for a return Trip” . Please reach out to Amex by checking the contact number on the back of your credit card. Have a great trip!

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