Travel Insurance Claim Tops One Million Dollars

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Cost for becoming ill or injured abroad, even in countries with reciprocal healthcare arrangements soar

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"In the US and Europe, medical costs can be astronomical for travelers"

In the last year, Southern Cross Travel Insurance's highest paid claim for an individual Australian was in excess of $200,000 (AUD). The company paid one New Zealand claim costing over one million dollars. Both claims were for overseas medical expenses and repatriation.

Southern Cross Travel Insurance CEO, Craig Morrison said, “In the US and Europe, medical costs can be astronomical for travelers – and that’s before you take into account the cost of evacuation. In many countries around the world, if an accident or health problem strikes you may also be left with a hefty bill for air, boat or ambulance travel.

“Depending on the severity and type of injury or illness, travel back home may require the purchase of a first-class seat, as well as the travel costs of an accompanying medical professional or family member, or even chartering an air ambulance.

“What this highlights is, if you can’t afford travel insurance – you can’t afford to travel.”

Though Southern Cross Travel Insurance (SCTI) only entered the Australian travel insurance market in April 2009, it has already emerged as a leader in consumer surveys.

Mr Morrison said SCTI’s ability to offer value for money was a result of its commitment to a ‘direct to consumer’ online business model. 100% of SCTI policy sales are transacted through its website.

“Until recently the majority of consumers were still buying travel insurance through their travel agent – and paying substantial commission costs. By transacting online, we can create cost efficiencies and pass these savings directly to consumers, who are buying from specialists in the field.”

About SCTI
For the third year running, SCTI received a five star rating for “outstanding value” in international travel insurance products by research house CANSTAR CANNEX. The survey compared 42 travel insurance brands and 233 insurance products to award ratings based on a combination of price and product.

SCTI was also the standout performer in consumer magazine Choice last year. A review of travel insurers for the Australian market rated SCTI “best buy” in each of the magazines four categories, based on a combination of policy features and price.

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Aimee Bourke
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