Travel insurance isn’t always easy to understand. But when the unexpected happens and you need to make a claim, it’s important that you know what is involved in the process.
In this article, we answer some of the most common claims questions asked by our customers, and provide advice on making a claim.
Making a claim
How do I make a claim?
If the unexpected happens and you need to make a claim, there are a few things you will need to get started:
- The details of the policy holder, including date of birth and email address
- The policy number (which can be found on the Certificate of Insurance)
With these at the ready, visit our website and click ‘Make a claim’ in the top menu. Once you’ve logged in, we’ll ask you some questions to help us understand what happened and what you’re claiming for.
Once you’ve selected ‘Submit your claim’, you’ll receive an email notification from us within 24 hours that will include:
- Confirmation that we have received your claim.
- Guidance on what documents you’ll need to send us and where to send them.
- A link to a Privacy Authorisation form, which you will need to sign and send to us along with your documents – this allows us to request your information from third parties, such as your GP or the police.
How long does it usually take for a claim to be processed?
Once you’ve made your claim, we’ll come back to you within 24 hours with guidance on how long you can expect the process to take. No two claims are the same, and sometimes we require additional information and supporting documents, which will affect the processing time.
Your Claims Assessor will keep you updated on the status of your claim during the process.
During the claims process, can I save my progress and come back to it?
No, your claim needs to be completed in one session, which is why it’s important that you have all of the required information at the ready.
Can I make a claim from overseas?
Yes, you’re welcome to submit a claim while overseas. However, we may need you to send us original documents and receipts for us to process your claim, which you may not have access to overseas. If you do choose to post your documents from overseas, we recommend you take photocopies of your documents, and get them sent via a courier so that you don’t lose any original copies.
What documents do I need to provide when making a medical claim?
If you need to claim for medical expenses, you’ll need:
- Original receipts for all medical expenses.
- Consultation notes or reports provided by the treating doctor.
- A referral letter from a doctor if you needed specialist treatment.
- A discharge summary, if you were treated at a hospital.
- Your regular GP’s name and contact details, in case we need to contact them to check your medical history.
Click here for information on what you need to do if you have a medical emergency and need to be hospitalised overseas.
What documents do I need to provide when making a claim for delays, alterations and cancellations?
- Proof of any refunds you received from a service provider (e.g. your airline, travel agent, cruise company, tour company, accommodation provider), and any correspondence that shows they declined to pay.
- Proof of any airport/government tax refunds you may have received for unused flights, and any correspondence from the airline confirming that the flight costs are non-refundable.
- Itineraries that show your original travel plans, as well as any new itineraries that show your updated travel plans.
- Original receipts for any payments you had to make as a result of the changes to your travel plans.
If you are making a claim for alterations and cancellations to your journey due to medical reasons:
- Proof of the reason for the cancellation or alteration of your trip (e.g. a medical report or hospital discharge summary).
- If you are overseas, confirmation from your overseas treating doctor confirming it was medically necessary for you to cut your journey short or you weren’t fit to fly.
- Your regular GP’s name and contact details, in case we need to contact them to check your medical history.
- If your journey needs to be cancelled because an immediate family member or travelling companion is ill, we’ll need to see all their necessary documents (e.g. medical reports, death certificates).
Under the terms of our policy, we define an immediate family member as: your spouse, fiancé, fiancée, parent, stepparent, sibling, child, stepchild, foster child, niece, nephew, grandparent, grandchild, parent-in-law, brother and sister-in-law, son and daughter-in-law.
Your Claims Assessor will let you know if there is any other information we need to process your claim.
What documents do I need to provide when making a claim for lost, stolen or damaged items?
- Original receipts that show that you owned the item and its value when you bought it (if possible).
- If you don’t have an original receipt, we may consider bank statements, valuations or reprinted receipts from the store you bought it from.
- A document from an appropriate authority confirming the event happened whilst you were overseas. For example, if you had your phone stolen from your bag, you'll need to report it to the local police or a relevant authority within 24 hours and get a written report. Or if your bags go missing at the airport or hotel, you’ll need a report from the lost luggage department.
- If you’re claiming for damaged items, we’ll need a repair report from a suitable outlet where you can get the item repaired, including a repair quote. Make sure that you keep hold of the damaged item during the claims process.
If you’re making a claim for specified items, you’ll need to provide us with one of the following:
- Original receipts that show you purchased the items no more than 12 months before they were specified on your travel insurance policy; or
- Original receipts, and a current valuation that is dated no more than 12 months before they were specified on your travel insurance policy; or
- Documents that show the item is specified on your domestic contents insurance policy, and a current valuation. The document must be dated no more than 12 months before they were specified on your travel insurance policy.
What documents do I need to provide when making a claim for rental vehicle excess?
- Documents that show the registered drivers of the rental vehicle
- Your original rental vehicle agreement, that shows the excess or deductible amount you are responsible for.
- Written notification from the rental vehicle company showing the amount of excess withheld and confirmation of the repair cost.
- Documents/bank statements to prove whether or not any refunds were given by the rental vehicle company.
For more information on rental vehicle claims click here.
The online claim form doesn’t seem to be working - what do I do?
You might be having trouble completing the online claim form if:
- You didn’t buy your TravelCare policy online. If you bought a policy via our Contact Centre, you’ll need to complete a paper form and post this to us. Please email email@example.com and we’ll send you a claim form to print out.
- You’re mistyping your TravelCare policy number. Make sure you double check that you’re typing it correctly, and that you’re paying close attention to the combination of letters and numbers. For example, a number ‘0' can look similar to the letter ‘o’.
- You’re entering a surname and date of birth that is different to the one you provided when you bought your policy.
- You’re entering a different email address than the one you provided when you bought your policy.
- When you bought your policy, you entered your surname followed by a space key. This means that your name was recorded in our system with an extra character on the end.
If you’re still having trouble completing the online claim form, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and describe the issue you’re facing (providing screenshots where possible).
Once you’ve made a claim
What happens after I make a claim?
Once we’ve received your supporting documents, we’ll send you an email to let you know. We’ll also let you know when you can expect to hear from us next. If we need any more supporting information to assess your claim, a Claims Assessor will be in touch.
What happens if my claim is accepted?
If your claim is accepted, we’ll send you an email with the details of the payments made. Please allow three business days for the payment to appear in your bank account. If we’ve paid a provider on your behalf, we’ll send you the details of that payment instead.
What could cause my claim to be delayed?
Sometimes we require further information from you or a third party (like a doctor, travel agent or the police) to process your claim. Your claim might be delayed until we receive this information, but don’t worry, your Claims Assessor will keep you updated with progress along the way.
We receive more claims if a catastrophic event occurs (like an earthquake or volcanic eruption), which may result in a slight delay.
I’ve already submitted a claim online but need to send further receipts and documentation - what do I do?
If you need to send further documentation so we can process your claim, please either:
1. Re-print the privacy authorisation form you received when you submitted your claim and post it to us with your additional documentation.
2. Clearly write your name, policy number and claim number on all documents and post them to:
Southern Cross Travel Insurance
PO Box 5176
What are my options if my claim isn’t accepted?
If you’re unhappy with the result of your claim or any aspect of the insurance or service we provide, please let us know so we can help. To make a complaint, you can contact us by phone on 1800 196 484, or email us at email@example.com.
Alternatively, you can choose to have the matter reviewed independently by the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) Australia. FOS provide an independent complaint resolution service and their decisions are binding on us. For more information or to access the FOS service, please call 1800 367 287, fax 03 9613 6399, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit their website.
Questions about your cover
How much is the excess for this policy?
When you make an insurance claim, you may be required to pay a fee known as an excess. The amount of this fee will be shown in your travel insurance policy wording.
You can find all benefits and excess amounts of our TravelCare policy in the Product Disclosure Statement including Policy Wording.
Quick tips when making a claim
- Check your Policy Certificate to make sure that the date of the incident falls within the start and finish dates of your policy.
- Remember that receipts, booking confirmations, transport information and other travel documents are crucial during the claims process. Keep them organised!
- Get into the habit of keeping receipts, especially for higher value items. This would make things much easier if you ever needed to make a claim.
- When you’re ready to make a claim online, keep a copy of your Policy Wording and Policy Certificate on hand; you’ll need to access information from them during the claims process.
- Double check that the details you’re submitting are correct and match the ones you provided when you bought your policy.
To learn more about the benefits of our TravelCare cover, and to decide whether it’s the right option for you, we recommend you read the Product Disclosure Statement including Policy Wording.