COVID-19 Coronavirus Enquiries

This is general information to help travellers understand how the SARS-CoV-2 virus and resulting disease COVID-19 may impact cover under existing National Seniors travel insurance policies.

For information about purchasing a new policy, please see our Travel Alerts page.

This is general information only. If you have been impacted by COVID-19, and need medical assistance, please contact our Emergency Assistance team.

If you have incurred costs and you need to submit a claim, you can find information about how to submit a claim here. All claims are assessed by our claims team on a case-by-case basis, along with all supporting documentation.

  1. Why can’t I purchase a travel policy at the moment?
  2. I have a trip I want to insure for later this year, when can I purchase a policy again?
  3. I have a policy but I'm yet to travel and want to change my dates – how can I do this?
  4. Why have you stopped selling? When will I be able to purchase a policy in the future… I am travelling in December – am I able to buy a policy now?
  5. Can I still extend my policy? - What’s the process for extending a current policy? - I want to get an extension as I'm stuck overseas – how do I do this?
  6. I have a current policy with you – does this change?
  7. I'm trying to get home but can't and I'm not eligible to extend my Insurance policy – will you extend on compassionate grounds?
  8. When will I be able to purchase a policy again?
  9. I want to accept an airline's offer to postpone my flights – how do I change the dates of my travel insurance policy
  10. I would like to cancel my policy and get a refund as I won’t be travelling
  11. I need to get home and suspend my trip, as my plans have been cancelled
  12. Can I claim my additional expenses?
  13. How can you help?
  14. I’m seeking advice and information on whether I should return home or continue my trip.
  15. I’ve already left on my trip and the country I’m travelling to has been declared a “Do Not Travel” region – what do I do?
  16. If I’m being advised to quarantine; are any of my accommodation or re-booking expenses covered?
  17. What should I do if I have a flight booked?
  18. How do I access medical help?
  19. Should I let anyone know I am traveling?
  20. What if I am still intending to travel?
  21. Will I be able to access health care while I am traveling?

1. Why can’t I purchase a travel policy at the moment?

Due to COVID-19, and the travel restrictions imposed by a number of governments across the world, nib Travel has temporarily ceased issuing new policies for travel insurance
This change is effective close of business on Wednesday 1 April 2020.
We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will advise travellers once we resume issuing new travel insurance policies.
We apologise for any inconvenience this causes and understand you will have questions about what this means for your individual circumstances. You may already find the answers to common questions in our FAQs, and we will continue to update these as soon as possible.

2. I have a trip I want to insure for later this year, when can I purchase a policy again?

Due to COVID-19, and the travel restrictions imposed by a number of governments across the world, nib Travel has temporarily ceased issuing new travel insurance policies This change is effective close of business on Wednesday 1 April 2020. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will advise travellers once we resume issuing new travel insurance policies.

We apologise for any inconvenience this causes and understand you will have questions about what this means for your individual circumstances. We are working on a set of answers and scenarios which we will add to our FAQ pages shortly.

3. I have a policy but I'm yet to travel and want to change my dates – how can I do this?

If you’d like to change your policy, contact us and our service team will help. There are limits on how far from your original purchase date you can move your policy start date – our service team can advise or check your policy for more information. Please be aware we are experiencing high volumes of calls so there may be longer than usual wait times.

Please note your cover may be effected if you alter your policy start date. As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all ‘Do Not Travel’ bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording to understand the impact before you change your cover

4. Why have you stopped selling? When will I be able to purchase a policy in the future… I am travelling in December – am I able to buy a policy now?

Due to COVID-19, and the travel restrictions imposed by a number of governments across the world, nib Travel has temporarily ceased issuing new travel insurance policies. This change is effective from close of business on Wednesday 1 April 2020 and only applies to new international policies. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will advise travellers once we resume issuing new travel insurance policies.

We apologise for any inconvenience this causes and understand you will have questions about what this means for your individual circumstances. We are working on a set of answers and scenarios which we will add to our FAQ pages shortly.

5. Can I still extend my policy? - What’s the process for extending a current policy? - I want to get an extension as I'm stuck overseas – how do I do this?

This does not change the terms of your policy and you can still extend if you meet the eligibility criteria. Please note your cover may be affected if you alter your policy. As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all ‘Do Not Travel’ bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording to understand the impact before you alter your policy. If you’re not eligible for an extension and wish to continue travelling, be aware you may not be able to purchase any more cover with us.

6.I have a current policy with you – does this change?

No. Your current policy is still valid under the terms and conditions of the plan you have purchased. Our decision to stop issuing new policies for travel does not change the terms of your existing policy.

7. I'm trying to get home but can't and I'm not eligible to extend my Insurance policy – will you extend on compassionate grounds?

If you’re not eligible for an extension we may not be able to extend your policy, please contact us to discuss your options.

8. When will I be able to purchase a policy again?

At this stage we can't say with certainty when we will be able to start selling international travel insurance again. Our first priority is making sure our existing customers are safe and assisting them in these difficult times. We will continue to monitor the government warnings.

9. I want to accept an airline's offer to postpone my flights – how do I change the dates of my travel insurance policy

If you’d like to extend your policy just contact us and our servicing team will help. There are limits on how far in advance you can move your policy – our service team can advise or check your policy for more information.

Please be aware we are experiencing high volumes of calls so there may be longer than usual wait times.

Please note your cover may be effected if you alter your policy start date or extend your policy after the date the coronavirus, COVID-19, any Do not Travel Ban, or government recommendations and restrictions became known events.

As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all "Do Not Travel" bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details before you choose to amend your policy.

10. I would like to cancel my policy and get a refund as I won’t be travelling

All our policies are subject to a period within which you may cancel your policy without any penalty (known variously as the cooling-off period, right to examine or Satisfaction Guarantee). Check your policy wording for details on what this period is.

How does this period work?
If you request to cancel your policy with nib Travel within this period, we will refund your premium as long as you aren’t using your policy in any way.

This means that:
• the departure date hasn’t started; and
• you have not yet left home or started your trip (and if you purchase your policy while already overseas, to start the same day, we consider that you have started your trip)
• you have not and will not make any claim; and
• you will not exercise any right/s under the policy.

How do I cancel my policy during this period?
If you are eligible to cancel your policy during this period, you can cancel it by:
• For members – logging into your membership and cancelling online (where available)
• For guests (and members) – contacting us Refunds, once approved, take up to 10 business days to appear in your bank account.

11. I need to get home and suspend my trip, as my plans have been cancelled

If you’re on your trip and your holiday or tour has been cancelled, and you need to get home, there are a number of things you can do:

1. Speak to your agent, airline, cruise line or tour operator to see if they can help rearrange your tickets. Many operators are offering refunds, and vouchers, without charging fees, to help travellers get home or where they need to be, as flights are cancelled and travel bans are imposed. It’s a good idea to go to the local airport and speak to airline agents in person to see if they can help.

2. Many governments, including Australia, New Zealand, UK and Ireland, have placed 'Do Not Travel' warnings on many, and in some cases, all destinations and we expect to see more in the coming weeks. We recommend you check your government’s travel advisory website. In addition, there may be 'Do Not Travel' warnings to certain regions. While there are many bans and restrictions being imposed between countries, most are allowing their own citizens to come home, although you may be subject to quarantine measures when you do arrive home.

3. This is a rapidly changing situation and governments may change their travel advice and bans at a moment’s notice. Make sure you stay informed about what is happening and follow the advice of local authorities.

12. Can I claim my additional expenses?

Whether or not your additional expenses are covered under your policy depends on the plan you purchased, when you bought your policy or extended it, and when you made your bookings. As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all "Do Not Travel" bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy as this will depend on the plan you’ve purchased, when you bought your policy, and your individual circumstances

You can continue to submit a claim as per the terms and conditions of your policy. We recommend you keep your receipts to support any claim you make, and try to minimise your expenses as much as possible. As there’s a lot of concern over COVID-19 we are experiencing high volumes of enquiries, so if you have any claims-related questions it’s best to contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

13. How can you help?

Our 24/7 emergency assistance team members are available to help get you in touch with local authorities, direct you to embassies and keep you updated on the situation. We have a number of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about how COVID-19 may impact your travel plans.

14. I’m seeking advice and information on whether I should return home or continue my trip.

Many people are unsure whether they should continue their holiday plans or cancel and return home. We can’t advise what’s best for you, but we do suggest you stay informed about what is happening in regards to COVID-19 in your local region and where you’re planning to travel to.

If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to:

1. Speak to your airline or travel operator to confirm your travel arrangements have not been disrupted.

2. Check your government’s travel advisory website and that there are no warnings, bans or quarantine requirements in place for where you’re planning to travel to. Be aware these are updated regularly and changing very quickly at the moment, so check back daily to stay abreast of any changes. 3. Make sure you stay informed about what is happening by watching and listening to local and international media, and follow local authorities’ advice and directions.

As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all "Do Not Travel" bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy before you choose to stay where you are as this decision may also effect or limit cover for insured events to the extent your loss is exacerbated by them.

I’m experiencing a medical emergency and need help

If you’re experiencing a medical emergency and need medical help, contact our 24/7 Emergency Assistance team who can help direct you to or help you obtain medical help, and if medically necessary they can work with local authorities to repatriate you home, subject to the terms and conditions of your policy.

15. I’ve already left on my trip and the country I’m travelling to has been declared a “Do Not Travel” region – what do I do?

If you’re on your trip and your destination has been declared a ‘Do Not Travel’ area, then you need to decide whether to continue to that destination or not. A ‘Do Not Travel’ warning is issued following very careful consideration by the respective government, and travelling against such warnings will affect any cover that may be available under your policy.

If you decide to cancel and return home you should:

1. Speak to your airline or travel operator to see if they can help rearrange your flights. Airlines are working to help many of their travellers get home or where they need to be, as flights are cancelled and travel bans imposed. It’s a good idea to go to the local airport and speak to airline agents in person to see if they can help.

2. Many governments including Australia, New Zealand, UK and Ireland have placed 'Do Not Travel' warnings on many, and in some cases all destinations and we expect to see more in the coming weeks. We recommend you check your government’s travel advisory website. In addition, there may be 'Do Not Travel' warnings to certain regions. While there are many bans and restrictions being imposed between countries, most are allowing their own citizens to come home, although you may be subject to quarantine measures when you arrive home.

3. If you’re trying to travel to another destination, check that there are no bans in place before you make any travel bookings.

4. This is a rapidly changing situation and governments may change their travel advice and warnings at a moment’s notice. Make sure you stay informed about what is happening and follow local authorities’ advice and directions

Can I claim my additional expenses?

Whether or not your additional expenses are covered under your policy depends on the plan you purchased, when you bought your policy or extended it, and when you made your bookings. As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all ‘Do Not Travel’ bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy before you choose to stay where you are as this decision may also effect or limit cover for insured events to the extent your loss is exacerbated by them. You can continue to submit a claim as per the terms and conditions of your policy. We recommend you keep your receipts to support any claim you make, and try to minimise your expenses as much as possible.

Please note as there’s a lot of concern over COVID-19 we are experiencing high volumes of enquiries, so if you have any claims-related questions it’s best to contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

If it’s urgent please contact us.

If you decide to go anyway:

Many of our policies have general exclusions around travel to destinations with government warnings. You’ll need to check your policy and your home country’s government travel warnings (or the warning of the government department noted in your policy, if different to your home country) to better understand how these may affect you and your travel insurance coverage in these regions.

If your policy has an exclusion for travel to a country or region where the government has issued a ‘Do Not Travel’ warning, and you choose to travel there, no cover is available in any event under any section of your policy.

16. If I’m being advised to quarantine; are any of my accommodation or re-booking expenses covered?

Some governments have imposed quarantines in relation to Coronavirus/COVID-19 which may affect some travellers’ plans. As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all Do Not Travel bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy as this will depend on the plan you’ve purchased, when you bought your policy, whether you’re ill or not and your individual circumstances

What do I do if I’m quarantined?

1. If quarantined, follow the direction of the local authorities and contact us as soon as possible for assistance. If you become ill while quarantined, seek medical assistance and contact our emergency assistance team when possible.

2. You should speak to your airline or travel operator to see if they can help rearrange your flights. Airlines are working to help many of their travellers get home or where they need to be, as flights are cancelled and travel bans imposed.

Can I claim any additional expenses I incur because I’m quarantined?

As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all "Do Not Travel" bans or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy as this will depend on the plan you’ve purchased, when you bought your policy, and your individual circumstances

17. What should I do if I have a flight booked?

Contact your airline 72hrs before your flight. Check if it has any special requirements you will need to meet prior to travel. Some airlines may require a medical clearance or confirmation that you are a resident or citizen of the county you are intending to enter or transit through.

18. How do I access medical help?

If you need to access a health care provider for any illness or injury, you may be required to undergo a COVID-19 test. These tests may be expensive and if you are asymptomatic (you don’t have any symptoms), it may be difficult to obtain a test. The nib Assist team will be able to direct you to an appropriate provider in your area.

19. Should I let anyone know I am traveling?

Register your travel with the appropriate authority, (eg. Smarttraveller) or contact your country’s consulate to update them on where you are and if you need assistance. It may be able to provide advice on closed boarders and any quarantine laws that may apply.

20. What if I am still intending to travel?

If you’re are continuing your journey, make sure you are able to enter your intended destination as there may be additional entry requirements. This may also apply to any countries you are required to transit through, so please ensure you check all destinations or transit locations. Check whether your intended destination has any quarantine or self-isolation requirements and if all services are available. Find out if you are you still able to access your accommodation and buy food.

As advised in our prior travel alerts we will not provide you with cover for any loss or event related to the coronavirus, COVID-19, all "Do Not Travel" bans or or government restrictions or recommendations. Loss related to these events ceased to be covered from the date they became known events. Please consider your PDS or policy wording for full details of what events are insured under your travel insurance policy before you choose to continue your journey or choose to travel as this decision may also effect or limit cover for insured events.

21. Will I be able to access health care while I am traveling?

Remember at this time, the health care systems of all countries are being inundated and services may be limited or have additional access requirements. If you are needing to access treatment or medical services, we recommended calling ahead to the provider to understand any requirements or contacting nib Assist for direction to the most appropriate facility in your destination.