Best Budget Travel Insurance for USA Trip

Hello everyone. I'm heading to the USA to visit my parents for Christmas. I leave in two weeks (December 3) and return in mid-January. I am looking for the best bang for buck travel insurance, and was hoping the community could point me in the right direction. I only want the most basic medical coverage (I don't want to end up a victim of the predatory health care system Stateside). I don't need to insure my luggage or anything like that. What do you guys and gals recommend? Thanks in advance!


  • +1

    I've used Tick Travel Insurance on my last two trips. Seem reasonably priced, can't comment on the claims process.

    • +2

      Had never heard of Tick before but just checked them out and they're cheaper for a comparable policy to TID that I booked a few days ago. Now I know for next time, thanks!

  • +2

    In b4 someone suggests travel insurance included with a credit card.


    Just buy the cheapest. Budget Direct are normally cheap. I've used others occasionally when they've been cheaper and can't really comment in any way - I've never had to do a claim.

    • Yep read the PDS to compare if in doubt.

      My credit card policy stated that rental vehicle excess is only covered if I purchase the highest level of cover from the rental company.
      Worked out cheaper to just purchase a separate policy from TID which didn't have that clause.

      • That's really dodgy given highest cover is usually no excess no matter what.

        Which company is that?

  • +1

    There is no substitute for actually reading the policy detail. All policies have exclusions for at least some pre existing medical conditions and for some other things so you need to think about your own state of health and what you will be doing on your travels. One credit card policy that I read a couple of years ago excluded any claims where the event was connected with alcohol use - not just your use of alcohol but anyone's use. So if the person who punched you or set fire to your hotel or hit you in their car was affected by alcohol, your claim would be rejected.

  • Travel Insurance Direct for my last 5 trips. Never claimed

    Dad was with NRMA Travel Insurance (it's actually Covermore) when he did a cruise in 2016 and got sick onboard and subsequently passed-away. Our costs for onboard medical and ambulance transfer were ~$16,000. They stuffed us around for 18 months (I assume hoping we'd give up). They lost paperwork repeatedly, asked for additional information from his GP multiple times and wanted information that was impossible to provide. We didn't get a single cent of the claim. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THEM.

    • Did you talk to these guys to try to get it resolved.

      • Nope. We gave up. So their stalling technique was effective.

        My Sister was over it & broken. She had some massive medical issues she had to deal with and I was doing my divorce so we had to choose our battles.

    • +1

      Wow, that's a truly horrible experience. Sorry for your loss.

      • Thank you.

        The old guy had a good innings and an interesting life. With Mum's passing 2 years before, he was ready to move on (that was an interesting conversation about medical intervention).

        The silver lining was that his estate allowed my sick Sister to retire earlier than she had planned which has improved her quality of life somewhat.

  • +2

    I would look at unlimited health cover, for America, and make sure you are straight about pre existing illnesses. Don’t give them any excuses here.

    • +5

      worst advice ever

    • +4

      Yeah, just keep a spare bank account with $120,000 bucks in it for emergency medical expenses. Should cover you about 2-3 days knowing the USA.


      • EDIT: 2-3 days hospital stay plus a few scans…

        Better be ready with bankruptcy forms if you have a medical emergency and need surgery

  • +1

    1cover, approved my claim overnight and paid out in two days.

  • +1

    1Cover repaid us the Hotel and Taxi when we were stranded in Amsterdam. Very quick claim.

  • +1

    Anther fan of reading the PDS. It may be tedious but you really need to know the terms and conditions.
    We've used our Commonwealth CC free insurance for years but have never had to claim.
    They have changed their supplier a few times but their terms and conditions haven't changed much.
    The current supplier is Covermore.
    Son uses same insurance. The night before his flight to US, Virgin changed his family flights to five days later.
    This was far from acceptable so he cancelled the lot and booked with Qantas to fly the next day as was the original plan.
    The extra cost was $2000.
    He claimed online when they got back and this was reimbursed a few days later.
    We've used the Commonwealth free insurance for years without a claim so it was good to see it does actually work.

  • Big thanks to everyone who took the time to respond. I'll definitely check some of these out, cheers!

  • I used Woolworths Travel Insurance on my last trip to the USA. Very cheap

  • I've got a beginner's question on travel insurance. Should I start a new thread? If I don't get a response within 6 hours, I'll start a new thread. Hope no one minds that. Thanks in advance!

    Family of 4 travelling to the USA for 6 weeks. I just applied for CommBank Ultimate Rewards credit card that includes travel insurance so long as I activate before I travel. I'm reading above that it's crap, and that I should get a proper travel insurance. ING has an offer now, 15% with INGONLINE. I suppose the ING one has a better coverage than the CommBank one, right?

    On ING's PDS, page 19 (, about the last line, in case the corona virus does cause travel bans, I am covered, even though I bought the tickets, paid for accommodation, etc a few months ago, but only buy the travel insurance now, and only flying in March, correct?

    Also, when I rent a car in the US, do I need insurance on top? I'm guessing I do because they cover different things.

    Hope to hear from all.


  • If you rent from outside USA they should offer full insurance. We just used who were cheaper than some others.

Login or Join to leave a comment