Generally, mental health is considered a pre-existing medical condition. We’re supportive of all types of conditions, so this doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t get travel insurance, but you do need to disclose your condition when you’re booking your travel insurance.
With mental health conditions, all grades need to be disclosed, even if you’re not taking medication. This means we’re aware of your circumstances and you’ll know exactly what you’re covered for.
Please note, there’s a possibility we might not be able to cover you at all, but we will tell you this after you have disclosed your condition and we have made an assessment.
*based on mental health condition being your only pre-existing condition
The process is simple and quick. You don’t need to call us and you don’t need to provide doctor’s certificates or other documents. All you need to do is fill out a simple questionnaire when you’re purchasing a policy online.
You’ll be asked about pre-existing conditions during your online purchase and if you select ‘yes”, you’ll fill out the questionnaire. This is where we’ll ask you everything we need to know about your mental health condition.
Once you’ve filled out this questionnaire, you’ll immediately find out your travel insurance options.
What is a mental health condition/illness?
About one in five Australians experience symptoms of a mental illness every year. Mental illness includes a range of conditions including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, panic disorders, stress, prenatal depression and PTSD.
Here’s a few common mental health conditions:
Travelling means being away from your routine, so you should make sure you’ve taken all the necessary steps to keep yourself safe and healthy on your trip. Please note, the below is general advice only is not intended to replace the advice or information from a registered body or your doctor.
We’re supportive of mental health, and offer cover for a different range of conditions. What we do is assess your individual circumstances when you disclose your condition.
Depression and anxiety are very common conditions. That’s why we assess your individual circumstances when you disclose your condition.
PTSD is difficult to go through and is a highly individual condition. We’re here to support your travel, and we may be able to offer cover once we know the full details of your condition.
Pre and post-natal depression affect a wide range of women. After you give birth, you may need to travel to be close to loved ones or for other reasons. When you let us know about your individual circumstances so we can make an accurate assessment about your insurance options.
See here for more information about pregnancy and travel insurance.
If you are prone to panic attacks, you might need to speak to your doctor before you leave to figure out a strategy for this situation.
If you are overseas and your panic attack is severe, you or someone you’re travelling with might need to call our medical assistance team for advice.
If we are unable to provide cover for your mental health condition, you could still obtain a policy that covers other events that aren’t related to your condition, including medical cover for other unforeseen injuries or illnesses, cancellation fees, lost deposits, lost luggage, theft, and more.
If you’re travelling with someone and they’re named on the policy, you will need to make sure that, where necessary, their medical conditions are declared. As a parent or guardian you can do this on your child's behalf. For adult travel companions, you’ll need to declare their condition if you have their permission to do so and are aware of their health and medical conditions. If you don’t have permission, they will need to do it themselves.
We are unable to provide cover for mental health conditions automatically, but we provide you with an instant outcome once you have complete your assessment either online or over the phone.
A pre-existing condition could be anything that is chronic or ongoing, or has ongoing implications. It could also be something that you take regular medication for. Visit our pre-existing medical conditions page for our full definition.
Travel insurance provides cover for a wide range of benefits. Although in some cases we may not be able to provide cover for your condition we may still offer cover things like unforeseen injury or illness (not related to your mental health), personal effects, cancellation fees & lost deposits, and family emergency.
If you don’t take out travel insurance you will be liable to pay all expenses that you incur if something happens while you’re away.
If you’re sick or injured, we advise that you or a member of your travelling party call our medical assistance team as soon as possible. Our medical team will liaise with the treating hospital, and if you are covered, may provide written guarantees of payment for reasonable expenses (subject to your claim being approved). If you are covered and approved for medical evacuation, they will arrange this, if it’s deemed necessary.
For minor ailments, such as those that only require a GP visit, you may choose to visit a doctor, pay for your visit upfront, and then submit your claim either from overseas or once you return home. Make sure that you keep all receipts and reports from your treating doctor, including the diagnosis and treatment notes and any other documents.
If your total cost of treatment will exceed $1,000 you MUST contact our medical assistance team as soon as possible. If you are still uncertain about what to do in relation to an injury or illness, please contact our medical assistance team for further advice.
Cover for mental health conditions on a Frequent Traveller policy works in the same way as single trip policies. You will need to complete a medical assessment to determine if we can offer the cover for your mental health condition when you apply for a quote.
If you’re diagnosed with a mental health condition part way through your Frequent Traveller policy, your new condition will be considering a pre-existing condition for the remainder of your policy.
This means you’ll need to disclose your condition before you go on any further trips.
If you have other pre-existing medical conditions that are not on our automatically covered list or they do not meet auto-criteria you will need to disclose them by completing a medical assessment.
If you forgot to disclose your condition and your policy has not started we may be able to add it. You can call our Customer Care Team to carry out an assessment for your condition.
Please be aware that depending on the outcome of the assessment you may need to pay an additional premium. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to cover your condition even after you have declared it on an existing policy.
All terms, conditions and limitations will apply in the same way as if you had disclosed the condition when you purchased the policy.
You may have a provision to claim for travel events related to the first episodes of a mental health condition, if the condition was completely unforeseen, and you had no signs, symptoms or investigations being done. Additionally, you would have had to have been deemed fit to travel by your doctor.
After these initial episodes, however, the condition becomes a pre-existing condition for all future policies.
Mental Health NZ is a national non-government organisation representing and promoting the interests of the New Zealanders' mental health sector. If you have specific questions about travelling with your condition, they may be able to help.
IAMAT are a non-profit organization who help travellers plan a healthy trip, and connect travellers with reputable English-speaking doctors. They are a useful point of contact for anyone travelling with a health condition.