COVID-19 & Overall Advice Level Alert – 11th August 2020 (updated 8th November 2020)

Important travel insurance information issued for Fast Cover travellers regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the Australian Government’s Overall Advice Levels

COVID-19 & Overall Advice Level Alert – 11th August 2020 (updated 8th November 2020)

Information about Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (applicable to all countries)

Australian Government Overall Travel Advice

As a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) issued an Overall Advice Level of Do Not Travel” for all countries.

The below information applies to your Fast Cover Travel Insurance, underwritten by Hollard.

Destination marker
If you choose to remain overseas

We encourage all Australians to follow the Government’s advice to urgently return home to Australia.  However, we appreciate that customers may wish to remain overseas or, due to circumstances beyond their control, may be unable to return to Australia.  

In the event you choose to remain overseas, we want to give you as much certainty as we can about your travel insurance policy so that you can make informed travel decisions for yourself and your loved ones.   

  • If you choose to remain overseas, there is no cover for claims relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. Refer below for more information about applicable exclusions. This includes (but is not limited to) COVID-19 testing, hospitalisation, treatment, emergency repatriation, quarantine and amendment of your travel arrangements. 
  • If you choose to remain overseas and need emergency assistance for a non-COVID-19 emergency, we may be limited in our ability to assist you due to ongoing travel restrictions and increased pressures on overseas medical facilities. This means it is riskier for you to remain overseas.
  • If you choose to remain overseas and need to claim for expenses not related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will consider your claim.  However, any payment to you may be reduced to the extent COVID-19 has contributed to the loss or increased the amount the loss otherwise would have been. Before you submit a claim, we remind that you should take all reasonable steps to minimise your loss.

Please urgently let us know if you are unable to return to Australia and require help making emergency travel arrangements.  This is a free service we offer as part of your policy.

Are you overseas and need emergency help?

If you need emergency help, contact our Worldwide Emergency Assistance team.

The Australian Government also offers 24-Hour Consular Assistance for travellers overseas:

  • Phone: +61 2 6261 3305
  • SMS: +61 421 269 080

What you should do if your travel has been affected

If your travel arrangements are affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and you have out of pocket expenses, we recommend you immediately contact your travel agent or travel provider regarding the best option for amending or cancelling your travel arrangements.

If you have previously contacted them and were not able to obtain refunds or credits, it may be worthwhile contacting them again as travel agent and travel provider circumstances may have changed.

Australia domestic
If you are planning to travel domestically
  • Your policy contains a General Exclusion relating to pandemics. This means there is no cover for cancellation or rearrangement costs due to COVID-19. The General Exclusion applies to all policies regardless of when the policy was purchased, the dates of travel or the destinations of travel.
  • Your policy contains a General Exclusion for travel that is against advice in the mass media or any government warning. You should follow the advice of your State or Territory Government and media in relation to local, regional and interstate travel for the safety of yourself and the safety of others. This means there is no cover for cancellation or rearrangement expenses due to travel booked or undertaken against any government advice.
World globe
If you are planning to travel internationally
  • Your policy contains a General Exclusion relating pandemics. This means there is no cover for cancellation or rearrangement costs due to COVID-19 or for medical-related expenses if you contract COVID-19. This includes (but is not limited to) COVID-19 testing, hospitalisation, treatment, emergency repatriation, quarantine and amendment of your travel arrangements. 
  • Your policy contains a General Exclusion for travel that is against advice in the mass media or any government warning and/or if you do not act in a responsible way to protect yourself. This means there is no cover for any claims related for travel to a country or region with a DFAT Overall Travel Advice of “Do not travel” or “Reconsider your need to travel”, regardless of the date the policy is purchased or the travel dates.

General Exclusions apply to all policies regardless when the policy was purchased, the dates of travel or the destinations of travel.

PDS
Relevant Policy Wording

We refer you to the Fast Cover Combined Product Disclosure Statements and Financial Services Guide (PDS) which states in part:

Pages 69-71

General Exclusions that apply to all benefits

To the extent permissible by law, we will not pay under any circumstances if 

14. Your claim arises from or is related to or is associated with:

a. an actual or likely epidemic or pandemic; or
b. 
the threat of an epidemic or pandemic. 

15. Your claim arises from you not following advice in the mass media or any government or other official body’s warning:

a. of a strike, riot, bad weather, civil protest or contagious disease (including an epidemic or pandemic); or

b. against travel to a particular country or parts of a country, including where an advice or warning has been released by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade indicating “Do not travel” or warning to “Reconsider your need to travel” or otherwise advising against all non-essential travel to or in that location or advising against specific transport arrangements or participation in specific events or activities; and

c. you did not take appropriate action to avoid or minimise any potential claim under your policy (including delay of travel to the country or part of the country referred to in the warning).

Please note, whilst General Exclusion 14 and 15 have been specifically mentioned, all General Exclusions are applicable to all policies regardless of policy purchase or travel dates.

What you should do if you are planning to travel

We encourage you to regularly review Smartraveller travel advisories for your planned destinations of travel.

Orange pen and paper
How do I make a claim?

All travellers are welcome to submit a claim for consideration as detailed in the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS). You can submit your claim:

Certificate of insurance
General Advice

For details about what your policy covers, please refer to your PDS. You can find a copy of the PDS at www.fastcover.com.au/pds. Limits, conditions and exclusions may apply under your policy. We will assess all claims in accordance with your PDS and your Certificate of Insurance. Your cover will depend on the type of plan you purchased and your particular circumstances.

If you have any questions or need help with your travel insurance, please:

Refunds

Green tick
14 day cooling off refund period

Policies come with a 14 day cooling off refund period as long as you have not travelled or exercised any condition under the policy such as departing on your trip, making a claim or using it as part of your visa requirements to enter a country such as Canada on an IEC Visa.

Cover for claims directly or indirectly related to COVID-19

Red cross
No cover for any claims related to COVID-19 or financial collapse

You should understand, all policies include a General Exclusion for Pandemics. There is no cover available for any claims for anything, directly or indirectly, relating to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the COVID-19 disease or any mutation of either, including but not limited to:

  • State, territory and international border closures or international travel bans by any Government.
  • The cancellation by an airline, bus line, shipping line or rail authority.
  • Due to the financial collapse of but not limited to any airline, or other carriers, accommodation provider, car rental agency, travel agency including online travel agencies, online travel and leisure retailer, tour or cruise operator, travel wholesaler, booking agent or other providers of facilities or travel or tourism-related services.

COVID-19 FAQs

Is there cover if I contract COVID-19?

No. There is no cover for testing, quarantine, medical expenses, cancellation or any claims directly or indirectly related to COVID-19.

Am I covered if the Australian border or a state or territory border is shut preventing me from taking my trip?

No. There is no cover for any claims relating to you being unable to travel due to border closures or if a border closure prevents you travelling to a trip commencement location such as a Kimberley Cruise.

Am I covered for travel to my destination country if the Australian Government's Department of Home Affairs has issued a "Do Not Travel" or "Reconsider Your Need To Travel" overall advice level?

There is no cover for travel to any country with a "Do Not Travel" or "Reconsider Your Need To Travel" overall advice level, unless the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs has issued you with a travel exemption AND it is for one of the following countries:

  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Finland
  • Italy
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Slovenia
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom

The list of countries may change from time to time depending on factors such as the severity of COVID-19 within that country, as well as our ability to provide assistance if required.

Am I covered for quarantined expenses if a government authority in my destination country or Australian state/territory announces quarantine upon arrival for travellers from my departure location?

There is no cover for any quarantine expenses, testing or cancellation due to the announcement of required quarantine in your destination for travellers from your departure location.

Am I covered if I’m worried about COVID-19 and I want to cancel my trip?

No. There is no cover for anything directly or indirectly related to COVID-19. This includes change of mind about travelling or concerns about COVID-19.

Am I covered if an airline, cruise line, bus line or rail authority refuses me boarding?

No. There is no cover for the refusal by an airline, cruise line, bus line or rail authority for you to board. You should seek a change of travel dates, credit or refund from the airline, cruise line, bus line or rail authority who refused your boarding.

Am I covered if I have a runny nose or other symptoms and choose not to travel?

No. There is no cover for any claim if you wish to delay or cancel your trip because you are worried about any symptoms of illness that you believe may be related to COVID-19.

Am I covered if I have to delay or cancel my trip as I am awaiting COVID-19 test results?

No. There is no cover for trip delay, trip disruption or trip cancellation due to you having to commence or recommence or cancel a trip whilst you wait for COVID-19 test results.

Am I covered if a member of our travelling group (including family members) has tested positive for COVID-19 or is identified as a close contact and we are required to quarantine before departure or on arrival?

No. There is no cover for any quarantine or cancellation expenses due to a member of your travelling party or you requiring quarantine in your departure or destination locations.

Do I need to disclose if I have or have had COVID-19?

No. We do not require you to disclose if you have previously tested positive to COVID-19 as there is no cover for anything directly or indirectly related to COVID-19.

Do I need travel insurance to travel?

There is no cover for any claims directly or indirectly related to COVID-19. However, usual policy benefits apply such as cover for cancellation expenses and lost deposits for unexpected illness or injury such as a broken bone from a fall that prevents you from travelling.

 

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