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As New Zealanders are increasingly tempted by record-low airfares, MoneyHub publishes its review on travel insurance and highlights major differences in the way premiums are sold and marketed.
A research report released by MoneyHub today aims to inform consumers about the range in premiums and benefits offered by travel insurers, with data suggesting many individuals and families are overpaying by not shopping around. MoneyHub compiled its report in response to the growing number of outbound tourism and the number of stories reported in the media about uninsured holidaymakers.
MoneyHub found that insurers such as TINZ, ColumbusDirect and NZ Travel Insurance routinely outpriced the established brands and often provided better coverage. A similar situation was found when it came to banks and travel agents who sold travel insurance, often charging up to twice as much for similar policies.
MoneyHub’s Senior Researcher Christopher Walsh said:
“New Zealanders have a wide choice of travel insurers and getting an online quote has never been faster or easier, but it’s essential to compare to save the most and get the right policy. Paying a lower excess for claims is just one benefit from shopping around”.
“Well known travel insurance brands, airlines and travel agents all charged up to twice as much for similar cover offered by less known but equally reliable insurers. For example, a couple going to Europe could pay $225 with TINZ or $250 with Southern Cross, or $486 with House of Travel, $524 with ANZ and $526 with Air New Zealand”.
“We are aware of the margin in travel insurance – company accounts of one travel insurer filed at the Companies Office indicated 90% of premium sold was gross profit. Travel insurers spent a lot of money advertising, but less known brands can have better prices and often provide more generous policies”.
“What many people didn’t know is that the underlying policies are provided by a limited number of big insurers such as Allianz, QBE, Zurich and Lloyd’s. This means you’re supported by experienced insurers should you come to claim and are not relying on a local New Zealand office to help you out”.
“Many New Zealanders think they are covered in Australia for any medical problem, but the reality is only emergency care would be taken care of. Any additional costs such as ambulances, medicines and rearranging travel add up and only travel insurance protects travellers from these unknowns”.
“We found that many travel insurers included children free of charge in policies, a welcome bonus for families heading overseas”.
“MoneyHub suggests holidaymakers shop around and avoid buying insurance where they buy their flights and hotels – there are excellent deals online from a number of providers who offer similar policies”.
MoneyHub published a number of tips when it came to buying and claiming on travel insurance and policy prices would be updated on a regular basis going forward.
More: Travel Insurance