In this article we help you to understand what you need to tell your insurer before you go on holiday – and that having a
pre-existing medical condition or illness doesn’t automatically mean you can’t buy travel insurance.
What does pre-existing condition mean?
A pre-existing condition in travel insurance refers to a diagnosed medical or dental condition – whether current or in the
past. Most travel insurance policies regardless of insurer, will have a requirement for the traveller to declare pre-existing
conditions, so that the right cover can be offered to you.
It’s not just conditions like cancer or heart disease, cholesterol and mental illness – it includes medical conditions that
have been diagnosed and documented that you require cover for whilst you’re on holiday.
This also includes any ongoing medical or dental condition that you are currently receiving treatment for. If you are on
holiday and you need to seek medical treatment for it – you may not be covered if you haven’t declared it to your insurer.
The most common conditions that people neglect to declare include high blood pressure, asthma, knee or hip replacements,
pacemakers and stents. They don’t purposefully neglect to declare them – people usually just don’t know that they need
to declare them when applying for travel insurance.
HBF travel insurance automatically covers some pre-existing medical conditions such as well-controlled asthma, non-insulin
dependent diabetes, pregnancy up to 24 weeks, high cholesterol and high blood pressure provided they meet certain criteria
and only if you have no other pre-existing medical conditions. Check our Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) for full
details and always ask your insurer about the pre-existing medical conditions they automatically cover as each insurer
If your pre-existing medical condition is not automatically covered, your insurer may provide cover for it once they have
assessed the condition.
HBF provides online medical assessments which are very quick and easy, you simply need to answer a few questions for each
medical condition you want cover for. Once completed you receive an immediate response advising you if it is a medical
condition we can cover. There is no need to visit a doctor to have a medical assessment form filled out, and we can help
you through the process to make sure you have the cover you need before you go on holiday.
If your insurer isn’t able to cover your specific pre-existing condition, you can usually still purchase travel insurance
and be covered for other unrelated unforeseen medical expenses or other events such as lost luggage, travel delays or
accidents, as long as they aren’t related to your pre-existing medical condition.
Tips for travellers
If you’re buying travel insurance for a couple or a family, you will need to make sure you disclose all medical conditions
that they will require cover for. List any current and previous medical conditions as well as surgery and ongoing medical
treatment before you apply for travel insurance so you don’t accidentally forget a condition you may have had. Think
about the conversations you’ve had with your GP recently, consider any medication you are currently taking and why you
are taking it.
Sharing your medical conditions with your travel insurer helps them to find you the best travel insurance cover for your
specific needs, so you can get on with enjoying your holiday.