DFAT and travel insurance

Why does DFAT reccommend travel insurance?


Each year, the Department of Foriegn Affairs and Trade (DFAT) handles over 20,000 cases involving Australians in difficulty overseas, including over 1,400 hospitalisations, 1,000 deaths and 30 evacuations of Australians for medical purposes.

Hospitalisation, medical evacuations, or even the return of the deceased's remains to Australia, can be very expensive, and can financially cripple families, forcing them to sell assets to cover costs.


Hospitalization (per day)

South East Asia


Return of remains



Medical evacuation




As a result, DFAT recommends that anyone going overseas needs to have some form of travel insurance to cover them financially in case something happens to them while away. 

While travel insurance can help financially, DFAT has provides a risk service called Smart Traveller. Smart Traveller is a website that provides you with travel and risk advice for different countries, provides advice on travel insurance and even lets you register your travel plans with them, to make it easier if something goes wrong while overseas.