The safety of our female travellers and their families is our utmost priority. To keep you informed, Travel with Jane monitors world events closely and releases travel warnings and general safety advice on this page.
Our primary source of travel alerts comes from the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade (DFAT). See www.smarttraveller.gov.au for more information.
Please check to see if any of your travel destinations are included in the listings below and by researching Smart Traveller. It’s important to know that your cover may be affected if you travel against advice given.
Tips to stay safe
You can call +61 2 9159 6649 from anywhere in the world 24/7 or email email@example.com..
If you need to make a claim
- If you are claiming additional expenses, make sure you keep a copy of all your receipts.
- If your travel was cancelled or delayed by a transport provider, you may be able to claim some of your meal and accommodation costs through them.
- Please check the terms and conditions of your transport provider’s ticket, and keep a copy of all their communication with you.
- Take reasonable steps to minimise your claim. Contact your airline or Travel provider for assistance if you need to rearrange your travel plans.
- Keep your receipts and any other supporting documentation e.g. travel provider cancellation letters. If you are claiming for additional meal, accommodation, and travel costs, please ensure you retain copies of all of your expense receipts.
China and Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Last updated: 25th Feb 2020. Still current.
There is an active outbreak of a novel coronavirus COVID-19 originating from Wuhan City in Hubei Province in China. There are confirmed cases of individuals with the coronavirus outside China.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the COVID-19 outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.
There are fears of a global epidemic after China confirmed the new strain was passed from person to person. Multiple people have died from the virus and there are currently many known cases.
The World Health Organization is closely monitoring the situation. If you are considering travelling to any destination with cases of COVID-19, you are recommend to take the following actions:
- Talk to your doctor before travelling with young children, babies or an elderly person; if you are pregnant; if you have a weak immune system, or have a chronic medical condition.
- Read the travel advice for your destination. There is a heightened risk of sustained local transmission in some countries, including at this stage Japan and South Korea.
- Read Smartraveller‘s advice about infectious diseases and medical assistance overseas before you go.
- Check with your travel agent, airline, cruise operator, accommodation provider and travel insurance provider to consider your options regarding any potential changes in services.
- Understand the risks you’re taking and that efforts to control the spread of COVID-19 may cause further travel disruptions and restrictions.
- Subscribe to Smartraveller‘s destination bulletins, and follow
- Smartraveller on Facebook and Twitter to receive latest updates on the situation as they occur.
Cancelling or amending your trip
Generally, when you can claim
Will your travel insurance cover COVID-19 cancellation and medical claims? The short answer is yes – if you purchased a policy with adequate cover for cancellations, prior to 11.59am on 19 January. Travellers who bought policies at this stage are considered to have not yet known of the risks to travel that the coronavirus represented. Claims made by these customers are likely to be supported, provided that the usual conditions are met.
And when you can’t claim
Policies bought from 20 January however, are considered to have been bought in full knowledge of the virus, and the travel warnings that went along with it. Unfortunately, cancellation claims related to COVID-19, from here on in, are viewed as a ‘change of mind’, and are therefore not covered.
Equally, claims related to medical treatment or expatriation costs will not be covered, as customers travelled in full knowledge that they may become unwell.
Trip Cancellations: you’re covered if you purchased prior to 19 Jan 2020
If your travel insurance was purchased prior to 19 January, your Travel with Jane travel insurance policy will cover cancellation claims related to the Coronavirus, up to your plan’s limits*. This could include assisting you with flight cancellation costs, tour cancellation costs, and accommodation cancellations costs. We only cover cancellations if the destinations you are travelling to have been assigned a ‘Do Not Travel’ advisory warning by the Australian Government, published on www.smartraveller.gov.au. We do not cover cancellations that are made due to a change or mind or fear.
Trip Cancellations: you’re not covered if you purchased after 20 Jan 2020
If you purchased travel insurance after 20 January 2020 you will not be covered for any trip cancellation claims related to coronavirus. This is due to the fact that as of 20 January, the outbreak was widely publicised, and health and travel authorities had advised that travellers take all necessary precautions. Customers purchasing travel insurance post 20 January do so in the knowledge that travel may be impacted by the coronavirus.
If you are looking to buy travel insurance now – your policy will no cover you for the coronavirus (medical or cancellation) – this is due to the fact that as of 20 January, the virus outbreak was widely publicised, and health and travel authorities had advised that travellers take all necessary precautions. Customers purchasing travel insurance post 20 January do so in the knowledge that travel may be impacted by COVID-19.
Last updated: 13 Jan 2020. Still current at: 14 Jan 2020. Taal Volcano, in the southern Luzon province of Batangas, erupted on 12 January 2020. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) has raised the alert level to four (4 out of 5), meaning an “explosive eruption” could happen in the coming hours or days. Local authorities have increased increased the exclusion zone to 14 kms from the volcano’s crater. Follow the instructions of local authorities, including any evacuation orders.
The Taal Volcanic Eruption is currently impacting flights in and around Manila. There is significant ash fall which is considered dangerous to your health.Contact your airline oor tour operator to determine if the situation will disrupt your travel plans. For more information visit Smart Traveller.
- Pay close attention to your personal security at all times and monitor the media about possible new safety or security risks.
- Pay close attention to your personal security at all times and monitor the media about possible new safety or security risks.
- Terrorist attacks could occur anywhere in the Philippines. Possible targets include public transport, hotels, shopping malls, restaurants, schools, events, places of worship and tourist areas. Be alert to possible threats.
- The threat of kidnapping and piracy in the southern Philippines is very high, especially in coastal resorts, coastal waters and isolated locations. Kidnappers may target popular tourist areas. If you travel to the southern Philippines, despite our advice, get professional security advice. Ensure your accommodation has proper security measures. Don’t travel by boat.
- Protests can turn violent. It’s illegal to take part in political rallies if you’re not Filipino. Avoid large public gatherings.
- Violent and other serious crime is common. Many crimes involve guns. Gunfights between criminals and police are common. Gangs often drug tourists before robbing or assaulting them.
- Pickpocketing, bag snatching and scams are common. Don’t leave food or drinks unattended. Don’t use public transport. Be careful in crowded shopping malls and other public places. Only use ATMs in secure locations.
- Severe currents and rips are common in coastal areas. Many travellers have drowned, including in popular resorts. Some swimmers also get ill from pollution. Get local advice before swimming. Don’t swim where there are red flags on the beach.
Overall exercise a high degree of caution in The Philippines.
Last updated: 09 Dec 2019. Still current at: 10 Dec 2019. Whakaari / White Island is an active volcano in New Zealand. On Monday 09 December it erupted without warning. About 50 people are believed to be on or near New Zealand’s White Island, and at least five people have been confirmed dead and up to two dozen are unaccounted for. If you are concerned about the welfare or whereabouts of a loved one, contact Smart Traveller by calling its 24-hour Emergency 1300 555 135 (within Australia) +61 2 6261 3305 (from overseas). Ash from the volcano could disrupt flights and airport operations. Contact your airline or tour operator directly for up-to-date information. If you’re in New Zealand, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.
- Crime rates are similar to those in Australia. Thieves often target vehicles. Don’t leave valuables in your car or campervan.
- Earthquakes are a constant risk. Large, damaging quakes can happen at any time. Know what to do during and after an earthquake.
- All of New Zealand’s coastline is at risk of a tsunami. Know the tsunami warning signs and move to high ground immediately. Don’t wait for official alerts.
- New Zealand has several active volcanoes. A volcano erupted on White Island in the Bay of Plenty on 9 December 2019. Further eruptions are possible. Avoid the area and follow the advice of local authorities.
- Weather conditions can change quickly. Severe weather could leave you stranded or injured, especially in an isolated area. If you’re climbing, hiking or in a remote area, register your trip with the Department of Conservation. Carry a personal locator beacon.
- There’s an outbreak of measles in New Zealand. Make sure your vaccinations are up to date before you travel.
Exercise normal safety precautions in New Zealand.
Updated: 03 Jan 2020. Current 14 Jan 2020.
There’s currently an outbreak of measles in a number of Pacific countries, including Samoa, American Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, and New Zealand. Some countries now have stricter entry requirements to prevent the spread of the disease.
Indonesia and Bali
Last updated: 07 Jan 2020. Still current at: 07 Jan 2020.
Mount Agung is an active volcano in Bali. Ash from the volcano could disrupt flights and airport operations. Contact your airline or tour operator directly for up-to-date information. If you’re in Bali, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.
- There’s a high risk of terrorist attack in Indonesia. Australians have been killed and injured in past attacks. Be aware of dates and places that could be terrorist targets.
- There has been increased tension, including demonstrations and violence, in towns in Papua and West Papua provinces since August 2019.
- Petty and violent crime occur in Indonesia. Drinks may be spiked or mixed with toxic substances. Crimes involving taxis and taxi drivers occur. Solo women are at higher risk.
- Be alert in taxis, crowds, bars and nightclubs.
- Legal disputes over real estate are common. Before entering into an agreement or providing financial details, do your research and get legal advice.
- Natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis occur. Domestic and international flights can be disrupted. Follow the advice of local authorities. Monitor media for updates.
Exercise a high degree of caution in Indonesia overall.
Last updated: 20 Nov 2019. Still current at: 14 Jan 2019.
- Terrorism is a threat in Sri Lanka. Attacks could happen anywhere at any time. Terrorists may target tourist areas. Avoid crowds. Follow the advice of local officials.
- Security has increased across the country following the 21 April 2019 terrorist attacks. Always carry travel and identification documents. Allow additional time to clear security checks, especially at airports.
- There are marked and unmarked minefields and unexploded weapons in the Northern Province and parts of the Eastern Province. Stay on main roads. Pay close attention to landmine warning signs.
- Violent crime, including sexual assault, harassment and robbery, occurs. If you’re a woman travelling alone, arrange travel through a reputable company.
- Scams and fraud are common, including credit card fraud, overcharging and fake goods. Be alert to fake goods, especially jewellery and gems. Check your bank statements often.
- Flooding and landslides occur during the monsoon season. This is December to March in the north-east and May to October in the south-west. Be prepared to change your travel plans.Exercise a high degree of caution in Sri Lanka.
Philippines Update 13 January 2020. Current
The Taal Volcanic Eruption is currently impacting flights in and around Manila. There is significant ash fall which considered dangerous to your health. Exercise caution while in the Philippines.
Bali (Indonesia) Updated 07 Jan 2020. Current
Mount Agung is an active volcano in Bali. Monitor news for warnings as further eruptions are possible.
White Island New Zealand Updated 10 December. Current
Following a volcanic eruption on White Island on 09 December, tourists are advised to exercise caution. Follow safety instructions given by authorities.