If you are wondering : ‘Does autism affect travel insurance?’ The answer is YES.
People with autism need to let travel insurers know they have a pre-existing condition and often need to pay a small extra charge in order to be fully covered. This also includes children with autism.
But the good news is that most insurers will provide insurance cover. They just need to know about the pre-existing condition and they may charge a higher premium.
This isn’t something that many people with autism or families know about, so here is some information.
The Product Disclosure Statements (PDS) of travel insurance companies are dense to read but they do make clear that pre-existing conditions must be mentioned.
Allianz- has a Travel Insurance Medical page which explains their policies and gives good general advice.
Travel Insurance Direct PDS – search ‘autism’ in this PDS and you will see it must be disclosed.
InsureandGo PDS doesn’t mention autism specifically, but see the Health Conditions section on page 5 which mentioned ‘any neurological condition.’
Cover-More make very clear what they cover on their website.
NB Anxiety and depression are also pre-existing conditions and should be disclosed too.
I did a test of a well known site, for a notional traveller aged 25 going to Bali for one week, with the standard $2000 cancellation cover and $250 excess
Cover for a traveller with no pre-existing condition cost $70.
I then enquired about a traveller of the same age with autism and answered a couple of questions.
Cover for the traveller with autism cost $77 more, so $147.
I did a second test with a different large insurer, looking at insurance for a 25 year old man going to New Zealand for a week.
There was no difference at all for the traveller with ASD compared to the traveller without.
Have Wheelchair Will Travel is a website written by an ex-travel consultant who has a son with additional needs. She has written several useful articles about travel insurance:
Travel insurance is vital, especially for overseas travel.
It will always pay to shop around, to call a couple of the bigger companies and to compare insurance cover costs.
The bottom line is that to ensure you are properly covered, do disclose autism as a pre-exisiting condition. It could save you a lot of money if a problem occurs when on holiday.
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