|1Cover Travel Insurance exposes why you should never contemplate travelling abroad without suitable travel insurance.|
|1Cover Travel Insurance exposes why you should never contemplate travelling abroad without suitable travel insurance.|
|The plus side to off-peak travelling is you’ll avoid huge crowds and high prices. Many frugal travellers opt to take their holidays during the low seasons but is there a trade-off?Unfortunately during the low season many tours, accommodation and attractions are not running or closed. These closures are often due to weather, scheduled maintenance or simply due to the fact that there are such limited number of visitors.|
The following information concerns the volcanic eruption in Iceland and associated ash clouds on Saturday 21 May 2011 and applies to travel insurance policies issued prior to 5.00pm (est) Monday 23 May 2011. Click here for more details. For a list of EU member airlines, click here.
Amazing buildings around the world
You can learn a lot about a culture by visiting the buildings that mean something to them… Get the most out of your holiday overseas with our guide to amazing buildings around the world . We’ll help you experience the best the world has to offer.
A temple of the Greek goddess Athena, the Parthenon stands today as perhaps the prime example of Classical Greece. In fact, there is some debate as to whether it is, strictly speaking, a temple, as there’s no evidence of an altar.
St. Marks Basilica (Italy)
If a building in Venice stands out as being particularly beautiful, you know it’s something special! One of the best-known examples of Byzantine architecture, St. Marks was originally the ‘chapel’ of Venetian rulers, as opposed to the cathedral it is today.
Taj Mahal (India)
The Taj Mahal, although widely thought of in terms of its famous dome, is actually a whole complex of structures symmetrically laid out over a large area. Completed around 1648, the Taj Mahal is centred around the tombs of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan and his favourite wife – Mumtaz Mahal.
The Hoover Dam (USA)
The Hoover Dam doesn’t hold as many records as it used to, but still grabs the imagination more than most other industrial buildings. For many, it stands as a monument to the incredible resilience and resourcefulness of Roosevelt’s America during the great depression.
The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao (Spain)
Widely hailed as a modern masterpiece, The Guggenheim Bilbao was designed by iconic Canadian/American architect Frank Gehry. Although an incredibly striking spectacle from some angles, the building fits in miraculously well with the surrounding traditional architecture.
Wherever you decide to go in search of wonderful buildings, don’t forget to make sure you have travel insurance. So you can enjoy the adventure, with complete peace of mind…
Nowadays, it’s much easier to access your money while you travel. But it makes sense to plan ahead, no matter where your overseas holiday takes you. Check out our Top five tips on accessing your money abroad – and avoid those hefty fees and scams.
1. Check with your bank first
It’s worth finding out how much your bank will charge you before you leave. Although using an ATM gives you a better exchange rate than exchanging hard cash, you’ll pay additional fees to access your bank account overseas. Using your credit card in an ATM (if you have a pin) involves higher fees again.
Let your credit card provider know your travel plans (so they don’t register unusual use of your credit card) and make sure you have regular direct debit payments in place before you go.
If you’re moving overseas temporarily, and plan to open a new bank account abroad, you’ll need some documentation from your current bank, and you’ll need to set up authorisations before you go if you want to transfer money between the two.
2. ATMs or travellers cheques?
It’s hard to remember the days when you couldn’t just get local currency from an ATM when you arrived at the airport. In those olden days, we all used travellers cheques.
Travellers cheques are still worth using if you are going to a remote country, where ATM access may not be predictable. But you’ll pay more in exchange fees, and you’ll only be able to change money during business hours. If you’re going on a long trip, take some money in travellers cheques and keep it separate – it will be your emergency fund if you lose access to your bank account or credit cards for any reason.
3. Keep your details safe
Make sure you keep a record of your debit and credit card numbers, and that handy ‘emergency-reverse-charges-while-you’re-overseas’ bank phone number. But don’t make your bank account details too obvious or record your pin number!
Protect yourself from credit card fraud while you’re travelling by making sure you sign for a bill before they have a chance to take it out of sight. And try to avoid online banking from a public internet café.
4. Don’t put all your money eggs in one basket
It’s best to have a combination of money sources: a small amount of cash, a debit card, two credit cards (in case one is declined or stolen!) and some travellers cheques. The easiest things to replace are credit cards and travellers cheques, and you’ll get instant cash and lower transaction fees on a debit card.
Some travellers swear by the ‘two wallet’ technique. Keep all your documents and credit cards safely in one wallet, and then use an everyday old wallet for cash and a few less important cards. If you get mugged, just hand over the second wallet and minimise your losses.
5. Help! I’ve been robbed!
This is when you’ll be glad you took out that travel insurance. Firstly, report any theft to the local police (and get written documentation if possible). Then, call our 24 hour emergency assistance line on (+) 800 7997 9000. Depending on your insurance, you’ll be covered for the loss of both cash and plastic – including any losses on your account. You’ll also need to notify your bank immediately so they can cancel your cards.
To make the most of your money while you’re travelling, it pays to take out overseas travel insurance. Then you can relax and enjoy your overseas adventures.
Going overseas? Make sure you’re prepared for accidents or unexpected illness with our guide to medical advice while abroad . We’ll help you enjoy the best the world has to offer.
First things first
Before setting off, make sure you’ve got adequate medical cover as part of your travel insurance. And make sure you declare any pre-existing medical conditions or prescribed medication when you arrange it. The last thing you want is to fall ill overseas, only to find out you’re not covered. You may need to pay an extra premium to include certain conditions, or find a better policy.
While you’re there
It pays to know a bit about the healthcare set-up in the country you’re visiting. Ask yourself, ‘what would I do? How do I call an ambulance? How do I let the authorities know I’m insured?’ And use your phrase book to learn basic terms like ‘I need a doctor,’ ‘where is the hospital?’ or ‘I am allergic to X’. Shouting and pointing won’t get you the best results!
Who to call
In an emergency, even if you’ve already called for an ambulance, call your insurer’s 24hr emergency assistance helpline. They’ll have details of doctors, clinics and hospitals near you. They’ll also offer advice on what to do, and in extreme cases they can liaise directly with the hospital or healthcare system in the country you’re visiting.
Look after yourself…
If you’re not sure about the quality of tap water, either boil it before drinking it or drink sealed, bottled water. Avoid ice cubes in bars, cafes and restaurants, and steer clear of raw or undercooked food. This can help you avoid an upset stomach – and an upset holiday.
… and your travelling companions
When travelling as a group, make sure you’re aware of each other’s medical conditions, allergies, and so on. This can make a big difference when performing first aid, or giving the right information to foreign doctors or emergency services. Especially if your travel partner is unconscious or can’t speak.
Can you buy medicines where you’re going?
What’s available over the counter in a foreign chemist can differ from country to country. Even if it’s just headache tablets, there may not be familiar brand names, and information about medicines’ active ingredients and strengths might be hard to decipher. Unless basic non-prescription medication is illegal in your destination country, it’s usually worth stocking up before you go.
If you use needles to self-administer medication, such as insulin, make sure you carry a doctor’s note explaining your condition and the need to carry syringes. If you have to buy needles, or you’re prescribed them following treatment overseas, make sure they are sealed and sterile.
The standard of medical facilities and medical care in many countries is significantly lower than in Australia. While we have reciprocal healthcare agreements with many destinations, such as the UK, Finland, New Zealand and Italy, they are no substitute for medical travel insurance.
Moving overseas is a big step for anyone, and it’s often a bit of a mix between nervousness and excitement. At 1Cover, we’ve put together the top 5 tips for moving overseas , to give you a few pointers on how to approach the big move.
1. Research visas and work permits
It’s not much fun, but the sooner you know your options, the sooner you can start getting excited about your move. And if you’re moving with a spouse or partner, make sure you find out how that could affect your (or their) working status. Don’t assume anything – always check.
2. Language lessons?
Lots of people move to foreign-language countries and manage to work there while only speaking English. But just because this is possible doesn’t make it desirable! You’ll have so much more fun, and find people a lot more welcoming, if you have some grasp of the native tongue.
3. Think carefully about what to take
It’s easy to make the mistake of trying to ‘transplant’ your current life to another country, taking things you don’t really want or need, just because they’re yours. Why not use this as an opportunity to take stock, think about what possessions really matter to you, and start afresh?
4. Swot up on your destination
You can start to get a feel for the culture of your new home before you get there. Why not read a little bit about its history, watch a film or two that are set there, or maybe even find out about specific festivals or events happening soon after you arrive? It’s not only about gathering information – doing little bits of research can keep you feeling excited about the move, too.
5. Seek out advice
Even if you don’t know anyone who’s moved overseas, the internet has a wealth of ‘ex-pat’ forums, where people are happy to share tips and warnings. And make sure you talk with your bank too – you’ll need a letter from them to set up an overseas bank account, and you’ll need to set up authorisations to transfer money before you depart.
It’s certainly worth taking out travel insurance for at least the first few months. That will give you time to qualify for, and organise, local insurance for your belongings and medical needs.
You’re having a great time on your overseas holiday, maybe you’ve even found casual work, and now your visa is about to run out. Don’t risk getting deported – make sure you renew your visa in time. Check out our top five tips on extending your visa. We’ll help youexperience the best the world has to offer.
1. Check your status
Most visas can be extended with a valid reason – but depending on the country, it can either be a routine process or a random lottery. So make sure you get advice from your embassy first, and check that your passport and travel documents are up-to-date.
2. Have the right paperwork
Some countries require proof of funds, study or employment; others will need to sight a paper return air-ticket. You may need a formal letter of invitation or sponsorship, Make sure you get original documents with the required ‘stamps’ – it will save you time and money in the long term.
3. Be prepared to travel
You may need to dip into that emergency fund to travel to the capital city, so you can apply in person at the local embassy. Or you may even need to cross the border to apply from a neighbouring country. Try to think of it as an opportunity to see more of the world, rather than an inconvenience!
4. Be polite – and persistent
There’s no use ranting and raving at an immigration official – you need to prove to them that you are the sort of person they want in their country, not an angry security risk. So, no matter how frustrated you get, follow their rules – and try to find out (politely) what other options you have if you’re facing a dead end.
5. Use a local immigration agent
Time is money. So it’s worth using a local visa agent to get it all sorted out for you – especially if you don’t speak the local language. Find out who your hotel or hostel recommends, or check the local traveller’s café.
Make sure you keep a copy of all your travel permits and visas, and remember that your travel insurance will help you if they ever get lost or stolen.
From the beaches of the Algarve, to port tasting in Porto, via the traditional charm of Lisbon, this is a country with plenty to keep you occupied. Make the most of your holiday overseas with our guide to the top 5 things to do in Portugal . We’ll help you enjoy the best the world has to offer.
1. The Algarve
One of Portugal’s best-loved tourist attractions is its coastline, known as the Algarve. A haven for golf enthusiasts – there are 19 professional courses in the area alone – the Algarve is also great for other activities, such as sailing, windsurfing or big-game fishing. But if you’re looking for a slower pace, you can just come here to soak up the sun and take a dip in the warm Mediterranean sea. A great place to just get away from it all.
Sweet fortified wine is one of Portugal’s biggest exports, and where better to sample it than the city it takes its name from: Porto. There are over 50 port producers based in this picturesque seaside city, so there are lots of opportunities for tours and tasting. One place that’s particularly worth taking a detour for is the Port Wine Institute on Rua Ferreira Borges, where you can sample many different types of port in an intimate living room setting.
You may be coming to Portugal for the sea and sun, but if you get a chance, try to spend at least a few days in Lisbon. Fairly small in size by capital city standards, but jam packed with attractions, you certainly won’t be short of things to do here. Climb Lisbon’s own version of the Eiffel Tower, the Elevador de Santa Justa, for example. Or listen to Portugal’s traditional Fado music in one of the many late-night clubs. Or simply wile away a few very pleasant hours in one of the city’s beautiful squares. Excellent for people watching.
Portugal has some truly stunning scenery and Peneda-Gerês is a great place to soak it all up. Portugal’s only national park, situated near the Spanish border, it comprises 70,000 hectares of mountainous countryside, and has an extraordinary diverse climate and environment. Once the home of the brown bear and the mountain goat, today it’s one of the last refuges of the great predators, such as the wolf and the royal eagle – as well as many rare flora and fauna.
And if you want to speed things up a bit, why not pay a visit to the world famous Estorilracetrack? Situated 30 kilometres west of Lisbon, just inland from the beach resort of Estoril, the course has been the setting for many well-known racing moments, including three times world champion Ayrton Senna’s first F1 win in 1985. Although Formula 1 no longer takes place here, you can still see many top-level car events. A must for racing fans, and a great place for the boys to come while the ladies are shopping in Lisbon!
Wherever your Portuguese adventures take you, make sure you have Europe travel insurance – then you can just relax and enjoy yourself.
Romantic cobblestone streets, art nouveau cafes, a diverse range of cultures. Portugal’s capital may be small but it has plenty to offer. Make the most of your holiday overseas with our guide to the top 5 things to do in Lisbon. We’ll help you enjoy the best the world has to offer.
1. Avenida de Liberdade
The main avenue of the city, Avenida de Liberdade was built after the great earthquake of 1755, which destroyed much of Lisbon. Initially, only the elite were allowed to walk on the promenade, a prohibition enforced until 1821 – but it’s now open for everyone to enjoy. Among the charming fountains and café tables stands the Monument to the Heroes of the Great War, a tribute to the 50,000 Portuguese soldiers who fought in World War I.
2. Elevador de Santa Justa
The Elevador de Santa Justa is one of the city’s best-loved landmarks, and was originally built in 1902 by Raoul Mesnier (an apprentice of Gustave Eiffel, which explains its similarities with the Eiffel Tower). For a small price, an elevator will transport you from the lowest point of the city (Baixa) to the highest (Barrio Alto), and there’s a café at the top where you can get an amazing view of the city.
3. Praca do Comercio
This vast waterfront square, also known as ‘Terreiro do Paço’ or ‘the palace’s square,’ is where the royal palace stood for over two centuries until 1755, when it was destroyed by the great earthquake. The royal family moved to another residence in the district of Belem, and the new arcaded buildings became the entrance to the city. It’s now one of Lisbon’s loveliest sites, and on the north side, you will find one of the city’s legendary cafes, Café Martinho.
4. Casa do Fado e da Guitarra Portuguesa
Fado is a melancholic style of acoustic Portuguese music dating back to the 1820s. Still an intricate part of the culture, it’s mostly found at late-night clubs, you can also hear a sample of it, and get a lesson in its history, at this quirky museum. Situated in an old bombing water station, it has an auditorium, exhibition area, cafe, esplanade and shop.
5. Mosteiro dos Jerónimos
Regarded by many as Lisbon’s most important landmark, this monastery thankfully managed to survive the great earthquake. It was constructed by Manuel and is said to be the finest example of Manuel architecture in Lisbon. Portuguese seafarers used to pray in the chapel before their departure into the unknown, and the monastery is decorated throughout with sea monsters and other maritime symbols. Don’t forget to go up to the ‘coro alto’ to see the beautiful choir stalls, made of carved oak and chestnut.