The Top 10 Most Expensive Travel Insurance Claims of 2023: A $187,000 Bill

The Top 10 Most Expensive Travel Insurance Claims of 2023: A 7,000 Bill
The Top 10 Most Expensive Travel Insurance Claims of 2023: A 7,000 Bill

Travel Insurance Claims: The Most Expensive Mishaps of 2023

Aussie travelers were thrilled to see the return of travel in 2023. However, along with the excitement came unexpected and costly situations while holidaying abroad. Southern Cross Travel Insurance recently released a list of the most expensive international travel claims made by Australians in 2023, and it includes some surprising incidents.

The Unforeseen Mishaps

These claims covered a range of incidents, from illnesses to injuries. While most claimants were older Australians, one case involved a 14-year-old traveler. It’s a reminder that mishaps can happen to anyone, regardless of age.

From a hot tub injury to a surfing accident, the most expensive travel insurance claims of the year have been revealed. (Source: AAP)

Southern Cross Travel Insurance CEO Jo McCauley expressed her delight at the strong resurgence of travel after the pandemic. However, she also emphasized the importance of not neglecting the basics. McCauley stated, “The types of claims we’re seeing aren’t dramatic events or far-fetched situations. They’re just the usual mishaps that can happen to any of us, which is why it’s so important to make sure you’re covered for the unexpected by taking out travel insurance. We understand that nobody gets excited about booking travel insurance. But it’s fair to say that if you can’t afford travel insurance, then you probably can’t afford to go on holiday.”

The Most Expensive Claims

Let’s take a look at the top 10 most expensive travel insurance claims from 2023:

1. Hot Tub Fall – $187,604

A 14-year-old traveler fractured his shoulder after falling out of an outdoor hot tub while on vacation with his family in the USA. Emergency surgery was required, resulting in a staggering claim of $187,604.

2. Complications in Germany – $155,000

A 71-year-old man experienced complications related to a heart condition while holidaying in Germany. During his recovery, he injured his leg, which became infected. The medical expenses, including surgery, amounted to $155,000.

3. Fiji Fracture – $147,148

A 94-year-old woman had to cut her Fiji holiday short due to a hip fracture from a fall. She was hospitalized and then repatriated via air ambulance back to Australia, resulting in a medical bill and transport cost of $147,148.

4. Cancer Complications – $140,148

A 69-year-old traveler had to return home early from Indonesia due to complications related to their brain cancer. Their claim for $140,148 covered the necessary medical expenses.

5. Pneumonia Issues – $102,060

A 62-year-old suffered from fluid on the lungs due to pneumonia and had to be transported back from Indonesia via air ambulance. The total cost of the air ambulance service amounted to $102,060.

6. Wrist Fracture – $87,000

A 60-year-old sustained a serious wrist fracture while on holiday in America. Surgery was required, leading to a claim of $87,000.

7. Emergency Treatment in Vietnam – $86,500

A 48-year-old traveler had to seek emergency treatment for gastroenteritis and septicemia while vacationing in Vietnam. The medical expenses reached $86,500.

8. Bile Duct Problem in Greece – $84,000

An 86-year-old suffered from a blocked bile duct while on holiday in Greece. They claimed $84,000 to cover the medical expenses.

9. Broken Hip – $81,000

A 91-year-old traveler fractured their hip while holidaying in Vietnam. The claim paid out was $81,000.

10. Surfing Accident – $79,500

Lastly, a 36-year-old suffered a broken sacrum (near the pelvis) after a surfing accident in Mexico. They required an internal air ambulance in Mexico and then had to travel back to Australia on a business class flight. The claim paid was $79,500.


Travel insurance is often overlooked but is crucial for protecting against unexpected mishaps while abroad. The most expensive travel insurance claims of 2023 serve as a reminder that accidents can happen to anyone. So, before embarking on your next adventure, make sure you have adequate travel insurance coverage.

About the Author

“The Most Expensive Mishaps of 2023” is an article by Yahoo Australia. For more travel news and updates, follow Yahoo Finance on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter. Don’t forget to subscribe to their free daily newsletter.

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