Is your next adventure a cruise adventure?

If you have chosen a cruise for your next holiday then congratulations! You and your travel companions are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime.

Cruising is fantastic. Why travel from A to B in an uncomfortable airline seat when you could be sipping pineapple juice poolside, shopping duty free or, boogying the night away while getting to your next destination?

Unfortunately, cruises are not always smooth sailing. When your trip hits a rough patch the costs can really pile up. A good insurance policy can protect you from the worst, and Columbus Direct is here to help.

We cover cruises as standard on all our policies, you just need to make sure you select the right area of cover.

cruise travel

Do I need Cruise Travel Insurance?

There are medical facilities available on most major cruise liners but, they don’t come cheap. People requiring medical treatment on-board a cruise can expect bills of up to $5000 a day. If you need to be evacuated to hospital, the cost can be even higher.

Even those cruising in New Zealand water should consider travel insurance. Most private health cover ceases to apply once your ship leaves port. ACC and public healthcare might cover the cost of treatment received onshore but, they are unlikely to provide for treatment you receive on-board.

When you insure with Columbus Direct, it is not just medical coverage that you receive. If your ‘ahoy there’ turns into ‘I’m not able to be there’, then we have your back. The policy includes some coverage for cancellation and missed departure, as well as delays, curtailment and the loss or theft of personal belongings.

Let Columbus Direct be your holiday lifeboat

Make your cruise cruisey! Choose Columbus Direct and relax knowing

  • You have wide ranging cover including missed departure, travel delay and cover for lost, stolen or delayed baggage.
  • You have up to $25 million cover for on-board or overseas medical expenses and emergency transport home.
  • You are covered automatically for a number of sports and activities. If you add our sports and leisure pack to your policy - you can be covered for even more.
  • Our single trip policies are available for people up to the age of 84.
  • We can cover many pre-existing medical conditions. Complete our easy online medical screening to see if your condition can be covered.
  • Booking insurance is quick and painless. Check out our online travel insurance quote process or call and speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable customer service staff.
  • We take care of our customers. Look at our great reviews on TrustPilot and see what our customers say.

Want to see a quote?

Good to know

How to ensure your cruise is covered

Great news: Cruising is included as standard under all of our international policies. If your cruise stops at ports outside New Zealand then you don't have to tick a special box or pay an extra premium to be covered. All you need to do is make sure that the policy you choose covers all of the countries and national waters that your ship will visit.

If your cruise only stops in New Zealand...

Those travelling on an Annual Multi-trip policy do not need to do anything - cruising New Zealand is included in your cover and there is no extra cost required.

Those purchasing a Single Trip policy need to select "South Pacific" as their destination area. We are unable to cover cruising on polices marked 'New Zealand' or 'Domestic.'

People cruising New Zealand waters on a suitable policy will be covered for medical expenses on-board their ship. You will need to use your regular public or private healthcare arrangements for costs that arise on New Zealand soil or while your ship is docked in a New Zealand port.


What is a cruise?

If you are sailing from A to B as a passenger on a commercial passenger ship then chances are, you're cruising. If you are unsure whether your trip constitutes a cruise contact our friendly Customer Care team to find out.

I'm not a New Zealand Citizen or Permanent Resident - can I still get cruise insurance?

Yes, as long as you have lived in New Zealand for 3 months or more at the time the insurance is purchased.

My cruise is still a long way off, should I buy insurance now?

We recommend you protect deposits and advance payments by getting a policy in place as soon as possible. Those under the age of 70 can buy insurance up to a year in advance. Those 70 or older can buy insurance up to 183 days in advance.

How do I choose my area of cover?

When you get a quote online, select 'Yes' to the question, 'Are you going to more than one country?'. Then select an area of cover from the drop-down list and hover over it to see all the countries covered under this area. Make sure all the waters you're entering during your cruise are covered. If your cruise only docs at New Zealand ports, you'll still need to select 'South Pacific' in order to be covered when you're away from the ports.

Will I be covered for Pre-existing medical conditions on board the ship?

We are able to cover for a range of pre-existing medical conditions. As part of the quote process you will need to declare any pre-existing medical conditions that you have. Once you have answered some brief questions, we will be able to tell you whether your conditions can be covered and, if so, whether you will need to pay an extra premium.

How do I know which medical conditions to declare?

If you have a medical condition, injury, defect or disease (other than common cold or flu) and the answer to one or more of the questions below is "Yes" then you need to declare it.

  • Have I received or been prescribed advice, treatment, medication or investigation in the last 12 months? or (if on an Annual Multi-trip policy) in the 12 months prior to booking my trip?
  • Is my condition, or a complication of my condition, ongoing or recurring in nature?
  • Was I aware of the condition, or its symptoms, or could reasonably be expected to have been aware of it, at the time of applying for this insurance?

Can I be covered if my cruise is part of a one-way trip?

Yes. We are able to organise cruise coverage for one-way travellers over the phone. The insurance would start when you leave New Zealand and cover you until you arrive in your new intended country of residence.

Am I covered if I need to cancel my cruise?

Yes - if you need to cancel your cruise for a covered reason, then we will reimburse irrecoverable cancellation costs. This includes deposits, advance payments and any cancellation charges that are laid out in your contract with the cruise operator.

Covered reasons for cancellation include redundancy, your serious injury or illness and the non-pre-existing serious injury or illness of a travelling companion, a close relative or the person you will be staying with.

Am I covered if I get sick or injured while on-board the cruise?

Yes, our travel insurance includes cover for necessary and reasonable medical treatment on board the ship and in overseas medical facilities. If you need to be taken to a hospital overseas, then cover for transportation costs is provided.

Am I covered if there is an emergency at home?

If you need to fly home before the end of your trip, then our policy will not only cover the cost for you to get home, we will also reimburse certain irrecoverable costs from the unused portion of your trip.

You will need to have your curtailment authorised by calling our 24 Hour Worldwide Medical Assistance helpline, and you will need to be travelling home early for a covered reason. Covered reasons include, for example, the non-pre-existing injury or illness of a close relative or the police requiring your attendance following the burglary of your home.

Am I covered If my cruise line or booking agent cancels my cruise or goes bankrupt?

Unfortunately no. Our policy excludes cover for bankruptcy and for default of your carrier. If you would like to cover for this possibility, then your travel agent may be able to help. Some travel agents and cruise companies have a policy in place to compensate you for losses of this nature. Some are even able to offer special insurance to cover for default and bankruptcy.

Not all of my travel and accommodation is on-board the cruise ship. Am I covered for the non-cruise parts of my trip?

You will be covered from the moment you leave New Zealand until the moment you return, provided you return inside the period of insurance. You cover will include any overseas hotel stays, connecting flights and non-cruise related travel plans.

Please note that the benefits we’ve listed below are just a summary – to really understand what you’re covered for it’s important that you read our full policy wording including terms, conditions and exclusions.

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Why Columbus Direct?

  • 24/7 emergency medical assistance helpline
  • Over 15 million travellers covered worldwide
  • 19 day money back guarantee*
  • No credit card surcharge
  • Secure online purchase process

*Provided you haven't travelled or claimed.

2013: Travel Insurance Intermediary of the year award by the ITIJ2011: Best Travel Insurance Provider award from the Personal Finance Awards 2012: Best Travel Insurance Provider award from the Your Money Direct AwardsBest Online Travel Insurance Provider award from the Your Money Direct Awards