Information for travellers

Smart traveller

All overseas travellers are encouraged to visit the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade smart traveller website.

Smart traveller allows you to register your details so you can be contacted in the event of an emergency. It also allows you to access the most up to date travel advisory information.

Travel insurance

All travellers are strongly advised to take out travel insurance for both domestic and international travel. Travel insurance can remove or reduce the significant financial strain which you may incur in the event of an accident including death, injury or hospitalisation, or the theft or loss of personal belongings. Private travel insurance is the best way to protect yourself and your family.

While often neglected, travel insurance for journeys within Australia also provides an added level of protection and reduces cost and hardship in the event of unexpected circumstances.

Travel insurance policies vary greatly, depending on the region you visit and the activities you take part in. Some insurance policies will not always cover claims made in countries in which the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade recommends against travel.

Many travellers are unaware that standard travel insurance policies can contain a broad range of exclusions. For example; war or acts of terrorism, unattended baggage, loss of cash, extreme sports and many other events. The smart traveller website contains further information to help you choose the right travel insurance policy to ensure you are fully covered in the event of accident or injury overseas.

Aviation liability arrangements

In the unlikely event of an airline accident, compensation arrangements in foreign countries may be complex and can take a long time to resolve.

Passenger entitlements to compensation are primarily a private contractual matter between a passenger and the airline concerned. In the event of an aviation related accident, or loss or damage of baggage, all claims should be made with the airline and/or your insurer.

A framework for compensation arrangements following an aviation incident is provided through Australian and State Government legislation and a system of international treaties. The Government cannot provide advice on your specific circumstances. In the event of a claim you are advised to seek independent legal advice.

The Australian Government has also developed a voluntary family assistance code for airlines in the case of a major incident. The code provides guidelines for airlines to prepare a family assistance plan and establishes the minimum standard expected of airlines operating in Australian territory after an aviation incident.

The legislation that governs liability in the event of aviation related accidents, or loss or damage of baggage, includes the:

The Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Act 1959 is applied to intra-state travel by complementary State Government Carriers' Liability Legislation.

Further information is available at the Air Carriers' Liability page.

The Department is not able to provide advice on specific claims. In the event of an incident, you may wish to seek private legal advice.

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Last Updated: 25 June, 2014