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Travel Insurance For Japan
Japan is a popular destination for Australians1. There’s a tonne of cultural experiences to soak up while you’re there. There’s the beautiful cherry blossoms, the ancient shrines and temples, the sumo wrestling, and of course, the delicious sushi.
If you’re thinking about booking a trip to Japan, it’s important to make sure you’re on the right level of cover for your needs. Accidents and unplanned mishaps can occur, so it’s best to find the right cover and enjoy peace of mind on your trip.
Fun things to do in Japan – and why you need travel insurance
Japan caters for all kinds of holiday-makers, whether that’s a ski trip with mates, a family tour of the major cities, or a group tour exploring some of the country’s spectacular wilderness.
It’s also renowned for the quirk-factor, so if you’re looking for unique experiences, Japan is bound to deliver. Here’s just a few ideas to get you started.
Skiing and snowboarding:
Switching the Aussie summer for a Japanese snow-break is a popular holiday for Australian ski bunnies. With guaranteed deep powder and affordable lift passes, it offers a great value alternative to Australian snow resorts. But skiing and snowboarding are inherently dangerous activities with high injury rates. Prevent injuries by wearing the right safety equipment, and by sticking to marked trails2. Give yourself peace of mind with a policy that specifically covers these activities.
Experience an onsen with monkeys:
Many travellers enjoy experiencing Japan’s hot springs, usually within private inns. But there are also opportunities to bath in natural hot springs in the great outdoors, even sharing your bathing experience with monkeys, such as Jigokudani Monkey Park. But remember, even though these monkeys are used to tourists, they’re still wild animals and can attack. Travel insurance can help to cover any treatment costs should an accident occur.
Hedgehog, cat, or owl café:
Don’t pass up the opportunity to enjoy one of Japan’s animal cafes and hold a hedgehog, owl, or other animals. But like all animal encounters, remember to follow instructions and avoid startling the animals.
Whether it’s Mount Fuji you want to tick off your list, or the lesser-known but far more challenging Mount Tanigawa (seriously, exercise caution – more people have died on its peaks than on Mount Everest), Japan has more than 100 mountains to climb. Of course, anyone tackling mountains should be well-prepared with advance training, the right equipment and, of course, comprehensive travel insurance.
Potential problems in Japan
Japan is one of the safest countries in the world2 and has a very low crime rate. However, there are occasional earthquakes and some regions are still affected by radiation from the Fukushima power plant (which had a meltdown in 2011). The Australian government recommends completely avoiding the immediate Fukushima area2, and exercising a high degree of caution in the surrounding areas.
What your Japan travel insurance will cover
Cancellation of flights, accommodation and tours
You never know if something will happen that disrupts your trip. So if you need to cancel your holiday, your travel insurance can reimburse you for at least some of the cancellation fees and accommodation costs.
The theft or loss of luggage and valuables
Despite the low crime rate, there’s still the occasional theft. You may also lose your possessions, in which case you’ll be covered for the cost of replacing them. However, there is usually a limit so you may not be able to replace all of them.
While in usual circumstances everything runs on time in Japan (if the train timetable says the train arrives at 9:42 am, it means 9:42 am), every so often the unexpected can happen. With Japan prone to natural disasters, travel insurance is essential protection if your plans are disrupted by earthquakes, volcanic activity, typhoons or even tsunamis and you incur additional costs as a result.
That said, it’s important to note that if you take out a travel insurance policy after a natural disaster has begun, then it’s possible that your insurer won’t provide any cover for any claims related to that natural disaster.
Medical care in Japan is expensive2, and you may also need an interpreter, so having good medical cover is important. A good policy will cover the cost of repatriation or medical evacuation, as well as in-hospital cash.
Personal and legal liability
If you damage property, injure someone or break a local law while in Japan then this cover will help you. Especially if you need a lawyer or an interpreter.
What’s not covered?
Most travel insurance for Japan won’t cover you for reckless behaviour, such as riding a motorbike without a helmet or a license. You may also be uncovered if you break any laws, lose items because you left them unattended, or if you get into trouble or an accident while intoxicated.
If you fail to declare pre-existing conditions then your policy may be invalid. Also, if you ignore travel advice and get sick or injured in an unsafe region, then you may also be uncovered.
Compare policies today with iSelect
Compare travel insurance policies for Japan online with iSelect, and find the right policy for your needs and trip.