Top 5 belongings most lost or stolen overseas

TRAVEL insurers are urging all Aussie travellers to travel prepared in 2016 with new data from InsureandGo showing mobile phones and cameras make up two of the top five personal valuables most likely to be lost or stolen when overseas.

Alongside phones and cameras, laptops, tablet devices and jewellery make up the top 5 most claimed items.

Mr Jonathan Etkind, Commercial Manager of InsureandGo says that holidaymakers should be particularly cautious when travelling this summer with any new valuable items that they received over Christmas. 

"From our knowledge of previous years, we know that over the next few months, Aussies are more likely to travel with new, expensive valuables such as a shiny new mobile phone, or that watch that you got from your partner for Christmas." 

Being prepared before you travel makes life much easier if something does go astray - remember you are on holiday and want to make any paperwork as easy as possible, or better yet avoid a claim altogether by travelling smart," said Mr Etkind.

Mr Etkind offered the following tips to help eliminate the need to claim, or to make claims easier:

  • By selecting right type of cover you can be covered for loss, theft or damage to personal valuables; however loss of data or damage to an electrical device caused by fluid or powder carried within your luggage is not covered. To avoid this, pack toiletries and other liquids/powders well away from any electrical devices and ensure all personal valuables are in your hand luggage when travelling.
  • Be very cautious when leaving any valuable items in a motor vehicle - limits apply for any property which is lost or stolen from an unattended motor vehicle. To ensure you are covered, any personal valuables must be kept in a locked boot, secured and covered luggage compartment or a locked glove compartment. If this is not possible, keep the item on you rather than leaving it in the car.
  • Before you leave for your trip, record down the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) of your mobile phone (as well as any other device with phone capabilities). You will need this Identity number if making a claim - as well as being required to block the IMEI (by Australian telecommunication providers) of the stolen or lost device as part of your claim process.
  • Ensure you have proof of ownership of your personal valuables and ensure that these can be easily found in the event you need to make a claim.
  • Leave any valuable items in your hotel safe (ensuring that it's properly locked), or if you do have any particularly expensive or sentimental items, you should speak with the hotel management to see if they are able to secure them in a larger hotel safe.
  • It goes without saying, do not leave any property unattended in a public place or with someone you don't know looking after it as you won't be covered.

"Many Aussies purchase their travel insurance, tick it off the to-do list and forget about it. It's important to follow the above tips before travelling and use common sense while overseas.

"While we can usually replace or reimburse you for the lost item, data is not so easily recovered.

"Ensure you download all existing images from your phone and camera before travelling and back up your holiday photos as you go - that way if disaster does strike, at least you haven't also lost personal mementoes of those precious holiday memories," concludes Mr Etkind.

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