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DESPITE THE cost of living crisis, holidays are still a priority for travel-mad Aussies.

New research has revealed that consumers are utilising cost-cutting measures and savings hacks to make their dreams a reality.

According to insights obtained by 1Cover Travel Insurance, Aussies are 1.6 times more inclined to travel in 2023 compared to 2019.

Demand for travel insurance has also shot up by 55 per cent as Aussies look to safeguard their holidays amid the cost-of-living crunch.

“Data shows that travel is on the rise thanks to pent up demand and the lingering effects of lockdown,” said Natalie Smith, spokesperson for 1Cover Travel Insurance.

“While Aussies are grappling with the increased cost of living, they are clearly willing to spend their hard-earned cash on travel and meaningful experiences with loved ones.”

Smith says that with budget constraints top of mind, Aussie travellers now expect more bang from their buck.

“Aussies are being more pragmatic about their spending, even if it means adapting their planning to the current economic outlook.

“We’ve seen an increase in weekend getaways and shorter trips along with a shift towards domestic holidays and destinations such as Bali and New Zealand. We’ve also seen growth in off peak season travel as a means of cutting costs.”


MISCHIEVOUS MONKEYS, kicking kangaroos and bitey bugs.

These are just some of the unlikely dangers travellers face according to claims made by customers with Southern Cross Travel Insurance (SCTI).

In recent years the company has paid Australians:

  • More than $26,000 in claims related to dog bites
  • More than $18,000 for property stolen or damaged by monkeys
  • More than $16,000 for bites from bugs.

The most expensive claim was for $8,560 when a traveller had their bag containing hearing aids, phone and money stolen by a monkey at Uluwatu in Bali.

“These might seem like surreal situations, but they happen more often than you might think,” said Jo McCauley, CEO at Southern Cross Travel Insurance.

“While amusing on the surface, they underscore the need for robust travel insurance coverage.

“A monkey stealing your bag containing your designer sunglasses, a bird swooping down and damaging your rental car’s windshield – these seemingly minor incidents can quickly add up to significant costs.”

The types of claims made by Australian travellers to Southern Cross Travel Insurance that relate to animals include:

  • Accidents caused by an animal (for example, swerving a vehicle to avoid an animal and causing injury, or being startled by an animal causing damage to an item)
  • Bites and scratches from insects, dogs, cats, squirrels and monkeys
  • Damage to vehicles from animals such as kangaroos
  • Property stolen by monkeys
  • Injuries, such as being stood on by a horse.

“The unpredictability of animal interactions emphasises the importance of comprehensive travel insurance coverage.

“It’s about safeguarding your well-earned travel experiences against the unforeseen, whether it’s a playful pup or a crafty primate.”


AN AUSSIE start-up company has just won a major accolade at the Global Youth Travel Awards.

Welcome to Travel (WtT) was crowned ‘Best Youth Tour Operator’ at the event in Lisbon.

The company was launched by Darryl Newby and Adam Ogle in 2017 with their first tour running a year later. It now has 28 staff and offices in Melbourne and Sydney.

With a focus on connection and community, WtT offers unique tours and services dedicated to transforming the backpacking experience.

“It felt like a rockstar moment, seeing all our partners who have supported us giving us a standing ovation in Lisbon is literally what dreams are made of,” said Darryl on learning of the award.

Welcome to Travel were one of the pioneer youth travel brands to embrace video marketing and created the viral Facebook video ‘Things Never Said By Backpackers’ which helped them become a recognised brand.

They say their success has come from innovative marketing and an unwavering dedication to providing customers with exceptional experiences and service.


IT’S THE study that’s likely to split the nation – again!

Explore Worldwide has just released new research which claims to reveal the most ‘interesting’ places in Australia.

The study looked at the location tags of more than 1.2 million Wikipedia articles and found that Melbourne was the most tagged Australian destination.

Sydney, Brisbane, Alice Springs and Maryborough rounded out the top five with Innisfail, Swan Hill, Townsville, Mount Isa and Warwick completing the top 10.

Melbourne was tagged in more than 438 Wikipedia articles, covering everything from its Aboriginal Victorian history to the city’s gold rush boom period in the 1850’s, as well as its skyscraper architecture and cultural significance as a global centre for sport, music, comedy and art.

“Immersing yourself in a place’s history – stepping into the actual buildings and seeing the grounds where historically significant events took place – is one of the most important parts of travel for us,” said Ben Ittensohn, the regional director for Australia and New Zealand at Explore Worldwide.

“While the major cities naturally take precedence, it’s been terrific to see smaller towns with unique histories and attractions, such as Alice Springs and Warwick, rank so highly.

“Whether it’s a wealth of museums or galleries, political history, sports teams, historical significance or beautiful parks and gardens, the destinations highlighted in our new study provide explorers with plenty of interesting sites and scenes to discover.”

The study also looked at the most tagged places in the world, with New York, London, Tokyo, Washington and Toronto making up the top five.