We strongly recommend you take out a Travel Insurance Policy at the time you pay your deposit to protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances such as personal injury during training or because you might have a compassionate reason that could prevent you from joining the trek you have booked on. Your policy must include provision for:
- emergency evacuation from anywhere along the trail by helicopter, aircraft, or porters to Port Moresby;
- medical treatment in Port Moresby and/or Australia as appropriate;
- payment of hospital bills and repatriation back to Australia if necessary;
- travel delays; lost/delayed luggage; lost/stolen money; and
- death and disability cover.
Some credit card companies include travel insurance but their policies do not allow for emergency evacuation by helicopter. Trekkers who rely on their credit cards should check the conditions of the policy and take out additional cover for evacuation by helicopter if it is not provided for in their policy.
Emergency Evacuation Costs and Claims
Helicopter companies in PNG will not start their engines unless they have a Guarantee of Payment (GOP) from your travel insurance company. Travel insurance companies usually require approval from their Australian head office before they will provide the necessary guarantee. This process can result in a delay of up to 24 hours between the time an emergency call is made via satellite phone from the trail and the arrival of the helicopter due to unpredictable weather conditions which may prevent a helicopter from flying to the site of the evacuation.
We have been dealing with Cover-more Insurance for more than a decade. They accept that calls for emergency evacuation from any of our Adventure Kokoda trek leaders will be actioned without delay and all expenses related to emergency evacuations will be paid.
We evacuate our trekkers to the Pacific International Hospital which has an emergency helipad. This is a private hospital and they require prepayment for any medical treatment.
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If you have a policy with a travel insurance company other than Cover-More, or you have agreed to pay an excess, you will be required to provide a bank authorisation on arrival in PNG to ensure you will be evacuated as quickly as possible in the event of an emergency. This will allow Adventure Kokoda to process your payment with the relevant PNG helicopter company immediately.
You will also be required to pay for any additional transport, accommodation, and meal costs prior to your departure from Port Moresby and claim these costs against your policy after you return to Australia.
If you do not wish to provide bank authorisation against your credit card you will have to accept that any request for emergency evacuation could be delayed for up to 24 hours whilst we seek authorisation from your travel insurance company in Australia.