Lombok earthquake: Advice for travellers
One of Indonesia's most popular tourist islands has been rocked by a devastating earthquake that's left dozens dead and damaged thousands of homes.
Travellers in Lombok, or booked to travel there, have been advised to:
• Follow the instructions of any local officials or emergency personnel and seek medical attention if you need it.
• Keep in touch with your family and advise them of your safety as soon as you can. Make sure you are registered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Travel through the smartraveller.gov.au. They'll be able to offer advice on what to do.
• If you are impacted by the earthquake, notify your travel insurer's emergency assistance team as soon as you can, to let them know whether you need any assistance. Ensure you have your policy number to hand.
• If you need to change your travel plans to get home, contact your service providers, such as the airline or tour operator, for assistance in the first instance. If you're concerned about what costs you're covered for, it's important to (where possible) speak to your travel insurer or check their website before making any changes. That way, you can be confident knowing what you're covered for.
Southern Cross Travel Insurance CEO Chris White recommends affected travellers keep all original documentation of delays or cancellation from their airline (including emails), along with the receipts of their additional expenses, such as accommodation and meals.
"This is an uncertain time for the people of Lombok and Indonesia - as well as those travelling there," White says.
"Our hearts go out to those affected and who have lost loved ones."
He says customers who took out policies with Southern Cross Travel Insurance up to 9am on August 6, 2018 (AEST) are covered for disruptions to their travel as a result of the earthquake.
"As always, we recommend taking out travel insurance at the time of booking your trip, to ensure you are covered for instances such as this," White says.