Am I covered if my baggage is lost by the airline?

You’ve arrived at your destination and you’re waiting and waiting by the carousel...but nothing! Your checked-in baggage hasn't turned up and you're coming to the realization that it’s never going to…

If your checked-in baggage has been lost permanently by a common carrier we may be able to help ease the pain of lost luggage.

Once confirmed as permanently lost by the carrier, you may claim for the personal belongings that were in those lost bags and the bags too (with some exceptions – see ‘what’s not covered’).

Read on to find out how and what you can claim if luck isn't on your side.

How much can I claim?

The amount you can claim depends on what plan you buy (Standard or Explorer) and how many travelers are listed on your policy.

The table below outlines how much you can claim based on which travel insurance plan you choose, and whether you’re a single traveler or traveling in a party of two or more:

Plan1 Traveller (Single)2+ Travellers (Couple/Family)
Standard up to $350 per item, total claim  $2,000 up to $350 per item, total claim  $4,000
Explorer up to $700 per item, total claim  $10,000 up to $700 per item, total claim  $20,000

What do I need to do if my bags are lost?

If your belongings are deemed permanently lost by an airline, there are steps you need to take to put the claims process in motion.

  • Report it. You’ll need to make a lost baggage report, aka the Property Irregularity Report (PIR), and this is best to do before you leave the airport. Give as much information about your bags as possible and be accurate with your forwarding address when talking to the airline representative so that if it turns out your bags are just delayed and not lost, they can be delivered to you without any further hassles.
  • Seek compensation from the carrier first before making a claim on your policy. Where you can show that you’ve exhausted all attempts to make a full recovery from the responsible party, we’ll pay the difference up to the policy limits.
  • Provide evidence of proof of ownership, age, and value of your belongings to support your claim as well as luggage checks and air tickets.
  • Make a claim online for your lost baggage, including all relevant documentation to support your claim. The policy excess applies to lost baggage claims. See the ‘Summary of Benefits’ table in your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) for full details.
  • If you’ve already submitted a claim for the expenses you incurred to buy essential items while waiting (optimistically) for your lost bags to arrive, any amount paid out under the 'delayed baggage' claim will be deducted from the final settlement of your lost baggage claim.

What’s not covered

Travel insurance is not designed to cover everything, so take the time to read the terms, conditions, limits, and exclusions in the PDS, particularly Section 4 – Your Belongings and the General Exclusions, so there are no surprises if you do need to use it.

Loss to any of the following is NOT covered if left in checked-in baggage/held by the carrier for transport:

  • specified high-value items
  • portable electronic devices (including tablets, laptops, photographic or video equipment, mobile phones and other hand-held devices)
  • jewelry
  • passports, travel documents
  • cash and credit cards.

Get a quote 24/7

Whether you’re in the midst of planning a trip or you’re already on the road, World Nomads can provide simple and flexible travel insurance. Get an instant quote online today and discover how we can help you come unstuck if the worst happens.


How do I report lost baggage?

If your bag doesn’t show up on the luggage carousel, you’ll need to report it to the airport’s baggage claim office where you can fill out and lodge the required ‘Property Irregularity Report.’ Always provide as much detail as possible when filling out your PIR, including your forwarding address.

Does my insurance cover the loss of high-value items in my baggage?

No, we will not pay for a claim on high-value items (such as a laptop, camera, jewelry, and other specified high-value items) if they are lost by a common carrier when kept in your checked-in baggage. Read over the ‘What’s not covered - Specific Exclusions under Section 4’ and ‘What you must do’ for full details.

How can I stop my bags from getting lost?

While lost baggage is the most common traveler complaint, there are a few things you can do to minimize the likelihood of your baggage going AWOL permanently. Always secure an ID tag to each piece of your luggage, detailing your name and contact details. You can also buy luggage GPS trackers, so you always know where your bags are.

This is only a summary of cover and does not include the full terms, conditions, limitations, and exclusions of the policy. You should read your PDS in full, so you understand what is and isn’t covered. That way there won’t be any surprises if you need to use it. If you have any questions, please get in touch.

Related Articles

View more

Can't find the answer you are looking for?

Contact us

Our contact details

We’re here to help if you have a question about travel insurance. We’re available:

  • Monday to Friday 9:00am - 6:00pm (AEST/ADST)
  • Saturday to Sunday closed (AEST/ADST)

Contact us


Within Australia:
1300 787 375

From anywhere in the world:
+61 2 8256 1542