Travel Insurance: Trekking in Nepal and Helicopter Evacuation

For information relating to policies purchased prior to 8 November 2022, please check the Policy Wording provided with your purchase. You can contact us if you need this sent to you again. For policies purchased from 8 November 2022, please see below.

Nepal is an amazing destination, but it also has unique hazards that can impact your travel insurance. Here are the basics you need to know.

Travellers often ask: “Am I covered for helicopter evacuation in Nepal?Answer: helicopter evacuation is included as part of the policy’s medical transport and repatriation cover.

Please note, however, that because Nepal is a particularly expensive destination to insure, it is the only country that has an excess payable if you need to be evacuated by air if something goes wrong. Without the excess, we would have to increase premiums or scale back cover across all destinations.

As with any destination please do your research and travel smart. This means not just having travel insurance, but also knowing what to do if you need to use it. This is why it’s so important to always read your policy wording in full.

What should I do if I need a helicopter?

Contact our 24/7 Emergency Assistance Team as soon as reasonably possible if you have a medical emergency, especially if you may need a helicopter. This is because:

  • First contact your private health/private medical (PMI) provider, (if applicable) and follow their emergency medical procedures and their claims procedures.
  • Where your PMI provider cannot provide assistance contact our 24/7 Emergency Assistance team as soon as possible.
  • Our medical experts need to deem helicopter evacuation medically necessary for cover to apply. You may only need a bit of rest and recovery to get back on the trail and finish your trek.
  • Helicopter evacuation in Nepal has been associated with scams. We only work with reputable operators and guarantee payment to them directly. We also transfer you to appropriate medical treatment.

While tourist scams is now a focus area for the Nepalese government, it’s also important to be a savvy traveller.

Always contact us yourself, or get a trusted friend to do it if you can’t. Unscrupulous operators and guides have been known to tell travellers they have our go-ahead when they don’t. This leaves the traveller with a Mount Everest-sized sense of disappointment – and evacuation bill.


Wherever possible, contact the 24/7 Emergency Assistance Team yourself or ask a friend to do it for you. This is because we have had cases where some unscrupulous operators and guides say they’ve received our go-ahead when they haven’t so it’s best if you contact the Emergency Assistance Team yourself.

And even more worrying, helicopter operators inflate flight hours to gain more money and guides of trekking companies gain commission payments as a result of calling for the helicopter evacuation of insured trekkers. All of this results in the insurer paying unnecessary bills, and trekkers often being taken off the mountain when they didn’t need to miss out on the rest of their trek. Who wants to go all the way to Nepal and only trek for a day or two when a little rest and recuperation was all that was needed to keep going?

So ALWAYS contact the Emergency Assistance Team if helicopter evacuation is medically necessary as this way, you are in safe hands and you’ll be covered!

This is only a summary of cover and does not include the full terms, conditions, limits, and exclusions of the policy. You should read your policy wording in full, so you understand what is and isn’t covered. If you are unsure about your level of travel cover, please contact us for help.

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