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Cancellation travel insurance

For when something unexpected forces you to cancel your trip.

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For information relating to policies purchased prior to 18 May 2022, please check the Policy Document provided with your purchase. You can contact us if you need this sent to you again. For policies purchased on or from 18 May 2022 please see below.

Unlike all the other benefits, cancellation cover starts from the moment you buy your policy, not when your trip starts. So if you've got travel booked starting a month from now and you buy insurance now, if you suddenly need to cancel your trip, you may be covered.

What can World Nomads travel insurance cover if I need to cancel?

If you're a New Zealander, World Nomads can cover you for various reasons if you have no choice but to cancel your trip. Cover is provided for the value of your unused arrangements, less any refunds you receive and up to the benefit limit of your plan. Always ask for refunds from your transport or accommodation providers – you'll be surprised how often you can get something back! And most importantly, get supporting documents for the reason you had to cancel.

We won't list all covered reasons for cancellation here, but the main ones that travellers claim on are:

  • A medical practitioner certifies that you're medically unfit to continue with your original travel plans.
  • You, a travel buddy or a close relative is hospitalised or dies unexpectedly.
  • Your transport is cancelled or delayed because of severe weather, natural disaster, hijacking, or strike.
  • You're made redundant or your employer cancels your pre-arranged leave (you need to be in full time permanent employment), the event must occur before your departure date.
  • You're called to jury service or called on as a witness (but not an expert witness).

If you want to see the other reasons for cancellation World Nomads can cover, read this article which will also give you further information on conditions.

Is cover for Coronavirus available?

World Nomads can offer benefits for medical issues related to Coronavirus (COVID-19). If you are diagnosed with COVID-19 while overseas and it’s not considered an ‘existing medical condition’ under our policy, your benefits may include:

  • 24/7 access to our Emergency Assistance team, who can help you access local medical care;
  • Medical costs including hospitalisation;
  • Evacuation or repatriation if deemed medically necessary by us and in consultation with your attending physician.

In addition, our Explorer Plan also has a Coronavirus Travel Costs benefit for certain events. You can check out our Coronavirus cover article which has all of the details, including benefit limits and exclusions. 

What's not covered by travel insurance?

Travel insurance isn't designed to cover everything. Common claims we see where there's no cover for cancellation include:

  • A loss arising from a change of mind, disinclination or reluctance to travel.
  • A loss arising from travelling to, planning to travel to, or choosing to remain in a country or region that is the subject of a ‘Do not travel’ warning issued by the New Zealand Government (see
  • A loss arising from any act of war (whether war is declared or not).
  • Any existing medical conditions that aren't automatically covered or where all criteria for automatic cover are not met.  
  • A loss arising from errors or mistakes in any booking arrangements, including, but not limited to, failure to book a portion of a trip or obtain appropriate travel documents or visas.

This is only a summary of coverage and does not include the full terms, conditions, limitations and exclusions of the policy. You should read your Policy Document 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.

Be prepared if you need to claim for cancellation.

Depending on your claim, you'll need copies of:

  • Receipts
  • Itineraries
  • Doctors/death certificates
  • Medical history 
  • Written documentation from the travel provider of reason for cancellation and any refunds

Death of Grandson.

My grandson died on the 28th of March 2015, from complications brought about by his premature birth. We held his funeral the day I was due to join my tour. I cancelled this tour.
Claim Paid: NZD $4464
Kiwi Nomad

Travel Insurance Benefits: how we can take care of you

Trip Cancellation

Protect your trip from unexpected cancellation.

  • Explorer Plan: Unlimited
  • Standard Plan: $5,000
Trip Protection
  • Have you died?
  • Has one of your relos died?
  • Has an earthquake damaged your home?

We’ve got your back.

Emergency Medical Overseas

Take the pain out of medical costs.

  • Explorer Plan: Unlimited
  • Standard Plan: $5,000,000
Emergency Medical Insurance
  • Need medicine?
  • Accidentally injured?
  • Suddenly sick?

We’ve got your back.

Emergency Medical Transport

We'll get you to hospital in a flash

  • Explorer Plan: Unlimited
  • Standard Plan: $500,000
Evacuation and Repatriation
  • Banged up overseas?
  • Medivac needed home?
  • You died overseas?

Help starts here.

Protect your gear

Cover your stolen or damaged gear and tech.

  • Explorer Plan: $10,000
  • Standard Plan: $2,000
Protect your gear
  • Damaged docs?
  • Passport pilfered?
  • Tech Trashed?

Help starts here.

  • Overseas Medical Expenses
  • Emergency dental treatment
  • 24 hour assistance
  • Emergency medical transport & repatriation
  • Cancellation costs
  • Trip interruption costs
  • Compassionate emergency visit home
  • Resumption of trip
  • Theft or accidental damage to baggage and personal items
  • Baggage delay over 12 hours
  • Funeral expenses overseas or repatriation of remains
  • Personal liability
This is a general summary for New Zealand residents only. Restrictions, exclusions and limitations will apply. Benefit limits may vary depending on the plan chosen. Check the policy documents for full details.

24/7 emergency assistance

If you need medical assistance or emergency medical evacuation our team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year before and during your trip.

Are you in need of emergency assistance right now?

From New Zealand & Overseas:
+61 2 8263 0470 or
+61 2 8292 1470
(reverse charges via an operator from anywhere in the world)

Within Australia (Free call): 1800 611 210

Travel insurance. Simple & flexible.

Travel insurance for independent travelers and intrepid families. Nobody wants to think about all the things that could go wrong on their trip, but these things can and do happen. So be prepared and get your travel insurance today.


Here are our most frequently asked questions about buying travel insurance for cancellation. You can also find the answers to other questions in our helpdesk or you can ask the customer service team.