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Travel Insurance for volunteering

Don't let your good deeds go uncovered.

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Whether you have specific skills to offer or you’re in search of meaningful connectionsvolunteering abroad can be life changing experience. While out in the world helping others, make sure you also look after yourself and consider buying travel insurance before you pack your bags. 

World Nomads travel insurance can cover you when participating in a range of round-the-world volunteer activities and vacations, from summer teaching programs to clean water projects. Whatever the cause, we’re strong supporters of paying it forward and giving back. 

What's covered   

Want to step out into the world and volunteer your time? Depending on your Country of Residence and the plan you’ve selected, World Nomads travel insurance may provide cover for: 

  • Trip cancellation 
  • Trip interruption  
  • Emergency medical care 
  • Emergency evacuation and repatriation 
  • Trip delay 
  • Baggage and personal belongings cover 
  • Extend or buy more cover while traveling 
  • Cover for some Coronavirus-related events 

Traveler tip 1: if you intend to work or study, you must have the appropriate visa to work or study under the local laws of the country you’re visiting. 

Travel insurance cover on our Standard and Explorer plans 

At World Nomads, we do our best to support volunteers, whether it's protecting endangered turtle hatching grounds or teaching school children in an under resourced village. 

Before you take off on your next volunteer adventure, consider packing travel insurance that provides cover for the things you plan to do.  

Volunteer activities our Standard Plan may cover include: 

  • Hospitality or work at bars. 
  • Farming such as fruit picking, WWOOFing or other manual labor. 
  • Wildlife or animal care. 
  • Environmental or conservation work. 
  • Au pair, nanny or other volunteer childcare. 
  • Teaching. 
  • Retail work such as shop assistant or store manager role. 
  • Office or clerical work. 

Volunteer activities our Explorer Plan may cover include: 

  • Undertakings in construction or renovation projects, including painting, using power tools, operating machinery, or roadwork. 
  • NGO support and disaster relief. 
  • Medical and health care work (health education, medical services, medical practitioner). 

Note: you can upgrade your cover for a range of other activities and experiences and manual work if you select the activities (listed as Level 2 and 3) and pay any required additional premium at the time you buy your policy. 

If you feel unsure about whether your volunteer activity is covered, you can get in touch with our Customer Service team and they will be able to assist you. 

Am I covered for Coronavirus-related events? 

While volunteer work is rewarding, getting sick while overseas can be costly in more ways than one, especially with Coronavirus still causing major issues worldwide. The cover you will have under our Standard and Explorer plans will depend on your Country of Residence. They include: 

  • Standard and Explorer plans: offer cover for emergency medical assistance if you get sick with Coronavirus (COVID-19) overseas (excluding pre-existing medical conditions, as defined in the policy wording) – cover includes medical assistance, repatriation, and hospitalization. 
  • Explorer Plan: additionally, offers cover for some Coronavirus-related events including but not limited to cancellation, trip interruption expenses and some quarantine costs, as well as additional cover for healthcare workers, residential care workers and law enforcement officers who have their pre-arranged leave cancelled by their employer due to Coronavirus. Benefit limits apply. 

To find out what cover applies to you, read our Coronavirus cover article, which has all of the details, including benefit limits, terms and conditions, and exclusions. 

Traveler tip 2: do your research well in advance of your trip around vaccines needed for your intended destination. Make sure you follow government, health department, and World Health Organization preventative and precautionary measures, including any relevant vaccinations, hygiene, or social distancing guidelines. Please refer to for further information. 

What’s not covered? 

Some volunteer activities may not be covered as they’re just too risky for us to cover. This includes volunteer work that includes: 

  • Taking part in activities such as base jumping, wingsuit flying, cliff diving, martial arts competitions, motor sports, and piloting an aircraft among others. 
  • Going on dangerous expeditions; mountaineering expeditions or expeditions to inaccessible regions of the Arctic, Antarctica, or Greenland, unless approved by us. 
  • Crewing of a vessel more than 60 miles (96.5km) from a protected body of water. 
  • Work as a guide where ropes or other specialist climbing equipment is required. 
  • Work offshore or underground, including in caves. 
  • Work operating machinery or heavy/industrial equipment. 
  • Work at height without proper safety equipment. 
  • Working with dangerous animals, for example, hippopotami, crocodiles, alligators, sharks, elephants, bears, big cats, and deadly snakes. 

Traveler tip 3: you must have the appropriate skills and training and hold the necessary licences and/or certificates for the work you undertake. You should only work from ground level up to two metres above ground, as the risk of injury is significantly increased when working at heights greater than two metres. 

If you’re not sure about coverage, contact us and we’ll help you. 

If haven't yet chosen a volunteer program, you can find inspiration in the following articles: 

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. 

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.

Travel Insurance Benefits: how we can take care of you

Trip Protection

Protect your hard earned vacation from unexpected cancellation before you leave home.

  • Explorer Plan: USD $10,000
  • Standard Plan: USD $5,000
Trip Protection
  • Unexpectedly hospitalised?
  • Travel buddy unfit to travel?
  • Close relative suddenly dies?

We’ve got your back.

Emergency Overseas Medical Insurance

Take the pain out of medical costs while traveling overseas.

  • Explorer Plan: Unlimited, up to 12 months
  • Standard Plan: USD $5,000,000
Emergency Medical Insurance
  • Need meds quick?
  • Accidentally injured?
  • Suddenly sick?

We’ve got your back.

Emergency Medical Transportation

We'll get you to hospital quickly.

  • Explorer Plan: USD $500,000
  • Standard Plan: USD $500,000
Evacuation and Repatriation
  • Banged up abroad?
  • Need a hospital urgently?
  • Medivac home?

Help starts here.

Protect your gear

Cover your stolen or damaged gear and tech.

  • Explorer Plan: USD $3,500
  • Standard Plan: USD $2,500
Protect your gear
  • Passport or tech stolen?
  • Airline lost your gear?
  • Bags delayed?

Help starts here.

  • Overseas Medical & Dental Expenses
  • 24 hour Emergency Assistance
  • Emergency Medical Transport
  • Repatriation & Travel Expenses
  • Pre-Trip Cancellation
  • Trip Interruption
  • Resumption of Trip
  • Travel Delay
  • Missed connection (Explorer)
  • Hijacking (Explorer)
  • Baggage & Personal Items
  • Passport & Travel Documents
  • Personal Liability
  • Rental vehicle insurance excess (Explorer)
  • Personal accident (Explorer)
*This is a general summary for all residents except from USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Brazil, China and Philippines. Restrictions, exclusions and limitations will apply. Coverage may not be available for all countries, states or provinces. Benefit limits may vary depending on the plan chosen. Get a quote for full details.

24/7 emergency assistance

Whether you need medical assistance or emergency evacuation, our teams are 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?
Phone:+353 21 237 8008 or +353 21 237 8003 (calls are not toll free. You can claim your itemised call costs)

Contact the team


Here are our most frequently asked questions about overseas medical insurance. You can also find the answers to other questions in our Helpdesk or you can ask our customer service team. If you’re looking for general travel advice, you can ask our community at Ask a Nomad.

  • Does my insurance cover medical costs upfront or do I have to pay and claim later?
    Who pays depends on what happened. If it’s an emergency situation, where medical evacuation is required, World Nomads can cover these costs upfront (provided the incident is covered as per the policy wording and you get pre-approval from the Emergency Assistance team). You must contact World Nomads 24/7 Emergency Assistance if you have a medical emergency.