Photo © Christian Wheatley

Travel insurance for water sports and activities

What to know when getting your adrenaline rush in and around the water

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Making the most of stand-up paddle-boarding SUP in Asia, a casual reef snorkeling experience in Hawaii, or maybe you want to dial up the adrenaline and go parasailing in Canada.

As fun as they sound, water sports activities aren’t always smooth sailing. World Nomads travel insurance can help you keep your head above water if the unexpected occurs.

What does World Nomads travel insurance cover?

As a team of professional travel tragics ourselves, we know how important it is to cover yourself against the unexpected. Medical costs in overseas hospitals can be exorbitant, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Depending on your Country of Residence and your selected plan, travel insurance may help if:

  • You’re injured and need medical transport or evacuation home.
  • You want cover for your bags and valuables in case they’re lost, stolen or damaged. Keep the paperwork and receipts for your gear.
  • You need to cancel yout rip or your trip is unexpectedly delayed.
  • You’ve already left home and need to buy travel insurance.
  • You want cover for some Coronavirus-related events.
  • You need cover for overseas medical expenses and hospitalization costs.
  • You’re looking for cover for adventure sports, activities, and experiences.

    Your coverage will vary according to your country of residence and whether you choose a Standard or an Explorer plan. Read your policy for details on cover, maximum benefit limits, exclusions and conditions of your coverage.

    What types of water activities and sports are covered?

    Whether you want to be in, on or under the water, having insurance as a safety net can be a good idea. These are just some of the many water sports covered under our plans:

    • Wakeboarding
    • Kiteboarding
    • Windsurfing
    • Boating (inland and coastal waters)
    • Parasailing
    • SUP
    • Rowing/sculling
    • Jet skiing
    • Water skiing
    • Tubing

      and many more activities, sports and experiences

      *All plans are different and may require an upgrade for some water activities and sports. Conditions and exclusions apply. Read the policy wording carefully to choose the right plan and/or water sport option for your trip.

      woman kayaking in Slovenia
      Woman kayaking in Slovenia. Photo credit: Getty Images/Brusonja

      Differents levels of cover and optional extras

      With cover for more than 200 activities, sports and experiences, our team of travel experts are all about supporting you as you venture into the global depths.

      When considering the specific water or non-water related activities, it’s vital that you decide on what you’ll be doing before going overseas. You cannot add sports or activities after purchasing a policy.

      World Nomads has several Level 1 activities, sports and experiences which you’ll be covered for automatically and are usually lower risk activities. For example, snorkeling, parasailing (over water only), water skiing and whitewater rafting are automatically covered under both Standard and Explorer plans.

      You may want to push some boundaries and add some more intense activities and sports that are categorised as Level 2 or above. For example, parasailing, deep sea fishing, and water skiing (barefoot) require an additional premium under either plan. The Explorer Plan covers you for higher risk activities and sports and will cost you an additional premium.

      Travel insurance tip: World Nomads provides travel insurance for more than 200 activities, sports and experiences. While this list might seem exhaustive, it doesn’t cover everything. That’s why you shouldn’t take for granted that your preferred activities will be covered. You can’t upgrade your level of cover mid-way through your holiday, so do consider this wisely.

      When choosing World Nomads, you’ll have access to two simple and flexible plans – Standard and Explorer. Both plans have several coverage options and optional extras. We offer cover (up to the policy limits) for:

      • Overseas medical expenses: whether you’re in a raft traveling at break-neck speed or gliding along behind a boat on skis, if you’re new to these activities, the wobbles are a given. It only takes one fall or jolt to see you wind up with a jarred back, neck or a twisted ankle. Emergency medical bills can ruin your holiday, that’s where insurance comes in.
      • 24-hour Emergency assistance: if you’re in a remote area and find yourself in need of urgent medical help, it’s not always easy to find help. World Nomads provides 24-hour Emergency Assistance. Our staff can assist you all the way from needing directions to a medical facility, helping with multi-lingual services, to urgent medical evacuation off a mountain.
      • Unexpected weather conditions may interrupt/delay your plans: crazy weather such as tornadoes or cyclones, huge swells, and in some cases tsunami warnings, can delay flights and force operators to cancel pre-booked activities. Our plans may cover unexpected conditions, including natural disasters, trip cancellation and delays.

        Whichever plan you go with, you agree to take reasonable care and not put yourself at needless risk while participating in these adventure sports. You must follow any local government or health authority warning or advice.

        What's not covered?

        While there are several things we can offer coverage for, there are also things we just won’t cover. These include, but are not limited to:

        • Participation in a water sports competition as a professional athlete
        • Sporting equipment damaged from use
        • Search-and-rescue mission
        • If you travel against medical advice or neglect to adhere to government warnings
        • Any adventure activities or sports that aren’t covered by our policies
        • Any existing medical conditions, except as may be noted in the policy wording
        • Any claims resulting from the violation of local laws
        • Losses that come from knowingly exposing yourself to needless risk
        • Fraudulent or criminal acts.

          Tips for your water activity and sports sports trip

          • Cover for stolen baggage and sports gear: travel insurance may be able to help if your water sports equipment is damaged or lost in transit. Note: it won’t be able to help if you break something while you’re using it, like your SUP paddle breaks, as exclusions apply to sports equipment in use.
          • Monitor weather conditions and consider your fitness: you may want to reconsider your plans for a water-based holiday if you’re traveling to an island nation during the least optimal season weather-wise. You also need to ensure you are fit enough to take on any water-related activities or sports that you plan on doing. There’s no point signing up for cage-diving for instance if you’re prone to panicking or aren’t a proficient swimmer.
          • Ensure your activity operators are certified and/or accredited – you should make sure that any activity you do is covered by the appropriate body or you must have the right experience level and accreditation. For example, if you’re scuba diving you must hold a current P.A.D.I. (Professional Association of Diving Instructors), B.S.A.C. (British Sub Aqua Club), SAA (Sub Aqua Association), C.M.A.S. (Confederation Mondiale Des Activites Subaquatiques), or equivalent internationally recognised qualification and follow their relevant association, club or confederation rules and guidelines at all times. Or you must only dive under the constant supervision of a properly licensed diving instructor.
          • Do your research regarding vaccinations and entry requirements: if you’re going somewhere remote, ensure you’re up to date with your vaccinations and have taken preventative measures for exotic diseases like malaria, as required by the World Health Organization. Some destinations require proof of these on arrival. Remain up to date with global health warnings by monitoring int and follow the advice of your government.
          • Cover for Coronavirus-related events: we offer cover for some Coronavirus-related events that may assist if your trip is derailed by COVID-19. To find out more, read our What’s Covered for Coronavirus article, which goes into more detail on all the benefits, including benefit limits, terms and conditions, and exclusions.

            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 policy wording 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.

            True Claims Stories

            • Never travel without insurance. This was the first time I ever purchased travel insurance and I am so glad I did. A few days into my trip to Spain I twisted my foot heading down to the metro. Thanks to World Nomads I was able to get medical attention in Spain and since, as luck would have it, I had a fracture that required surgery, they got me a flight home the next day. Filing a claim was surprisingly easy and when the claim was finally processed, I was reimbursed for all of my expenses including things like the extra week in the hotel I didn't get to take advantage of.
              U.S. resident in Spain
            • I recently had a serious injury traveling on my own & the team was amazing. Being confused with a brain injury they took care of everything. Claiming was no problem, they were on the phone constantly to see if all was OK. I can't recommend them enough. Absolutely fantastic & l will always travel with World Nomads Insurance. Thanks guys for getting me home safely.
              Australian in Thailand
            • I was bitten by a monkey at the Batu Caves in Kuala Lumpur. I went to a nearby clinic and they gave me a rabies shot, antibiotics to take for 4 days, pain medicine, and anti-inflammatory medicine.
              Canadian in Malaysia

            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?

            Contact the team

            Travel Insurance Benefits: how we can take care of you*

            Trip Cancellation

            Been working hard for your trip?

            We'll work hard to protect it.

            Trip Protection
            • Unexpectedly hospitalised?
            • Travel buddy unfit to travel?
            • Been made redundant?

            We’ve got your back.

            Emergency Medical Expenses

            Feeling fit and healthy? What if you get sick or injured?

            Take the pain out of medical or dental costs.

            Emergency Medical Insurance
            • Need meds quick?
            • Accidentally injured?
            • Suddenly sick?

            We’ve got your back.

            Emergency Medical Transportation

            Know where the nearest hospital is?

            Don’t stress, we’ll get you there quickly.

            Evacuation and Repatriation
            • Banged up abroad?
            • Need a hospital urgently?
            • Medivac home?

            Help starts here.

            Protect your gear

            Love photography, filming or sport?

            Cover your bags, tech or gear.

            Protect your gear
            • Luggage lost?
            • Airline lost your gear?
            • Tech trashed?

            Help starts here.

            • Emergency Overseas Medical & Dental Expenses
            • Emergency Medical Evacuation & Repatriation
            • Trip Cancellation or Interruption
            • 24-Hour Assistance Services
            • Baggage
            • And more (depending on your country of residence)
            *This is a general summary only. 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.

            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.