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What to do if me or my travel companion test positive to COVID-19 and can't come home?

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When traveling during the pandemic, whether for business or pleasure, the risk of contracting Coronavirus (COVID-19) during your travels is real and you may not know what to do if your trip home is postponed because of a case of COVID-19.

The level of cover you’ll have for any Coronavirus-related events under our Standard and Explorer plans will depend on your Country of Residence.

At a glance

  • On all Standard and Explorer plans: overseas medical expenses and evacuation: we offer cover for emergency overseas medical assistance, medically necessary evacuation, and repatriation if you get sick or die from Coronavirus (COVID-19) while traveling overseas.
  • On the Explorer Plan only: Coronavirus Travel Costs: on this plan we also offer cover for some additional costs associated with some Coronavirus-related events.

Check out our Travel Insurance cover for Coronavirus article which goes into more detail on all the benefits, including benefit limits, terms and conditions, and exclusions.

We have added some key steps below that may help you if you or a traveling companion are diagnosed with COVID-19 while overseas.

Step 1: Isolate and get medical assistance

The first thing you’ll need to do if you’ve been diagnosed with Coronavirus on arrival is to isolate and get tested. If the test is positive, you may need to go into mandatory quarantine, which could be anywhere from 5 days to 21 days depending on where in the world you’re currently located.

Travel insurance tip 1: some of our policies offer cover for Coronavirus-related events but these vary depending on your Country of Residence and the plan you've selected. While one policy might offer cover for the cost of your quarantine, another may not. Make sure you select your chosen plan carefully and that you know what you're covered for before making a purchase.

Step 2: Contact the 24/7 Emergency Assistance Team

If you catch COVID-19 while on your travels you must contact our 24/7 Emergency Assistance Team as soon as possible so that we can direct you to nearby appropriate care, talk to doctors, help out with admin, and arrange for payment of expenses where possible.

Step 3: Contact your travel provider

If you know your trip home is put on hold you must make every effort to contact your travel providers as soon as reasonably possible to seek compensation or offers to rearrange or reschedule your return flight plans. Wherever possible, you must exercise your rights under consumer protection legislation, before deciding to add additional expenses, change your travel plans or make a claim with us. You must accept any reasonable alternative options offered by the provider.

Step 4: Stay on top of research and paperwork

As the saying goes, 'fail to prepare, prepare to fail'. Traveling overseas during a pandemic means you’ll need to do a lot of research and have all your paperwork ready to ensure you comply with any entry requirements. For example, mandatory isolation can range from staying inside your Airbnb or accommodation you’ve booked, to state-run quarantine hotels. The amount of paperwork required will vary from one country to the next so have this in mind when going overseas.

Step 5: Be prepared to use your credit card

You may need to have extra savings ready if your original stay is blown out of the water and you're told you will be isolating or in quarantine longer than expected. The same principle applies if there are unexpected health related costs to pay (such as PCR tests and rapid antigen tests). Where hospitalization from complications due to COVID-19 is required, considering travel insurance can make the difference between affordable healthcare and being charged many thousands of dollars.

Travel insurance tip 2: if you are stuck in quarantine and need to extend or renew your travel insurance coverage, we allow an extension of your cover right up until your policy expires, shown as your Certificate of Insurance’s end date. The maximum duration of a policy is 365 days from the start date, depending on the dates you've selected.

For more information on Coronavirus-related coverage, check out our other content that may be useful when considering your travel insurance cover options:

Need to know more?

Our suggestions should help you when things go wrong, and you want to make a claim. All travel insurance plans are different, and cover will vary, depending on what's happened, your country of residence, the plan you choose and any options or upgrades you buy. Your policy wording will always have the full terms, conditions and exclusions that apply.

If you have questions about what's covered and not covered, just ask us.

Don’t forget to read the policy wording as all plans are different and coverage will depend on your Country of Residence. Never assume you’ll be covered in every situation, as benefit limits, terms and conditions, and exclusions apply. If you are still unsure about what you are covered for then contact us.

How do I buy COVID-19 travel insurance?

All you need to do is enter a few details about yourself and your holiday online and the ages of all your family members or travel companions and we will generate an instant quote with both Standard and Explorer plans.

Once you’ve selected the right level of cover for you and paid, you will get confirmation of what you will be covered for to your selected email.

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
  • Passport or tech stolen?
  • Airline lost your gear?
  • Bags delayed?

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.

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
Wherever you are, we’re here 24/7 to help you in any emergency.
Aurelie's portrait photo
Aurelie Menard,
Emergency Assistance, World Nomads

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.

World Nomads Travel Insurance was reviewed on Trust Pilot on 1st August 2017 and rated 4 stars