Unsure how travel insurance works, and why you might need it? Get your answers here.

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We do our best to make travel insurance both simple and flexible, but questions still come up. Here's a quick overview of the basics.

For more details, or if you have a specific question about World Nomads insurance, please visit our online Help Desk or contact us.

What is travel insurance and how does it work?

Travel insurance is designed to help cover your expenses if something goes wrong on your trip, and fill any gaps that wouldn't be covered by your primary health insurance or other insurance you may have. It's not meant to be a substitute for health insurance and won't cover non-essential overseas medical treatment, such as routine exams.

Travel insurance usually covers travel at a certain distance from your home. You pay the insurance company a fee, called a "premium," which can vary based on where you're traveling, how long your trip is, your age, and what activities you plan to participate in. The insurance company agrees to cover costs (up to a certain limit) for things like emergency medical treatment, lost or stolen luggage, delayed flights, or nonrefundable expenses should you have to unexpectedly cancel your trip.

Travel insurance can be an affordable way to protect yourself against specific unforeseen events. Having to cancel your long-anticipated trek in Patagonia due to an enexpected family medical emergency is bad enough without having to forfeit all your costs as well. Also, your personal medical insurance may not cover costs while traveling out of the country or might exclude certain activities. With travel insurance, you can explore your boundaries (within reason, of course) and still be covered.

What's covered and what's not?

The full list of things we cover is too long to include here, but in general our coverage includes:

  • Overseas emergency medical and dental expenses
  • Emergency medical evacuation
  • Trip delay, cancellation, or interruption due to an unforeseen event
  • Delayed, damaged, or stolen gear or bags if they've been checked in with a carrier. 

Travel insurance isn't designed to cover everything. Terms, conditions, and exclusions do apply, so be sure to read your full policy wording to avoid surprises.

Here are the main things that aren't covered:

  • Expenses related to pre-existing medical conditions unless your policy says otherwise
  • Non-emergency medical expenses, such as eyeglasses or contact lenses, routine medical check ups, or cosmetic procedures
  • Items left unsupervised in a public place
  • Gear damaged while in use

Have more questions?

If you have more questions about travel insurance, feel free to contact us.

Did you know travel insurance covers...

You can also buy away from home or buy more cover if you extend your trip. Plus, you can claim online anytime, anywhere in the world.

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.
    L. De Jesus
    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.
    A. Brennan
    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.
    T. Ryan
    Canadian in Malaysia

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?
  • Close relative suddenly dies?

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

Get a quote

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