Travel insurance is not affordable if you don’t have the means to pay.
It is true?
It’s not a good idea to travel without insurance. You’ll hear phrases like “Oh it doesn’t really matter if your bags are lost, just pack light” or “Medical bills for Southeast Asia are quite affordable if you need to get over food poisoning.” Or our favorite, “Travel insurance companies will only tell you horror stories to convince you to purchase insurance.”
This last statement is unashamedly accurate. We want you to know that we have been through thousands of evacuations and emergencies over the years. An emergency evacuation without travel insurance can be more expensive than US$100,000.
Most cases your travels will be smooth. It won’t be necessary to become seriously ill or injures in another country. If you do get hurt or become seriously ill in a foreign country, you don’t want to be without the financial support and resources you need to get you treated and returned home.
Travel insurance may be worth it just for that reason.
However, it can be confusing. Let’s help you understand travel insurance. World Nomads aims to make insurance terms clear, but there will be times when certain terms may have restrictions, limitations, and exclusions that only the policy wording can fully explain.
These are the key components of travel insurance
You should read the entire description and coverage of travel insurance carefully. Ask questions if you aren’t sure.
We will explain what each major component does.
Medical Emergencies and Evacuation
As we have already mentioned, there are only one reason to purchase travel insurance.
In some countries, such as the US, hospital costs can exceed US$10,000 per night while medical repatriation (emergency transport home) can easily surpass US$100,000. This section should be read in depth, particularly the sections on emergency evacuation, medical expenses limits, and emergency dental care. Pay attention to the exclusions that are listed in the policy wording.
Coronavirus-19-related events covered
We have policies that cover certain Coronavirus-related events. This gives travelers access to benefits such as emergency medical coverage, and benefits related to travel expenses under the Explorer plan. It depends on the plan that you purchased and how your Country of Residence is affected.
Your Country of Residence will determine the level of coverage that you have for Coronavirus-related events. Your benefits could include:
- Our Emergency Assistance team is available 24/7 to help you get local medical care.
- Hospitalization and medical costs
- If medically necessary, we will arrange for evacuation or repatriation in consultation with your attending physician.
Depending on the Country of Residence, some Explorer plans offer additional coverage for Coronavirus-related events, such as cancellations following a diagnosis.
To find out what cover applies to you, read our What’s Covered for Coronavirus article which has all of the details, including benefit limits, conditions and exclusions.
You will be reimbursed for any costs you incur if you are unable to travel due to an unforeseeable cause, such as illness, accident or death of a family member. This section is important to keep in mind. You must purchase travel insurance before you book your tickets, not a week before.
Some travel insurance policies do not cover cancellation. Only a few cover non-refundable pre-booked expenses if your trip is canceled after you have left home. Please read the policy wording and description that applies to you.
Although personal property is the most important reason people purchase travel insurance, they are often not the most important. Your health and possessions can often be replaced, but your belongings can’t. World Nomads expects that you take reasonable care of your belongings. This means that a claim might be denied if your camera is left unsupervised in public places overnight or in your vehicle.
Some of our travel insurance plans let you specify the higher-value items that you wish to include with your laptop, camera, and other valuables. You should carefully review your policy wording and benefits to see what exclusions and limits are in place, especially for cash and high-value items.
This is not insurance to cover your liability when you drive your car, motorbike, or operate any watercraft. Insurance can protect you and your legal costs if you are involved in an accident, or accidentally cause damage. This type of cover is not offered by all World Nomads insurance companies. Please review the policy wording and description that applies to you.
Travel insurance typically ends when you return home. If you buy a policy that covers 12 months but come home after four months, your policy will not be refunded. Some policies allow you to resume your trip with the same policy, but you won’t have coverage for the time that you are at home. For details about when expenses may be covered if you return home early, please read the policy description (policy wording).
Travel insurance is not all the same
Every travel policy has specific conditions, exclusions, and benefits. It is common sense and imperative to carefully read every word of the policy. These vary depending on your Country of Residence, so please take the time and always contact us if you are unsure about anything.