Travel

What is travel insurance? And why you need it

Travel planning isn’t just about booking flights and hotels, it’s also about some boring aspects. One of them is travel insurance.

What Is Travel Insurance You Might Ask For?

Travel insurance is one of the things that you must have, but I hope you will never use it.

If you’re a traveler who loves to count every penny, travel insurance likely isn’t high on your list as you won’t get any immediate benefit from your purchase. But trust us, you will be glad you received it should something go wrong on your journey! Travel insurance will save you a ton of money when you need to take advantage of it.

There are several travel insurance options. Some travelers may be happy with a general policy while others prefer a tailored package offered by companies like World Nomads.

Different coverage options include travel cancellation, baggage protection, emergency medical expenses, and emergency medical transportation.

What is Travel Insurance and Why Do You Need It?

What is travel insurance?

Travel insurance includes different types of coverage for your trips. Here are the most important things that travel insurance includes.

Travel cancellation / interruption

This is the most basic coverage and covers most of the events that would result in your being unable to travel.

Examples include, but are not limited to: Illness, injury, job change and financial hardship (bankruptcy) for yourself or one of your travel companions. Good policies can also cover delays, terrorism, political change, supplier cancellations, and natural disasters.

Single occupancy

If you’ve arranged double occupancy and your partner cancels or needs to change their plans, you can get insurance to cover the necessary “upgrade”.

Trigger delay / missed connection

Any delay that is beyond your control could entitle you to compensation.

Legal advice

This reporting provides access to local legal experts in case you run into legal misunderstandings.

Accident / illness costs

Any procedure or treatment performed during your trip or possibly as a direct result of an event on your trip. This segment of coverage can sometimes include a small amount of dental care.

Note that SafetyWing’s nomad insurance now includes coverage for Covid-19. As with any other illness on the insurance cover, all medical costs are covered – as long as you have not contracted the virus before taking out the insurance. Testing for COVID-19 is only covered if deemed medically necessary by a doctor. The antibody test is not covered as it is not medically necessary.

Pet coverage

If you bring your pet (this is generally limited to a cat or dog) they can be covered for emergency medical expenses.

Emergency evacuation

This coverage is required for travel where you may not be near medical facilities and may require transportation such as a helicopter or express train to get to an appropriate medical facility.

Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD & D)

If an event causes the loss of a body part (dismemberment), you can be compensated under the standard fee plans. The other part of the reporting is self explanatory.

Luggage cover

If your luggage is lost or delayed, you can have essential items such as clothing and other personal items reimbursed. Some plans involve items like laptops and electronic devices.

We recommend making sure that you have at least one cancellation / delay insurance as this will cover any significant changes to the trip. Some medical plans will continue your coverage while you travel abroad, so accident / medical care, emergency evacuation, and / or AD&D coverage may even be redundant for some travelers.

However, the health insurance that you can get from a travel insurer can be of much better quality and put you, the traveler, at less risk of having to pay exorbitant medical fees up front before they are reimbursed.

Additional coverage should be subscribed to at the traveler’s discretion.

Some of the questions to ask yourself before choosing to report include:

  • Is my absence flexible or do I have a strict schedule?
  • Does my ticket guarantee that I will get to my destination? (i.e. budget does not pay like Ryanair)
  • What is the airline’s policy for lost / delayed baggage?
  • Will I be in an urban setting or will I be far from civilization? (Evacuation potential)
  • Do my home country and the country I am visiting have a strong relationship? (Legal advice)
  • Who am I going to travel with? Is my travel partner a potential flake that can cost me money?
  • Do I need special insurance, such as voluntary international travel insurance?

Purchase of a voluntary international travel insurancePurchase of a voluntary international travel insurance

10 reasons why you need travel insurance

1. Emergency medical care

You never know when you might get sick or injured while on a trip. This is especially important when participating in adventurous activities such as hiking, snowboarding, surfing, or diving.

With medical travel insurance, you don’t pay a huge medical bill. They also have assistance services – in your own language – to find a suitable medical facility and arrange transportation.

2. Baggage protection

You never know when your luggage will be lost on the plane, stolen while traveling on local buses / trains, etc., or damaged in transit. This includes not only your clothes in your suitcase, but also your valuable equipment such as camera, laptop, cell phone, etc.

If your luggage is delayed, travel insurance will reimburse you for the day you don’t have it. If it is stolen, you are covered to have your items replaced.

3. Coverage if your trip is canceled

There could be a number of reasons why you suddenly have to cancel a trip – illness, family emergencies, job duties, or some other emergency and you can no longer walk. You never know what life is going to throw at you.

With travel cancellation cover, you can reimburse your expenses for these and other reasons.

4. You miss your connection or your flight is canceled

If you are traveling on a route that requires more than one flight and for some reason you miss your connection, you will be covered by many travel insurances for those missed connections. The same applies if your flight is canceled.

5. Adventure and sports coverage

If you are planning adventurous activities or want to practice sports, this cover is extremely important for you. World Nomads covers a number of different activities including snow, water, air, land and various sports activities.

Whether your diving equipment is stolen or you are injured while windsurfing, you are covered.

6. Working or volunteering abroad

You can get customized travel insurance when you work on board or when you volunteer. You are then insured for everything that happens to you during your work. Specific covers include childcare, general farm work, hospitality, restaurant, tuition, administration, ski instructors and even office work.

7. Support with emergency prescriptions

If your prescription drugs are lost, stolen, or used up, there is travel insurance coverage to help you fill out an emergency prescription. This is an essential cover if you are on important medication!

8. Your travel company is going under

What if you book the most amazing trip with a tour operator months in advance of your departure, right before something happens to the company and they close? Some travel insurance companies will help you recoup the expenses you have already paid and book another trip.

9. Loss of your documents abroad

This is possibly any traveler’s worst nightmare. Good travel insurance will help replace your documents and get you home.

10. A natural disaster or an act of terrorism

Should a natural disaster such as a hurricane, earthquake, flood or act of terrorism occur wherever you are, you want to go home. Travel insurance will help you get home safe.

If these occur at your destination before your departure and have to cancel your trip, your costs will also be reimbursed.

Where can I get travel insurance?

World nomads

For good travel insurance, we strongly recommend World Nomads. They are a well-known and trusted brand among many frequent travelers. They offer great value for money, flexibility, availability to make claims online while you are still on the go, offer coverage for a range of adventure activities, and offer up-to-date travel safety alerts through the World Nomads Travel Safety Hub and even purchase a World Nomads Policy if you are already traveling.

WorldNomads.com travel insurance is available to people in 140 countries. It is designed for the adventurous traveler, providing protection for medical supplies, evacuation, luggage, and a range of adventure sports and activities overseas.

Note that World Nomads does not cover travel to countries with a COVID travel ban. So make yourself familiar with the exclusions (read more about their coronavirus coverage here). Even so, it is extremely important to have travel insurance if you are going through a pandemic.

Get a Quote From World Nomads Below:

All in all, the prices for fully comprehensive insurance are very reasonable if you choose the right provider. Well worth getting full coverage if you can. You will be very grateful for the options that full coverage offers in case your trip does not go as planned.

We have seen many trips being disrupted by unforeseen circumstances (even before Covid-19), and good quality travel insurance such as that offered by World Nomads or SafetyWing that covers everything is often the savior of a spoiled vacation.

Knowing what you are paying for and what your plan includes is important, and we hope that the breakdown of each aspect of coverage will help you next time you research and purchase travel insurance.


  • Travel dudes

    I am sure you have had similar experiences that I had while traveling. You are in a certain place and a fellow traveler or a local directs you to a little-known beach, bar or accommodation. Great travel tips from other travelers or locals always give our trips something special. That was the inspiration for Travel Dudes.

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