World Nomads Travel Insurance Review: Is it Worth The Cost?
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World Nomads offers the Standard and Explorer travel insurance plans and excels in sports/activity related travel insurance coverage while offering solid trip delay, baggage delay and lost luggage protections.
The provider offers insurance plans for travel to nearly any country and is available to residents of most countries. In the U.S., World Nomads policies are administered by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company offering various types of insurance and financial products.
Before you buy a plan, check to see if you already have coverage through a premium travel credit card, and if so, verify whether those limits are sufficient. If they are, standalone emergency medical coverage may be adequate as the travel insurance provided by credit card often excludes healthcare expenses or offers a low limit (the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the few cards to offer emergency medical and dental, however coverage is capped at $2,500).
Here’s what you need to know about World Nomads travel insurance to help you decide which plan makes sense for your trip.
What does World Nomads travel insurance cover?
World Nomads offers different coverage levels for its travel insurance options, but both qualify as single trip plans.
Single trip plans are designed for individuals who are leaving their home, visiting another destination (or destinations) and returning home. These travel insurance plans are the most comprehensive and provide benefits like trip cancellation, trip interruption and medical coverage.
World Nomads is unique amongst other providers as it is a good fit for adventurous travelers. Its plans automatically include coverage for over 200+ activities, including skiing, rafting, backpacking and bouldering. Note that extreme sports are not covered.
All plans include trip protection, emergency medical insurance, emergency evacuation and coverage to protect your gear.
World Nomads single trip plans
World Nomads offers two plans, with the latter offering higher limits and additional adventure sports coverage.
The plans can be purchased for trip duration up to a maximum 180 days, and you can extend your coverage mid-trip. The price of the policy will depend on the duration of the trip and the countries that you're visiting.
To see the cost of the insurance plan, you will need to input your trip details, your age and state of residence. Unlike many other insurers, you do not need to include the cost of your trip when searching for a World Nomads policy because trip cancellation and interruption benefits are capped at a specific dollar amount rather than a percentage of money spent.
We input a sample trip of a two-week vacation in December 2023 to Italy by a 30-year-old from Illinois.
Standard Plan Coverage Limits
Explorer Plan Coverage Limits
Emergency Accident & Sickness Medical Expense
Pre-existing Medical Conditions
Repatriation of Remains
Non-Medical Emergency Transportation
Baggage & Personal Effects
Per Article Limit
Combined Maximum Benefit (for jewelry, watches, silver, gold, or platinum items, or furs)
Baggage Delay (outward journey only)
Rental Car Damage (not available in NY, OR or TX)
Accidental Death & Dismemberment
Generali Global Assistance 24-Hour Services
Adventure Sports & Activities
Standard Plan Sports & Activities as listed for U.S. residents.
Standard & Explorer Plan Sports & Activities as listed for U.S. residents.
World Nomads single trip plan cost
Here are some example World Nomads insurance costs based on our example trip.
The Standard Plan ($86) is a good choice for those who are satisfied with trip cancellation and interruption coverage of $2,500 or less, do not need rental car damage protection, find the limits to be sufficient and do not need coverage for certain adventure sports.
However, this plan still shines in sports coverage, covering activities like wind surfing and bungee jumping, which are seldom covered by travel insurance companies. A full list of covered sports by plan type is available on the World Nomads site.
The Explorer Plan ($155) includes all the benefits of the Standard Plan along with higher limits, rental car damage insurance (in the states where it is available) and adventure sports (e.g., skydiving, heli skiing) coverage.
This choice is also good for those whose trips costs less than $10,000 as this is the maximum trip cancellation and interruption protection.
A Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) upgrade is not offered by World Nomads. If this option is a must, look for a travel insurance company that offers CFAR.
Which World Nomads insurance plan is best for me?
Selecting the appropriate plan for your travels involves understanding which coverage you’d like on the trip.
If you have a premium travel card: If you have a premium travel card that offers an adequate amount of trip cancellation / interruption benefits, you may only need to get a standalone emergency health care policy. For example, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express offers $10,000 per trip and $20,000 per year in trip cancellation benefits. Terms apply. Only the Explorer Plan ($10,000) has a comparable level of trip cancellation protection. Terms apply.
If the coverage provided by your card isn’t adequate or applicable: If you don’t have a premium travel credit card, the coverage provided by your card isn’t sufficient or you didn’t use the card to pay for your trip, then a comprehensive insurance plan like the Standard or Explorer plan might be the best choice.
More chill travelers: If you don’t need adventure sports coverage and your trip costs less than $2,500 (or you already have trip cancellation / interruption benefits from your credit card), the Standard Plan would be sufficient.
» Learn More: How to find the best travel insurance
Can you buy World Nomads travel insurance online?
Go to worldnomads.com and input your trip details.
If your country of residence is the U.S., an additional row will appear asking you to input your state.
» Learn more: Is travel insurance worth it?
What isn’t covered
Trip insurance plans are filled with exclusions, so you’ll want to pay attention to what is and isn’t covered so there aren’t any surprises. Here are some exclusions you can expect from World Nomads:
Pre-existing conditions: If you’ve sought treatment for any illness or condition in the 90-day period preceding the start of the policy and then seek medical care for the same illness/condition, you may be on the hook for the bill since World Nomads does not cover pre-existing conditions.
Intentional acts: Losses sustained from self-harm, intoxication, drug use or criminal activity are not covered.
Travelers with pre-existing conditions might consider policies from providers like Travel Guard by AIG or Allianz.
Is World Nomads insurance worth it?
World Nomads offers some good travel insurance plans for adventurous, single-trip travelers. This is also a good fit for anyone who is uncertain about their trip length (since you can add coverage during your vacation).
Insurance can be extended mid-trip.
You can insure trips up to 180 days in length — which makes it an attractive option for digital nomads.
Adventure sports coverage is more robust than many other plans.
Simple choice of two plans.
Extreme sports are not covered.
There is no annual plan option. A policy ends once you return within 100 miles of home, even if you’re only home briefly as part of a long trip.
Regardless of your trip cost, trip cancellation and interruption coverage is capped at a dollar amount rather than as a percentage of trip cost. The Standard Plan and Explorer Plan cover trips up to $2,500 and $10,000, respectively. If you’re going on a more expensive trip, you won’t be able to protect the entire trip.
You must be 70 years old or younger to qualify for coverage.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
A previous version of this article misstated World Nomads' insurance offerings. This article has been corrected.