World Nomads Travel Insurance Review: Is it Worth The Cost?

Here's what you need to know about the Standard and Explorer travel insurance plans offered by World Nomads.
Meg Lee
Elina Geller
By Elina Geller and  Meg Lee 
Updated
Edited by Kevin Berry

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World Nomads

World Nomads caters specifically to adventure travelers, backpackers and those with active itineraries.
Compare Rates
at SquareMouth

Pros

  • Travelers can extend coverage mid-trip.
  • The standard plan covers up to $300,000 in emergency evacuation costs.
  • Plans automatically cover 200+ adventurous activities.

Cons

  • No Cancel For Any Reason upgrades are available.
  • No pre-existing medical condition waivers are available.
insurance-product-card-logo
Compare Rates
at SquareMouth

World Nomads

World Nomads caters specifically to adventure travelers, backpackers and those with active itineraries.

Pros

  • Travelers can extend coverage mid-trip.
  • The standard plan covers up to $300,000 in emergency evacuation costs.
  • Plans automatically cover 200+ adventurous activities.

Cons

  • No Cancel For Any Reason upgrades are available.
  • No pre-existing medical condition waivers are available.

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.

Here’s what you need to know about World Nomads travel insurance to help you decide which plan makes sense for your trip.

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).

Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

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Annual fee

$550

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.

  • Standard.

  • Explorer.

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.

World Nomads

Standard Plan Coverage Limits

Explorer Plan Coverage Limits

Trip Cancellation

$2,500.

$10,000.

Trip Interruption

$2,500.

$10,000.

Trip Delay

$500.

$3,000.

Emergency Accident & Sickness Medical Expense

$100,000.

$100,000.

Emergency Dental

$750.

$750.

Pre-existing Medical Conditions

Not covered.

Not covered.

Emergency Evacuation

$300,000.

$500,000.

Repatriation of Remains

$300,000.

$500,000.

Non-Medical Emergency Transportation

$25,000.

$25,000.

Baggage & Personal Effects

$1,000.

$3,000.

Per Article Limit

$500.

$1,500.

Combined Maximum Benefit (for jewelry, watches, silver, gold, or platinum items, or furs)

$500.

$500.

Baggage Delay (outward journey only)

$750.

$750.

Daily Limit

$150.

$150.

Rental Car Damage (not available in NY, OR or TX)

Not included.

$35,000.

Accidental Death & Dismemberment

$5,000.

$10,000.

Generali Global Assistance 24-Hour Services

Unlimited.

Unlimited.

Adventure Sports & Activities

Standard Plan Sports & Activities as listed for U.S. residents.

Standard & Explorer Plan Sports & Activities as listed for U.S. residents.

Policy Cost

$86.

$155.

World Nomads single trip plan cost

Here are some example World Nomads insurance costs based on our example trip.

world nomads travel insurance costs

Standard Plan

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.

Explorer Plan

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.

🤓Nerdy Tip

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.

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.

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.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Travelers with pre-existing conditions might consider policies from providers like Travel Guard by AIG or Allianz.

Frequently asked questions

World Nomads has been offering insurance since 2002. The company is well established and offers two single trip travel insurance policies to fit many different needs.

Both plans offered by World Nomads include trip cancellation, interruption and delays; emergency accident and sickness medical expenses; emergency evacuation; repatriation of remains; non-medical emergency transportation; baggage and personal effects; baggage delay for outward journeys; rental car damage in certain locations; accidental death and dismemberment; Generali Global Assistance; and adventure sports and activities.

World Nomads does not include Cancel For Any Reason coverage, even as an add on.

You will need to file a claim with the insurer after you’ve incurred costs related to a covered expense. If the claim is approved, you will receive a reimbursement. In some instances, such as baggage delay, World Nomads pays you a fixed amount per day rather than 100% coverage for costs incurred.

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).

Pros:

  • 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.

Cons:

  • 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.

To view rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, see this page.

Insurance Benefit: Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance

  • The maximum benefit amount for Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance is $10,000 per Covered Trip and $20,000 per Eligible Card per 12 consecutive month period.

  • Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply.

  • Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details.

  • Underwritten by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.


How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are some of the best travel credit cards of 2024:

A previous version of this article misstated World Nomads' insurance offerings. This article has been corrected.

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