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I’ve used World Nomads several times over the past nine years and even had claims paid out. My current policy expired in August 2023, and I switched to SafetyWing to test them out.

In the following sections, we’ll dive deep into a comprehensive World Nomads Travel Insurance review, helping you decipher if it’s the right safety net for your adventures. We’ll also examine the main differences between the World Nomads Standard and Explorer Plans.

When it comes to traveling, whether you’re a seasoned explorer or a novice adventurer, one thing often overlooked is travel insurance. Imagine you’re on the trip of a lifetime, but out of the blue, you fall ill or, worse, lose your luggage.

It’s in such unexpected situations that travel insurance becomes your best travel buddy, covering everything from medical emergencies to trip cancellations.

One such popular option among globe-trotters is World Nomads Travel Insurance.

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What is World Nomads?

If you’re a college kid with an itch for adventure and backpacking around the globe, World Nomads is an ideal choice.

They’ve earned their rep by offering solid coverage that caters especially to folks like us who love some thrill in our travels.

The idea for this unique insurance company came from Simon Monk in 1989, who quit his job, sold everything he had, and embarked on a journey to explore the world. This sensation of freedom and adventure eventually led to the conception of World Nomads.

WorldNomads.com Pty Limited markets and promotes travel insurance products of now parent company nib Travel Services Limited.

It’s designed to cater to the unique needs of long-term travelers and digital nomads, providing them with the safety net they need while on the road. It’s still an affordable option for people taking one or two-week vacations.

Unlike most travel insurance companies, World Nomads covers more than 200 types of activities, making it a popular choice among those seeking thrills and adventures during their travels.

In the US, World Nomads policies are administered by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company offering various types of insurance, and in Canada, by Travel Guard. This means that when you purchase a policy from World Nomads, you’re not only getting coverage for your travels but also the backing of an established and reputable insurance company.

Despite being on the road for over two decades, World Nomads remains a viable travel insurance option for long-term backpackers, adventurous travelers, and digital nomads.

World Nomads Travel Insurance Review

World Nomads covers snorkeling

World Nomads Travel Insurance offers extensive coverage for various situations travelers may encounter.

Key coverage areas include adventure activities such as scuba diving, sky diving, bungee jumping, and snowboarding; baggage and gear; trip delay, assault, delayed baggage; overseas emergency dental; and acts of terrorism.

Their policies also cover emergency medical costs, evacuation, cancellation, and baggage loss. For most travelers they offer Standard and Explorer plans that provide these coverages.

The company even provides coverage if you contract COVID-19 while traveling, including benefits such as emergency medical treatment, emergency medical evacuation, trip delay, and trip interruption.

World Nomads Travel Insurance extends its coverage to most countries, with the caveat that war or sanctions may affect the availability of coverage in specific destinations or regions.

Furthermore, World Nomads doesn’t provide insurance coverage in Cuba, North Korea, or Sudan. This is a bummer, as many Canadians and Europeans travel to Cuba.

However, potential policyholders should thoroughly review their policy documents to understand what is and isn’t covered.

In addition, World Nomads has an average customer review score of 3.5 out of 5.0 on Trustpilot, with nearly 2,400 personal reviews. In contrast, people who usually don’t write reviews will usually take the time to write a negative review rather than a positive review.

My Personal Experience with World Nomads

I’ve made two World Nomads claims over the years: one before the pandemic and the other most recently post-pandemic in 2023.

The claims included visits to the emergency room in Medellin, prescription drugs, and emergency dental work. Both my claims were paid out entirely, surprisingly, even some over-the-counter drugs without a doctor’s prescription.

The downside of my claims is that it took a while to get them approved. My first claim took about one month, and my second claim took about two months (possibly due to the post-pandemic labor shortage) to be paid out.

Keep in mind Travel Guard is responsible for underwriting the travel insurance policy in Canada for World Nomads. I’m Canadian.

Nationals of other countries may have different claim adjudication times.

Who Should Get World Nomads Travel Insurance?

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World Nomads Travel Insurance is designed for the adventurous, the explorers, and those who wish to embrace the world with open arms. It is not your average travel insurance, as it caters specifically to the needs of travelers who seek more than just a getaway.

Who is the Perfect Candidate?

The perfect candidate for World Nomads Travel Insurance is:

  1. Backpackers and Adventure-Seekers: If you’re the type of person who loves to explore off-the-beaten-path destinations and partake in adventurous activities, World Nomads is for you. With over 200+ activities covered, from scuba diving to skiing, it’s ideal for the intrepid traveler.
  2. Long-Term Travelers and Digital Nomads: If you’re planning a trip that spans several months or even years, World Nomads offers flexible policies that can be extended or modified while you’re still on the road.
  3. Solo Travelers: For those traveling alone, having a comprehensive travel insurance plan like World Nomads provides peace of mind, knowing that you’re covered in case of an emergency.
  4. Couples and Families: While World Nomads is popular among solo travelers, it’s also suitable for couples and families who want comprehensive coverage while participating in shared adventures.

Why Choose World Nomads?

World Nomads stands out in the market for several reasons:

  1. Extensive Coverage: World Nomads covers a wide array of potential issues, including trip cancellation, medical emergencies, baggage loss or damage, and even some adventure activities that other insurers don’t cover.
  2. Flexibility: You can purchase, extend, and claim online, even after you’ve left home. It provides flexibility for travelers whose plans are constantly changing.
  3. 24/7 Emergency Assistance: Round-the-clock support means you’re never alone in your time of need.
  4. Positive Reputation: World Nomads has a strong reputation among long-term travelers, with many positive reviews highlighting unexpected emergency medical situations.

Compared to other options out there, World Nomads really steps up its game. It’s got your back if you’re into wild adventures or planning a long-term trip. You get more bang for your buck with their extensive coverage. So whether you’re cliff diving in Mexico or backpacking across Europe for six months, they cover you.

World Nomads Standard vs Explorer Plans

World Nomads offers two main plans for their travel insurance: the Standard and Explorer plans. Most travelers will only require the Standard, including myself, who snowboards and scuba dives in shark-invested waters.

To get it out of the way, both the Standard and Explorer Plans cover COVID-19 illnesses at the time of writing this.

If you’re traveling with expensive equipment, such as most digital nomads, it’s better to opt for the Explored Plan because it usually has a $3,000 coverage due to theft compared to $1,000 for the Standard Plan. For 2024, I need to upgrade my laptop and will opt for the Explorer Plan.

Standard Plan

The Standard plan is a comprehensive package that includes overseas medical coverage, coverage for your belongings, pre-trip cancellation, and coverage for certain adventure activities. It features emergency medical from $100,000, making it a solid choice for most individuals. This plan also covers trip interruptions and delays, accidental death, and dismemberment. 

Explorer Plan

On the other hand, the Explorer plan includes all the benefits of the Standard plan but comes with higher coverage limits. For example, it includes rental car damage insurance (in the States) and covers more adventure activities. It also offers coverage for overseas emergency medical expenses for accidents or sudden illnesses.

Similarities and Differences

Both plans offer coverage for over 200+ adventure activities. They also both provide cover for overseas emergency medical expenses for accidents or sudden illnesses.

However, the key difference between the two lies in the coverage limits and additional features. The Explorer plan offers higher coverage limits and additional features such as rental car damage insurance. This makes the World Nomads Explorer Plan a more comprehensive choice for travelers who want greater peace of mind or are planning to engage in more adventurous activities.

While both the Standard and Explorer plans from World Nomads offer extensive coverage for travelers, the choice between the two ultimately depends on the individual’s specific needs, risk tolerance, and nationality. 

Those seeking higher coverage limits and additional features may find the Explorer plan more suitable, while those looking for a more affordable option might opt for the Standard plan.


World Nomads Review Final Verdict

Paying for insurance you don’t use sucks, but it definitely provides peace of mind and allows me to travel on the wild side. In addition to my two personal claims being approved, World Nomads is relatively affordable for Canadians, as opposed to US citizens or citizens from developing countries.

Overall, I recommend World Nomads Travel Insurance in 2023 and continuing into 2024. Hope this World Nomads review helped you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does World Nomads cover pre-existing conditions?

World Nomads Travel Insurance generally does not cover pre-existing medical conditions. This means if you have a health issue that existed before the start of your coverage, expenses related to that condition typically won’t be covered.

However, if your pre-existing condition is controlled and stable, it may be covered for certain parts of the insurance policy, like Trip Cancellation, Trip Interruption, and Accidental Death.

For example, to determine pre-existing conditions, World Nomads would look backward 90 days from policy purchase to see if any treatment was sought for a condition.

Keep in mind that even if your pre-existing medical condition isn’t covered, you can still purchase a policy online through World Nomads1. The rest of the policy benefits remain available to you.

It’s important to note that travel insurance differs from health insurance. While health insurance might cover ongoing treatments for pre-existing conditions, travel insurance like World Nomads covers health issues and medical emergencies that occur while you’re traveling overseas.

Does World Nomads cover pregnancy?

World Nomads does provide coverage for pregnancy, but it’s important to note that there are restrictions and certain conditions must be met.

According to their policy, World Nomads can offer coverage if you have complications with your pregnancy within the first few weeks (depending on residency) of pregnancy. For example, expecting Canadian mothers are covered for the first 31 weeks of pregnancy. However, they do not cover pre-existing pregnancy complications.

Pregnancy-related expenses, routine physicals, and non-urgent medical treatments are not covered by World Nomads policies. Therefore, while some aspects of pregnancy might be covered, the insurance is not intended to cover regular check-ups or predictable costs associated with pregnancy.

Can you add countries to World Nomads Travel Insurance while already traveling?

Yes, you can add countries to your World Nomads Travel Insurance policy while you’re already traveling. World Nomads offers the flexibility to make changes to your policy pre-trip or while traveling. This includes the ability to add new countries or regions to your coverage.

To do this, you simply sign in to your World Nomads membership and make the necessary changes to your travel insurance policy. You can buy your policy online from anywhere in the world 24/7.

However, it’s important to note that you will only have coverage in the places or regions listed on your purchase confirmation. Therefore, if you decide to visit a country that was not initially included in your policy, you should update your policy to ensure you’re covered.

Vincent Croos
About the Author: Vincent Croos

Hola Parceros,

I’m the founder of Aperlust. I enjoy web development and SEO and am into snowboarding and linguistics. In my spare time, you can find me destroying my opponents in chess across the globe.

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