World Nomads Travel Insurance - 2023 Review
World Nomads Travel Insurance Review
- Innovative Adventure Travel Coverage
- Explorer Policy is Unique
- Perfect for Adventurers
- May Not Fully Cover Expensive Trips
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The World Nomads trip insurance coverage is primarily geared to the adventure traveler with over 200+ adventure activities covered that would normally be excluded from other travel insurance.
Unlike other travel insurance, customers can buy the insurance after they have already left home and are already away traveling. Because of these unique features, the company is the recommended travel insurance partner of Lonely Planet.
World Nomads US Travel Insurance plans are operated by TripMate and underwritten by Nationwide. In other words, customers are actually buying a Nationwide policy with TripMate support staff.
For those who travel in the USA, World Nomads Trip Insurance only provides coverage if your trip is more than 100 miles from your home.
World Nomads Travel Insurance
World Nomads Travel Insurance provides great coverage if you are engaging in more extreme activities. It can be somewhat expensive, but probably the only way that a traveler who is looking for high-adventure travel will get covered.
However, if a traveler is just engaged in normal, fun, standard behavior on a vacation, there may be better options available in the marketplace.
World Nomads provides two options for insurance: the Standard Plan and the Explorer Plan. We’ll compare both to each other and to other available options through TripInsure101.
World Nomads Travel Insurance Standard Plan
We ran a quote for two 65-year-old travelers visiting Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands from June 6 – 24 with a $10,000 trip cost and received prices for both the Standard and the Explorer plans. What was unusual as we ran the quote was that we were not asked for our trip cost. Normally, when running a quote for travel insurance, the price of the trip is one of the questions we are asked. It helps determine plan type, and plan price. This is because in the event of a cancellation, we want to be able to recoup the full cost of the trip.
We’ll look at the Standard Plan first:
In the Standard Plan we notice that Trip Cancellation and Delay benefits are capped at $2,500. This is fine if the trip costs less than $2,500, but since our travelers have a $10,000 trip cost, it’s not a great option for them. No-one wants to lose money by having a policy that won’t refund the full trip cost.
The Standard plan has $100k of Medical Coverage which is a good level for most people.
Emergency Evacuation Coverage is $300k. This is a solid amount of coverage and would be sufficient to bring back a traveler in a medical jet from most places worldwide.
World Nomads also offers Cancel for Work Coverage in the Standard plan. This can be helpful to travelers who fear that their vacation may be cancelled by their employer. This benefit is not highlighted in the summary, but is included in the policy document itself.
However, Pre-Existing Medical Conditions are not covered. To determine pre-existing conditions, World Nomads would look backwards 90 days from policy purchase to see if any treatment was sought for a condition; or whether the traveler received a recommendation for a test, exam or medical treatment; or if any medication was taken or prescribed.
Other travel insurance carriers can cover pre-existing conditions if the policy is purchased in a certain amount of time after the initial trip payment, and most have only a 60-day look back. Overall, World Nomads’ medical coverage is not bad, but we’ve seen better.
Of the 200+ activities World Nomads can cover; the majority are covered in the Standard Plan with the exception of the more dangerous activities. The listing below shows the snow activities covered:
We have never seen a policy document like the one that World Nomads provides. Most trip insurance policies tell us what is NOT covered – as in, everything else is covered apart from these small number of activities. World Nomads takes the opposite approach and lists what IS covered.
Remember, if your activity is not on their list, then World Nomads Travel Protection does not cover it. Check carefully!
World Nomads Explorer Plan
The Explorer Plan is the other option from World Nomads. This plan is geared to adventure travelers with many high adventure activities covered that aren’t covered in the Standard Plan (see above example in orange for included snow activities available with the Explorer plan) nor in most other travel insurances. The list does change periodically so be sure to check the latest version of the policy to ensure an activity you want covered is still listed.
The Explorer Plan has somewhat higher coverage than the Standard Plan with Trip Cancellation benefits capped at $10,000 instead of the $2,500 in the Standard Plan.
As our Ecuador trip cost is $10,000 we would automatically want the Explorer Plan to make sure our full trip cost could be refunded if needed.
The medical coverage is the same $100,000 as the Standard Plan but the Medical Evacuation has increased to $500,000.
Pre-existing Medical Conditions are also not covered in the Explorer Plan and it has the same 90-day look back period as the Standard Plan.
One additional benefit in the Explorer Plan is the addition of $35,000 for rental car damage.
Overall, the Explorer Plan has excellent coverage for adventure seekers with many high-risk activities covered that would otherwise be excluded in standard travel insurance policies.
For the difference in the price between the Standard and Explorer plans, if planned activities are covered in the Standard plan, then there is no need to upgrade to the Explorer plan unless trip costs are higher than $2,500 or the traveler wishes higher medical evacuation coverage and/or rental car damage coverage.
Travel Policies in the Open Marketplace
After reviewing the Standard and Explorer coverage levels, let’s look at prices for similar insurance in the open marketplace through TripInsure101.
Inputting our trip details into the TripInsure101 quoting system, we’re presented with 28 options for travel insurance. How do we determine which policy to choose?
TripInsure101 recommends having a minimum of $100,000 of medical coverage and a minimum of $250,000 of medical evacuation coverage for international travel. For destinations farther afield, TripInsure101 recommends having at least $500,000 of medical evacuation coverage.
The least expensive plan with adequate coverage on our quote is the John Hancock Silver for $634.
The plan provides $100,000 of medical coverage and $500,000 of medical evacuation coverage and will also provide a waiver to cover pre-existing medical conditions if the policy is purchased within 14 days from the initial trip payment or deposit date.
The policy is more expensive than either the Standard or Explorer plans and may not cover some of the adventurous activities that are covered with the World Nomads’ plans. However, if you need coverage for a pre-existing medical condition and have a higher trip cost than the $2,500 or $10,000 that the Nomad plans cover, then it can be a good choice for travel insurance.
If we desire maximum cancellation flexibility, then another option we have in the open marketplace is a Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) policy.
Cancel For Any Reason
As the name suggests, Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) policies allow you to cancel for any reason whatsoever and receive a partial refund of trip costs – either 50% or 75% depending on the policy purchased if a non-listed cancellation reason is used.
Looking at the quote from TripInsure101, the least expensive CFAR policy with adequate coverage for our trip is the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) for $951, which is the total cost for both travelers combined.
This is the same John Hancock Silver policy we looked at previously but adds the Cancel For Any Reason option if the policy is purchased within 14 days of the initial trip payment or deposit date. This would automatically cover pre-existing medical conditions as well which also had a 14-day purchase timeframe.
If we cancel for a reason such as illness or injury, we’ll get a 100% refund of our trip costs but if we use a non-listed reason, we’ll get a 75% refund.
Pricing is quite a bit more expensive than the World Nomad’s Explorer but for those who need maximum cancellation flexibility, have pre-existing conditions to cover and high trip costs, it can be an excellent choice.
The Standard and Explorer plans from World Nomads are definitely worth considering for adventure trips.
Both policies will cover a wide range of adventurous activities and the Explorer can accommodate many extreme sports that would otherwise be excluded from normal travel insurance.
A unique feature of the plans is the ability to purchase the insurance AFTER the trip has begun. This can be a huge benefit to travelers who need it.
There is a trip cancellation and interruption limit of $10k with the Explorer Plan, which ought to be suitable for most travelers, though the $2500 limit on the Standard Plan is a bit low. $100k of Medical Expense and $500k of Evacuation coverage on the Explorer Plan should be suitable for most adventurers traveling worldwide.
Overall, we’ve seen nothing similar for those engaging in truly adventurous travel.
We are happy to recommend the World Nomads Explorer Plan to adventure travelers.
To see what other options may be available for your trip, visit TripInsure101 first to shop around before committing to the first travel insurance policy you find. Please stop by and chat, send an email, or give us a call at +1(650) 397-6592.
This article has been written for review purposes only and does not suggest sponsorship or endorsement of AARDY by the trademark owner.
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