Choosing the best travel insurance policy for your needs is something that everyone going abroad has to deal with – or at least they should deal with it! This page shares my knowledge accumulated from more than a decade of overseas travel. If you are looking for generic travel insurance advice, please head to my travel insurance advice page. This page addresses the travel insurance that I use and why I use, and when I would choose to not use it.
WHICH COMPANY PROVIDES THE BEST ONLINE TRAVEL INSURANCE POLICY?
For my needs, World Nomads. However, the word ‘best’ is subjective to the individual in question, so let me explain my answer. [Quick note: WN is great for UK, US, and many other citizens, but for certain nationalities, the quotes come out super expensive.]
I have been buying travel insurance for over a decade, starting when I went on my first big trip, travelling around the world on a round the world ticket for six months. As such, I have bought travel insurance from many different companies for many different purposes, refining my needs, but in recent years I have chosen only to use World Nomads travel insurance. When I am looking for travel insurance, the main options I consider (in order of importance) are:
- A reputable company that will pay out when necessary
- Emergency health cover of at least £1 million
- Customisable policies offering different levels of cover for ‘dangerous activities’
- Ability to extend policies and start insurance when away from your home country
- A reasonably priced policy
- Option to add high value electrical items (which I only get for certain trips)
If you want to get an instant quote now to see if this is the best travel insurance policy for you, you can use the form below. If you want more information about World Nomads travel insurance, read on to see why I use them (a more detailed version) and when I would not use them.
WHY DO I USE WORLD NOMADS TRAVEL INSURANCE?
- After proving to be reliable, they are one of the few travel insurance companies that have gained my trust.
- You can buy their travel insurance at any time, even after you have left for your trip, or extend a policy whilst abroad. This is really great for me as my plans always change and sometimes I let a policy expire before I remember to renew it. Some other companies only allow travel insurance for a trip that starts and finishes in your home country, thus if you run out whilst abroad, you can no longer get cover (with the same company).
- The insurance can be purchased by people from 140 different countries (of which I am from one).
- Each policy is tailored to the destinations that you will be travelling to and the price reflects this.
- The price of their policies is very reasonable. Note: Policy prices varies by nationality, but their policies are particularly well priced for UK and US citizens for the cover that they offer. I am sure there are other nationalities where the pricing is favourable, but I only look at travel insurance for myself and my (American) partner on a regular basis for obvious reasons.
- If you are away and decide to stay longer, it is very simple to extend your cover. Even if it runs out, you can start a new policy.
- They cover a high value (£5 / 10 million options on my latest quote) of medical expenses. However badly you injure yourself, you are very unlikely to exceed this cost.
- They cover a high value (£2 million on my latest quote) of personal liability expenses. It is unlikely that you could do more damage than this.
- They offer an option to purchase an upgrade that will cover high value personal items.
- They offer add-ons which cover adventure sports, as well as work, study, and volunteer activities. As my trips are varied, this has been important to me.
- The policy excess is fair.
- You can purchase policies for individuals, couples, or families to help reduce your costs. I do a lot of trips on my own, but I like the option that I could get group discounts!
- It is a reputable company that is now promoted by Lonely Planet and Rough Guides (amongst others). They are unlikely to screw their customers over because the bad publicity would cause too much backlash and the possibility of withdrawal from their supporters.
- Claims can be made online.
- You can easily add a donation to a charitable organisation when booking the insurance.
WHEN WOULD I USE A DIFFERENT INSURANCE PROVIDER?
Coming from the UK, I always use WN for my insurance quotes as they offer everything that I need at a reasonable price. I have looked at loads of other alternatives and I can’t find a better option. My American partner does the same as it offers the most appropriate cover and the best price for her as well. However, the policy costs depend upon your nationality. If you are from certain countries, your policy quote might be close to double for the exact same policy. I don’t know why this is, but if my premiums were double what I pay now, I might look again to see what else was on the market. This is an important issue to consider as policies are offered to different nationalities at different rates. It is worth noting that as a British citizen, I can get some dirt cheap travel insurance if I want it (which my American partner cannot get), but I had a friend who used to work for one of these cheap companies and he described his day-to-day job as trying to find any loophole in the policy that avoided them making a payout. Thus I now avoid these companies. If you read my travel insurance advice page, I make suggestions of what you should look for in your travel insurance polices.
If I ever find a better travel insurance provider, I will switch providers and tell you about it here.
In 2011, I fell and broke my back in a skiing accident. This happened about six months after I finished university, during which time I had been volunteering and working as a ski rep. I was having the time of my life whilst getting paid under £100 a week, and already owed money from my time volunteering and travelling overseas: In short, I was in a bad financial situation and I genuinely don’t know what I would have done without travel insurance. If I had had to pay the £5,000+ medical bills by myself, I would not have been able to visit the many places that I have been to in the past few years and my life would be terribly, awfully different. This is why I have a personal belief in purchasing reliable travel insurance (with good emergency medical cover) and why I recommend not travelling without it.
Below is a picture of me being collected from the ski slope by paramedics. I am trying to smile because I knew the picture was being taken and thought (hoped) it was the only time I would get to have a picture taken with paramedics whilst I had a broken back. Although the broken back wasn’t confirmed at the time, I suspected it due to a similar accident a friend had a few weeks before me. The X-ray shows compression fractures of both my T12 and L1 vertebrae. It wasn’t all bad though, I learnt a few things from breaking my back.
That’s it! This page details why I have always used World Nomads travel insurance for the past few years and why I will continue to do so. If I ever change insurance provider, I’ll let you know.
If you want more advice on travel insurance, check out my travel insurance page. Stay safe, boys and girls.
Disclaimer: I am an affiliate of World Nomads, meaning that I will get a commission on each sale, but it will not cost you anything extra to buy their policies. The commission helps me run this site and I will be grateful for you using my links. I share their policies only because I use them myself and if this ever changes, I will change this page accordingly.