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There’s nothing more fun than exploring the world, but there are normally a few boring as hell hoops to jump through before you can enjoy it fully. Hoops like getting travel vaccinations, suffering through the physical and mental torture of long-haul flights and finding travel insurance – and we’re going to talk about the latter today.
I know… travel insurance isn’t exactly the most glamorous topic and you probably want to get this over with as quickly as possible. But choosing travel insurance isn’t something you should rush – unless, you know, you’re a superhuman millionaire with nine lives – so if you take one thing away from this blog post, please make sure you choose your travel insurance wisely. Actually, better add “make sure you take out travel insurance!!” to that, too.
A quick Google search will tell you one thing: there are a lot of options when it comes to travel insurance. And if you’re simply jetting off on a quick holiday, most of them will probably do the trick. So take your pick!
If, however, you’re a fellow crazy person who wants to travel long-term and embark on the digital nomad life, that’s probably not going to work. Those travel insurance companies are sneaky and they don’t really want to support our long-term travel dreams. Or maybe it’s just a little bit too risky for them – I’ll let you decide. Either way, you’re going to need a specific type of travel insurance for long term travel.
Quitting my job to travel full-time was STRESSFUL. As the ‘big day’ approached, the list of things that could go wrong seemed to grow on a daily basis and one of the biggest concerns I had was insurance.
I assumed the Coverwise annual travel insurance I already had would cover me for the first few months, but (of course) I was wrong. After browsing Money Supermarket (my usual tactic) for a little too long, I realised it wasn’t going to be so straightforward after all. It also meant no meerkat movies for me. Sob.
The one thing I knew for sure was that I wasn’t leaving without travel insurance. I was taking a big enough risk by giving up my biggest source of income and the stable (albeit unsatisfying) life that went with it.
And then someone recommended World Nomads.
As I mentioned above, you may need to take out extra gadget insurance if you’re travelling with high value gear. Even if you have travel insurance and contents insurance back home, it’s unlikely they will cover you in the case of loss, theft or other unfortunate events that happen abroad.
Like general travel insurance, finding camera travel insurance is a pain. It took me a while to find one that would cover my gear worldwide, 365 days per year, but eventually I settled on Protect Your Bubble. After lots of Googling, emailing and stressing, I found their gadget and camera travel insurance with no limit on your length of time abroad, which was exactly what I needed.
I’ve claimed on this insurance three times (for three different gadgets!) and they’ve never let me down.
Credit card insurance
Before I sign off this 1800-word essay on travel insurance (seriously never thought I’d be saying that), there’s one final point I almost forgot to include: credit card insurance.
Some credit cards have amazing benefits, and one that crops up a lot is travel insurance. Like most travel insurance, this will normally only cover you for short trips and exclude any crazy activities, but it’s a nice little extra for peace of mind.
A bigger benefit that comes with some credit cars, however, is the car rental insurance. This means you never have to worry about insurance when renting a car abroad and takes a lot of the hassle out of the process, as well as saving you precious travel time.
American Express is probably the best credit card for this and I use the British Airways card, which gives up to £75,000 for travel accidents, so that I can rack up extra air miles (and free flights!) with my day-to-day spending too. I wrote more about that in this post about the ways I save money on travel and travel for free, so go check that out for all my other little secrets.
Disclaimer: I work in media (not insurance!), so I am not a legal expert and none of the above is legal advice. I am sharing my experience and tips for finding digital nomad travel insurance to help others in a similar situation. Touch wood, I’ve never had to make a claim with World Nomads. But given the people I’ve met on the road who have made an insurance claim with their World Nomads insurance, I have no worries should I ever find myself in that situation.