About Author: Hi, I’m Jessica Suess, an Aussie who moved to the UK for studies and ended up on a global journey as a freelancing digital nomad. I’m recently settled in Brazil, navigating finances and sharing what I have learned. See My Full Bio.
Most people wouldn’t dream of traveling overseas without the security of travel insurance. It covers your treatment if you become sick or injured and covers expenses for delayed flights or lost baggage. Basically, it gives you the resources to deal with the unexpected.
Digital nomads who are regularly on the move benefit from the protection of travel insurance. The more you travel, the greater the chance that something can go wrong. Plus, if you aren’t heading home, you can’t wait until you “get back” to deal with medical and dental issues. But traditional travel insurance policies just aren’t designed with digital nomads in mind.
Most travel insurance policies are designed for short trips. You need to specify your destinations, apply from your home country before you travel, and pay in advance. For most digital nomads, this just doesn’t work.
Fortunately, the travel insurance market is catching up and is finally offering travel insurance policies designed specifically for digital nomads and long-term travelers.
Read on as we take you through what to look for when choosing a travel insurance policy as a digital nomad and review what we think are the three best travel insurance providers for digital nomads.
Digital Nomad Travel Insurance: What To Look For?
Digital nomads should be looking at open-ended or long-trip policies with monthly premiums rather than upfront payments. But even monthly rolling policies are for a maximum of 364 days. After a year you need to apply for a new policy. Also, make sure you can apply for or extend your insurance while traveling.
Unless you have a specific travel itinerary, most digital nomads will want global coverage. This means that you don’t need to specify your destinations, but they probably will ask whether you intend to travel to the United States. This always pushes up premiums. Also, check whether you are covered if you are visiting your home country. Most provide 15-30 days of home coverage every three months.
Next, medical coverage is probably the most important element. Traditional travel policies generally only cover emergency medical treatment. But as a permanent traveler, you will probably want more comprehensive coverage including routine medical checkups, prescription medications, vaccinations, dental, etc. You can choose between all-in-one travel and medical insurance, and travel insurance with a separate global health insurance policy. You can read our complete guide to health insurance for digital nomads.
With these general bases covered, it is time to consider your specific situation:
- What level of medical and emergency evacuation coverage do you need? Are you traveling in a part of the world where healthcare is available and affordable? You may only need US$100,000 in medical coverage. If you are traveling in more remote parts of the world, you will want higher medical and emergency evacuation coverage.
- What level of coverage do you need for your possessions? If your laptop is lost, stolen, or broken, will this affect your livelihood? How quickly will you need a replacement?
- Do you enjoy sporting activities such as climbing and diving? These usually aren’t included in standard coverage, You need to purchase a premium plan or add-on to ensure you are covered.
- Do you have enough savings to get home in case of an emergency? Many digital nomads who didn’t have travel insurance were bitten by this during the pandemic. Not necessarily because they had COVID, but to avoid lockdowns and be with family.
Before shopping around for the right digital nomad insurance for you, make a checklist of must-haves.
Best Digital Nomad Insurance Providers
SafetyWing and Insured Nomads have 4.1 and 4.3 ratings respectively on Trustpilot, while World Nomads insurance has 3.3/5 reviews. SafetyWing offers monthly subscription-based insurance for digital nomads, while Insured Nomads and World Nomads both offer comprehensive insurance.
|4.1 / 5 out of 900+ reviews
|3.3 / 5 out of 2,400+ reviews
|4.3 / 5 out of 100+ reviews
|Insurance cost (for individuals under 40 y/o)
|Starting from US $45.08 per month
|Varies with the number of days of travel and destinations
|Varies with the number of days of travel
|Depends on your stated number travel of days
|Various policies, up to 364 days
|Up to US$250,000*
|Up to US$100,000*
|Up to US$2 million*
|Optional add-ons availability
|Yes, up to 3 options
|Coverage in Home Country
|30 days every 90 days abroad
|Depends on the availed plan
|A bit expensive
|Flexible, offers policies for different situations
|Get a Quote
|Get a Quote
|Get a Quote
Many insurance providers are now offering plans for digital nomads, but a few providers have emerged that are specifically focused on long-term travelers. They tend to offer the best plans because rather than adapting existing plans, they are optimized for digital nomads. Below are our three top picks for the best digital nomad insurance providers.
Safety Wing offers one of the most affordable combined travel and health insurance plans for digital nomads starting from just US$45 per month for under 40s. You can sign up anywhere in the world and it covers you for multiple countries, plus 30 days in your home country every 90 days. This is so important as something is just as likely to happen to you “back home” as anywhere, and for most digital nomads things like health insurance have expired.
Your monthly rolling coverage includes both emergency and routine medical coverage up to US$250,000, however, it doesn’t include things like routine check-ups, pre-existing conditions, and cancer treatment. It also includes trip interruption (if you need to go home for an emergency), unplanned overnight stays due to travel delays, protection for personal possessions, emergency evacuation due to political unrest, personal liability, and death.
For those wanting more comprehensive health coverage, you can upgrade to a Nomad Health plan, which provides up to US$1.5 million in coverage annual maximum and includes everything, such as routine dental care, eye exams and glasses, psychiatric treatment, etc for the premium plan and higher. It also includes full coverage in your home country.
World Nomads also provides very good coverage for digital nomads and is underwritten by Nationwide Mutual Insurance. The policies are for a maximum of 180 days, at which point you need to start a new policy. But you can apply from anywhere in the world, not just your home country. I once got caught out with a policy without this option and ended up traveling for three months without insurance.
The policy includes medical coverage up to US$100,000, but excludes pre-existing conditions and self-harm. It also includes trip cancellation, interruption, and delay, emergency evacuation and repatriation, baggage delays and loss, rental car damage, and more.
While World Nomads is comprehensive, it is quite a bit more expensive than Safety Wing. A person under 40 can expect a starting pay between US$100-150 per month for a multiple-country trip for 180 days.
Insured Nomads is a flexible provider that has a range of policies for different situations. It offers both individual policies and group health insurance policies for companies that employ remote workers around the world.
It has a number of different individual traveler policies. World Explorer is for extended trips, up to 364 days, starting from US$2.87 per day. World Explorer Multi is for people who make several trips throughout the year but return home regularly. World Explorer Hotspot is for people who know they will travel to conflict zones.
The World Explorer policy covers both medical and travel needs and stands out because it provides up to US$2 million in medical coverage. It also includes treatment for acute onset of an existing condition, but not general treatment of existing conditions. You are also covered in your home country for 15 days every three months. A person under 40 can expect to pay US$100-150 per month.
Find Your Policy
Just like looking for any kind of insurance, you will find the best policy by shopping around. When looking, you should have a list of your must-haves to hand so you don’t find yourself with a policy that doesn’t cover you for something essential. You should also have an idea of what you don’t need so that you don’t find yourself paying for bells and whistles that just don’t apply to your travel experience.