Backpacker Travel Insurance – The Essential Guide

Choosing travel insurance for backpacking can be daunting if you lack the time to thoroughly read the complete policy document and if you’re not well-versed in legal jargon, as it becomes challenging to determine your coverage.

To save you from the stress of trawling through review sites, we have carefully selected the most recommended travel insurance companies for backpackers in our community. Bring the brains of our community with you!

This site offers a great way for you to find links through which you can buy/book without incurring any additional costs. Please note that this article includes affiliate links.

Purchase travel insurance for endorsement purposes, not solely for informational purposes. Please note that this does not serve as an endorsement of World Nomads. If you obtain a quote from World Nomads through the provided links, we earn a commission as an affiliate.

Popular Backpacker Travel Insurance Providers: Quick Answers!


Tailored for individuals who engage in extended periods of travel.

  • Available worldwide.
  • Emphasize healthcare coverage.
  • Monthly subscription that rolls over.
  • No need to provide a return date.
  • Include scuba diving and motorcycle riding.
  • Please refer to the complete policy wording for all the specific information.
  • World Nomads

    Insurance Crafted by Travelers for Travelers.

  • World Nomads travel insurance policies provide coverage for over 150 different activities.
  • Obtain a quotation, assert a request, or purchase or prolong your policy while traveling.
  • Please refer to the complete policy wording for all the specific information.
  • True Traveller

    European Travel Insurance.

  • Only provides insurance for travelers originating from Europe.
  • Protective gear for scuba diving and motorcycle riding.
  • Extra activity bundles are accessible.
  • Please refer to the complete policy wording for all the specific information.
  • Yes, you definitely require travel insurance if you plan on going backpacking. Traveling without insurance is a risky endeavor!

    If something goes awry, which is highly likely if you travel frequently, it is crucial to be aware that you are safeguarded. However, the entire insurance sector can be deceptive, perplexing, and costly. Opting for backpacking travel insurance can be quite bothersome, I understand.

    Man worried about travel insurance.
    Navigating travel insurance is stressful but worth the anguish!

    Your savings will not be sufficient. Your insurance policy will provide coverage for this. In various regions across the globe, an unpleasant infection, fractured bone, or even more severe injuries could result in a substantial financial setback amounting to tens of thousands of dollars. Nevertheless, insurance remains superior in terms of protection. Like numerous backpackers I am acquainted with, setting aside a few thousand dollars for unforeseen circumstances is commendable.

    If you leave your home without travel insurance, you are risking not only your entire savings but also those of your friends and family.

    Not Convinced?

    I would like to inform my mother about this article, which discusses an uninsured 24-year-old traveler who was left with a medical bill of GBP £35,000 after being involved in a motorbike accident in Phuket. Please read this article!

    Related: (opens in new tab)

  • Review of SafetyWing Backpacker Insurance.
  • Plan Your Journey To Southeast Asia.
  • When is the optimal time to obtain travel insurance?
  • Is Backpacker Insurance Different From Travel Insurance?

    When referring to insurance for long-term travel, they’re talking about a type of insurance designed specifically for backpackers or travelers who are going to multiple countries in a year.

    In this case, a typical travel insurance company will demand a significant amount of money, and while you can obtain coverage for lengthier journeys, standard travel insurance is primarily designed for brief single trips.

    It should be mentioned that when traveling, different insurance companies provide different levels of coverage for activities. While a standard travel insurance provider may not cover you for riding a moped or going diving, a backpacker insurance firm is likely to provide coverage, albeit with some conditions. It is important to note that insurers vary in their coverage options for activities during travel.

    The same applies to luggage protection and frequently to coverage for transportation delays or cancellations.

    It is unlikely that you will find a backpacker insurance policy that offers as much baggage cover as a standard travel insurance company, which tends to cover for a longer period.

    Similarly, numerous providers of backpacker insurance will not provide coverage for missed transportation if the responsibility lies with you.

    What Travel Insurance SHOULD Cover

    Thoroughly examine the information provided regarding the subsequent five aspects: ensure that you go through the details of coverage as described by the travel insurance company you are contemplating.

    1. Medical and Hospital Cover

    You simply want to consider the finest accessible healthcare facilities. If you happen to stay overnight in a hospital or require medication, you don’t want to stress over the expenses of treatment. Additionally, there is always a non-zero chance that you may have an accident or fall ill while traveling.

    Doctor performing an operation.
    Good medical cover is an absolute must!

    Within a short period, it is effortless to accumulate a substantial amount of money owed and high-quality global medical facilities, equipped with doctors fluent in English, are costly in many regions around the globe!

    Ensure that your travel insurance provides adequate medical and hospital coverage!

    Eyes and Teeth

    Carefully review the terms and conditions of the policy! Although not always guaranteed, insurance companies may sometimes provide coverage for dental and vision expenses. Travel insurers often use the term ‘medical cover’ to refer specifically to your teeth and eyes, which they consider separate from the rest of your body. This is the part of the policy where the fine details become intricate.

    2. Emergency Evacuation

    You will need to be covered by your insurer in order to receive the treatment required for being rescued from the deep jungle or a remote mountain after breaking your leg, which could cost thousands of dollars in evacuation expenses.

    Don’t take the risk of getting insufficient insurance that won’t offer enough protection, particularly if you plan on trekking or participating in adventurous activities!

    Helicopter in the mountains.
    You’ll regret not having good evacuation cover if you get hurt up here!

    3. Repatriation

    It is not your decision to make. It’s worth noting that the choice of whether to send you home or keep you in the hands of the company’s insurance and doctors is not in your control. If you are seriously ill or injured and it may be best for your treatment to return home, you should consider the option. Your travel insurance should cover the cost of repatriation in case of an emergency while you are away from home.

    Plane Flying
    Make sure repatriation cover is included!

    In the event of a worst-case scenario, comprehensive repatriation coverage will guarantee the transportation of your remains to your home country, while also providing financial protection for your journey back for medical care.

    4. Cancellations, Missed Transport and Delays

    Travel insurance is one of the most useful facets of covering trip disruptions, hotel closures, and flight cancellations, as it allows you to be reimbursed for these expenses.

    If it’s not your fault, they will likely cover it, but they won’t offer coverage if you miss your flight or sleep in. For example, if it’s not your fault, they will likely cover it, but in case of a natural disaster, accident, sickness, etc., They will likely cover it. However, backpacker insurance tends not to cover you if the disruptions are your fault.

    Hotel Closed sign.
    Travel insurance sometimes covers you for hotels closing down or tours that get cancelled!

    Always review your policy language to determine what is and is not included in terms of cancellations, missed transportation, and delays.

    It is worth noting that the airline has the responsibility to reimburse or compensate you for the delay if your flight is significantly delayed.

    5. Personal Liability / Legal Fees

    When traveling, personal liability insurance is primarily utilized for incidents involving motor vehicle collisions. It guarantees that you will receive financial assistance and reparations if an accident is determined to be caused by you. There is always the possibility of causing harm to someone’s belongings, inflicting injuries upon others, or even leading to their demise.

    The roads in Hanoi Vietnam are carazy!
    The world is unpredictable, personal liability cover will help cover you for an incident that’s your fault!

    What Most Travel Insurers DON’T Cover

    The list of what travel insurance providers do not cover is typically longer than the list of what they do. It is always important to carefully review your coverage description to understand precisely what you are not protected against. Additionally, if you require additional coverage, it might be feasible to enhance your policy.

    1. Belongings

    The tablet or phone, laptop that you own is covered near nowhere to its full value. However, there is a stipulation in the coverage description that only a single item can be covered, with a maximum value of $250USD. It may sound great to have your belongings covered for up to $2000USD, but it is rarely adequate. Almost all backpacker insurance policies include some kind of baggage coverage.

    If you happen to misplace a bag containing your MacBook, along with the worth of the other missing belongings, the reimbursement for the MacBook alone would be limited to $250 USD.

    Working outdoors
    Travelling with an expensive laptop? Make sure it’s covered!

    TIP – Keep an eye out for the Single Item Cover Limit in your policy wording!

    You’ll need the original receipts for any items you want to insure, but be aware that you can often get separate policies or upgrades to include more expensive items.

    2. Motorbike Accidents

    Many basic travel insurance companies do not offer any coverage for the utilization of motorcycles – irrespective of whether you are a passenger or an operator.

    In your country of residence, as well as the foreign country you are visiting, travel insurance companies frequently offer coverage, but only if you possess an International Driving Permit and abide by the laws regarding motorcycle riding.

    However, even this comes with regulations and conditions.

    Motorbiking Mai Chau Valley, Vietnam.
    Make sure you’re legal to ride and have the correct safety equipment when on a motorcycle!

    If you are experiencing the effects of alcohol or narcotics, it is evident that you will not receive coverage. In the event of an accident involving a passenger whom you are not authorized to transport, your coverage will be invalidated. You shall only receive coverage if you are wearing a helmet.

    3. Extreme / Adventure Sports

    If you plan to take part in adventure sports such as diving, rafting, bungee jumping, skydiving, backpacking, mountain biking, rock climbing, kayaking, etc., Make sure to check that your travel insurance covers them.

    Although numerous travel insurances offer coverage for a range of basic pursuits, further extras or bundles might be required for more daring undertakings.

    Tim at Death Road
    Make sure you’re covered before taking on anything too dangerous!

    Always check what is included in the package if you are considering upgrading your sports adventure. Due to the geography of South America, this rule will apply to many of the best hikes and other adventure activities on the continent. It is important to be aware that many travel insurance companies do not cover activities over 3000m for backpackers in South America.

    4. Diving

    With such incredible marine life, diving becomes an essential activity in Southeast Asia. However, ensure that you are adequately insured if you intend to dive. Additionally, verify the depth limit and number of dives covered by your insurance policy.

    Diving in Gili T
    Don’t chase that turtle too deep, or you may no longer be insured!

    5. Negligence

    If an insurance company can find fault with you to evade payment, they will do so. It is advisable to ensure that you have not left the keys in the ignition, as otherwise, you will have no chance of making a successful claim if your motorbike is stolen.

    ? Learn More: How To Successfully File a Travel Insurance Claim ?

    6. Any Illegal Activity and/or Drunkenness

    If you were involved in any illegal activity at the time of your accident or injury, insurance coverage will not be provided to you.

    It doesn’t matter what happened if you’re drunk or under the influence of any kind of drugs, including Pedro San or Ayahuasca as well as other plant medicines, you won’t be held responsible.

    Backpackers with buckets onKhao San Road
    Too many ‘buckets’ and your insurance will be void for the night!

    7. Missed Flights

    Whose fault was it, the missed departure and the extent of coverage, depends on various regulations that numerous travel insurance companies follow. When it comes to travel insurance, whether you can receive compensation for missing a flight is a situation that lacks clarity.

    These typically encompass any of these! However, backpacker insurance does not, therefore it is essential to thoroughly review your policy. Medical issues, social turmoil, environmental catastrophes, or a transportation mishap might serve as grounds for your insurance coverage in the event of a missed flight. In simple terms, you are protected.

    Flight cover is complex. You might be covered. You might not. Read the small print!

    Insurance for your travel is not provided if the flight is missed due to mechanical failure and/or airline delays that are not the fault of the insured.

    8. Pre-existing Medical Conditions

    If you have a pre-existing medical condition, most travel insurers will not cover you for missing a part of your trip or flight due to standard medical conditions. Similarly, if you have a medical emergency related to your pre-existing condition, you will not be covered.

    Existing conditions encompass mild to severe illnesses; ranging from asthma to ME.

    Check out:.

    “Traveling With Prescription Medication – What You Should Be Aware of – Travel Insurance for Pre-existing Medical Conditions”

    9. Trekking at Over 3,000 Metres

    If you are planning to visit a place like Nepal or South America, where activities like trekking are popular, it is important to keep in mind that most travel insurers do not usually cover activities that are undertaken at an altitude above 3,000 meters above sea level, especially when deciding on the best insurance policy.

    Man with collapsible daypack hikes to mountain
    Trek too high and your cover is likely void!

    10. Government Travel Advisories.

    Prior to your journey, it is prudent to conduct a thorough examination of this matter. In the event that you visit a nation subject to governmental sanctions, you might discover that your insurance coverage is also rendered ineffective. Furthermore, if you decide to travel to a country against the counsel provided by your government, the majority of travel insurance policies will be null and void.

    11. Vaccinations.

    Seldom discussed is the expense of typical travel immunizations, whether you obtain them prior to your trip (advised) or during your time abroad. Take a moment to learn more about the necessary immunizations for traveling in Southeast Asia.

    Travel Vaccinations for Southeast Asia
    Vaccines won’t be covered. You’ll need to fork out for those yourself!

    TOP 3 Most Popular Backpacking Insurance Companies With Our Readers!

    1. World Nomads

    World Nomads Logo


    Although the words were not written by us, we have faith in the authenticity of the following statements. Please be reassured that we are bound by certain restrictions in this particular situation. On the pages of this website, our readers anticipate discovering original content that is unaffected by external influences. We acknowledge that it would have been impossible to compose this article truthfully without incorporating World Nomads. The World Nomads brand is consistently recommended by travelers in our Facebook Community. We received these statements directly from World Nomads, and therefore, the subsequent bullet points do not originate from us. When discussing World Nomads, we are solely allowed to employ the company’s officially approved phrasing in accordance with the content guidelines of the insurer and the insurance regulators.

  • Nomads World travel insurance has been designed to provide coverage for more than 150 activities, as well as for trip cancellations, lost luggage, and medical emergencies, catering to the needs of travelers.
  • Nomads World has been protecting independent and inspiring travelers since 2002 by offering flexible and straightforward travel safety advice and insurance to help you confidently travel.
  • By pushing the limits, the objective of World Nomads is to assist and inspire explorers. To assist you in traveling with assurance, they provide uncomplicated and adaptable travel insurance as well as safety guidance.
  • Jaimee, the Reader, had this to say and make a claim with World Nomads: “I had to make a claim, it wasn’t unpleasant. World Nomads provide you with the chance to include costly items that you bring along. I’m happy I did that because I damaged my camera. They reimbursed me the full amount I paid for the camera – except for the excess.” They paid out the full value I paid for the camera, except for the excess. I damaged my camera because I’m glad I did that. You bring along expensive items to include for the opportunity that World Nomads provide. It wasn’t unpleasant, I had to make a claim.

    I made a claim with World Nomads and it was as simple as counting 1-2-3! I utilized a PDF application on my smartphone to transmit images of all my receipts, submitted my claim online, and received complete reimbursement of 100%! (The claim was for a sequence of rabies vaccinations). Nicole Lang.

    World Nomads

    World Nomads

    Nomads World travel insurance has been specifically designed to provide coverage for more than 150 activities, as well as for situations such as trip cancellations, lost luggage, and medical emergencies, catering to the needs of travelers.

    2. SafetyWing – Best for Long-Term Travellers and Digital Nomads (Worldwide)

  • Covered nationalities: All countries except: Iran, North Korea, and Cuba.
  • Maximum duration of stay: 364 days.
  • Motorcycle utilization: Yes, refer to the specifics.
  • Diving included: Yes, please refer to the specifics.
  • Muay Thai Cover: None.
  • Death Road Bike Tour Coverage: Yes, please refer to the specifics.
  • Accessible if you are already overseas: Yes.
  • Do you need a round trip ticket? No.
  • SafetyWing Logo

    Benefits of SafetyWing Travel Insurance

  • SafetyWing is built for digital nomads and remote workers who are travelling and living outside of their home country for long periods.
  • Their payment system operates on a monthly membership basis. It’s ideal for impromptu explorers without fixed itineraries.
  • You can purchase insurance while already traveling and do not require a return flight reservation.
  • Even if you’re currently overseas, you have the option to acquire an additional subscription once this timeframe expires. The maximum duration for which you can obtain insurance coverage is 364 days.
  • SafetyWing focuses on offering medical insurance. Nevertheless, their coverage for travel interruption or personal possessions is not as thorough as that of other insurance companies.
  • If you possess PADI certification (18 metres), or if you are accompanied by a certified dive instructor at depths below 10 metres, you will be provided coverage for scuba diving.
  • SafetyWing does not provide coverage for cycle touring or journeys where cycling is the main means of transportation, except for one-time activities. SafetyWing does provide coverage for cycling, such as riding on Bolivia’s Death Road.
  • If you are participating in a race or under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it goes without saying that you will not receive coverage. However, if you possess an International Driving Permit (IDP) and have the necessary safety gear, you are eligible for insurance while riding a motorcycle (with the exception of motorized dirt bikes).
  • SafetyWing does not provide coverage for martial arts, including Muay Thai.
  • SafetyWing


  • Exceptional healthcare coverage.
  • Designed for digital nomads and individuals who travel for extended periods.
  • Pay a monthly fee for subscription-based insurance.
  • 3. True Traveller – Great Value for Money Backpacker Insurance for Europeans (Europe)

  • Nationalities included: European.
  • Maximum duration of stay: 18 months.
  • Motorcycle utilization: Yes, refer to the specifics.
  • Diving included: Yes, please refer to the specifics.
  • Muay Thai Cover: Training exclusively.
  • Death Road Bicycle Excursion Cover: None.
  • Accessible if you are already overseas: Yes.
  • Do you need a round trip ticket? No.
  • True Traveller Logo

    Benefits of True Traveller Travel Insurance

  • There is a wide range of options available from this insurance company. Your tailor can customize an insurance package that suits you best. One of the best things about this insurance company is the variety of options it offers.
  • They provide single-journey or multi-journey packages that offer excellent affordability.
  • Their policies include a total of 92 activities as standard.
  • For those individuals who enjoy spending time at the beach, the cost is minimized through the acquisition of extra activity bundles, which are accessible to the most daring explorers. (Take a look at the ‘Adventure Pack’, the ‘Extreme Pack’ or the ‘Ultimate Pack’).
  • If you meet the requirements, the pricier policies provide coverage for dives of up to 50 meters. However, if you are already a certified diver, scuba diving up to 18 meters is included as part of the standard policy.
  • The basic True Traveller activity pack will include coverage for riding motorcycles up to, and including, 125cc. In your home country, it is mandatory to wear a helmet and have a license when riding a motorcycle. If you choose to ride a motorcycle, True Traveller will not provide Accidental Disability Cover or Personal Liability Cover. Furthermore, if a motorcycle is your primary mode of transportation or if you are on a motorcycle tour, True Traveller will not offer any coverage.
  • Similar to the rest on this roster, you have the option to obtain this travel insurance while you are already overseas.
  • You do not require a round-trip ticket and you have the flexibility to extend your stay while traveling.
  • True Traveller provides coverage for non-contact Muay Thai training in their Traveller Pack.
  • One of our readers Gemma says, “True Adventurer are exceptional! I’ve made 4x claims and they have consistently been fantastic!”.

    True Traveller

    True Traveller

  • Customize the insurance to fit your needs.
  • Encompasses a variety of “backpacker” pursuits.
  • Extra packages are offered for more adventurous activities.
  • Other Popular Travel Insurers for Backpackers

    Faye Travel Insurance

    Before you often need to spend your own money to cover the initial costs of claimable expenses, claims are quickly paid into your Wallet Faye’s. Faye’s app-based interface makes it easy to set up a claimable system, which is a recent entry into the Fin-Tech and travel insurance space.

    The company offers a wide range of coverage choices, and their policies can be customized to include everything from exciting pursuits to pet insurance.

    Faye experiences some downsides as the trips she takes, which are only insured for residents of the US and do not cover trips longer than 180 days, are not provided by the cheapest insurer.


    Heymondo is a travel insurance broker that offers a range of works with insured. This allows them to tailor the best cover for your specific trip and circumstances. Even if you are already abroad and need coverage without having to return home, they offer the ability to take out additional cover.

    If necessary, they have the ability to offer additional protection for items such as electronic devices or extreme sports activities. The process of filing a claim can be completed either through their mobile application or by calling their customer service at any time of the day. They offer clear and upfront pricing.

    If you are over 49 years old, Heymondo is the maximum age limit for travel insurance. If you are in your 50s and planning to travel, you will need to look elsewhere.

    PassportCard Nomads

    PassportCard Nomads provide a distinctive approach for individuals who are traveling and managing medical expenses. Instead of personally covering the cost of treatment, PassportCard Nomads offer a prepaid debit card to pay for all medical services. Once you leave the hospital, you can easily request the reimbursement to be transferred to your card by using their app.

    PassportCard Nomads is designed to cater to the requirements of digital nomads and long-term travelers. In contrast to other backpacker insurance options, their medical coverage is exceptional but comes at a higher cost.

    Travel Insurance FAQs

    Which travel insurance for backpackers is most popular?

    The most popular travel insurance providers among our readers are SafetyWing and World Nomads.

    Nomads World offers travel insurance for adventurous families and independent travelers. Their general travel insurance policies also cover loss of luggage, but they specialize predominantly in providing medical coverage. SafetyWing is a subscription-based service that renews every month.

    Why get travel insurance?

    Travel coverage is consistently a wise decision! Whether it’s for your personal tranquility or your loved ones’, it provides protection for a variety of situations, minimizing the possibility of receiving insufficient healthcare or being unable to come back home. If you engage in journeys, acquiring travel insurance is recommended.

    Does travel insurance cover business travel?

    Not typically suitable for business travel, regular travel insurance isn’t usually sufficient. The most advisable course of action is to inform the insurance company that you are traveling for business purposes, so they can suggest the appropriate extent of coverage.

    Travel Insurance: The Verdict!

    We strongly advise purchasing travel insurance. Although we cannot compel you to purchase travel insurance, there is a well-known saying; ‘if you lack the financial means to acquire travel insurance, it indicates that you lack the financial means to go on a trip’.

    I have never met anyone who regretted buying travel insurance. Choosing not to is a massive gamble. It is not worth risking ending up in a dirty hospital with an infection or having to cut short a six-month trip. Don’t let it happen to you. It may seem like a lot of money, but it’s worth the investment of time and money, just like a few hundred dollars.

    Have we missed your favorite travel insurer? Let us know in the comments!Output: Did we overlook your preferred travel insurance provider? Inform us in the comments section!