Traveler's insurance should be a part of every backpacker's repertoire. Basic medical care in many countries, although cheap, can easily set you back thousands of dollars. Besides medical care, travel insurance can back you up with trip cancelations, lost luggage, and personal liability.
The travel insurance programs listed below have been selected based on reputation, longevity, benefit set, and independent scores by leading underwriting evaluators. For more information, visit their websites for complete up-to-date fine print.
World Nomad – Positioning itself as the go-to travel insurance for "independent and adventurous travelers," the company has a solid track record. They have an extensive list of activities, or "adventures", they cover. Street skateboarding is included, while snow rafting and quad biking are not. Its basic package benefits with the following coverage amounts: $5000 for trip cancellation, $100,000 for emergency medical and dental, $500,000 for emergency medical transportation, $10,000 for travel accident, and $2500 in baggage coverage. This coverage is available for as low as $63 per week for international travel outside of the United States.
Travel Guard – Travel Guard comes armed with an A rating by Underwriters' AM Best and an A rating from Insurer's BBB for good reason. Its flagship coverage, the Gold Plan, offers trip cancellation and up to 150% of trip cost benefits due to trip interruption.
Global Travel Shield – Global Travel Shield by American Express has been in business since 1850 with an Underwriters’ AM Best rating of A and an Insurer’s BBB Rating of A+. They are best known for four comprehensive packages varying in coverage amounts. Its basic plan, the Standard, offers up to $20,000 for emergency med and dental and up to $1000 for trip cancellation. Quotes are based on age and covered trip cost per person.
Travel Insured International – This leader is armed with an "A" Underwriters' AM Best rating and an A+ from the Insurer's BBB.