Why we recommend World Nomads travel insurance
21st January, 2004
Total reviews: 24
At least 113
Regular Travelfish readers will be aware that we've been long time fans of World Nomads. We use them every single time we travel away from home and while they're not the cheapest, having met the people behind the company, we've been of the firm opinion they're the best.
In all these years though, we've never had to make a claim -- until this week that is. Verdict? We were right -- they're excellent.
On a recent trip to Thailand and Burma, I woke in my Bangkok guesthouse to find that through the night I had scratched and ruptured a sty in my left eye. While still asleep, the eye became pus-filled, swelled up and sealed. This meant that when I woke up, not only did I look like I'd been hit with a cricket bat, I couldn't open my eye.
My super sexy 5am look.
Given I was supposed to be flying to Burma in a few days, I was less than enthused with the situation and so, at around 5am stumbled out onto the street and got a taxi to Bangkok's Samitivej hospital. Samitivej is a large private hospital and isn't cheap, but I've used them before and had no qualms about heading there.
I eventually saw an eye specialist, who cleaned up my eye and gave me a bag of blues and reds to combat the infection and the swelling and asked me to return in a few days to see how it was going.
I spent the next couple of days stumbling around in Bangkok, walking into poles on more than one occasion (yes two eyes are better than one) and when I returned to the hospital the doctor decided to operate on my eye to remove the sty. It was a thoroughly unpleasant undertaking, but only lasted about 15 minutes and my eye was patched up and she said I was good to go.
Two days later I was in Burma.
The total cost of the two treatments was 5,461 baht
Once back in Bali I decided to file a claim with World Nomads.
The process was very simple. On June 20 I logged into my account on World Nomads and filled out a few forms online where I explained what had happened and then I had to itemise each of the receipts (all of which I had kept).
The form noted I'd have to send originals of all the paperwork to the insurer's office in Switzerland which was a bit of a drag, and what I think was an automated response supported this. But after another eight hours I received a message back that included an email address I could email the docs to, so I immediately photographed the paperwork and emailed them all along with a couple of mugshots showing me with a bad case of cricket-bat-to-the-head-itis two hours after receiving this email.
Five days later I received a message from the insurer advising that my claim had been approved and that the payment (minus a US$100 excess as spelled out in the policy) would be paid into my bank within two weeks.
Yes the amounts concerned were small, but I found the claims system easy to use and the responses from the insurer prompt and helpful.
Given that a friend is currently in a far more serious situation and at the point of threatening legal action to get their travel insurance provider (not World Nomads) to fulfil their side of the bargain, my experience has only strengthened my resolve that World Nomads is a solid travel insurance company.
Some advice should you have a medical situation arise:
*) Keep all paperwork -- invoices, receipts for payment, credit card slips, appointment forms and so on;
*) If possible, take photos illustrating the problem (unless it is dysentery!);
*) File your claim as soon as possible so that all the details are fresh in your mind;
*) Have electronic copies of supporting documents like your air ticket in case you're asked for them.
You can read more about World Nomads on Travelfish here or visit their website direct to find out more.
Even if you decide World Nomads is not a good fit for you, make sure you are adequately insured before you travel - and read the fine print!
Please note if you purchase travel insurance with World Nomads via a link on Travelfish.org a commission may be payable to us.
#1 Posted: 25/6/2013 - 19:27
11th January, 2013
Total reviews: 4
I'm not happy with them at all. OK so my claim wasn't approved (they're all about the small print these insurances- I actually saved them money by opting to stay at a hotel next to the hospital, instead of at the hospital, for a 3 day recovery from typhoid fever, but of course only a hospital stay would have been reimbursed). What really puts me off them is that, if you terminate the insurance for any reason at all, (say you decide to return home early), they will not repay a cent of what you paid them! Other insurances, like STATravel, will pay back unused months- minus a 10 Euro fee. Also, having a question answered takes several emails to several people, or queries aren't answered at all- because of "holiday absence".... I find their style of communication sort of dehumanized too. Wish I'd chosen another insurance.
#2 Posted: 26/7/2013 - 06:07
12th February, 2006
Location United States
Total reviews: 47
At least 98
arcu's (first and only) post looks suspiciously like an ad for STATravel, doesn't it?
#3 Posted: 26/7/2013 - 12:18
19th June, 2008
Total reviews: 14
Indeed it does. It'd be great to hear from others who've filed claims with WN and other insurance companies. I've used both STA and WN at different times but have fortunately never had to claim with either (knock on wood).
#4 Posted: 26/7/2013 - 22:19
11th January, 2013
Total reviews: 4
I should have added a disclaimer! I'm not affiliated with them, and I just signed up with them, so I don't know if I'll have a better experience with STA (would prefer not to have an experience at all!) Wanted to ditch World Nomads after my first claim, because of, to put it mildly, unsatisfactory communication, but then realized I would not be reimbursed for the remaining months of my one year policy.
#5 Posted: 27/7/2013 - 03:22
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