Since I am immortal or at least think I am, the thought of buying travel insurance pre-departure hardly ever crosses my mind. And I would much rather invest in a good sleeping bag than drop a few hundred dollars on insurance.
However, looking back, there have been countless times when having some insurance could have saved me a great deal of pain and suffering.
For example, if I had been able to afford medical treatment when I was infected with gangrene in Israel, I wouldn’t of had to suffer the many nights of severe hallucinogenic fevers. And I wouldn’t of had to undergo the agonizing pain of having my foot bled at the hand of a schizophrenic South African and his fishing knife.
If I had had travel insurance, I could have been treated properly for my severe travelers diarrhea and avoided malnourishment and those relentless rashes.
If I had had travel insurance, I could have had my aching 18 cavities filled.
My point is, even if you think of yourself as a resilient and healthy person, with travel often comes unforeseen illnesses. So, if you’re an actual run away or a budget backpacker, you should definitely consider buying some travel insurance before you make your escape.
What kind of insurance do you need?
For starters, if you are on a budget, the main thing you want to make sure your travel insurance covers is health. Below is a short list of all things health wise that your travel insurance agency should provide.
-Emergency medical and dental up to at least 100,000$
-Emergency medical transport/evacuation up to at least $200,000
Other coverage options that you may want to consider:
-Trip cancellation in case of unforeseen interruptions to flights up to 3000$
-Baggage coverage in case of loss or theft up to 2000$
Once you have decided on your coverage plan, be sure to read the fine print. Find out exactly what you are buying. Also, be sure to take note of deductable costs. Remember, insurance companies are “for profit” organizations and profit best when they don’ t have to pay out. So again, read the fine print to ensure they pay out for you.
With so many travel insurance agencies out there, how do you know which one to buy?
The best way to determine the insurance company that’s right for you is to do your research. Use the list above and compare prices vs. coverage. Though it may be dull compared to your road romance fantasies, when the shit hits the propellers, you will be glad you took the time.
The Runaway Guide’s travel insurance of choice
One travel insurance agency that offers much of the coverage previously mentioned and at a price fit for a budget backpacker, is World Nomads travel insurance. World Nomads is recommended by many major travel websites, including Lonely Planet. And compared to other agencies, I have found it to be the most cost effective and comprehensive. Check out the link below for more information.