World Nomad's Travel Insurance - The Best?

Discussion in 'Trip Planning' started by NCK, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. NCK

    NCK Been here awhile

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    I've read just about every thread on this site and HU about comprehensive travel insurance and am having a tough time finding anything that is as complete as World Nomads for US citizen. I'm wondering if I'm missing something?

    One of the most consistent pieces of advice folks give is to have insurance to cover both your care, and any necessary evacuation from a country to a place to give you better care. There are many plans which offer evacuation coverage alone, and many plans that cover health-care back in the US. These plans together would make sense, but then again, World Nomads covers both in one package. They also cover motorcycling, a key hiccup in many coverages.

    Here is the detailed World Nomads Description of Coverage which I've read in full.

    I guess what's confusing to me is the following: This looks like a no brainier, and I can't seem to find anyone who competes with what this plan offers. If that's the case, why is there so many conflicting opinions about what to get? Am I missing something?

    :freaky

    Thanks!
    Nate
    #1
  2. acejones

    acejones Long timer

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    Are you looking for a policy to pay for treatment in Bad Breath Uganda, then pay to fly you home, then pay to treat you in the Great US of A ?
    #2
  3. Mark Manley

    Mark Manley On my way

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    Here is something about world nomad cover for motorcyclist is the US and it looks like they don't actually cover you, this topic has been discussed before there and it is not easy for US citizens to get cover and it is expensive as unlike cover for Brits, Canadians and other Europeans they can't just leave you in the hands of your relative health service when you get home.

    Sorry that is not more helpful.

    http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/staying-healthy-on-the-road/world-nomads-be-careful-54218
    #3
  4. Underboning

    Underboning Been here awhile

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    When we were getting ready for our RTW trip a few years ago, we looked at World Nomads and they did not cover riding your own motorcycle. We went with Patriot International which was one of the recommended companies on one of the BMW websites. The website is insuremytrip.com You can compare coverage from several different underwriters there. We never needed to use it, so I can't comment on the coverage. But somewhere on ADV is a report by an American rider who had coverage through them and was injured in Central America (IIRC) and he had a positive experience.

    As an aside, I see that your proposed RTW route includes India. I would read and heed other's experiences and recommendations before you get there - I wish I had. Good Luck!
    #4
  5. Mark Manley

    Mark Manley On my way

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    Wherever you go don't miss India, it will be one of the most memorable places on your trip, for a great many reasons.:eek1
    #5
  6. lightcycle

    lightcycle Nomad

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    World Nomad is underwritten by several insurance companies depending on where you live:

    http://www.worldnomads.com/insurers.aspx

    Some companies will cover motorcycle travel, others won't. In the US, it's underwritten by Travel Guard. Do your own due diligence with this company and its affiliates. When we Googled "Travel Guard", we weren't happy with the complaints that we found.
    #6
  7. Moto Mikey

    Moto Mikey Been here awhile

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    I'm going with IMG Insurance for my trip. They have great reviews and were cheaper (at least for me) than World Nomads. They also cover motorcycle riding.

    http://www.imglobal.com/index.aspx
    #7
  8. AndyT

    AndyT Been here awhile

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    In 2006, I looked at World Nomads for a trip to south america. At the time, they had an exclusion for motorcycle riding over 125cc ( I am American). Last fall I did a couple month trip to Guatemala, and found just what the OP had, no one else came close for the money, and no exclusion for motorcycles. I bought the policy, but never had to use it, so can't comment on claims.
    #8
  9. 0theories

    0theories Been here awhile

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    I currently have a World Nomads policy traveling through Central America. They cover you on a motorcycle (at least me, American). I've used them before for backpacking and they get great reviews on Travelfish (a southeast Asian travel forum). I've never had any issues so can't speak to how they actually treat your claim.
    #9
  10. duncanmac

    duncanmac Been here awhile

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    I cannot find a company that will provide travel insurance for my trip to the USA in July. The exception is a motorcycle with an engine capacity of less than 200cc's :rofl

    Anyone out there able to steer me in the right direction, please?
    #10
  11. Deuce

    Deuce Crazy Canuck

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    Have you tried your local Auto Association? :1drink
    #11
  12. duncanmac

    duncanmac Been here awhile

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    Yes, I have. The less than 200cc rule applies.....

    Some progress, though. I am in communication with Patriot and they do have an offering. I am busy wading through it. Or ploughing through it. Insurance lawyers are a different breed of human being.
    #12
  13. eightup

    eightup Been here awhile

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    Just got off the phone with World Nomad insurance, since online they list Motorcycling and Motorcycling (125cc), the representative said they do not cover anything over 125cc.
    #13
  14. troyfromtexas

    troyfromtexas Been here awhile

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    I could never get a strait answer from worldnomad if they cover moto travel. Sometimes it depends it you are on an organized tour vs independent travel. And as stated above, it may depend on the size of the bike. Strange.

    I ended up buying a worldnomad policy in case something happened. I did have an accident in Guatemala. I went to the hospital and they gave me inadequate care. They examined me and x-rayed me and told me that nothing was broken. They told me to rest for 2 weeks with my arm in a sling, then I it would be okay. I did so. The hospital did not charge me anything.

    Later I went to a different doctor at a private clinic because I felt that my shoulder was not normal. He told me that my shoulder was separated. When I tried to report and claim coverage from worldnomads, they indicated that I would not be covered because it was not an "emergency". That's right, they will cover you in an "emergency", but because I waited some time, they would not cover the costs. I would be wary of worldnomads.
    #14
  15. d_mob

    d_mob Been here awhile

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    On the phone with World Nomads as we speak...

    According to Grace and her supervisor Gail (they both work for Travel Guard, which is the company that underwrites World Nomad policies for US based plans), motorcycling (regardless of engine size) is covered from a medical perspective.

    The only things that would NOT be covered are as follows...

    + An accident on motorbike while drunk or under influence of other drugs
    + An accident on motorbike while racing or participating in a race event
    + Collision outside of rental car (meaning they won't cover collision on bike)

    Also, the policy says it won't cover baggage or personal effects loss while on motor vehicles (includes motorbikes). I'm assuming this means that if your camera is nicked out of your pannier, they won't cover it. BUT who is to say you have to mention it was in your pannier? :D

    I'm going with World Nomads for my 6-12 month trip departing from US to/through Central and South America leaving in December.

    Hope there are no issues, but I feel confident after speaking with them that I'll be covered. I recorded the call and have both their names stating that bikes are covered regardless of engine size, and if it is my bike vs rented for a day.
    #15
  16. d_mob

    d_mob Been here awhile

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    Upon further review, Global Medical Insurance seems to be the better option. Coverage is much more robust through their plan (Gold plan is probably what I'll go with).

    Here is a chat I just had with an operator from the site who answered a few questions for me... Might help others out with their decision.

    "Please wait for a site operator to respond.

    You are now chatting with 'jbarrios'

    jbarrios: Hello, how may I help you?
    David Mobley: Hello, I have several questions about an upcoming trip.
    David Mobley: I will be departing the USA for 6 - 12 months on my BMW F800GS motorbike to travel through Central and South America.
    David Mobley: The bike is mine and will be my primary mode of transportation. It is 800cc.
    David Mobley: Will your policies cover this?
    jbarrios: Which plan are you looking at?
    David Mobley: Assuming I am following rules in-country (i.e. not drinking and driving), not racing, etc?
    David Mobley: Looking at either Silver or Gold Global Medical Insurance plan
    jbarrios: Ok. Yes that is fine. As long as it's used as a mode of transportation, similar to a car.
    David Mobley: Correct. It would be my main mode of transportation for travel. Not used for anything else.
    jbarrios: Ok
    David Mobley: To clarify, it looks like you have to have 12 months of coverage with your company before qualifying or ANY mental insurance?
    David Mobley: So, nothing is covered for first 12 months. Probably not needed, but just curious.
    jbarrios: Correct
    David Mobley: Also, in emergency evac it says this under Gold... "Up to maximum limit - not subject to deductible or coinsurance"
    David Mobley: What is maximum limit?
    jbarrios: 5 million
    David Mobley: Also, none of the plans (except for platinum) include remote transport. What does that mean? I won't be evacuated from a remote area? What is a remote area?
    David Mobley: Final question, treatment inside US shows PPO network. Where do I find access to offered providers?
    jbarrios: In an event of a diagnosis of a critical medical condition which is not necessarily immediately life-threatening, but severe enough to result in death or a permanent disability if not treated right away, this benefit will provide for eligible charges arising out of the transportation of an insured person to a qualified medical facility for further treatment
    jbarrios: The US ppo network is First Health and their website is www.firsthealth.com"
    #16
  17. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    :scratch

    So you have to get the insurance 12 months prior to leaving because they don't cover anything for the first 12 months? That doesn't make any sense at all.

    Jamie
    #17
  18. d_mob

    d_mob Been here awhile

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    Most people who buy this type of insurance are expats who 're-up' year after year.

    Mental health is rarely covered by these types of plans, so having it at all is actually nice.

    What it means is, you aren't covered from a mental health perspective for the first 12 months, but if you continue coverage, then it kicks in (level dependent on what plan you go with / silver, gold, gold plus, etc).

    On a side note, I plan to go with the Gold plan for 12 mos. Since I'm quitting a job I'll need to get 'creditable coverage' while I'm away or risk not being able to get fresh insurance when I return for some time (gotta love the USA). This is the reason that I'm not going with the World Nomad package (not creditable).

    There were conflicting reports on whether the IMG Global Medical Insurance plan was creditable, but after hours of exhausting online research and speaking with an IMG representative today, they assured me that this plan is considered creditable and sent me a sample letter that will be used upon expiration of plan that I will give to future insurer. Another good thing about this plan is for a bit more money you can choose to not exclude US coverage, meaning that I'll be covered in US before I depart country and after I get back (assuming I'm not in the States for more than six months out of year).

    PS... On a side, side note, I'm not sure what Obamacare does with regards to creditable coverage beginning in Jan of 2014. That's on the list to research tomorrow. If it eliminates the need for creditable coverage then I will start comparing World Nomad plans again.
    #18
  19. d_mob

    d_mob Been here awhile

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    Also, who needs mental coverage??? Oh wait, everyone on this site likes to leave home for extended periods of time to travel incredible distances aboard a motorbike seeking adventure and fun. I guess we're all a little insane! :lol3
    #19
  20. d_mob

    d_mob Been here awhile

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    So, it looks like creditable coverage will be required until Jan 1, 2014. Act goes into place Jan 1, 2013, but letters of creditable coverage will be required for any new insurance signed prior to Jan 1, 2014. Confusing, yeah it is...

    Long story short, I'll be going with the Global Medical Insurance plan as opposed to World Nomads because it counts as preventative/creditable insurance and they provide a letter to future insurers (not much more expensive and better coverage overall anyway).

    I would go with World Nomads if my departure date was post Jan 1, 2014. Both cover motorcycles and riding as long as you aren't participating in an organized sporting event or race. And aren't drinking (of course).
    #20