This is chapter 4 of a 15 part series about digital nomading and location independence. To see all of the other chapters, click here!
Traveling without health or travel insurance is risky for obvious reasons. Since travel insurance prices start at only $40/month, there isn’t a good reason to nomad without insurance.
When nomading, you have two basic options: travel insurance or international health insurance.
Travel Insurance vs. International Health Insurance for Digital Nomads
Travel insurance is much cheaper, but it only covers emergency medical assistance. Also, there are restrictions on U.S. coverage if you’re American. It does cover many things that traditional health insurance doesn’t, such as:
- Lost luggage
- Trip cancellations
- Emergency evacuations.
International Health Insurance is a much more expensive option, but it includes:
- Routine check-ups
- Ongoing care for existing conditions
- Broader U.S. coverage
Important Note: Standard U.S. health insurance plans usually provide limited coverage abroad. Make sure to read about coverage restrictions if you’re considering staying on your existing plan.
From my experience, healthcare costs in developing countries tend to be 5-10x cheaper than in the U.S.
The most popular travel insurance company in recent years has been WorldNomads. The most recommended company for nomads is an insurance startup built specifically for nomads, SafetyWing. This is my personal recommendation.
If you’re interested in international health insurance, I recommend checking out International Insurance to compare providers and options.
If you’re looking for a more detailed breakdown on travel insurance, then I recommend this article from NomadGate.