Are you a digital nomad who gets to travel and work from anywhere? Yes? Read on. Do you have travel medical insurance? No? You’ll definitely want to continue reading. Travel is so unpredictable. Accidents and emergencies can and do happen. So, if something happens to you, you’ll want to make sure you’re covered.

The two most noteworthy providers of travel insurance for digital nomads are World Nomads and a relative newcomer to the market, SafetyWing. So who is SafetyWing and how do they compare to World Nomads travel insurance company? Here is their review. 

About SafetyWing Insurance

SafetyWing Insurance is “for nomads, by nomads” – primarily designed to meet the medical and travel needs faced by digital nomads and remote workers while they are outside of their home country. Their goal is simple- to build a global safety net for digital nomads and remote workers at an affordable cost. Even though safety wing is a rather new company, they are backed by one of the most solid insurance companies in the world, Tokio Marine.

SafetyWing Insurance

What Makes SafetyWing Travel Insurance Special

SafetyWing strives to offer a high-touch customer experience. And that level of service extends well beyond any claims or inquiries. SafetyWing is a real community builder. They want to develop strong social bonds by hosting events, both online and in-person. Hosting events in cities around the world it allows members to feel connected to each other. To create the experience of always having your village nearby, wherever you might be in the world. It is through this social connection, bridging like-minded people together to create this sense of community. Don’t you just love that?!

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Who is Using SafetyWing Travel Insurance

The biggest consumer for SafetyWing is digital nomads. Did you know that worldwide there are 35 million digital nomads in 2021? That is the fastest-growing global workforce trend. If you are a digital nomad, it means you are someone who works remotely and is frequently travelling from one place to the next. Facts about digital nomads:

  • 61% are married 
  • the average age is 32 years old
  • 70% of digital nomads work 40 hours per week (or less)
  • 80% of digital nomads stay in one place between 3 to 9 months and 66% stay in one place between 3 to 6 months
  • an average digital nomad salary is $119,423 a year

What is the best travel medical insurance for digital nomads?

It’s no secret that World Nomads Travel is a well-known travel insurance company. You might be wondering what’s the difference between the travel insurance plans for SafetyWing and World Nomads. Here’s the breakdown of both companies’ policies so you can determine which travel insurance company is best for you.  

mountain with backpack and coffee mug

SafetyWing vs. World Nomads Comparison

ItemSafetyWingWorld Nomads
Travel Insurance CostSafetyWing coverage starts at approximately $37+/4 weeks (for ages 10-39 years old, price increases 40+)World Nomads coverage starts at approximately $116+/month (2-tier plans)
Plan OptionsSuper simple – all coverage is offered in one planChoose from the Standard Plan or the Explorer Plan
Travel Insurance CoverageTravel delays out of your control (excl. missed flights) up to $5,000
No trip cancellation 
Only lost checked luggage is covered up to $3,000 (excl. electronics gear, see policy for details)
Worldwide coverage (excludes North Korea, Cuba, and Iran) 
Health insurance coverage for emergency medical expenses related to unexpected injuries and illnesses (includes dental emergencies, hospital stay, prescriptions, doctors, and emergency medical evacuation/extraction) AND, up to $250,000 (with $250 deductible)
Health coverage is not covered for existing medical conditions, like cancer treatment, routine checkups, preventative care 
Personal Liability Coverage = $10,000
Travel delays out of your control (incl. missed flights) up to $2,500
Trip cancellations up to $2,500
Lost checked luggage up to $1,000 and stolen/damaged gear (refer to the full policy for details) 
Worldwide coverage (excludes North Korea, Iran)
Health insurance coverage for emergency medical expenses related to unexpected injuries and illnesses (includes dental emergencies, hospital stay, prescriptions, doctors, and emergency medical evacuation/extraction) AND up to $100,000 
Health coverage is not covered for existing medical conditions, like cancer treatment, routine checkups, preventative care
Personal Liability Coverage = none
Customer Review4/5 stars
Company Review (by TrustPilot)
Review citing positive customer experience and quality for the low cost of insurance
You can view the SafetyWing reviews on TrustPilot and see how they got this rating
3/5 stars
Company Review (by TrustPilot) 
Review citing benefits of two-tiered plans, but at a high cost
You can view the World Nomads reviews on TrustPilot and see how they

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Click here to see the rates for SafetyWing

COVID-19 Travel Insurance

As of August 1, 2020, SafetyWing modified its policy to include COVID-19 travel insurance, whereas World Nomads does not.

Here’s Safetywing travel insurance coverage for COVID-19:

  • treats it like any other illness as long as it was not contracted before your coverage start date 
  • covers mandated quarantine period
  • testing for COVID-19 if deemed medically required

SafetyWing Insurance Review

SafetyWing is the ideal choice for those who need flexible medical insurance while travelling. Its coverage is intended for long-term travellers who don’t really need much in the way of trip interruption or cancellation coverage which makes it the best choice for nomad insurance. Think of SafetyWing as the Netflix or Spotify of travel insurance and remote health. It uses a subscription-based payment on a monthly basis. Complete flexibility that is easy and simple to use. 

What Sets SafetyWing Insurance Apart

  1. Extremely affordable. Let’s face it, price matters! It doesn’t matter if you are a student or a retiree or somewhere in between, we all want the best coverage at the best price. And, SafetyWing has the entire insurance industry beat – they offer the best coverage at its price point. 
  2. Worldwide and Home Coverage. They offer worldwide and home country coverage too. There is no other provider that does this. It includes 30 days for every 90 days of medical coverage in your home country (unless you’re a US citizen–then you get 15 days of coverage for every 90 days when you are back home).
  3. Free Coverage for Young Children. They offer free additional travel medical coverage for one child, age 14 days to 10 years, per paying adult in the family (up to 2 children). This is perfect for those families who love to travel. 
  4. Click here and find out how affordable SafetyWing Insurance really is

Where does SafetyWing Fall Short

Based on what SafetyWing covers the two biggest gaps are:

  1. High-risk adventure sports and activities are not covered by SafetyWing. World Nomads insurance may cover some under their Explorer Plan, but not all. The distinction here is extreme. Here are a few examples of what adventure activities are not covered by SafetyWing, heli-skiing, hang-gliding, kite surfing, and running with the bulls. Extreme right? So, for the average adventuresome traveller like me, you will still be covered. Refer to the full list of exclusions in the policy.  
  2. Electronics and gear coverage is not covered by SafetyWing (unless it is part of checked baggage) but is by World Nomads under their “Explorer” policy. It only makes sense to pay for this premium if you have professional and top-of-the-line photography equipment and gear.

Travel Insurance Tips

No matter which company you choose for traveller insurance, here are some practical tips.

  • Read the fine print carefully. Even when there is comprehensive coverage, know every detail. 
  • Find out what coverage you already have and determine what’s missing or where you might need extra coverage.
  • Know how the plan works, so that in the event of an illness or emergency, you already know what to do and follow their claim process.
  • Keep copies of all receipts and related information.
solo traveler on edge of mountain

Travel insurance is one of the most important things that you can purchase for any international travel. So, whether you are going for a week or a year-long trip around the world, it is something that you should consider very seriously.

As a holidaymaker…

Travel insurance is not exactly the most exciting part of trip planning. But buying travel insurance is an investment, it’s your safety net to guard against those unplanned events or accidents. Hopefully, you’re likely never ever to need it, but when you do, you will be so glad you did. Take the time, to research the different travel insurance companies, and choose the right one for you.

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  1. As Canadians, travel insurance is always an add on to a provincial plan. But we are considering a long term stay out of country and need to look at insurance products like SafetyWing to see if it meets these needs. Good to see how it compares to World Nomads. It would be interesting to see how each company has addressed Covid coverage.

    1. Thank you kindly for your comment. I am so happy that you find this helpful and will refer to this link when you are ready to get some travel insurance.

  2. Travel insurance is important indeed. Safetywings seems very effective. I liked your tips where you mentioned that it is really important to see how your insurance plan works so you know what to do during emergency, when it’s needed.

  3. We travel abroad so many times and never thought of getting such insurance. Of course, we had to spend more on many occasions when we got stuck or sick. Insurance from SafetyWing seems to be a good choice for the nomads out there. Thanks for the insights.

    1. Thank you for sharing your personal experience. I hope that SafetyWing Travel insurance gives you an affordable option in the future.

  4. I’ve read one or two other posts on SafetyWing but had no idea what their backstory was until now. I also like how you include who they work with (Tokio Marine). After reading your post, I’m even more likely to consider them for my next trip! It seems like they have the right idea for a different type of customer than Global Nomads.

    1. Thank you Kevin for your comment. I am glad that added a bit more information you already had about them and that you may consider them for your next travels. Yes, the back story is always important to me, it speaks volumes in terms of the customer experience and that is important when you are looking at differentiators.

  5. What a comprehensive guide. Thank you for sharing. I always get a random travel insurance for my travels and never really look at what’s included. Im disappointed that it doesn’t cover electronics however as drones are very expensive and definately needs cover.

    1. Hi Kristina, yes SafetyWing is exploring including electronics later this year as they look to revise their policy plan. Thank you for your comment.

  6. I recently purchased insurance through SafetyWing for my trip to London and it was extremely affordable. Thankfully my trip went smoothly and I didn’t have to fil any claims. I don’t have any children but it’s great that they cover up to 2 kids free of charge.

    1. That is great of you to share that you used SafetyWing Travel insurance for your last trip. Thankfully you didn’t have to file a claim, but likely were able to enjoy your trip knowing that if anything were to happen that you had great coverage at an affordable rate. Yes, the added bonus for families is that children are covered up to age 14.

  7. We are looking to go location independent in two years and leave the traditional cooperate coverage. All my friends say “What about medical coverage?!>>!!!!” (Did I get enough punctuation?) It looks like Safetywing ad 37$/month would totally work. We might be in the old people doing dangerous sports category, but those are just details. It’s hard to believe that so many people dread this concept when it’s solved by $500/year or so.

    1. Congratulations on your upcoming adventure! I am sure it will be everything you hope it will be, and more!
      When it’s time, hopefully you will remember SafetyWing as one of those companies you might check out to see if it meets your needs.
      Thank you for your comment.

  8. I love this post! I’ve considered World Nomads, so it’s nice to see a side-by-side comparison.

    1. Yes, World Nomads has dominated the market for so many years with very little competition, that is until SafetyWing came along.

  9. This is really helpful. I have been trying to work out what travel insurance to buy for our next trip. Back in the UK there are plenty of websites that help compare various insurance policies, but I didn’t find anything similar while I live in Canada. I’ll take a peek at Safety Wing.

    1. That’s great Josy! Yes, being Canadian also, I did a little digging on what coverage would be honoured here to see what medical centres would be offered as a point of reference, and only the well-known and reputable hospitals were listed. Thanks for your comment.

  10. Medical and travel coverage is essential for digital nomads who can expect the unexpected. SafetyWing looks like a great option with reasonable fees.

    1. Thank you Catherine for your comment. I completely agree with you and happy to share this alternative with others.

  11. Thanks for sharing! We never purchased other insurance as our credit card includes travel insurance if we used it! Do you advise in purchasing another insurance aside from cc coverage or if you have it already it’s enough?!

    1. Great question April! I have always relied on my credit card too, but having looked into it further realize it offers very limited coverage and only in certain circumstances. It is always best to read the fine print of the credit card’s policy to know what is and is not covered, that includes any travel insurance you may have with your employer as well.

  12. This looks like a fairly decent policy providing you don’t need trip cancellation which many nomads don’t cause they are already on the road. The other thing to check for is the altitude of where you are going. Make sure they cover you if you are hiking at a specific height. We ran into this when planning a trip recently.

    1. You are right Paula, always check the small details of the adventure activities. All policies will state inclusions and exclusions, especially on some of the higher risk activities like hiking, scuba diving, etc. They are clearly spelled out in SafetyWing’s policy. Thanks for your comment and sharing your travel advice.

  13. It’s good to see that there are more options available especially for a lower cost. It definitely pays to do your homework. Thanks for the comparison — that’s helpful.

  14. Travel insurance is so important. I would not consider going abroad without it. We usually just buy an annual policy and renew it every year. As skiers it is especially important to have mountain rescue cover and full medical cover. It sounds like Safetywing have all this covered. Insurance is one thing I do not mind paying for and hope I never need!

    1. Thanks for your comment Jane and sharing your experience with travel insurance. You may want to check out the cost of SafetyWing, it acts like a subscription so you can start and end it at any time, and that might be more cost effective than annual coverage. But you are right, read the fine print about skiing and mountain rescue. That is all spelled out in their policy of when it is and is not covered.

  15. Seriously considering this for our next trip out of the country, 3 months into Mexico starting January 1. Very affordable and no gaps for not an explorer!

    1. Thank you Carol for your comment. It takes a matter of a couple minutes to get a quote, and then you know what you need to budget for. Wow, 3 months in Mexico during winter sounds wonderful!

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