Backpacker travel insurance

Compare backpacker policy features to make sure you are ready to travel and covered for the unexpected.

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When do you need backpacker travel insurance?

If you are going on a long trip, like travelling during your gap year, you will need specialist backpacker travel insurance.

This is because most single trip and annual policies will not offer a maximum trip length long enough to cover you.

What does backpacker insurance cover?

It will cover things like medical expenses and cancellation, but it will usually also include:

  • Longer trip duration: Many policies will cover you for up to 18 months of continuous travel.

  • Cover for several countries: You can visit any country in your selected area of travel during your trip. You can usually choose from Europe, Worldwide excluding USA, Canada and the Caribbean and Worldwide including USA, Canada and the Caribbean.

  • Activities cover: Some backpacker policies will cover certain extreme and adventure sports as standard. Not all do this so check the policy first as you may have to pay extra to cover the activities you want.

You can find out everything that travel insurance covers here.

Look out for exclusions

There some exclusions that you should look out for, like:

  • Age limit: Some backpacker policies have a much lower maximum age than normal travel policies, sometimes as low as 35 years old

  • Return home cover: If you plan to return to the UK during your trip it could invalidate some policies, but others will let you come home and restart your policy as soon as you leave

  • Pre-existing medical conditions: Not all policies cover certain medical problems, but you must declare any conditions you have when you apply for backpacker travel insurance

How to get the right backpacker policy

  • Look for policies that offer a long enough trip duration for your travels

  • Check it covers the activities you want to take part in

  • Look at the exclusions to make sure you are eligible for the policy

  • Compare quotes to find the cheapest price

You should also make sure the policy offers all the cover you need for things like medical expenses, baggage and cancellation.

Try these 8 ways to cut your travel insurance costs to help find the best deal

If you have a pre-existing condition, you can still get a quote through These conditions could include cancer, stroke, serious heart, respiratory and terminal conditions.

Some insurers might not cover you if you already have a serious medical condition, or if you have a number of conditions. Others might only offer insurance at a much higher price. If you're unable to find suitable cover, the Money and Pension Service (MaPS) has also set up a directory of insurers willing to cover customers with pre-existing medical conditions.

You can contact the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) or you can telephone 0800 138 7777.

Backpacker travel insurance FAQs

It depends on your policy, but most insurers allow trips of up 18 months, with some available for as long as two years.

Most countries, but some may not be covered if they are deemed dangerous by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO).

Yes, you will be covered to visit any country covered by your policy during your trip. You will need to choose what area of the world you will be visiting.

Yes, but it varies; the maximum age can range from 35 to over 90, and the minimum is often 18 years old but some offer cover to those aged 16.

Yes, but it can be more expensive and not all insurers will cover you. This guide explains how to find travel insurance with pre-existing conditions.

The best way to get the cheapest deal is to shop around for quotes. You can also try these 8 ways to cut your travel insurance costs.

Last updated: 13 October, 2021

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