Worldwide travel insurance covers you if you’re travelling beyond Europe. It pays out for things like medical treatment, baggage and travel delays.

Finding the best worldwide travel insurance for your needs can give you peace of mind and financial security if something goes wrong. For example, if you had an accident and needed medical treatment, or if your baggage was lost or stolen, it could really help you out.

It’s more expensive than standard travel insurance. That’s because medical treatment around the world can be extremely expensive. This is especially true in countries where private healthcare is the only option.

When you’re looking for the best worldwide travel insurance for your needs, you’ll discover that there are several types to choose from.

Most insurers give you two options when it comes to worldwide travel insurance.

The first option is to include every country around the world. This is called worldwide travel insurance including the USA, Canada and the Caribbean. The second option is worldwide travel insurance excluding the USA, Canada and the Caribbean. This means you can travel to any country excluding the USA, Canada and the Caribbean.

Medical treatment in the USA, Canada and the Caribbean is particularly expensive. Insurance covering these areas costs more.

If you’re looking for the best travel insurance, worldwide cover that doesn’t exclude any countries is of course the ‘biggest and best’ in terms of scope. But, if you’re not travelling to those countries, then there’s no need to pay for something you don't need. Instead, you should find the policy that caters to your needs.

You also need to choose between single-trip insurance or annual insurance. This will depend on how many times you expect to travel in a year. If you’ll be going on two or more holidays, then annual insurance usually works out cheaper.

The best worldwide travel insurance is the one that best suits your needs. You can find the best worldwide travel insurance companies to cover you internationally by:

  • Finding policies that cover you worldwide

  • Deciding what level of cover you want

  • Picking a policy that offers the cover you need at the cheapest price.

The main types of cover you’ll get with worldwide travel insurance include:

  • Medical expenses: This covers your medical bills if you’re ill or injured on holiday. It can also cover the cost of getting you home in an emergency, plus added accommodation and travel costs. Cancellation and curtailment: This covers the cost of cancelling your trip if you can’t travel due to an emergency. It also covers you if you have to cut your trip short, e.g. if a relative dies. Here’s more about when cancellation cover will pay out.

  • Personal belongings and baggage: This covers accidental loss, theft or damage to your possessions. This includes your luggage. Check the single item limit and the maximum claim limit, to make sure your most expensive belongings are covered.

  • Lost passport: This covers any additional accommodation or travel costs you have to pay to replace your passport if it’s lost or stolen. Most policies will pay out between £250 and £500.

  • Delays: This covers extra expenses if your travel is delayed for more than 12 hours. For example, food, travel costs and accommodation. If your airline causes delays to your travel, you may also be able to claim compensation from them.

Here’s more about what travel insurance covers.

What’s not covered by even the best worldwide travel insurance?

Even the very best worldwide travel insurance has exclusions. These are the things you won’t be able to claim for.

These might include:

  • Pre-existing medical conditions. However, you might be able to arrange cover for these with your insurer

  • Travel to a destination which the government’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office has advised people not to travel to

  • Treatment for an illness you should have been vaccinated against

  • High risk sports and activities (unless you’ve arranged specific cover)

  • Claims arising from drug use, excessive alcohol intake, reckless behaviour, or illegal activities.

The price of worldwide travel insurance depends on several factors. These might include:

  • Your age

  • Whether you have pre-existing medical problems

  • Where you’re travelling (dangerous regions will cost more)

  • The length of your trip

  • Whether you want to include optional extras, e.g. cover for extreme sports.

The cost of worldwide travel insurance varies between providers, so shop around and find the best deal.

Here are 8 easy ways to cut the cost of your travel insurance

Some insurers will still offer you insurance if you have pre-existing medical conditions. You’ll pay more for your insurance policy if it covers these pre-existing medical conditions.

Other insurers will still offer insurance, but they won’t cover you for claims linked to your pre-existing conditions.

If you don’t need worldwide travel insurance, you could get European travel insurance. This specifically covers travel to Europe. Alternatively, you could get UK travel insurance to cover your UK trip.