Backpacker travel insurance

Compare backpacker insurance from just £18.40*

  • Find backpacker cover for up to 18 months

  • Help protect yourself against unexpected costs while travelling multiple countries

  • Compare some policies with covid cover

*The cheapest Backpackers policy is £18.40 (based on 1 adult aged 31, with no previous medical conditions travelling in Europe for up to 31 nights). Prices correct on the 28/03/2022.  

Covid-19 - Important information from 18th March 2022

The UK government has removed all COVID-19 international travel restrictions for all passengers. It's still important to check your destination's entry requirements for travelling there.

If you travel against the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) advice, you won't be covered by any travel insurance policy you buy.

What is backpacker travel insurance?

Backpacker insurance covers you for travelling to multiple countries on longer duration trips. This includes trips lasting from 1 to 18 months. You might be taking a gap year between school and university, or just taking a break to explore more of the world. Either way, a backpacker travel insurance policy will make sure you’re covered on your trip.

Backpacker insurance is different to an annual travel insurance policy, which covers you for unlimited trips over 12 months, but only for a maximum of 31 days per trip.

Do I need backpacker travel insurance?

If you’re planning on travelling for more than 31 days and visiting multiple countries, you should consider getting backpacker travel insurance

It’s best to research where you’re travelling to check how much cover you’ll need. Healthcare systems differ largely across the world. Checking a policy before you buy is the best way to make sure you’re covered for everything you’ll need while you’re away.

If you’re travelling around Europe, your level of medical cover has changed since the UK left the EU on 31st December 2020. You’ll still be covered by your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) as long as it’s valid. If yours has expired then you won’t have any cover in Europe. However, a replacement to the EHIC, the Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) is available and works in the same way as the EHIC. You can find out more about it on the NHS UK website.

It’s also advised that you get a backpacker travel insurance policy that includes medical cover. This could help to cover medical treatment or repatriation costs that aren’t covered by your EHIC, or the GHIC.

What does backpacker travel insurance cover?

Backpacker insurance covers all the things a regular travel insurance policy does. The main differences are your cover will be spread over a longer period and can include cover for multiple countries.

A good backpacker travel insurance policy should cover:

  • Medical treatment
  • Your personal belongings
  • Delays and cancellations
  • Accident, liability and legal expenses
  • Extreme and adventure sports

Medical treatment can be surprisingly expensive abroad, so your medical costs and return travel to the UK could be covered if you get ill or injured overseas.

Your personal belongings, money and travel documents could also be covered if they’re lost or stolen. Make sure you report a loss or theft within 24 hours and obtain a police report for proof. You’ll need it if you want to make a claim.

Delays and cancellations if your flights are postponed or if you’re forced to cancel your trip in an emergency.

Accident, liability and legal expenses which could be useful if you stumble into any trouble while abroad.

Extreme and adventure sports are covered as standard under some policies, but not all. It’s worth checking with your insurer to make sure you’ve got the right cover in place if you’re planning on doing these activities on your trip.

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How do I compare backpacker travel insurance quotes?

Getting a quote for backpacker travel insurance takes about 2 minutes and if you’ve used us before it’s even quicker.

  • To get you started, fill in our quote form. We just need a few details about you and your trip(s)
  • We’ll compare up to 52 travel insurance companies to help find you the best deal.
  • We’ll show you a list of quotes to choose from so you can choose the best backpacker insurance for your needs.

To help you find the right policy for you, when you get a quote we show ratings from the independent financial researcher, Defaqto, next to each company. So, you can make a better-informed decision, quickly.

Compare backpacker travel insurance quotes

What do I need to get a backpacker insurance quote?

To start comparing backpacker insurance quotes we’ll need to know a few details like your age and any existing medical conditions you may have. We’ll also need to know:

  • Where you’re going as you’ll need different cover for different continents and countries.
  • How long you’re going for, backpacker insurance can cover you for trips lasting up to 18 months.
  • What you’ll be doing, including any activities or volunteer work you have planned.
  • What you’re taking, such as any gadgets like a laptop or mobile phone you want extra cover for.

What impacts the cost of backpacker travel insurance?

The price you pay for backpacker insurance will vary depending on:

  • What countries you’re travelling to
  • Your age
  • How long you’re travelling for
  • Whether you want to add any extras to your policy (winter or extreme sports cover)
  • If you have a pre-existing medical condition

How much does backpacker travel insurance cost?

Here are a few examples of the average costs of backpacker insurance policies from destinations around the world1:

Destination Average premium for 12 months1
Europe
£114.75
Worldwide exc. US, Canada, Caribbean & Mexico
£212.12
Worldwide inc. US, Canada, Caribbean & Mexico
£231.21
Australia & New Zealand
£293.23

1. Confused.com travel insurance data – March 2021 to March 2022

Can I get backpacker travel insurance if I have a pre-existing medical condition?

If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you can still use our site to get a medical insurance quote. These conditions could include cancer, stroke, serious heart, respiratory and terminal conditions.

Some insurers may 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 find their directory of insurers on the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) website or you can phone them on 0800 138 7777 for free impartial advice.

What our travel insurance expert says

If you’re backpacking around the world, the last thing you want is to be left out of pocket if something unexpected happens. Get backpacker travel insurance in plenty of time and you can enjoy your trip knowing you’ve got all bases covered.
Jac Morris signature

Jac Morris

Travel insurance Product Executive

Need more help?

What's the best travel insurance for backpackers?

The best travel insurance for backpackers depends on the destination(s) you’re going, the level of cover you need and the length of time you want it for. We compare travel insurance from a range of insurers so you can find a policy that suits your needs and budget.

Do you have any extra advice for backpackers?

Here’s what you should think about before going travelling:

  • You might need a visa. Check the entry requirements for the countries you plan to visit. Some countries require visas on arrival so make sure you’re prepared with the right documents before you set off.
  • Remember vaccinations. As well as covid vaccinations check with your GP for any additional jabs you might need like yellow fever or rabies, you might need to get some well in advance of your trip.
  • Tell your bank you’re going overseas, if they flag any suspicious transactions they can block your card.
  • Contact your mobile phone provider to check on any overseas charges you might incur. Be careful using free WIFI abroad especially to carry out confidential or banking transactions.
  • Show respect to different countries that may have certain customs, research them before your trip and show respect.
  • Languages. It’s always polite to learn common phrases like “please” and “thank you” in the countries national language.

When should I buy backpacker travel insurance?

You should buy backpacker insurance as soon as you book your trip. This will help cover you for the unexpected, like flight or tour cancellations, medical costs and your personal possessions for the length of your trip.

Do I need backpacker insurance for interrailing?

If you’re interrailing around Europe for the summer, backpacker travel insurance will cover you for multiple countries over an extended period. It can provide peace of mind that if your belongings get lost or stolen you won't be out of pocket.

Do I need single trip travel insurance or backpacker insurance?

If you’re going away on one trip for no more than 31 days, a single trip policy should provide you with enough cover. If you’re planning on travelling for more than 31 days to multiple locations, then a backpacker policy will provide you with the appropriate level of cover for your trip.

Does backpacker insurance cover working abroad?

A backpacker insurance policy should cover you if you end up working on your trip, but not all policies do as standard. Check your policy details before you buy to make sure you’re covered.

What isn’t covered by backpacker travel insurance?

A backpacker insurance policy won't normally cover you for any of the following:

  • Failing to declare any pre-existing medical conditions
  • Travelling against FCDO advice
  • Failing to report any lost or stolen possessions in time
  • Any incidents that happen while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
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