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5 Best Cheap Travel Insurance in 2024 (plus DISCOUNTS)

When traveling abroad, get a policy from one of the best travel insurance companies. You can get a 5% discount on Heymondo, the only insurance that pays medical bills upfront for you, HERE! 

If you’re taking a trip and looking for the best cheap travel insurance, you’ve come to the right place. Travel insurance may not be the most exciting topic, but it’s an essential part of planning a trip, so make sure you don’t leave home without it!

Besides, you can find affordable travel insurance for all types of budgets, so rest assured that you can get great coverage without spending a lot of money. In this guide, I’ll share the 5 cheapest international travel insurance companies to help you find the perfect fit for your trip needs.

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5 Best cheap travel insurance in 2024

I will say upfront that we use Heymondo for all our trips. It’s one of the best travel insurance companies out there, offering tons of coverage and competitive prices. Plus, Heymondo is the only provider that pays your medical expenses upfront, so you don’t have to pay out of pocket and file a claim for reimbursement. Plus, you can get a 5% Heymondo discount just for being a Capture the Atlas reader.

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5% OFF your travel insurance

Of course, there are other great options, such as SafetyWing, a cheap travel medical insurance that’s perfect for those on a tight budget who don’t mind having a deductible. Keep reading to see all the best options, compare prices, and see what inexpensive travel insurance should include.

Top 5 cheap travel insurance companies in 2024

In this guide, you’ll find the 5 best cheap travel insurance companies of 2024, so I’m sure you’ll find an option that’s perfect for you. To sum up, these are my top 5 recommendations:

  1. Heymondo, the best cheap travel insurance company
  2. SafetyWing, the best medical-only cheap travel insurance
  3. IMG, the best budget travel insurance for seniors
  4. Trawick International, a cheap travel insurance for pre-existing conditions
  5. Travelex, a cheap travel insurance for families

Keep reading to learn more about each company, including its prices, coverage limits, and other benefits, as well as a chart comparing the cheapest travel insurance policies.

Best cheap travel insurance price comparison

Before I get into details about each of these cheap travel insurance companies, I want to give you an overview of their prices and benefits. This chart will let you see each provider’s price per person, deductible, and coverage limits at a glance.

For this cheap travel insurance comparison, I used the example of a 30-year-old traveler from Canada who was going to Costa Rica for one week with a trip cost of $2,500. I also chose the most affordable plan for each company:

HEYMONDO TOP

SAFETYWING NOMAD INSURANCE

IMG GLOBAL ITRAVELINSURED LITE

TRAWICK INTERNATIONAL SAFE TRAVELS

TRAVELEX MEDICAL-ONLY

Price

$28.11

$11.27

$69

$23.94

$36

Deductible

$0

$250

$0

$0

$0

Medical Expenses Paid Upfront

Yes

No

No

No

No

Emergency Medical Expenses

$5,000,000

$250,000

$100,000

$250,000

$5,000,000

Evacuation & Repatriation

$500,000

$100,000

$250,000

$2,000,000

$5,000,000

Trip Cancellation

$3,500

Not covered

100% of $2,500*

Not covered

N/A

Trip Interruption

$2,500

$5,000

125% of $2,500*

$7,500

N/A

Baggage Loss

$1,700

$3,000

$750

$1,000

N/A

CHEAPEST TRAVEL INSURANCE

 

As you can see, Heymondo and SafetyWing are the two cheapest international travel insurance options. While Heymondo costs more, it also offers much higher coverage limits than SafetyWing, which is why it’s our favorite. It’s also the only provider that pays your medical expenses upfront, so you don’t have to pay out of pocket.

IMG Global, Trawick International, and Travelex offer similar coverage in some categories, but they also cost more. I recommend reading about each company below so you can determine which one best suits your needs.

1. Heymondo, the best cheap travel insurance company

Heymondo is one of the best cheap travel insurance companies overall, offering a high amount of coverage at a great price. With Heymondo, you’ll have comprehensive travel and medical-related benefits, including emergency medical expenses, trip cancellation insurance, and baggage loss.

There is also a $0 deductible for single-trip and annual multi-trip insurance, and the deductible for long-stay travel insurance is just $250 per claim. Best of all, they’re the only company that pays your medical bills upfront, so you don’t have to pay any medical bills and file a claim later to get a reimbursement.

Heymondo, cheap travelers insurance

Heymondo was also one of the first providers to include COVID coverage in its policies, which set the bar for other insurers. Moreover, the 24/7 traveler assistance app is another testament to Heymondo’s dedication and customer service. You can use it to get in touch with a team of doctors for advice and recommendations for the nearest clinic or hospital.

For all these reasons, we’ve been traveling with this insurer for 5 years, and we have a detailed Heymondo insurance review that you can read for more information. Overall, it’s the best value for money, and for just a bit more, you can upgrade your coverage to include adventure sports, cruises, and electronics.

PROS CONS
  • Pays your medical expenses upfront so you don’t have to file a claim
  • High amount of coverage in all medical- and travel-related categories
  • $0 deductible
  • COVID-19 coverage
  • 24/7 traveler assistance app and free emergency calls
  • Excellent price-to-coverage ratio
  • Not the absolute cheapest travel insurance available
  • Doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions

Right now, we have the annual multi-trip policy from Heymondo, which is the cheapest international travel insurance for frequent travelers. If you decide to purchase from Heymondo, don’t forget to take advantage of our 5% Heymondo discount code by using our link.

2. SafetyWing, the best medical-only cheap travel insurance

Another affordable travel insurance to look into is SafetyWing. Their Nomad Insurance plan offers excellent, budget-friendly medical coverage with some travel-related benefits like baggage loss.

One of the most unique things about SafetyWing is that you can get coverage in your home country for 30 days after you’ve been abroad for 90 days, so it’s a good deal if you want supplementary protection for any medical issues. Moreover, this is a good, cheap travel insurance for families since it offers free coverage for up to two kids under the age of 10.

SafetyWing, cheap travel insurance international

Keep in mind that while SafetyWing has cheap travel medical insurance, it focuses mostly on health-related benefits like emergency medical expenses and COVID coverage. That said, if you’re fine with having medical-only insurance for travel, it’s one of the best deals.

Another drawback of SafetyWing is that it has a $250 deductible per claim, so you’ll have to pay $250 toward your medical bills before the company will cover the rest. If you don’t want a deductible, Heymondo is a good alternative.

PROS CONS
  • Excellent medical-related coverage
  • COVID-19 coverage
  • High baggage loss coverage
  • 2 children under the age of 10 can be included for free per family
  • You can get coverage in your home country for 30 days after being abroad for 90 days
  • You must file a claim to get reimbursed for medical expenses
  • $250 deductible
  • Limited travel-related coverage
  • Doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions unless they’re not chronic or congenital

3. IMG Global, the best budget travel insurance for seniors

If you’re looking for travel insurance for seniors, then IMG Global is one of the best options. Finding budget-friendly travel insurance for seniors can be super tricky, but IMG Global has a plan specifically designed for travelers 65 and older.

The GlobeHopper Senior Single Trip plan offers travel and medical-related benefits and the option to choose a maximum coverage limit of $50,000, $100,000, $500,000, or $1,000,000. It’s also one of the few cheap travel insurances for pre-existing medical conditions, so it’s ideal for older travelers. While there aren’t as many travel-related benefits with this plan, it does offer lots of flexibility, as customers can choose a deductible of $0, $100, $250, $500, $1,000, or $2,500.

IMG Global, cheap international travel insurance

And for other travelers, IMG Global’s iTravelInsured Travel Lite plan is a good deal, with a $0 deductible and a good amount of coverage in all travel and medical-related categories. This includes emergency medical, evacuation, and trip cancellation/interruption benefits. In fact, its trip cancellation covers a wide range of reasons, including work transfers, job loss, passport/visa theft, natural disasters, and injury/illness.

However, this plan is among the most expensive options we found, so if you’re looking for cheaper single-trip travel insurance, I recommend Heymondo.

PROS CONS
  • Coverage for pre-existing conditions
  • $0 deductible
  • COVID-19 coverage
  • Excellent trip cancellation coverage
  • Good price-to-coverage ratio
  • You must file a claim to get reimbursed for medical expenses
  • You can get similar or better coverage for a more affordable price
  • Low emergency medical expense coverage
  • Limited baggage loss coverage

4. Trawick International, an affordable travel insurance for pre-existing conditions

Trawick International is another cheap travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions, so if that’s something you’re looking for, I suggest getting a quote.

The company’s Safe Travels Explorer Plus plan is just a few dollars more than the Safe Travels Explorer plan, so it’s worth shelling out a bit more for its comprehensive coverage. This includes emergency medical expenses, repatriation, trip cancellation, baggage loss, and more, plus a $0 deductible. You can even add cancel for any reason travel insurance to your policy.

Trawick International, affordable travel medical insurance

While Trawick International offers travel insurance for pre-existing conditions, you must purchase your plan within 7 days of the initial trip deposit date to enjoy this benefit. Also, it’s worth noting that the medical expenses coverage is on the lower end, at $250,000. If you don’t have a pre-existing medical condition and want higher medical coverage, you can get about five times more protection by going with Heymondo.

PROS CONS
  • Safe Travels Explorer plan offers good coverage in almost all travel- and medical-related categories
  • Safe Travels Explorer Plus plan provides coverage for pre-existing conditions for just a few dollars more than Safe Travels Explorer
  • Offers Cancel For Any Reason coverage
  • $0 deductible
  • COVID-19 coverage
  • You must file a claim to get reimbursed for medical expenses
  • You can get better travel- and medical-related coverage for a lower price
  • Low emergency medical expense coverage
  • Limited baggage loss coverage

5. Travelex, a cheap travel insurance for families

Finally, Travelex is another cheap travel insurance company and a great option if you’re looking for domestic travel insurance for the USA. Travelex’s plans are affordably priced and offer comprehensive protection, including coverage for pre-existing medical conditions.

You can choose from the Travel Basic or Travel Select plan, although we recommend the latter, especially if you have a pre-existing condition or want a higher amount of coverage. That said, make sure to purchase your policy within 15 days of your initial trip payment so you receive a Pre-existing Medical Condition Exclusive Waiver.

Travelex, cheapest travel medical insurance

Additionally, Travelex is a good option to consider if you want cheap family travel insurance since kids under 17 are included for free. Plus, you can upgrade your coverage to include things like rental cars, Cancel for Any Reason, and extra medical coverage.

Travelex’s benefits include coverage for baggage loss, trip cancellation, trip interruption, and evacuation and repatriation. While it also offers emergency medical expenses coverage, the limits are quite low, especially considering the price.

Also, for Canadian residents, there is a medical-only plan, which could be a good option if you’re looking for cheap medical-only travel insurance.

PROS CONS
  • Good overall coverage
  • Travel Select plan offers coverage for pre-existing conditions
  • Covers travelers up to age 110
  • $0 deductible
  • COVID-19 coverage
  • Covers children under 17 for free
  • You must file a claim to get reimbursed for medical expenses
  • Low emergency medical expense coverage with Travel Basic plan
  • Travel Basic plan doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions
  • You can get similar or better coverage for a more affordable price

What does cheap international travel insurance cover?

When looking for the best deals on travel insurance, remember to check the policies carefully so you understand what’s included. Some cheap travel medical insurance plans include higher amounts of coverage compared to others with similar prices, so it gets a bit tricky.

Below, you’ll find the most important things to consider when browsing affordable travel insurance.

Emergency medical coverage

First, emergency medical expense coverage is one of the most crucial aspects of any cheap travel health insurance. You want to be covered for any unexpected costs that arise from an injury or illness while abroad. Emergency medical coverage includes things like hospitalizations, doctor-prescribed tests, treatments, and even dental procedures.

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Emergency medical coverage with cheap travel insurance

Again, this is one of the most important benefits to look for, even if you want inexpensive travel insurance. It’s worth paying a bit more for a high amount of coverage, especially if you’re shopping around for travel insurance for the USA, where healthcare costs are through the roof.

Medical evacuation & repatriation

Another thing to look for when browsing the cheapest holiday insurance is medical evacuation and repatriation. The costs for these services are super expensive, so having this type of coverage is essential.

With medical evacuation and repatriation protection, you’ll be covered if you need to be transported from a remote area to a hospital or from your travel destination to your home country due to a serious injury or illness. It’s easy to overlook this benefit but should something happen and you don’t have this coverage, it could result in a huge financial loss.

Antelope Canyon, best affordable travel insurance

Medical evacuation & repatriation coverage

Should an emergency arise, you don’t want to delay getting proper medical care, so having this type of coverage is very important!

Covid-related coverage

As I mentioned, Heymondo was one of the first providers to cover COVID-19 the same as any other illness, and many other insurance companies soon followed suit. While the height of the pandemic is over, it’s still worth having COVID coverage.

Besides, most cheap international travel insurance includes this type of coverage, so it won’t increase the price of your policy. If you do happen to contract COVID during your trip, you’ll be covered for the medical and travel-related expenses.

The exact terms and conditions depend on the company, but most insurers cover travelers for COVID testing, treatment, and quarantine.

Trip cancellation (and trip interruption)

Another thing you’ll want your plan to include is some type of trip cancellation coverage. This usually covers reasons like illness, inclement weather, strikes, and jury duty. However, you should always double-check your policy since providers vary on what they will and won’t cover.

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Trip cancellation and trip interruption benefits

Also, be aware that cheap travel insurance typically doesn’t include Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) but may offer it as an add-on. You can check our guide on the best cancel for any reason travel insurance for more information.

Along the same lines, trip interruption coverage will reimburse you if you need to cut your trip short due to a serious illness, injury, or the death of a family member. When buying cheap travel insurance, check to see if this benefit is included and what exactly falls under this category.

Lost or stolen baggage & delays

Lastly, baggage loss is something that even the most affordable travel insurance plans should cover. Anyone who has traveled knows that there is always the risk of your luggage getting lost, damaged, or delayed, so having this type of coverage is a good idea.

Under this benefit, you’ll receive a reimbursement so you can buy new toiletries, clothes, and other essentials if something happens to your luggage. The amount depends on the particular plan you choose.

What’s not covered by cheap travel insurance?

Now that you know the most important things to look for when shopping for travel insurance on a budget, let’s talk about what’s not covered. While cheap travel insurance can definitely offer comprehensive coverage, some policies only cover medical-related expenses, so you won’t be covered for travel-related issues.

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What’s not covered by cheap travel insurance?

Others exclude certain things like coverage for pre-existing medical conditions, natural disasters, and fear of travel. Again, it’s crucial that you look over your policy carefully so you know exactly what you’re getting.

Tips for buying travel insurance on a budget

Getting cheap international travel insurance isn’t just a matter of purchasing the least expensive policy you see. To get the best bang for your buck, keep these tips in mind:

  • Pay attention to the policy limits to make sure you’re getting the best deal on travel insurance. While you might find lots of plans with low prices, that doesn’t mean they all offer the same amount of coverage.
  • Buy at the right time. It’s better to purchase a policy as soon as you book your vacation so you know the exact price of your trip (this makes the claims process easier). Also, if you buy your policy just after booking your trip, you will have more benefits regarding the cancellation coverage.
  • Shop around and compare cheap travel insurance policies from different providers.
  • Only buy what you need and decline any unnecessary extras. For example, if you just need medical coverage, you don’t need to bother with things like trip cancellation and baggage loss coverage.
  • Check to see if your credit card has travel insurance benefits. Some cards offer protection for trip cancellation or delayed/lost baggage (I’ll touch on this later).

By keeping these tips in mind, you can find cheap travel insurance for any type of trip.

Medical-only vs. cheap travel insurance

As you’re shopping for low-cost travel insurance, you’ll probably come across medical-only travel insurance. While they’re both affordable options, they aren’t the same, so it’s important to know the difference.

Cheap international travel insurance includes both medical and travel-related coverage. This means that you’ll be covered for health emergencies like sicknesses and injuries, as well as trip cancellation and baggage loss.

Catedral de la Puisima Concepcion, cheap travelers insurance

Medical-only vs. cheap travel insurance

On the other hand, medical-only travel insurance will only apply to medical-related scenarios, and the coverage limits tend to be a lot higher. Of course, this really comes in handy when you’re traveling to countries where healthcare is exceedingly high, like the United States or Japan.

For our trips, we like to have insurance that covers medical and travel-related situations, which is why we always go with Heymondo travel insurance plans. This way, we’re covered for medical emergencies, trip delays, lost baggage, evacuation, repatriation, and more.

Is getting affordable travel insurance worth it?

Without a doubt, travel insurance is worth it, always! When you travel as much as us, you realize that anything can happen while you’re abroad, so it’s always a good idea to be prepared. We’ve had several scary experiences and mishaps, and if it weren’t for our annual travel insurance from Heymondo, we would’ve been stuck with huge headaches and financial losses.

Here are just a few examples of times when we’ve had to rely on our insurance:

  • We had our most traumatic experience in the Peruvian Amazon when our boat capsized and tossed all of the passengers and their bags into the river. We were carried away by the water for about 15 minutes before we were able to get rescued and climb back on land. While Dan and I didn’t need medical attention, we lost a lot of equipment, including a couple of laptops and cameras, several lenses, two hard drives, and our passports. Fortunately, we were able to contact Heymondo via their 24/7 app, and they helped us connect with the Spanish embassy to return to Spain for new passports. Plus, our policy included $750 dollars each for Dan and me to cover our lost equipment.
  • A less dramatic but still terrifying incident occurred in Alaska when Dan’s drone hit a tree and fell on me, cutting up my hand. I got freaked out by all the blood, and, in a rush, we drove to the nearest hospital for medical care. If we had contacted Heymondo first, they would’ve arranged the medical payments in advance, but since we forgot to, we had to pay the $3,000 bill upfront. Heymondo quickly reimbursed us, of course, but imagine if we hadn’t had trip insurance!
  • In Ecuador, Dan got a stomach sickness that led to a hospital visit. Luckily, with our cheap holiday insurance, we were covered for this emergency medical expense.

So yes, getting insurance is totally worth it! Best of all, there are affordable travel insurance plans out there, as you’ve seen in this guide, so there’s no reason not to get it.

Credit cards with cheap travel insurance benefits

The last thing I want to touch on involves getting cheap travel insurance with one of the best credit cards for travel. While not all cards have this benefit, some offer trip cancellation protection or reimbursement for lost or delayed baggage.

Traveler with boarding pass, best cheap travel insurance

Credit cards with cheap travel insurance benefits

For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card is one option that offers cardholders coverage for trip cancellation and interruption, as well as baggage loss/delay coverage. So, if you’re thinking about buying cheap travel insurance that mostly covers medical-related expenses, you might want to look into a credit card with travel-related benefits.

That said, I still recommend investing in a good travel insurance policy, especially if you’re a frequent traveler. You can find the best deals on travel insurance by looking into any of the providers I mentioned in this guide.

FAQs – Cheap travel insurance

To end this guide, I’m sharing the answers to the most common questions about affordable travel insurance:

In my opinion, Heymondo has the best cheap travel insurance on the market, although it’s also worth looking at SafetyWing, IMG Global, Trawick International, and Travelex.

You can buy cheap travel insurance for under $10 per week, although the amount of coverage varies.

You can find cheap medical-only travel insurance or affordable insurance with travel and medical-related coverage.

The best cheap travel insurance covers emergency medical expenses, repatriation, baggage loss/delay, and trip cancellation.

Some budget travel insurance policies won’t cover pre-existing conditions or travelers over a certain age.

You should purchase your travel insurance as soon as you book your holiday.

Yes, even if it’s a cheaper travel medical insurance, it’s still worth getting. This way, you’re covered in case anything goes wrong during your trip, so you can focus on enjoying yourself.

I hope this guide helps you find the best affordable trip insurance for your needs. Don’t forget that you can save money on a Heymondo policy by using our link.

If you have any other questions about budget travel insurance, feel free to leave me a comment below. I’d be happy to help you out.

Until then, have a great trip, and don’t leave home without travel insurance!

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CHIEF ADVENTURER, TRAVEL GURU, AND MASTER PLANNER AT CAPTURE THE ATLAS
Hey there, I'm Ascen, your personal trip planner on a mission to help you craft the most incredible adventure of your life. While I'm based in Las Vegas, you won't find me there often. As a full-time traveler, I'm always on the go, exploring new destinations and capturing the world through my lens. From the enchanting shores of Almeria, Spain, where I grew up, to the far reaches of the globe, I'm here to provide you with detailed travel guides and practical tips to make your trip planning a breeze. Find out more about me here.
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