Gap Year Travel Insurance

Gap year travel insurance is something so commonly forgot.  You got your camera, your visa, your passport, kissed mom and dad good bye,  school contact list, i-pad, every phone number imaginable, sleeping eye mask and extra comfy sweats for the flight...glancing at your watch every 30 seconds like it's going to slow down time. You know you need to be at the airport 2 hours before international flights depart.

Gap Year Check List: Don't Forget Travel Insurance

And in the back of your mind you feel like you forgot something but for the life of you, you can't quite put a finger on it. So you pull out your check list AGAIN and go over it, by this time it looks like something a dog has chewed on yet everything appear so be in order.

Out the door you fly like a dog after the mailman. One not so small thing overlooked. Travel insurance.

It's easy to overlook. Heck, your teaching contract you signed has health insurance right. Right. It's health insurance and not travel insurance. You're not there yet. Health insurance doesn't apply.You lose your bags and your i-pad or they get ripped off while you're waiting for your connecting flight to Tokyo and it's pretty much your loss if you don't have any type of travel coverage.

Gap Year Travel Insurance - Buy What You Need, Not What They Tell You You Need

What you actually need and what an insurance company will tell you you need are two different things.

Understanding The Game

Travel insurance or insurance in general is a bit like playing black jack in Vegas. The house wins most of the time. They stay in business because the casino player at the table, can spot the sucker, knows the odds and rigged the game to win in a tie. The dealer has an advantage right from the start.

So in buying travel insurance for your gap year adventure, some companies will try to sell you a policy for extreme injuries and stuff that is outside of what you would normally run into.  They make money on this. So be realistic about what you actually need.  So in other words, It's your job to place your bet when you sit at the table.

Buy what is within the range of normal. World Nomads is a standard go to no no nonsense insurer with a wide (and we mean wide in a big big sense here) range of travel insurance that will fit any gap year adventure you plan on.

5,4,3,2,1, Click the shutter or lose it!

If the extent of your adventure is climbing Mt. Fuji and timing  your arrival at the peak  to  to take a cool shot of you and the new cool friend you met at your brand spanking new  job teaching English in Osaka, you don't need extreme insurance to cover deep sea diving or bungee jumping.

Gap Year Travel Insurance: What you Actually Need - The Common Stuff

Okay then, if you're not going to be jumping out of an airplane what do you need?

  •  Believe it or not, the most common claim is lost luggage and stolen luggage.
  • Then there is the $4000 Persian rug you bought in India. Only you never actually went there. Your credit card did. But not all by itself - it had some help. Big #2 stolen credit cards.
  • Illness or injury is the next biggest one. It's good to remember that the Japanese health care system is generally pretty good. But this doesn't cover you when you sprain your ankle climbing Mt. Fuji or wipe out because you drank 1 too many beers.

 Coverage related to teaching is something that would be covered. For example during the summer, the school asks you to go on a camping trip with your high school students and you agree because they threw a bunch of money at you.  You get bit by snake setting up the tent. Bit in the line of duty is covered not power-shooting Jello shots on a Saturday night ...even if your students are buying.

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