Insurance for freelance journalists

Due to the recent evolution of the COVID-19 crisis, our insurance provider just informed us that they won't provide any new travel insurance until further notice. The ongoing insurance remain valid, even though our insurers have advised us that from now on their policies do not cover any claims related to the COVID-19 condition.

In partnership with Escapade Travel Insurance, Reporters Without Borders provides a complete health insurance and repatriation for journalists and reporters for almost any country, war zone included. US based reporters, Brazilians residing in Brazil, and Canadians in Canada are not eligible for these insurance plans. RWB membership is mandatory. To become a RWB member, follow this link.

Since Reporters Without Borders has been offering this program, in 2009, several hundred journalists have purchased an insurance policy with Reporters Without Borders, notably to go to Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon and Ukraine or Syria.

The policies provide two different plans which apply:

  • 24/7, worldwide
  • For any work assignment, short or long term
  • Outside your country of permanent residence
  • Even if you are already at your destination (only for the Essential Plan)

The US based reporters, Brazilians residing in Brazil and Canadian in Canada are not eligible to these insurance plans.

Please note that given the current pandemic related to Covid-19 (Coronavirus), our insurers have advised us that from now on their policies do not cover any claims related to this condition.

- Solution 1, Single trip Essential Plan:

This international health insurance solution aims to cover the medical emergencies (accident or illness) arising during a mission. The medical expenses, the out-patient treatments, the hospitalization bills, medical evacuation, the ambulance services and the repatriation to the home country are covered. Direct payments can be made.

The journalists are covered at 100% of actual costs, for an unlimited amount, without deductible. The war risk, the consequences of a riot or acts of terrorism are also covered (the insured must not perpetrate or attempt to perpetrate illegal or criminal acts, participation in a riot, insurrection or mass demonstration). The reporter shall not be actively engaging in any acts of war or unrest, meaning the journalists must not carry or use any type of weapons, meaning the journalists must be bystanders.

The premiums depend on the age group and the destination.

€ 2.64 or $US 2.64 per travel day for reporters not older than 60 years for the main majority of trip destinations (there is an additional charge for those traveling to the United States of America due to healthcare costs significantly higher).

Under the Essential plan, journalists can be covered Worldwide except in their home country and the high-risk countries such as Afghanistan, Crimea, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Syria, West Bank/Gaza, Yemen – this list may change without prior notice.

The reporter shall be covered under the Extended Plan for these destinations.

The premiums increase for reporters aged between 61-63. Reporters over 63 years of age may not be covered

The Essential Plan does not suit to the reporters willing to be covered:
▪ for their pre-existing conditions: any medical condition that existed before you subscribed health insurance is excluded (such as asthma, epilepsy, chronic infections, diabetes, heart problems etc.);
▪ for accidental death and dismemberment during the mission;
▪ embedded on a mission with armed forces (military or governmental ground vehicles or aircrafts or naval units);
▪ for high risk countries.

-Solution 2, Extended Plan:

Compared to solution 1, this plan offers the following additional benefits:

  • Coverage for pre-existing conditions (asthma , heart problems ... ) should complications related to said conditions arise during your mission
  • Coverage of embedded missions in military or government units (land air and sea)
  • Possibility of a benefit in the event of an accidental death or dismemberment during a work assignment
  • All destinations are covered
  • All extreme reporting requirements are eligible (see conditions in the insurance police)

The main features are:

- up to $1,000,000 for medical expenses, at 100% of actual costs;
- health coverage in case of illness or injury;
- no deductible, no waiting period;
- up to $2,000 for dental care in case of accident only;
- up to $300,000 for evacuation;
- up to $15,000 for transportation of the body;
- war risks included (if you suffer from an act of terrorism you will be covered);
- coverage if you are embedded (military or governmental ground vehicle or aircraft, NGO vehicles);
- pre-existing conditions are covered (so no health questionnaire required);
- AD&D option from C$100,000 to C$ 1,000,000 depending on the destination;
- Assistance Center: AIG Assist based in the USA.

The cost of the Extended Plan varies depending on destination and length of stay.

To purchase insurance from Reporters Without Borders or request a quote, please contact [email protected] or [email protected]

Join Reporters Without Borders