Getting medical travel insurance can be very confusing to plan on our international travel adventure. But is it worth the expense? Which companies offer the best travel medical coverage?
What is Travel insurance?
The term travel insurance is commonly used to describe some different types of insurance. Sometimes it can be quite confusing for new travelers.
You should know what type of coverage a travel insurance policy includes because you cannot include everything you think you are doing.
Travel Health Insurance covers accidents, injuries and hospital visits while you are away from home.
Medical Evacuation Insurance is coverage for transportation to a larger hospital for treatment.
Trip Cancelation Insurance is coverage for unexpected interruptions in your travel plans.
Baggage/property Insurance is covered by theft or damage to your equipment during the trip.
Do you need travel insurance?
This is the million dollar issue and ultimately a personal decision. I have met many people who travel without travel insurance and have considered doing the same.
But after more than 6 years of constant travel, listen to horror stories from other travelers, and get into a little dangerous scrutinizing myself–if someone asks my opinion on the subject I am responding with:
Yes, everyone should use health insurance/property insurance on any travel!
Why? Because shit happens. If you think he’ll do it or not. Despite their best-planned plans and preventive measures. Sure, if you cook your ankle, it might not be a big deal.
But what if your appendix blows up? Or does your bus crash? Or do you get a deadly disease? or require medical evacuation after breaking the leg?
These things definitely happen to travelers from time to time, and it could cost tens of thousands (or hundreds) of thousands of dollars. Without insurance, you’re ruined!
My recommendation is based on hearing countless first-hand stories of other travelers ‘ disasters as well as my own personal experiences.
I met a woman in Costa Rica who fell off a ladder and crushed the bone in her arm. She had no medical insurance, so she received a horrible treatment at the local hospital, and was basically retained until she was able to pay an expensive medical bill.
Another friend lost everything he possessed when his guest house closed in Ecuador broke in. Without personal property insurance, I would need to spend thousands replacing the stolen equipment and the camera.
Another friend entered a carnivorous paraspecies while trekking through the Peruvian jungle. He demanded months of treatment from specialized physicians, and a flight back to the United States. Another friend had his five-star hotel room aswing in Mexico.
Own close calls
Once I crashed with a wooden sled as I flew down a volcano and I was flaking on my head. Fortunately, I didn’t break anything…but a girl with our group was not so lucky, and ripped a ligament in the ankle that required surgery.
On a trip to Panama, my laptop was literally stolen directly from under my feet. I would like to let my travel insurance expire and it was no longer covered by theft… Fortunately, I have a little vengeance!
I also entered the dengue fever in Mexico, which required blood tests and the doctor’s visit. In more severe cases patients are hospitalized for weeks and require blood transfusions. It’s not cheap.
My point here is you never know. You don’t have travel insurance when you really need it sucks a great time. And you won’t understand how much it stinks until it happens to you.
What kind of insurance?
It really depends on many different factors. You’ll have to ask yourself a few questions. Are you a short-term traveler who goes away for a few days/weeks? Or are you a long-term traveler coming out for 6 months or more?
Do you carry tons of expensive photos/computer gears, or not? Will your regular health insurance cover you abroad? Does it include medical evacuation? Do you already have existing conditions?
Are you the type of person booking hotels/flights/activities in advance? Or did you just fly it and pay for the services you use?
Short-term travel insurance
There are many short-term international travel medical insurance plans that can help you protect yourself from the high cost of medical treatment, help you gain access to high-quality healthcare and alleviate some of the stress of dealing with medical systems Unknown. Short-term international health insurance provides medical benefits for those who travel outside of their country of origin or country where they permanently reside.
It can be overwhelming to choose between travel insurance and travel health insurance policies that are available. There are many insurance companies that all offer a wide range of products in a variety of different price points.
Travel health Insurance Versus Travel Insurance
Travel insurance usually covers details such as trip cancellation, travel protection and certain limited emergency medical coverage. These plans are usually available from one to 62 days.
Travel health insurance focuses primarily on providing comprehensive emergency health insurance during your travels. Travel health insurance Plans can often be purchased for periods of between five days and one year, sometimes extended for up to 3 years.
Who needs short-term Travel Insurance?
The short answer is all poses international travel health insurance needs. If you want to travel outside of your home country for business or pleasure, it is important to have travel health insurance. Your existing health insurance plan will probably not cover you for travel abroad, and if coverage exists, it is probably quite minimal.
Because someone is susceptible to accidents or illnesses, insurance is a valuable purchase.
Factors to consider when investing in travel insurance
Individual or multi-trip adjustments. Short-term health insurance is available as a unique travel plan covering a specific trip for a given number of days or months.
If you travel more often, you may want to consider an annual multi-trip policy that would give you travel health insurance for up to one year and a maximum number of days per trip. This can certainly be a more profitable option for frequent travelers.
Long-term Travel Insurance
Because I am a digital nomad and travel with thousands of dollars of camera equipment for work, I have a longer-term travel insurance mindset. I use a health insurance policy dedicated to expatriates, along with a gear policy for professional photographers.
This mix is more expensive than a World nomad policy, but it works best for my long-term travel lifestyle.
TCP Insurance has been around for 40 years and has a dedicated department of professional photographers. General liability and equipment insurance begins at $500 per year with quarterly payments. They can cover tens of thousands of dollars in photography equipment, including laptops, drones and general business responsibilities that must hurt another person while working in the location.
This plan specializes in long-term medical coverage worldwide but does not cover theft or cancellation of the trip. Coverage in the United States is included, but to qualify you must spend at least 6 months of the year living abroad. You can select a deductible from $250-$10000.
More Insurance options
Full international medical insurance, including the United States. There are no limits on how long you are in the United States. Deductible waived for regular medical checkups. Excellent safe, but expensive. Sherry from OttsWorld.com is a happy customer.
Your current Insurance
Do you already have regular health insurance in your home country? Check to see if they provide worldwide coverage. If they provide worldwide coverage, then you won’t need anything else.
Your landlord or Tenant insurance can cover your belongings when you travel abroad as well. Call me to confirm the details.
Credit Card Insurance
Many credit card companies often include basic travel insurance and theft for their customers. Call me for information about what is covered (or not).
Make a claim
Medical insurance companies highlight the media bureaucracy to pay claims. Making a claim can take some work on your side, depending on the situation. Here are some tips for receiving payment:
- If you have trouble filing a claim, always work on the company ladder. Talk to a tutor. So I talked to the project manager. Make public your requirements using social networks, if necessary.
- Record conversations. At the beginning of each phone call, tell the other party that you are recording the conversation, to make sure there are no misunderstandings later. You can do this easily with Skype and a program like Pamela for PC or Ecamm Call Recorder for Mac.
- When you send a police report of any kind, keep the story simple. The longer and deeper the report, the easier it will be for insurance companies to find a hole they can use to deny their claim. You better think they’ll try.
Travel Insurance Tips
- Read the small print first! Know what you’re covered for. For example, some policies do not cover extreme sports or theft of unmanned items.
- Take photos of your entire computer with a date stamp.
- Save PDF copies of all shopping and hospital receipts. Save the originals.
- Note Serial numbers, policy numbers, and insurance contact information.
- Keep this information online in a safe and easy-to-reach location. I’m using Evernote. Another good option is Dropbox or Google Drive.
- File a police report immediately after the robbery or accident.
No one likes to think of theft or damage when on vacation, but the threat is real, and without good travel insurance, an unexpected event can ruin the rest of your year. I never travel without it!
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