International travel insurance

International trips are filled with adventure. But unexpected medical and emergency events like a lost passport or family member falling ill can halt those plans and end up being more costly than the trip itself. It helps to know what’s covered ahead of time so you can plan and add to your coverage if you choose, before you leave.

What is travel insurance?

It may be easy to confuse travel insurance with travel medical insurance, but they are two very different kinds of insurance. Some travelers may be aware of travel insurance, but may think you'd only buy it if you were nervous about your trip being cancelled or your luggage getting lost. There's actually more to it than that. Understanding the difference can help you decide the type of coverage you may need before you travel outside of the country. Let's break down the details of each. 
  • Travel insurance primarily covers trip-related negatives, such as trip cancellation, trip interruption or lost baggage.
  • Travel medical insurance is for people who are leaving the country and provides coverage while they are outside of the country. A travel medical policy focuses on emergency medical and dental. It also covers medical evacuation if it’s needed. 

Who should buy travel medical insurance?

Nearly every traveler can benefit from the extra protection of travel medical insurance. Some in particular who may want to consider it include:

  • Families with children
  • Anyone visiting a country that speaks a different language
  • People with chronic conditions
  • Solo travelers
  • Travelers to a remote location

Does my health insurance plan work internationally?

Many health insurance plans do not cover you when you are out of the country. For those that do, the coverage is often limited and requires you to pay at the time of service, save receipts and file for reimbursement once you get home. In case of a medical or a dental emergency while in another country, this could require you to spend a large amount of your own personal funds or charge significant amounts on credit cards while you are still traveling.

Travel medical insurance plans typically cover emergency medical and dental costs. Emergency transportation costs, such as ambulance or air lift, also are covered as are emergency evacuations that would get you from a remote location to appropriate medical care.

Tips to help you prepare before an international trip

Getting ready for a successful trip requires good planning. Consider these tips when you're preparing to travel internationally. 

Find available international health insurance

At UnitedHealthcare Global, we want you to take the trip, not the risk. Designed to respond to unique challenges international travelers face, SafeTrip  travel insurance was created for individuals, families, business travelers, students and NGO’s with a single purpose – to provide you and your loved ones with high quality care and support – in case of an unforeseen event including medical evacuation, lost baggage, travel assistance and so much more.

Footnotes

  1. Your Health Abroad, Travel.State.Gov, accessed July 2021

Disclaimers

UnitedHealthcare Global is part of UnitedHealth Group, Incorporated, a Fortune 10 company. Travel assistance services may be provided by or through UnitedHealth Group entities, and / or the UnitedHealthcare Global brand.  Travel medical coverage is underwritten by third party companies that are not related to the UnitedHealthcare family of companies.