Is medical travel insurance necessary?

Mar 27th, 2001, 11:37 AM
  #1  
Marilyn
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Is medical travel insurance necessary?

Would appreciate your opinions - if one's medical insurance is not valid out of country, is it wise to buy temp. coverage? This question was asked of me and I don't really know how to answer. And how does the system work in France if one does have medical insurance? One country I know demanded payment upfront regardles of insurance status. Thanks for any input
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 11:50 AM
  #2  
Caitlin
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My insurance is not valid outside of North America, and I get basic coverage for when I am gone. But that is because, though I've never had a problem or been ill while traveling, I have a medical situation where if something did happen, I would want coverage. Rather pay $ for the insurance just in case than $$$ for treatment if....I think in most cases you will be charged up front, and have to submit a claim for insurance reimbursement, whether your coverage is your regular or a travel package.
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 11:59 AM
  #3  
Linda
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Try to buy trip insurance. That will cover many things, including, usually, medical. I've never had to use the trip insurance, but it's nice to know it is there. That way, if the trip is cancelled because of an emergency, you get at least a portion, if not all, of your money back. It also usually covers things like lost or stolen luggage. Are you going through a travel agent? If so, they can help you. As I said, I'd purchase it; peace of mind is well worth the relatively small cost, and if you need it . . .
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 01:16 PM
  #4  
Insure!
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In my opinion it is crazy to go on holiday without insurance ! I presume you're from the USA. Just think how crazy it would be for a European to go to the US without medical insurance, CDW etc......
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 01:19 PM
  #5  
Gail
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I just purchased Travelguard insurance. I did a bit of research and they were the most comprehensive and reasonable. I did it all online too. I purchased the Supersaver package which cost $111.00 for $1,500 coverage per person/there are two of us.
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 02:22 PM
  #6  
Kim
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The majority of U.S. health plans provide coverage while you're traveling (although some of length-of-stay limits). Just check out your policy (easiest thing to do is the HR person in your office. He/she should know, or will find out).
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 07:03 PM
  #7  
Doranne
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Marilyn,
I researched travel insurance because even though I have excellent medical coverage outside the US, trip insurance covers almost else that could possibly happen, from trip delay due to weather, to cancellation of the trip due to family members illness (kids or in-laws become ill), medical evacuation, baggage loss or delay, etc. I researched 4 companies and went with Travel Guard- they seemed to be the best value and easiest to figure out. Look at the pre existing condition waiver that they will do ONLY if you purchase within 14 days of your initial booking. This is important if anyone has medical issues like my husband does. They have an easy to read website, too.(And no, I do not work for them!!)
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 07:24 PM
  #8  
Donna
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Best be is to shop travel insurance like the dickens. Forget the glossy brochures and what the person selling it to you tells you - review the actual policy. No matter the coverage (yours or a supplemental plan), you're nearly always required to pay and apply for reimbursement. Check those details!
 
Mar 27th, 2001, 10:31 PM
  #9  
btilke
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I always buy travel insurance; however, you should know that the American Hospital in Paris accepts Blue Cross/Blue Shield. If you have Blues coverage and you're only going to be in Paris, you might want to skip it, but I'd err on the side of caution and get it anyway.
Btilke
 
Mar 29th, 2001, 11:12 AM
  #10  
carolyn
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In reading Social Security information prior to retiring this summer, I have just discovered that Medicare does not cover U.S. citizens traveling outside the country. You can bet that I have bought travel insurance for my September trip to Great Britain.

If you think waiting for a trip is hard, think about waiting for a trip plus waiting for your retirement date after 45 years in the workforce! As you may surmise, I am not one of those people who wonder what they will do when they are no longer working.
 
Mar 29th, 2001, 11:49 AM
  #11  
Marilyn
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Thanks for all your advice. I have passed this on to the person who asked. I think she will buy the insurance. I still have a question - maybe someone will share their experience. Even with insurance, does one have to pay medical bills upfront? When I lived in Brussels, we were told by our relocating team that this was the procedure and then we were to turn bills into our insurance for reimbursement. I was wondering about other areas - Paris etc. If one went to hospital, that could be a large bill to pay out. Anyone? Thanks
 
Mar 30th, 2001, 05:11 PM
  #12  
Joyce
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to Carolyn, re medicare. I have Health NetHMO with medicare and fortunately the HMO does worldwide coverage . It is of course for emergency service and such,. I am still contemplating the insurance , although I have dual nationality and might be eligible within the UK program. J
 
Mar 31st, 2001, 12:52 AM
  #13  
Mary
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btilke: thanks for that info about Blue Cross being accepted at American Hospital in Paris.
 
Apr 3rd, 2001, 12:00 PM
  #14  
carolyn
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Thank you, Joyce. We haven't chosen a Medigap company yet, but I'll be sure to ask about coverage abroad.
 

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