Travel Medical Insurance
Travel Medical Insurance protects you in the event of an illness or injury when traveling outside of your country of residence. It provides key medical benefits in case of an emergency.
Traveling abroad is an exciting experience, but unpredictable illnesses and accidents can happen. Even worse, the resulting medical bills can be overwhelming. The level of international medical coverage provided by your domestic insurance provider can vary greatly depending on your plan, so you may have very limited coverage or no coverage at all. A travel medical insurance plan can provide the coverage you need.
Travel medical coverage is ideal for:
- International vacationers
- Relatives visiting from overseas
- People going on cruises, safaris or guided tours
- International business travelers
- Students studying abroad
International Medical Group® (IMG®) also offers travel insurance that protects your health as well as your trip costs and travel expenses. And if you need long-term medical coverage, check out our international health insurance. IMG plans include a wide range of medical benefits, protection, and support should a problem arise.
Student health insurance plans tailored to fit the needs of international students involved in educational or cultural exchange.
Temporary fixed coverage health insurance for non-U.S. citizens when traveling outside of your home country.
Temporary health insurance for missionaries and mission groups when traveling outside of your home country.
Temporary health insurance for travelers age 65+ when traveling outside of your home country.
Annual multi-trip travel medical insurance for individuals, families and groups.
Why Do I Need Travel Medical Insurance?
Depending on where you travel, you may encounter language and currency barriers that prevent you from accessing high-quality medical care. Check out IMG’s Top Destinations and Countries of Citizenship for 2016 to learn more about some of these challenges.
Traveling unprotected can leave you vulnerable to paying high out-of-pocket medical expenses, and navigating a foreign health care system without the assistance you need.
However, with a travel medical insurance plan, you can worry less and experience more knowing you have medical coverage and a trusted health advisor who can support you in your time of need.
Get even more information by checking out our article, “Do I Need Travel Medical Insurance?”
How Much Does Travel Medical Insurance Cost?
Less than $3 per day for an average plan.
Like other travelers, you may be wondering if the coverage is worth the cost. It may surprise you to learn that IMG’s travel medical plans can cost less than $3 per day (based on an average plan) and can provide coverage worth well beyond your initial cost. Pick a plan and get protected.
Age of Traveler
Age is one of the primary factors that determines insurance rates. Each IMG plan has a complete breakdown of insurance rates based on ages that can be found in the plan brochure.
Medical expenses vary around the world. To provide the best balance of coverage and cost, plan coverage rates may be different for a traveler visiting the United States than they are for a traveler in a destination where healthcare is less expensive.
Duration of Trip
A breakdown of daily rates and monthly rates can be found in IMG plan brochures. If you need long-term coverage (1 year or more), view our international health insurance plans.
Deductible, Maximum Limit, & Additional Optional Coverage
Customize your plan by choosing the deductible amount, maximum limit, and any optional rider that is best for you.
When Is Travel Health Insurance required?
Some countries may require you to purchase travel health insurance to gain entry.
Traveling to Schengen Countries
Schengen countries require visa applicants to prove they have travel medical insurance to cover expenses for repatriation, urgent medical attention, emergency hospital treatment and more. Read our blog about Countries that Require Travel Medical Insurance for Entry to learn more.
You may also be required to purchase travel health insurance depending on the purpose of your trip. The U.S., for example, requires those traveling on a J1 or J2 visa to maintain a certain level of medical coverage for the duration of their stay.
Travelers embarking on other trips — such as organized tours, working holiday schemes, mission trips, and cruises — may also be required to purchase coverage.
These are just a few reasons when you would be required to purchase Travel Medical Insurance. See the full list for 6 Times You Need to Purchase Travel Medical Insurance.
Recent Blog Articles
My Husband Got Bit by a Stray Dog Abroad - Here's What We Learned
IMG has compensated the author for providing this article.
The hair on my arms stood up as I heard dogs fighting outside the building where my husband, Chris, and I were visiting. We were traveling in Thailand and were at a Buddhist temple. Chris was already outside, and when I emerged, he was standing there and said one of the stray dogs just bit the back of his leg. Fearing the worst, we knew our plans for the day had just changed.
We quickly moved away from the dogs to take a look at the bite. Lifting Chris’ pant leg, we held our breath in hope that the skin had not been punctured. The threat of rabies came to mind and, much to our dismay, we saw a puncture wound and blood. We knew Chris would need to get treatment. In many cases, getting injured while away from home is a traveler’s worst fear. Knowing we had good travel medical insurance to cover unexpected events just like this, however, we felt relieved. We were prepared to tackle whatever steps would be necessary to get through this situation. Here’s what we learned from our experience handling Chris’ injury:
Get International Medical Insurance so you can Stay Calm
When an incident happens, either at home or abroad, it’s easy to let our minds run wild. Taking a deep breath, we looked at each other and said, “Well, let’s head back to our guest house now.”
I narrowed my focus on what I had to do in order to figure out the best way to move forward. Staying calm in unnerving situations is key when you’re facing medical and financial decisions.
Make a Plan
As we walked to the guest house, we quickly made our action plan. Chris would research hospitals and I would call IMG, while getting all of our important documents together.
In our room, Chris began an online search of local hospitals. In the past, I have used IMG’s International Provider Access database to search for providers, although given Phuket, Thailand, had such a strong expat community, Chris just did a quick online search for the top three hospitals in the area.
Meanwhile, I gathered our IMG ID cards, passports, credit and debit cards, snacks and books to keep ourselves busy. Our hotel concierge provided us directions to the hospital, so we hopped on a bus and arrived shortly thereafter.
Check in with Your Insurance
Even though I read my insurance plans word for word, when a situation arises, I always call to make sure I am not forgetting any important steps, and to ask if IMG has any tips or advice on how to proceed.
I could not remember if we needed to precertify the hospital visit, so I called IMG via Skype to find out. I was immediately connected to a representative who kindly informed me that, with our plan, we did not need precertification for this situation and we were good to go.
I also asked how much time I had to follow up with filing the claim. It’s important to note that each time you seek medical treatment, you need to file a claim before you or the medical provider can be reimbursed. The IMG representative reminded me that the claim had to be filed within 60 days of Chris’ treatment. With one simple form submission, we were reimbursed the amount in accordance with our plan in about 30 days with no hassle.
Additionally, the IMG representative gave me important reminders, such as ensuring any receipts I got had the hospital address on them. It’s easy to overlook small details like this when your adrenaline is pumping — another reason it’s key to check in with your insurance company when an incident takes place.
Go with the Flow
Going to a new doctor can be nerve-racking, let alone visiting one in another country. Fortunately, when we arrived at the hospital, we were greeted by medical staff, many of whom spoke basic English. Much to our delight, Chris saw a doctor within about 15 minutes, and was advised to get a series of five rabies shots as well as a tetanus shot.
The doctor filled out a card in both Thai and English, clearly stating the recommended vaccinations and dates each dose needed to be administered. He said we would be able to go to virtually any hospital in Thailand or elsewhere, show them that card and they would have the information needed to administer the shots.
Aside from the reason we were there in the first place, our visit to the hospital was quick and painless! In fact, for each of the visits we made for Chris’ shots, we were in and out of the hospitals in under an hour almost every time.
Despite our worries, the process of seeking and receiving care abroad went smoother than we could have imagined. Everyone we interacted with during this ordeal was kind and caring – from the hotel concierge to our insurance company to our doctors.
Learn from Your Experience
Looking back on it now, we can’t help but laugh a bit thinking that Chris got bit by a grouchy old dog at a Buddist temple while I was inside using the bathroom!
Most importantly, though, the situation reminded us that we are indeed capable of handling any obstacles, and we will never let anything stand in our way of traveling.
Before, I would read about others’ experiences with stray dogs abroad, and was terrified of going through it with Chris. But after it happened to us, the whole process reminded me that incidents — when handled calmly, with a clear mind and with excellent travel medical insurance — can be manageable events that ultimately turn into part of your travel journey.
For over a decade, Tiffany Soukup has traveled to more than 35 countries with her husband Chris, hiking into remote jungles, looking for endangered wildlife and seeking adventures.
Frequently Asked Questions
This is not an offer to enter into an insurance contract. This is only a summary and shall not bind the company or require the company to offer or write any insurance at any particular rate or to any particular group or individual. The information on this page does and will not affect, modify or supersede in any way the policy, certificate of insurance and governing policy documents (together the "Insurance Contract"). The actual rates and benefits are governed by the Insurance Contract and nothing else. Benefits are subject to exclusions and limitations.