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Do I Need Travel Insurance with Medical Insurance?

Travel is the most immersive experience in the world. From the authentic cobblestone roads of Europe to the dense tropical rainforests of Brazil and the sand-swept deserts of Egypt, traveling to a new destination can feel like traveling through time. Unfortunately, the more mundane issues of the modern world — like accidents, injuries, and illnesses- don’t simply disappear once travelers arrive in new countries.

Whether you’re planning to travel for business or leisure, alone or with a travel group, purchasing travel insurance with medical coverage is essential to receive the appropriate medical care while abroad and avoid exorbitant medical bills once you arrive home. Discover how comprehensive medical coverage in travel insurance can protect you and your peace of mind while exploring the world. 

Is Medical Insurance Enough for Travel?

Travelers who strictly rely on medical insurance while traveling abroad can face several limitations when seeking medical care. In the event of a severe medical emergency, such as a critical illness or injury, medical insurance may not cover the costs of emergency evacuation to the nearest suitable medical facility. Instead, travelers may become responsible for transportation expenses, which can be a significant financial burden.

Likewise, medical insurance is narrowly focused on healthcare-related expenses. Unlike travel insurance plans, medical insurance will not address non-medical emergencies, such as trip cancellations, lost baggage, or travel delays, and will not provide round-the-clock assistance.  Therefore, travelers solely relying on medical insurance may need help to handle these common travel disruptions.

If you’re a foreign citizen currently residing in the U.S., comprehensive travel insurance with medical coverage may be required to explore Europe’s border-free Schengen area. The 27 Schengen area countries, which include Austria, Croatia, Denmark, Italy, Spain, and Sweden, request Schengen travel insurance with medical protection. Emergency medical coverage in travel insurance must include hospitalization and repatriation. 

Coverage Gaps Abroad

Two words no traveler wants to hear after they’ve been ill or injured abroad is “coverage gap.’’ Unfortunately, standard medical insurance plans might not provide adequate coverage outside one’s home country. Most medical insurance plans, including Medicare, have geographical restrictions that limit emergency medical services, hospitalization, and other healthcare needs to specific regions or countries.  

There’s a high probability that travelers who venture outside of the areas predefined in their insurance policy may need more adequate coverage in a medical emergency. This issue of inadequate coverage is particularly true for travelers with pre-existing medical conditions, who can face highly restrictive access to potentially life-saving medical care without travel insurance for medical emergencies abroad.

Medical condition update between the family member and doctor while traveling in a medical facility.

Travel Insurance with Medical Coverage

So, what does travel insurance with medical coverage typically include? Are pre-existing medical conditions covered in travel insurance? To better understand what is included in international travel insurance with medical benefits, let’s review the core coverages of the Go Ready Primary Multi-Trip Travel Insurance Plan by Aegis, which is ideal for anyone traveling three or more times per year for business or pleasure. 

  • Emergency medical expenses are a fundamental component of travel insurance that covers the costs of necessary medical treatments resulting from sudden illnesses or accidents that occur during a trip, including hospitalization, surgery, prescription medications, and other essential medical services.
  • Emergency medical evacuation is a mandatory component of international travel insurance that ensures the safe transportation of a traveler to the nearest suitable medical facility in the event of a severe medical condition or injury that requires specialized treatment not available at the current location.
  • Repatriation of remains is a common component of travel insurance for seniors with medical coverage that covers the cost of returning a traveler’s remains to their home country, including preparation and transportation, in tragic cases where a traveler passes away during their trip.
  • Dental coverage is a component of emergency medical coverage in travel insurance that covers unexpected dental issues that require immediate attention, including but not limited to treatments such as extractions or fillings.

Primary vs. Secondary 

Coverage Now that you recognize the importance of travel insurance with medical coverage, it’s time to discuss primary coverage versus secondary coverage.  These terms refer to how each insurance interacts with other insurance policies and are crucial for travelers seeking financial protection while abroad because they have implications for the order in which claims are processed. Let’s delve into the differences: 

Primary Coverage

Travel insurance with primary coverage is the first line of defense in the event of a covered loss or expense, such as an accident or injury. In the case of a claimable event, the primary insurance will reimburse the insured first, regardless of whether other insurance policies (like a traveler’s current medical insurance plan) also cover the same incident.

Primary coverage often results in quicker claims processing since there is no need to coordinate with other insurance providers or wait on different policies to receive benefits. Plus, travelers can rely on the primary coverage to address a wide range of travel-related contingencies — like flight delays — without involving other insurance policies. 

However, travel insurance with primary coverage may be more expensive than secondary coverage due to its broader protection scope.

Secondary Coverage

On the other hand, travel insurance with secondary coverage is the second line of defense after the traveler’s primary insurance policy has paid its portion. In the case of a claimable event, secondary coverage acts as a supplement. It will cover the costs not fully addressed by the primary insurance, such as coverage gaps for medical care. 

Secondary coverage can coordinate with existing insurance policies, from health insurance to homeowners insurance, to provide additional protection without duplicating coverage. It is also more cost-effective, making it an attractive option for those with robust primary coverage through another insurance policy.

However, the claims process may involve coordination between multiple insurance providers, leading to longer processing times. Likewise, depending solely on secondary coverage may leave travelers with gaps in protection if their primary insurance is insufficient and only applies to specific events, such as injuries from extreme sports. 

Why Consider Travel Insurance Alongside Medical Coverage?

Have you been asking yourself, “How do I choose the right travel insurance for my medical needs?” If so, the safest decision is to purchase travel insurance with medical coverage that applies to unlimited trips per calendar year. The Annual Go Ready Primary Multi-Trip Travel Insurance Plan is designed to offer continuous medical protections alongside robust travel-related benefits, such as:

  • Trip cancellation coverage reimburses 100% of the insured trip cost in the event you must cancel your vacation before departure. 
  • Trip interruption coverage reimburses 150% of the insured trip cost in the event an unavoidable event halts your ongoing vacation.
  • Missed connection coverage provides $500 per person if you encounter an issue or a delay that causes you to miss your flight.
  • COVID coverage can be included in trip interruption and airline ticket change protections in the event you, your travel companion, your child’s caregiver, a family member, or a business partner contracts COVID-19 that requires you to change your plans, as well as in emergency medical coverage for those on the policy to receive proper care during the trip. 
  • Rental car coverage protects you from financial liability for accidents, damage, or theft involving the rental vehicle.
  • Baggage insurance reimburses $1,000 per person ($250 per item) in the event your personal belongings are damaged, stolen, or lost in transit.

Purchasing the Go Ready Primary Multi-Trip Travel Insurance Plan

Travel can transport you from ancient cities and foreign countries to new ones. Still, it won’t allow you to escape the everyday dangers of your normal life, whether it’s a pre-existing medical condition, unavoidable accident, or uncontrollable travel delay. Travel insurance with medical coverage, like the Go Ready Primary Multi-Trip Travel Insurance Plan, will allow you to travel confidently. 

If you’re looking for the most comprehensive medical coverage in travel insurance, compare Go Ready plans today.

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