Buying travel health insurance can be a complex task. There are so many plans – each with different benefits and restrictions.

It is important to shop wisely for trip insurance. Many people buy coverage that seems inexpensive only to find out that they are not adequately covered when a medical emergency occurs. Below are a few key questions you should ask your insurance provider before purchasing trip insurance:

What is not covered by the policy? Insurance companies call these “exclusions,” and every policy has them.

Are there specific exclusions relating to sports or other activities?

Does the plan have a deductible that you must pay each time you file a claim?

Does the plan deny benefits if your medical emergency arises because of a “pre-existing condition or health problem?

Knowing the answers to these questions can help you avoid unpleasant surprises when you make a claim. Make sure you understand exactly what your trip insurance plan covers. When in doubt, call your insurer. A reputable insurance company can give you straight answers to your questions. Most offer toll-free numbers, so you can call them directly from wherever you are.

If you find that a plan has too many restrictions and complications, or that your questions are not being answered satisfactorily, do not hesitate to look somewhere else.

A comprehensive travel health insurance plan usually covers the following emergency medical expenses:

Hospital accommodations

Medical bills such as those for a physician, surgeon, and anesthetist


Diagnostic services such as laboratory tests and x-rays

Private registered nurses

Medical aids such as slings or splints, and the temporary rental of wheelchairs or walkers

Prescription drugs

Cost of returning a deceased back home

Remember that when it comes to insurance, you get what you pay for. When shopping around for trip insurance, it is important to keep in mind that not all insurance policies are alike. Be aware of minor price variations between insurance companies (the cheapest may not be the best company to deal with when you have a claim.)