International travelers will almost always want to obtain travel insurance because it covers medical expenses, but even other travelers may find it useful depending on their plans. You purchase travel insurance for international trips through an insurer in your country of residence, which means the country to which you’d want to be evacuated to or return to after a serious medical emergency and/or the country you’d need to travel to if a family member became very ill (these are assumed to be the same country)
Some travel agents will offer travel insurance when you book travel, but you can purchase travel insurance between then and shortly before you depart. However, if you have a “pre-existing condition” you need covered, you need to purchase coverage promptly, for some insurers within 2-3 days, others within 10-14 days of first booking (not final purchase of) the travel. Otherwise, between the booking and departure date or anytime during travel, if you are injured, become ill or have other reason disallowing or cutting short your travel, you’re out of luck. Virtually all policies list the specific risks any covers. An insurer may offer different policies for different levels of coverage. Or particularly costly risks may be offered under extra-cost options. Carefully examine all to suit your needs. After noting the discussions throughout this article, consider the coverage tables below as typical examples.
As you buy, the number and age of travelers, plus the total known and estimated costs of the trip will primarily determine the cost of insurance, though other factors influence it. Do not understate any facts as you apply for/purchase a policy (e.g., , understate travelers’ ages, only count the air travel you’ve booked); your claim for reimbursement for some “covered” cost may be denied. Travel insurance becomes increasingly difficult to get after age 55, with your age alone being considered something of a pre-existing condition. The precise cutoff for receiving insurance without an addition premium and/or medical examinations varies from 55 to over 70 for some insurers. As you age, you will face increasingly higher premiums and perhaps excess charges or deductibles on claims, and your existing medical conditions may be partly or totally excluded.
A medical evacuation is often a chartered trip (usually a flight) for a patient who is not well enough to return home by other means to better facilities or to their home country. Though the need is rare, its costs can be devastating to most peoples’ savings. On-balance, the cost of coverage for it is not terribly great
no one should ignore medical evacuation coverage
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