For those that travel internationally, international health insurance is something that is necessary just in case illness or an injury happens. This type of insurance also covers when something happens to their belongings. Look into the insurance that you have at home. They may or may not provide some coverage for you when you are traveling outside of the country. Investing in this type of extra insurance may be beneficial. There are many pros and cons to having this type of insurance.

What is International Health Insurance?

This type of insurance covers various aspects of what could happen while you are traveling internationally. The health insurance that you have while you are in the States does not extend outside of the country. For those that travel often, this could cause problems that become very expensive. It does not only cover potential health issues, but it also covers what you bring to the countries you are traveling to.

These types of insurance plans vary dependent upon what you think you need. While many people simply consider loss of personal belongings, they tend to forget that they need to be able to protect themselves as well. Considering what you are going to need covered should also include medical expenses, as health issues happen without warning pretty often.

What Does it Cover?

Services vary dependent upon the company providing them. Some companies have services that help when it comes to communication. For example, if you need someone to interpret or translate between languages--they may provide a translator or interpreter for you. There are plans out there that offer protection over certain purchases, too. For example, if you need to cancel the trip entirely or certain aspects of the trip; They may be able to help. When a medical emergency happens, it is likely you won't be taking advantage of the trip you planned. Most insurers understand that and attempt to relieve you of that debt.

Who Needs It?

To put it simply, anyone that travels out of the country needs it. It is especially important for those that may study abroad, do missionary work, or travel often for business reasons. Those that are on vacation or visiting there from time to time may get by with some temporary International health insurance, but the best choice would be to acquire it.

If something happens while out of the country and you are not covered, you could fall into some pretty frustrating situations. One issue could be that you end up in international debt. Your health should be your number one priority and it is important to be taken care of the way you would if you were back in the States.

The Types of Plans Available

Plans are based on a couple of aspects. The first aspect would be how long you need coverage. If you are simply going on a trip for vacation or a one time business trip, you can get coverage for that amount of time. Short term coverage tends to vary from a few days up to two years. If you are a student or living abroad for other reasons a fuller coverage would be the best to invest in due as it has more coverage and can last as long as you need for it to.

What are its Pitfalls?

There are so many reasons that things can go wrong. One of the major pitfalls is having the coverage declined. It can be declined for reasons that may not even make any sense to the insured. That is why it is important to make sure that you do your best to fall in line with what their guidelines are. This means keeping track of the items and investments that you bring along with you. That may seem time consuming, but it can save you at least some of the headache that dealing with insurance policies can bring.

For those that have pre-existing conditions, most of these insurances will not cover them at all. For example, if someone has asthma and they have an asthma attack and must be hospitalized, they may not be covered due to the fact that it is a pre-existing condition. This may not always be the case and should be looked into. Communication between you and your insurer should be open. If there are issues that you already have, run it by them and see if there is a plan that covers you in the chance that you must seek medical treatment for it.


Making sure that you are covered anywhere you go is incredibly important. If you are lucky, you may already be covered through insurance that you have at home. Look into the plans that you have before you go searching for international health insurance plans. Make sure to read all of the information should you apply for it, so that you know what you are getting and what you aren't.