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Health Insurance While Travel To Europe

Hi All,

My husband and I will visit Europe (Rome, German, Switzerland, and Paris) for 3 weeks this spring. This is our first time to visit those countries.

Both of us are 62 years old. My husband's health is fair, but my health is not very good such as diabetic, asthma, and so on...

Can you guys please recommend us what kind of health insurance that we should purchase with a reason price. We do have health insurance from the companies that we work for, and we belong to Kaiser.

Any advice that you can suggest it that is wonderful. Thank you all!

Sandy Chen

Posted by
8201 posts

You should probably check with Kaiser Permanente first to see how much coverage you have out of the country.

There are a number of different travel insurance companies that can be researched online. Some are slanted toward medical coverages while others go in different directions. They all have different priorities.

I'm on Medicare with a great supplement that pays $50K maximum out of pocket when outside the U.S.

Posted by
8499 posts

Your Kaiser Insurance should cover any illness or accidents while traveling. You can contact them to confirm.

I rely on my Kaiser Medicare Advantage policy, additional coverage that comes free with my credit card, and a Medjet (medical evacuation) policy to cover me when traveling.

Posted by
16670 posts

As noted above, Kaiser should cover you but check your specific type of policy to be certain. If you need to actually use it in Europe, make sure you follow their instructions regarding notification as soon as you are admitted to a hospital, or get treatment at a clinic.

You may have trouble getting an extra policy ( separate from your Kaiser insurance) that will cover your pre-existing health conditions at this point. Most travel insurance policies require that you buy the insurance within a specified time ( like 10-14 days) from the date of your first payment toward a trip. So if you booked your flights a month or two ago, it may be too late to get a waiver of the standard pre-existing condition exclusion.

Posted by
273 posts

You may want to look at a short-term plan from Geo-Blue as a supplement to the Kaiser plan. If you go to their website you can easily get a quote that is a supplement to your current coverage and would just cover the period of your travel. There are different levels of coverage and it might help for non-emergency care that isn't covered by Kaiser. It's worth taking a look at Geo-Blue if nothing else. I've used them for years for my travels.

Posted by
7643 posts

In general, as others said, your insurance should cover you out of country. However, you might want to consider a travel policy that also has medical, payment tends to be more immediate, and you can include medical evacuation, as well as coverage for any trip interruption.

Posted by
395 posts

My husband and I have Kaiser and are covered for emergencies/urgent care whenever we're outside our Kaiser coverage area. However each Kaiser area has its own "quirks", so you should check with your area for your coverage. One important thing you will need is the 24-hour number (with area code, not a toll-free number) to call if the hospital/clinic you're visiting in Europe needs to verify your coverage. In Southern California, this number will also give us medical advice if we need to decide whether to be seen by a professional or not. If you use the digital Kaiser options, you can probably get the number and information about your coverage by doing a search for "International Travel". I write this number on the back of my Kaiser card in permanent ink.

That said, we also buy travel insurance that includes medical insurance for our international trips, particularly so we are covered if we have to return home early--or late!--due to an injury or illness while we're gone. Never had to use it yet, and hope to keep that record.

Posted by
2712 posts

If Kaiser covers medical costs I would ask them about evacuation to the US. We enrolled in MedJet Assist as most insurances pay only to get you to the nearest hospital that can care for you. If we are really ill but stable for transfer, we want to come home.

Posted by
1985 posts

I have travel/health insurance and most probably what will happen is that you will have to pay up front and then submit your bills back home to your insurance and/or travel insurance. My parents had to pay upfront when my dad got sick in Prague/Vienna.Of course the bill was nothing like here in the US but he kept all the receipts and was eventually reimbursed by his insurance.

Posted by
4828 posts

"If Kaiser covers medical costs I would ask them about evacuation to the US."
Kaiser has told me that my policy does not cover any evacuation, such as back to the US.