Insurance for American Expatriates

5 Reasons Expats Should Purchase a Global Health Plan When Abroad

Why it is Important That Expats Purchase a Global Health Plan While Living Abroad

Moving abroad for work, extended travel, or retirement is a huge endeavor for individuals, couples, and especially families. You will have many preparations to make before you live overseas and even more adjustments and often culture shock once you get there.

One of the most important considerations is how to protect you and your loved ones should one of you become sick or get injured. Policies and insurers vary widely, and so do prices and the fine print. It can often be a daunting decision, but it is vital. Here are 5 reasons why expatriates should purchase a global health plan when abroad:

healthcare in Canada

1. You Have Quick Access to Quality Healthcare

Expats with international health insurance have access to quality healthcare wherever they live abroad. Of course, note that some plans will limit medical treatment to certain geographic regions – such as global excluding or including the USA. Having global medical is key since living abroad has its own challenges. This is true, especially if you live in a country unfamiliar with the local language and require medical care. The experience can be even more challenging due to the difference in culture, language barrier, or low-quality healthcare in the expat country. When you are covered under comprehensive healthcare policy, you can access quality medical care no matter where you are.

2. It is Often Better Than Local Health Cover

Not all expat destinations have great local healthcare systems. Many countries do not have free healthcare either. For that reason, getting international health insurance is usually the better choice. Plus, international health insurance means insurance providers have access to a wide network of doctors and specialists – both in your destination country, back home and regionally. That means you get to choose which doctor you want to see and which hospital. Furthermore, you also don’t have to wait for your turn, as it gives you immediate access to the right specialist. It is also important to note that, with the COVID-19 pandemic, more countries now require expats to show proof of international health insurance upon entry.

Healthcare for expats in Europe

3. It Suits the Expat Lifestyle

If you’re an expat  or global nomad who may move from one country to another or move around for work, international health insurance will be able to cover you in any country that you go to. As long as you are within the zone of your cover (worldwide including or excluding the USA), your global health insurance travels with you.

4. It Covers You in Your Home Country Too

For expats, it is important to prioritize their mental health. As such, most expats would want to stay connected to their home country, where they are a lot more comfortable with their family doctor who knows their medical history. Plus, being familiar with the healthcare systems and procedures is a lot easier on the expat’s peace of mind. However, if you move to a different country, access to healthcare in your home country becomes limited. With international health insurance, you can be covered for medical care in your home country. Note that if you move back permanently to your country of citizenship, most plans will not be renewable.

travel and international health insurance

5. Keep Control of Your Health Costs

The biggest mistake an expat can make is not getting a global health plan when abroad. When faced with a medical emergency, you will be paying out of your pocket. Depending on where you are, the costs can be expensive. With international health insurance, you can be treated in a private sector without worrying about the financial burden.

What other reasons should expats and international citizens buy international health insurance? Please send us your reason and maybe we’ll add it to this article. If you are curious about all the global insurance jargon and how international healthcare works, make sure you download the international health insurance guidebook for free!

International Health Insurance Consumer Guide