There are two basic types of travel insurance coverage
Much of what we review, and what is in the mind of travelers, is called travel protection or a package plan. The main feature of a package plan is the trip cancellation coverage, but they also include medical emergencies, medical evacuation, and lost baggage.
The other type of travel insurance policy is called a travel medical plan
The main feature of these plans are to provide medical emergency/evacuation coverage. With some plans, there is some coverage for baggage (usually a small amount), or trip interruption due to the death of a family member.
Most travelers are not aware that their medical insurance from home will not cover them while in a foreign country
Travel medical plans are typically much less expensive that package plans, because the coverage is so reduced. Since there is no cancellation coverage, a very large financial risk is taken away, making travel medical plans much cheaper.
Travel medical plans are meant for travelers going overseas for a longer period of time, even up to a several years. Some examples of travelers who might use a travel medical plan include:
- Students studying abroad for a semester
- An employee spending a year at a foreign office
- Anyone living abroad
- Foreign citizens visiting their family here in the US
Travel medical plans are popular for both US citizens going abroad, as well as foreign citizens visiting the US
The plans are generally available from as little as 5 days, and up to 3 years. Travel medical plans are available to citizens from all over the world. Here in the US, ethnic communities are frequent users of travel medical plans.
For example: a resident of India is living and working here in the US. Their parents want to visit for a year and do some sightseeing. Their insurance from home would not cover them, but by purchasing an international medical plan, they can recieve coverage.