We’ve recently had some questions from readers who want to know whether travel insurance cover giving birth under the medical coverage portion of their policy.
A pregnant traveler who is in an advanced stage of pregnancy is not likely to have travel insurance coverage for a normal birth because the birth is an expected event. Travel insurance only covers unexpected events, and so childbirth is not covered unless it’s an unusual medical situation.
To be specific, pregnancy is excluded from all travel insurance coverage with exclusionary language like the following:
“pregnancy, childbirth, or elective abortion, other than complications of pregnancy;”
It’s important to understand that travel insurance coverage for pregnancy depends on the circumstances. First, the pregnancy must occur after the travel insurance policy’s effective date, or it’s considered a pre-existing medical condition.
Next, premature labor is considered a complication of pregnancy, which is typically covered under a travel insurance plan’s medical coverage and therefore medical treatment is covered up to the plan limits. Here are the best rules to apply to getting travel insurance to cover giving birth:
If the traveler discovers she is pregnant after making travel arrangements and has already purchased travel insurance, she’ll need to carefully review the plan’s rules for pregnancy and the coverage for medical conditions.
If the traveler is already pregnant and wants to purchase travel insurance to cover any medical complications, she should be sure that the plan includes coverage for pre-existing medical conditions (an upgrade may be necessary and there are timing restrictions involved).
If the traveler becomes pregnant after the policy’s effective date, she should verify that there is enough medical coverage in case something does happen on the trip and she needs medical care.
To summarize, you can get travel insurance coverage for emergency medical care due to complications of your pregnancy, but a normal pregnancy that’s proceeding smoothly along is not covered – including giving birth.
For more details, see How Travel Insurance Covers Pregnancy.