Health insurance to travel to Europe from the United States

More and more travelers buy travel health insurance to fly to Europe in the face of more frequent flight cancellations and delays, and the possibility of contracting COVID-19 anytime, anywhere.

Health insurance is mandatory to travel to Europe, depending on the reason for the trip and the destination, whether it is inside or outside the so-called “Schengen Area”, an area in which 26 different European nations recognize the abolition of their internal borders with other nations. limbs without movement restrictions.

Recent research from Squaremouth, a travel insurance marketplace, has revealed that 2023 will be the year international travel fully recovers, despite high inflation, as travelers plan larger trips to fulfill their pent-up desire. to travel after the pandemic.

This same report indicates that older travelers have already reached the same levels of activity as in 2019, but millennials and Generation Z will continue to spend more on travel insurance.

For its part, the European Union reports that international travelers “should be able to financially cover medical services in the event of an accident, injury or any other sudden event.” Therefore, it establishes the requirements of the Schengen visa insurance, which is mandatory by law.

The US government advises that it does not offer insurance to US citizens abroad. “We don’t pay medical bills or unexpected costs. We strongly recommend that you buy insurance before you travel, ”he explains. “Check the country information page for your destination before you travel.”

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Most travel insurance policies include basic coverage that in an unexpected situation can save you a lot of money. David McNew Getty Images

Do you need medical insurance with the future ETIAS entry permit?

For US citizens who need an ETIAS visa waiver next year 2023, the new permit to enter the European Union without a visa, it is not mandatory to show medical insurance at Customs.

But, if US citizens need to stay in Europe longer than the 90 days allowed by the ETIAN visa waiver, similar to the US ESTA e-visa, they will need to apply for a Schengen visa, which is required by law to purchase travel medical insurance.

The Schengen visa is issued for a specific country and you cannot move freely around Europe. There are several types of visas.

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Schengen visa insurance requirements

The minimum coverage must be at least €30,000.

Cover all member states of the Schengen zone.

It must cover possible repatriation for medical reasons.

Urgent health care coverage and hospital emergency treatment.

Coverage in case of death.

The coverage must cover the entire period of stay in Europe, regardless of whether it is for business, tourism, studies, vacations or other reasons.

Travel insurance taken out to travel to Europe must be recognized by the European Union. Archive/El Nuevo Herald

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Types of insurance for the Schengen visa and costs

There are two insurance companies recommended by the EU: Europ Assistance and Mondial Care, which has an online calculator that helps you know the amount to pay, depending on the health program chosen, the days of stay and the country of origin . They are policies accepted by European embassies and consulates around the world.

Both companies have policies that can be easily purchased online and in both cases the policy can be canceled, free of charge, if you provide proof that you have been denied a Schengen visa.

Europ Assistance, the world’s leading company in travel medical assistance and insurance at a really very cheap price, has two plans: Schengen insurance €3 and Schengen Plus insurance €5.

For Americans, a month’s stay with the €3 Schengen insurance medical health plan comes to a total of €46.

This plan covers the expenses of medical assistance due to sudden illness or accident produced during the trip outside the country of origin. Europ Assistance coverage also includes medical fees, drug costs, hospitalization costs, fees for transfers requested by a doctor and repatriation costs. Everything up to €30,000.

In addition, the minimum plan covers the transfer of mortal remains together with embalming costs, the legal minimum coffin and administrative procedures.

For Americans, a month’s stay with the Schengen Plus €5 insurance medical health plan comes to a total of €73.

The Schengen Plus insurance includes, in addition to the services of the regular Schengen insurance, an extension of stay, expenses that will be paid by Europ Assistance if prescribed by a doctor, for a maximum of 10 days, at €100 per day.

This insurance company will also cover with this plan the return costs of any person accompanying the insured person, that is, the price of the ticket. In addition, it will take care of the return trip of any person under 14 years of age to their country of residence.

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The international insurance company Mondial Care covers medical expenses in case of illness or accident that occurred during your stay in the Schengen zone and you can choose between two levels of coverage: €35,000 or €100,000.

Both companies offer different insurance policies, in addition to Schengen visa insurance.

Although travel health insurance is not mandatory for travelers coming from countries that do not require a visa, the EU insists on the need to obtain one in case you are going to travel to the countries of the Schengen area.

This story was originally published on December 23, 2022 1:18 pm.

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Isabel Olmos is a Public Service reporter. At el Nuevo Herald she has written stories for Trasfondo, Locales, Revista Viernes and Galería 305, and has covered fundamental topics such as health, art, cooking and travel. She is a scriptwriter for television documentaries. She has a degree in Journalism from the CEU Universidad San Pablo in Valencia, Spain.

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