Everything you need to know about health insurance for traveling abroad

Don't let a small setback become a big problem.

If you are looking for medical insurance to travel abroad, in this article we offer valuable information so you can make the most appropriate decision, depending on the destination or the type of trip you are going to take. 

When you're away from home, any health-related issue can become overwhelming. Because of this, we recommend that you review the health conditions and coverage included in the insurance policies you are considering, whether for travel, doctors or those included with your credit card.

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For traveling in Europe

If traveling in Europe, you can request the European Health Insurance Card to get coverage for emergency medical treatments, chronic illnesses or pregnancy in the 27 countries of the European Union, as well as in Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. 

Keep in mind that the EHIC does not cover situations that are usually included in travel insurance, such as treatment for illnesses, repatriations or transfers of relatives. Furthermore, it does not guarantee that your healthcare will be totally free. In some cases, you may have to pay the amount on the spot, although it will be reimbursed upon your return.

For traveling outside Europe

Taking out a medical insurance policy to travel abroad is a preventive measure that can save you money, especially when you consider that in some countries, the price of a doctor's visit can easily exceed the price of the policy. 

The health system works differently in each country. As a result, a benefit that doesn't cost anything in one country may require a large payment in another. 

Taking out health insurance allows travelers to enjoy medical care, regardless of what country they're in and how much money they have with them at the time. In addition, these policies feature 24-hour telephone assistance that provide useful information in your language. 

Be sure to get all the information on your policy's limits on medical expenses. It should be set based on the destination. If you travel to the USA, where healthcare costs are very high, it's better to have higher coverage limits than if you travel to France, for example. 

If traveling outside Spain, you should take out a travel insurance policy that will cover large medical expenses. Depending on the destination, as we said, this amount may vary. 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommends that everyone traveling abroad take out medical insurance that covers them if they get injured or sick during the trip, including evacuation by a medical plane. However, having an insurance policy is not a prerequisite for traveling to most countries, save for some exceptional cases. You can check the Ministry's page to get this information. 

Private health insurance, such as BBVA Más Salud Insurance, includes emergency healthcare abroad, even if you travel to the United States. 

If you travel outside Spain and want insurance that protects you and gives you peace of mind, at BBVA we offer BBVA Travel Insurance with medical coverage and, through its expanded option, access to compensation in the event of trip delays and lost, damaged or stolen luggage.

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Customized health insurance

It's important for the health insurance to adapt to the characteristics of the trip, the destination, the duration or the activities that you will do during the trip. 

If you plan to visit several countries during the trip, make sure that the policy you take out is valid in all of them, including at any airport stopovers. Ideally, you should take out a policy that covers the entire trip, including the arrival and departure days. 

Travel health insurance should include the following basic coverage

  • Emergency medical care. 
  • Expenses for hospitalization, medications, tests, etc. 
  • Medical care in case of an accident. 

If you plan to engage in risky activities or sports, such as scuba diving, mountaineering, caving, climbing, kite surfing, skiing or paragliding, make sure that your medical insurance for traveling abroad includes specific coverage, such as rescue, medical evacuation or the transfer of mortal remains. 

Take out the health insurance that best suits your needs and enjoy the pleasure of traveling worry-free.

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