Monday, October 11, 2010
Travel Medical Insurance
I love to travel. Big trips, little trips, day trips and weekend trips. My sister lives in Texas and I visit her at least twice a year. I live 3 hours from the USA border. It's not unusual for us to zip down for an overnight visit. Next month I have a vacation planned that will take me to Mexico. While I look for deals on hotels, restaurants etc. One thing I won't skimp on is travel medical insurance. Even if I am just over the border for an hour, and that has happened when I have had to drop someone at the airport. I want to make sure I'm covered. Of course, my frugal nature has meant I have searched out the best deal!
There are many different options when it comes to purchasing travel medical insurance. There are multiple companies that offer travel medical insurance. Including banks, traditional insurance companies and auto clubs. Some employer benefit plans even include emergency medical trip coverage.
As for the type of coverage there are also multiple options. In the past I would buy an emergency medical plan for the specific duration of my trip (called a daily plan by my auto club). If I knew I had an upcoming vacation I'd buy travel medical insurance that would cover me for that specific period of time. Insurance companies base the cost on the age of the applicant. For my upcoming vacation a travel medical plan to cover me would cost $24.24 for 8 days. If the entire family was travelling a family plan for the same duration would cost $48.48. For a day trip to the States it would cost $12.12 for 1 days coverage for a single person or $24.24 for a family.
Another option is an annual plan. An annual plan covers you for the entire year, for multiple trips up to 15 or 30 days in duration (depending on the option you choose). For me, a 15 day annual plan would cost $75. A family would cost $150/year. This coverage is for the entire year for multiple trips. The advantage of this plan is that I can plan a spur-of-the-moment trip across the border with no worries about arranging for travel insurance. Because I travel frequently, the annual plan is a much more cost-effective option.
Since purchasing our annual plan in March, we have crossed the border multiple times. In March my daughter took a 10 day vacation. I drove her to, and picked her up from the Buffalo airport. In April the rest of the family took a 10 day vacation. Next month I will be away for 8 days. Separately, travel medical insurance for each of these trips would have cost $139.38. That is close to the cost of the annual premium, and we still have 6 months left!
For Works for me Wednesday.