Sep 27, 2011

MEDICAL TRAVEL INSURANCE

Over the years Colin and I have travelled the globe and medical insurance has always been a part of the trip.  We have never used it.  Now as we are getting older the people who decide medical insurance policies have decided we are at risk and have to pay much higher prices.  We use to get annual medical insurance for around $300.00.  Now that Colin is 61 and I am 58, the prices have shot up for no valid reason other than the age factor.  The price for just our 5.5 month trip to Mexico has been quoted at $1078.00.  That price is based on us being in perfect health.  There is no extra cost re my surgery this past July, they just say that I will not be covered for that or anything arising as a result of or possibly related to the surgery.  Basically it means that even with the big dollars paid I will likely not be covered for much.

I began my research in this area last season and after making some inquiries this past month this is what we are going to do.

We are going to pay for travel medical insurance from the first day we cross into the USA until we reach our destination on Isla de la Piedra.  We will pay for an insurance policy from the day we plan to leave Tres Amigos RV Park till we reenter Canada.  In our case, we will pay $61.64 for travel from Oct. 26 to Nov. 6th.  For travel from March 30th to April 13th we will pay $92.60.  A combined grand total of $154.24 is a much more reasonable price to pay.  I know that this brings a number of questions to mind which I hope to answer for you here but if you have any further questions or comments just let me know.

This policy is issued by TIC Travel Insurance, available through most brokers. It includes a $5 million hospital & medical services, air ambulance, pet & vehicle return and much more.  It does however only include the days listed on your policy.  As we don’t know exactly the number of days we will be on the road I have added a few extra days in both directions.  Extra days are about $2.50 each, per person.  You can change your dates before you travel.  We are waiting till we know 100% the date we are leaving Canada before paying for our policy.  However we do have the option of changing our return dates before we travel providing we have had no claims.  For instance if our house sells 😀 and we have to return sooner 🙁  we just have to call the broker and change the dates.  I still chose to add the extra days just so we have that freedom without having to call.

While in Mexico, should we need any medical attention we will simply pay for it, as the prices are so very reasonable.  Our main concern re medical insurance is transiting the USA due to the extreme high costs for medical treatment.  Also our B.C. provincial health care will reimburse us what they would have paid here in B.C. for any emergency medical issues provided the claim is submitted within 90 days from the service provided. This is the form that needs to be filled out.  I suggest you make a copy of it and take it with you, that way you can be sure you have all the information you will need to provide.

Also if your medical incident is because of a vehicle accident, either your RV or car or truck, your Mexican vehicle insurance should have some medical coverage.  Ours has up to $5,000.00 per person ( up to 5 people in vehicle ) per incident.  A great policy.

Depending on what medical incident that occurs, if it does, one has the option of taking lots of pain medication and getting on a flight back home for treatment.

For those of you thinking of returning in April, Easter is early in 2012.  Semena Santa will be around April 6-10th.  For some that may affect your travel dates.

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11 responses so far

11 Responses to “MEDICAL TRAVEL INSURANCE”

  1. Al McClughan says:

    Hi Contessa:

    Your medical coverage plan makes sense. The only things I would suggest/add is to check to see if you can be reimbursed for excess days. Our plan allows us to get some $$ back if we spend less time out of country than what we originally declared. As we have a new grandchild on the way, we may have to come back earlier from the US.

    The second item is the repatriation of the RV and your dogs in case of a problem in Mexico. Our plans cover this issue (although we aren’t going to Mexico it will cover us in Mexico or the US), you may want to think about it. My wife doesn’t drive the RV.

    Al.

    • contessa says:

      Al…..as always thanks for your input, it is always valued. There is no reimbursement for the extra days but personally it is not an issue I am concerned with. Good point re the RV & pet return, I will do some research and post it. I don’t drive the RV either. Good Sam does have a system where you can hire another RVer to pick up & return your RV, however that brings to mind another issue with the paperwork and getting it out of Mexico!!

      TnT….welcome to the blog. Looking forward to hearing about you new adventures.

      Croft…..poor Norma! I do understand her point. It is a difficult decision to make.

      Marty…..OUCH!! I had no idea your costs were so high.

      George…..we all do what we do.

  2. Trent and Teresa says:

    Hi Contessa.

    Thank you so much for the comment you left for us. I am sure we will have a million questions.

    Teresa and I have not travelled much at all. In fact, when we flew down to Colorado to pick up our rig, it was the first time flying for either of us, as adults.

    Whew, it is going to take some time to get caught up on your blog, but what exciting adventures you have had already.

    Take care, and talk to you again…. TnT

  3. Croft says:

    We are 66 and 69 and have seen our rates go up an unbelievable amount! I would like to do as you do but Norma is terrified at the prospect of having no (extra) insurance down there. We have actually used our insurance once when Norma got a Lear Jet ride home from Tuscon with a broken hip. Like you say, being without insurance in the USA is not something we would do!

  4. Marty says:

    Our USA insurance runs $650 per MONTH! Even with my upcoming surgery, I still have paid in more than I get out. I have the foreboding that at the beginning of the new year it will go up over $700. And of course, they only pay after the deductible, the 20% co-pay, and the out of pocket limit. So we can still end up shelling out some decent cash even after the insurance company has sent its check.

    Croft, I agree-it would be scary being without insurance here in the land of overpriced medical care!

  5. A good system for you guys but we don’t sit still long enough to enjoy that luxury.

  6. Would you mind mentioning briefly what the difference is between this coverage and garden-variety health insurance coverage? You don’t have to go into great detail, I’m just wondering because it’s so (relatively) inexpensive.

    Thanks!

    • contessa says:

      Welcome to my blog, just love ducks!!

      This insurance is primarily directed to Canadians who are travelling through the US for a period of time or simply transiting the US enroute to Mexico where they will forgo ‘formal’ medical insurance and just go with the pay as you need medical assistance. The garden/duck variety of medical travel insurance is for those who need the security of being totally covered every minute they are away, as in door to door. If this is an insufficient answer, let me know 🙂

  7. Thanks, Contessa! I’m exploring our options, since our gold-plated medical insurance (employer-provided) will expire in the spring, and we’re fulltimers. I thought it would be worth asking.

    Ducks love you, too! Visit anytime.

    Roxanne

  8. […] then I might still have to shoot you……I started being seriously questioned about my Medical Travel Insurance blog which I happened to mention on RV.net, the Mexican section.  I am the one known as Big C ( […]

  9. […] the fine print.  Surprise!!!  We are covered for way more than I ever thought.  So between the medical insurance coverage we have settled on, this fills in the blanks quite nicely.  We have always paid the extra $10.00 […]

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