Now that the summer of 2015 has drawn to a close, many of my snowbird clients are looking forward to their annual winter getaways.

One of the main questions my clients ask me is:

“Do I need additional medical insurance when I travel abroad?”

Out of country costs are exorbitantly high; what we would consider a routine trip to the doctor here in Canada, could put us at serious financial risk when out of country.

Sadly, many snowbirds are complacent about the need for medical insurance while traveling outside Canada. A 2013 survey conducted by TD Insurance, revealed that only roughly 50% of Canadians aged 50 and older even consider checking their medical insurance before leaving for vacation. It was also learned that only 16% call their insurance providers to confirm if they have sufficient coverage.

Technically, all Canadians are covered under their provincial plans, any time they are overseas, but coverage is very limited. In Ontario, for example, OHIP only covers the first $400.00 of medical expenses incurred in the United States. And that does not include ambulance, prescriptions, or auxiliary expenses.

In my next post, I will talk about how to find the best policy.

Travelling Abroad? Don’t Forget Medical Insurance! Part I