Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Do You Need Health Insurance To Travel Within Canada

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Dont Worry Travel Insurance Can Cover You If Your Health Has Changed


Sometimes its possible to overlook the importance of a minor health-related development but be aware that it can impact your travel insurance. Heres what you need to know.

A standard emergency medical travel insurance policy will include coverage for pre-existing medical conditions provided you meet the insurers stability requirements. What does that mean?

That means it is important to let your broker or insurer know of any health-related changes when applying for insurance and prior to the start of each trip.

If you travel as planned without notifying your insurer, you risk paying a medical bill if your symptoms recur while you are away.

Heres the hurdle you may be facing: to meet an insurers stability requirements there must be no change in your medical treatment or health condition in a specified time frame and the rules around this differ between insurers.

Does that mean your health changes will prevent you from getting the coverage you need? The good news is you do have options. Heres what you need to know.

Whats Not Covered By Provincial Health Care When Youre Travelling

Whats covered by province varies, they dont all offer the same coverage. Ontarians travelling outside of their province, the Ontario Health Insurance Plan does not cover the following:

  • ambulance services
  • prescription drugs and other drugs are given outside a hospital
  • home-care services
  • fees charged by private hospitals or facilities
  • diagnostic or laboratory services outside of a public hospital
  • long-term care or residential services
  • assistive devices
  • Other services not generally covered in Ontario

Youll see similar services not be covered by your provincial plan if you live outside of Ontario. Go to your provinces website to learn more about what services are not covered.

Myth : Im Ready To Run The Risk Of Assuming Part Of My Medical Expenses Instead Of Buying Travel Insurance For A Stay Somewhere Else In Canada

Remember: the RAMQ covers a broad range of care and services, but it doesnt cover everything. Fees that arent covered in Quebec wont be when youre travelling outside the province either. This is true of the following, among others:

  • Transportation by ambulance if you are under 65
  • The cost of bringing you back to Quebec
  • A private hospital room
  • Fees for extra services
  • Drugs purchased outside Quebec
  • Services provided by a healthcare professional other than a doctor .

Only private health insurance or travel insurance can reimburse you for the cost of these services in the case of an emergency. And the RAMQ definitely wont refund non-medical travel expenses, such as:

  • Lost, damaged, or stolen baggage
  • Trip cancellations due to weather or illness.

Youll need comprehensive travel insurance or another type of insurance for those, too.

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And Travel Insurance Wont Protect You From Airline Overbooking

Travel insurance, of course, its not just about health coverage. It can also spare you hefty out-of-pocket costs if youre forced to cancel your trip, when something goes awry on your way to and back from your vacation, and if your property is damaged or stolen during the trip, among other things.

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Still, one thing travel insurance wont cover is airline overbooking. If youre bumped off an overcrowded flight, a travel insurance plan will be of little help, said Ingle.

Thats because the decision to boot you out is the airlines, whereas travel insurance generally covers travel disruptions that are outside the control of the transport provider, Ingle explained.

READ MORE: Air Canada cancels couples tickets, stranding them and costing them over $6K

Some insurers, including Ingles own company, have been talking about ways to offer insurance for overbooking. For now, however, theres nothing that will cover it, other than some airline policies, mostly in Europe, said Ingle.

And if you think Ottawas proposed bill of rights for air passengers will put an end to the overbooking, think again.

Do I Need Private Health Care Coverage When Travelling Within Canada

Why you need medical travel insurance for trips within ...

The portability criterion of the Canada Health Act requires that the provinces and territories extend medically necessary hospital and physician coverage to their eligible residents during temporary absences from the province or territory. This allows them to travel or be absent from their home province or territory and yet retain their health insurance coverage. Within Canada, the portability provisions are generally implemented through a series of bilateral reciprocal billing agreements between the provinces and territories for hospital and physician services. This generally means that your provincial/territorial health card will be accepted, in lieu of payment, when you receive hospital or physician services in another province or territory because the rates prescribed within these agreements are host-province/territory rates. These agreements ensure that Canadian residents, for the most part, will not face point-of-service charges for medically required hospital and physician services when they travel in Canada because the province or territory providing the service directly bills your home province/territory.

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Whats Covered Elsewhere In Canada

When you show your valid Ontario health card in another Canadian province or territory, you will be covered for some of the same services youre covered for in Ontario including:

  • physician services
  • services provided in a public hospital

Any service or treatment you receive in another Canadian province or territory must be medically necessary for it to be covered by OHIP.

Destination Health Travel Plans

The Reduced Stability Period option is available with Destination Travel Health Plans. You may qualify for 30-day, 90-day or 180-day reduced stability period for your pre-existing medical condition, depending on the plan you are eligible for based on your answers to medical questions on the application. Coverage for a pre-existing medical condition that has been stable within a reduced stability period is up limited to $150,000.

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Who Your Health Insurance Policy Covers

Your health insurance policy covers you if the policy is in your name.

Your spouse or partner and children under 19 years old may also be eligible for coverage under your insurance policy. Children over 19 may be eligible for coverage under your policy if they are still in school or if they are disabled.

Do You Need Travel Insurance Within Canada


Getting on a plane these days is frightening. The notion of contracting COVID among strangers when you work so hard to stay safe, mask on, and in a family bubble well, its difficult to justify the risk.

But people love to travel. A reports the #1 concern for any sort of travel was safety. Its likely why 47% of those surveyed plan on driving for their next vacation. Road tripping may enter a golden age as a safer alternative to avoid the virus.

It begs the question, is travel insurance within Canada a thing? Or, more precisely, do you need health insurance to travel within Canada, especially during a pandemic? We have public health care, right? The answer is that you typically dont. Still, depending on your health situation, it might be necessary to get in-country travel insurance for Canadians.

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Not All Medical Expenses Are Covered By Ohip

Im sure if you asked, most Canadians assume that their provincial health coverage, such as OHIP for Ontarians, will cover any unexpected medical costs that they may incur should they require medical assistance while travelling in another province. The fact is provincial health insurance plans will only cover some medical expenses. Therefore, you should always protect yourself by purchasing medical insurance when travelling within Canada.

Watch The Fine Print In Your Group Benefits And Credit Card Insurance Plans

If you have health coverage through your employer or credit card, you might be OK but you should check the fine print on those plans prior to travel to make sure thats really the case, said Ingle.

Over the past five years, some companies have been trimming back on their out-of-province coverage in an effort to rein in expenses, he noted.

READ MORE: Via Rail youth passes sold out after delays with reservation system

Some very large companies are facing larger retired populations, and employee benefits costs are rising, Ingle told Global News.

Canadians can call human resources or their employers insurance provider before a trip to ensure they have all the coverage theyre going to need, he added.

The same scrutiny should be applied to the insurance policies that come with credit cards, Ingle said.

READ MORE: B.C. woman injured in California warns of need for proper travel insurance

When it comes to credit cards, the first thing you should check is that they actually cover out-of-province domestic trips, as some may only apply to international travel.

The American Express Air Miles Credit Card is one that has your back even for Canada-bound trips, according to flights comparison website

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How Can I Stay Safe In A City Or Region Ive Never Been To Before

  • Use good judgement. If a situation seems dangerous or puts you at risk, avoid it.
  • Protect your sensitive information. Avoid using public WiFi when checking important personal information.
  • Protect your sensitive information offline, too. Dont share too much information with strangers.
  • Do not travel in unlicensed or unmarked vehicles. If youre using a rideshare app, make sure the details on the app match the vehicle you see.

What Other Health Care Services Do Provinces And Territories Provide

Do You Need Travel Insurance or International Health ...

Provinces and territories may also offer “additional benefits” under their respective health insurance plans, funded and delivered on their own terms and conditions. These benefits are often targeted to specific population groups , and may be partially or fully covered. While these services vary across different provinces and territories, examples include prescription drugs, dental care, optometric, chiropractic, and ambulance services.

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Do You Need Travel Insurance To Travel Within Canada

By Krista DeKuyper | July 26, 2021 | General Health, General Travel, HealthQuotes Articles, Travel Insurance

Were slowly starting to get back to normal and more people are finally able to put their summer travel plans into action. However, instead of looking abroad Canadians are looking domestically. People are discovering the beauty and adventure that awaits them in their own country. Even the Canadian government is encouraging citizens to hit the road. The Canadian government recently announced that they would be committing a total of over $70 million dollars to Canadian tourism. Quebec also recently launched a campaign aimed at Ontario residents in the hopes that they would visit the French province.

Medical Benefits Outside Of Bc

Due to COVID-19, the Government of Canada and Province of British Columbia have advised all residents to restrict non-essential travel:

If essential, urgent medical treatment is recommended and treatment is not available in Canada, your attending specialist in B.C. must carefully review your care and current travel advisories.

If you are eligible for coverage while temporarily absent from B.C., MSP will help pay for unexpected medical services provided the services are medically required, rendered by a licensed physician and normally insured by MSP. Reimbursement for physician services will be made in Canadian funds and payment will not exceed the amount payable had the same services been performed in B.C. Any excess cost is the responsibility of the beneficiary.

MSP does not provide any coverage for treatment provided by a health care practitioner outside the province .

PharmaCare does not provide coverage for prescription drugs or medical supplies when obtained outside B.C. Provincial assistance is also not provided to subsidize payment for ambulance services outside B.C.

Although the province does provide some coverage for emergency hospital care when you travel outside Canada, the province limits coverage to a maximum daily payment of $75.00, in Canadian funds.

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Leaving Manitoba To Travel Work Study Or Move:

What You Need to Know About Your Insured Health Benefits

When you leave the province, you can take steps to ensure you continue to receive benefits from Manitoba Health and Seniors Care while you are away.

The coverage you receive, and the steps you need to take before you leave, may vary depending on the circumstances of your departure. Although Manitoba Health and Seniors Care covers a broad range of insured health services, its important to know what is not insured so you can better plan for yourself and your family.

If you want to know if a specific service is covered, contact the contact the Insured Benefits Branch.

Do I have coverage when I visit another province or territory?

Yes. If you are visiting another Canadian province or territory and need hospital or medical care, show your Manitoba Health card. In most cases, the doctor and hospital bills will be sent directly to Manitoba Health and Seniors Care for processing.

Do I have coverage when I travel outside the country?

You are responsible for some of the costs of emergency hospital or medical care when you travel outside of Canada. Thats why its always a good idea to buy travel health insurance before you leave. Health care services in other countries, particularly the United States, can be significantly more expensive than here in Manitoba.

Do You Need Health Insurance To Travel In Canada

Canada’s Private Health Insurance: Is it Worth It

Yes, though it depends on your health situation, because not all provinces offer the same coverage as your own. This lack of coverage parity among regions means you may be paying out-of-pocket for services. While some expenses may qualify for reimbursement from your home province, Its not always the case.

For example, for Ontarians travelling outside of their province, theOntario Health Insurance Plan does not cover the following:

  • ambulance services
  • prescription drugs and other drugs are given outside a hospital
  • home-care services
  • fees charged by private hospitals or facilities
  • diagnostic or laboratory services outside of a public hospital
  • long-term care or residential services
  • assistive devices
  • Other services not generally covered in Ontario

In general, most people dont need these services while out of the province. However, purchasingtravel insurance for seniors, someone with a pre-existing condition, or disability, would be a wise choice.

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Does My Provincial Health Care Plan Cover Me For Travel Within Canada

Most Canadian provinces with the exception of Quebec have what are commonly referred to as reciprocalInterprovincial Health Insurance Agreements.

Under these agreements, if you require emergency medical treatment while in another province, the host province will cover the cost of any medically necessary health care services you receive and subsequently bill your home province for reimbursement.

However, there are some gaps and limits as to whats covered under these agreements which could you leave you on the hook personally for out-of-pocket expenses totalling thousand, or even tens of thousands of dollars, as evidenced by this case of an Ontario woman who required emergency medical treatment in Nova Scotia and incurred $12,000 in out-of-pocket medical expenses.

In addition, keep in mind that reciprocal agreements only apply for emergency medical care that is medically necessary. For example, you wont be covered if you decide travel to another province for treatment.

What Health Care Services Are Insured By The Provinces And Territories

Provincial and territorial health insurance plans are required to provide insured persons with coverage of insured health services, which are: hospital services provided to in-patients or out-patients, if the services are medically necessary for the purpose of maintaining health, preventing disease or diagnosing or treating an injury, illness, or disability and medically required physician services rendered by medical practitioners.

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Why You Should Buy Travel Health Insurance

  • Your Canadian health insurance may not pay your medical fees while you are outside Canada
  • Your provincial or territorial health plan may cover none, or only a small part, of the costs of your medical care abroad. It will never pay your bills up front
  • Foreign hospitals can be very expensive and may require immediate cash payment
  • In some countries hospitals and clinics will not treat you if you do not have enough insurance or money to pay your bills
  • The Government of Canada will not pay your medical bills

Domestic Travel Insurance Within Canada

Do you need travel insurance for trips within Canada ...

About to embark on some domestic travel within Canada, outside of your home province? Theres a lot of fun to be had inside our borders and, when you pack for a Canadian vacation, you should consider adding travel insurance to your travel checklist.

Here are some things to consider for travel insurance, plus other tips for when you travel within Canada.

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What Is And Isnt Covered By My Provincial Health Care Plan In Other Provinces

While the vast majority of your emergency medical treatment costs in another province will usually be covered by your provincial health insurance plan, there are a few issues and limitations to be aware of.

  • Every province differs in what they will cover: For example, under reciprocal agreements all provinces cover emergency care received in a hospital in another province, however only some provinces cover care received in a private clinic or from a doctor outside a hospital.
  • Coverage amounts may differ: Your home province may only cover the amount that can be charged in your province of residence for the same treatment. For example, if you live in one province where the set billing amount for a particular treatment is set at $500 and you receive that treatment in another province where the set billing amount is $700, you could be on the hook for the $200 difference.
  • Some costs are not covered: There are some costs that most provincial health insurance plans wont cover for emergency medical treatment in another province. Some of these costs include:
  • – Ground and Air Ambulance

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