Medipac Travel Insurance Blog

"Canada's Most Experienced Travellers Trust Medipac Travel Medical Insurance"

How to Spot an Authentic Travel Insurance Plan

10 August, 2015 | Travel Medical Insurance

Yes, I saw par. The Canadian dollar is surging forward at one dollar, playing head-to-head with the U.S. dollar at exactly the same amount. Snowbird activities will now be more affordable while we are off exploring other terrains. Everyone is hopeful that the dollar will stay strong.

A par dollar is a big boon to the insurance industry because it counterbalances the high cost increases in the U.S. medical system. Obamacare has remained a mystery – not that it matters with presidential elections looming in November. Shaky times like these call for proper risk assessment and cost estimations. In anticipation of a better dollar value, a modest increase has been added to Medipac travel insurance rates seeing as medical prices in the U.S. still run well beyond the regular inflation rates issued by the government. We encourage you to take advantage of the Medipac Early Bird pricing and enrol in the Snowbird Currency Exchange Program while there is still time.

How worrying it is to know that many people are not aware about the risks of irregular health insurance while travelling. A number of younger snowbirds are under the impression that their provincial government health insurance plan will cover all the bills. But this belief is incorrect! Only 4 to 9 percent of your bills will be shouldered by the government while travelling and you are left to your own devices after that. Imagine having a $100,000 bill. This leaves you with a $90,000 burden. Medipac pays attention to competitors by assessing their policies and the products they offer. The results can be pretty daunting particularly in situations where you have no option but to depend on your policy. I came across a really upsetting one over the Internet. I went undercover and bought a travel medical insurance plan from a new cool-looking travel medical insurance site. After hitting the “Travel Medical Insurance” button, I clicked on “Buy Now,” answered all the questions thrown at me and informed them about my cholesterol pill, baby aspirin and overall travel plans. An impressive rate of $731 greeted me following a short delay. Something must be wrong, I mused. The rate is much lower than Medipac's $855 price (before discounts and credits). It seems too good to be true given my age and the length of my trip. Real travel insurance, as far as I know, is not as cheap as that. I did some further research and discovered that what they sold to me was only trip cancellation insurance. They never once sent a warning that they would be switching me to a different travel insurance plan along the way. I bought a different product from the outset, so what gives? It sure was reassuring when they advised me to “read my policy carefully” and that was because they would cover nothing! Well the said phrase is actually for their lawyers and not for their clients. To think that a connoisseur of travel insurance like me was almost deceived. How many seniors

There are cases wherein a plan does not cover heart and lung issues, or has an insufficient coverage limit of $50,000, or a treatment clause that covers your pre-existing condition only if you are not taking any medication (which is a different way of saying you will not be covered at all). Such insurance plans are misleading and deceiving. Ironically, they never seem to run out and people still keep buying them. Carefully note these plans, including credit cards that promise multiple coverage yet provide zero travel medical coverage for their clients after age 65. You have certainly been forewarned through a small piece of document entitled “Important Changes to Your Benefits,” containing a web of complex wordings upon which travel insurance changes are buried.

Another noteworthy event is when a gentleman approached me during one of our shows, asking me why Medipac is so expensive. He said he “would really like to buy” Medipac because all his friends recommend it but the plan “costs much more than what I am paying.” I enumerated the aforementioned elements for his consideration but he claimed to have had great coverage at a much lower rate. Having a few health issues of his own means he had to be really careful that his coverage remains effective. He was evidently worried and on the edge so I offered to review his policy and compare it to Medipac's travel medical insurance plan, but he declined my offer saying there was no need to do so. When asked why, he said he had a wallet card, which proved that he was indeed covered. Surpisingly, he never saw a policy – much less a booklet that outlined all his benefits.

A wallet card may prove you are covered but it is not the same as a travel medical insurance. Even an employee booklet cannot provide you with enough information about your coverage. So word to the wise? Read your policy. Note that several employer benefit plans have a $10,000 travel medical insurance coverage limit or lifetime maximums ranging from $50,000 to $100,000.

Here's what I have to say to people who think that brokers and websites that spout “We will find you the best coverage,” “We will find you the best deal” or “We will tailor-make a travel medical policy just for you” are their salvation: Do not be deceived. Insurance plans featured in their comparisons are those that pay fees or commissions to them. Medipac is not part of the option because we do not pay any of these fees or commissions to brokers or insurance websites. Each plan is unique so comparing requires hours and hours of hard work. They have high expenses (wrought by extra costs or a poor policy) so competing with Medipac will only backfire.

Travel safely! 

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