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Our complete guide to understanding the importance of international health insurance

Our ultimate guide to insurance at the 1st euro: how it works, the advantages and the possible choices

Our complete guide to the CFE: how it works, the offers and the alternatives

Overseas Health Insurance: The Ultimate Guide



Not having an overseas health insurance means exposing yourself to medical and administrative risks. They usually happen when you least expect them, and they can put you into real financial trouble.

Here you are going to see some considerations on why is so important to have an insurance while abroad and some tips to make the right choice of coverage.

Lacking Health Insurance for Living Overseas Means Being Unprotected

Social Security is Not a Valid Insurance While You Are Abroad

One of the main reasons to get an overseas health insurance is that Social Security does not cover health expenses outside of the home country, except for relocated workers.

For short stays abroad, reimbursements are neither mandatory nor automatic: they must be justified and are very exceptional. Repatriation is never covered.

After a few months outside of the country, insured persons simply lose their affiliation to Social Security.

Without overseas medical insurance, the patient must pay for all expenses, including administrative procedures.

Overseas Health Insurance: Get Coverage Against All Kinds of Risks

Unexpected health problems are not the only reason to take out health insurance for living overseas: an accident causing damage to a third party, flight cancellation, loss of luggage, or litigation are risks that are more frequent than one might imagine.

It is therefore more prudent to take out insurance to avoid administrative worries or significant expenses.

Some Countries Require an Overseas Medical Insurance

In some countries, overseas health insurance may be mandatory to obtain a visa, and affiliation to the local medical plan may be required in case of expatriation. It is therefore important to find out what your obligations are.

However, subscribing to a local insurance plan is rarely sufficient, as the guarantees may be limited and only work in the country of residence. It is therefore advisable to take out international health insurance for living overseas.

Overseas Health Insurance From the First Euro/Dollar/Pound

This type of insurance while abroad is offered by private companies.

Health Insurance for Living Overseas With Full Coverage

Unlike supplementary insurance, “first euro” (or “first dollar”) insurance covers health care costs from the first euro spent. They do not require membership in any national medical system.

The levels of coverage are defined in the overseas health insurance contract and are adapted to the country of residence and the cost of care on site.

An Overseas Medical Insurance Specially Designed for Expatriates

These insurance policies are specifically designed to meet the needs of expatriates. Thus, the representatives speak your local language and are used to answering questions from people living abroad.

In addition, they include repatriation insurance, and cover care provided during stays in your country.

Insurance While Abroad That Connects You With Experts

Generally, companies that market “first euro/dollar/pound” insurances have partnerships with networks of local practitioners.

Thus, policyholders benefit from advantageous rates, reduced reimbursement periods, and even a waiver of advance payment in case of hospitalization.

Finally, the ratio between the amount of the contributions and the guarantees is generally more interesting than in the case of any public system.

Overseas Health Insurance With Simplified Management

“First euro/dollar/pound” contracts are often recommended for their flexibility and good value for money.

Designed by international insurance specialists, these covers meet the specific needs of relocated workers and expatriates.

The management of the contracts is simple and is done in English.

The companies offer interesting services such as:

  • English-speaking assistance that can be reached from anywhere in the world
  • Partnerships with local health networks
  • Mobile applications offering useful tools such as medical translators or directories of health professionals.

Insurance While Abroad for All Budgets

The “first euro/dollar/pound” overseas health insurance covers expenses from the first euro incurred.

They follow the insured throughout the world, including the country of origin, and are available in a wide variety of formulas to suit all needs, all budgets and all lengths of stay.

Special guarantees can be added to the contract for enhanced protection. Of course, the more extensive the coverage, the more expensive it is, but competition allows you to benefit from advantageous rates.

Be careful, however, as the overseas medical insurancet is subject to a medical questionnaire which may lead to higher premiums or exclusions from coverage in the event of pre-existing medical conditions.

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This is also interesting:

What countries should I move to? The best countries to move to are not the same for everyone! Finding the ideal destination depends first of all on what is expected on a personal level.


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