Travel Insurance 101

How to choose your travel insurance policy: A Practical Guide

First of all, make sure you know your status and why you need insurance.


You need insurance because you are leaving Canada; 
  1. Is it part of your job?
  2. Is it as part of a leisure trip?
  3. If you’re a regular winter visitor to the USA, and fit the “Snowbirds” category, we invite you to read our article on “Snowbirds; Top 5 things to know before you go”.


You need insurance to come to Canada;
  1. Are you studying in Canada?
  2. Are you visiting family members?
  3. Are you visiting the country?
  4. Are you working in Canada? 


What does travel insurance cover?

First of all, travel insurance is insurance taken out when the insured leaves their country of residence. Whether you’re an international student coming to study in Canada, a foreign worker or a Canadian traveling south for a few weeks, travel insurance is the solution to the unexpected.

Medical Guarantees

Basic medical benefits cover emergency medical expenses, hospitalization, emergency transport or clinic consultation following an accident or health problem while traveling. Some insurers offer additional cover, such as accident and dismemberment, paramedical and psychological services, repatriation and return of the deceased. 

Non-Medical Benefit

Non-medical benefits may be purchased by a Canadian citizen at any time, or by a non-resident while in Canada.

Trip cancellation and interruption

Trip cancellation insurance covers non-refundable expenses incurred prior to departure, in the event that the trip has to be cancelled for health reasons or on the advice of the traveler. Trip interruption coverage covers non-refundable costs incurred after departure, should the trip have to be cancelled or shortened for reasons of health or advice to the traveler. Trip cancellation and interruption clauses vary from one insurer to another, so it’s important to read the policy carefully to understand the reasons why you can benefit from it.


Baggage coverage provides financial protection against the loss, breakage and sometimes delay in arrival of baggage during a trip.

What do I need to pay particular attention to?

Amount of Insurance

Some insurance plans, such as those for Canadians traveling outside Canada, offer coverage for medical emergencies and miscellaneous medical expenses, in amounts ranging from $1 million to $10 million per traveler. This means you can travel with peace of mind virtually anywhere on the planet. Most plans for foreign students offer coverage for medical emergencies and miscellaneous medical expenses, ranging from $2 million to $5 million per traveler.  

Plans for visitors to Canada offer coverage for medical emergencies and miscellaneous medical expenses, ranging from $10,000 to $500,000 per traveller. It’s important to make a proper assessment of your needs, taking into account the length of your stay and the real costs of the Canadian healthcare system. Consider that a single day in the emergency room can easily cost several hundred dollars, and a day in intensive care more than $10,000, so imagine if you had to spend a few days there and undergo surgery. What would be the right amount of insurance?


Each insurer has different clauses and exclusions, often relating to age, state of health and pre-existing conditions. It is very important to declare all health conditions, since when making a claim, the insurer will ask to consult the medical file history. Under certain conditions, many insurers offer to add an endorsement for stable pre-existing conditions, for a higher premium.   

Remember, we have a licensed team ready to listen to your needs. Trusted service is one of Assurance Visiteurs’ values, and our dedicated team strives to provide personalized service that’s fast, efficient and focused on our customers’ needs.

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