Getting sick or injured while away from home can not only be dangerous, but extremely costly as well. Unfortunately, even if you have travel insurance, your ailments or predicament may not be covered, which is why reading the fine print before embarking is so essential.
Nearly half of Canadians who travel have no idea what the fine print on their travel health policies says. A recent study from the Travel Health Insurance Association found that though 23% of respondents required medical treatment while travelling and away from home, 47% of respondents had never bothered to read and review their plans.
When speaking to your clients about small business health care options and travel insurance plans, make sure they fully understand the importance of not only having the proper travel coverage before departure but also of reading and understanding the fine print.
Pre-Existing Conditions May Not Be Covered
Exemptions on travel insurance are more numerous than you may think. For example, many people do not understand that high blood pressure or cholesterol, a history of cancer, and pregnancy are all considered pre-existing conditions.
As a Benecaid Advisor, your clients may come to you with questions about what pre-existing conditions won’t be covered, so make sure you understand which pre-existing exemptions are in place with each plan.
Recognize Prohibited Activities
Travel insurance plans can often prohibit certain types of dangerous activities as well. Any injuries incurred during parasailing, horseback riding, bungee jumping, or other extreme activities, for example, may not be covered. It’s important to know the specific details of the coverage.
Check the Dates of Coverage
Make sure clients know that the entire duration of their trip will be covered. If clients have employees leaving on trips regularly throughout the year, enrolling in short-term travel insurance before every trip will be cumbersome. As an alternative, Benecaid offers annual travel insurance policies, which will cover employees for the entirety of the year.
Don’t Assume You Are Automatically Covered While Travelling
Canadian insurance will almost never be valid outside of Canada, and your provincial insurance may also fail to cover you fully when you’re out-of-province.
If you become injured or ill while out of the country, for example, it is quite possible that your current employee health benefits will not cover any form of treatment — or just a small amount of your overall cost of care. In worst-case scenarios, doctors and hospitals in other parts of the world may even deny your care entirely if you do not have the appropriate travel health insurance or enough cash to pay the bills in full.
You should also not assume that a credit card will provide coverage. It is true that some credit cards offer travel insurance, but they are usually rife with limitations, only providing coverage for those of a certain age or extremely short periods of time.
Your travel health insurance plans should include basic health insurance such as hospital coverage, prescription drugs, and rehabilitation. There are also options that provide additional coverage such as pre-existing condition coverage, coverage for those over age 65, and non-medical items like lost baggage or trip cancellation. Provisions should be provided for any pre-existing medical conditions that you may have. Additional coverage also provides for medical evacuations and medical escorts (in the case you need to be relocated to Canada or the nearest safe location), and repatriation to Canada in the unfortunate event of death.
Encourage Clients to Read the Fine Print
Make sure your clients with group travel coverage understand that purchasing the best travel insurance they can afford is important for their safety and financial security. Reading the fine print is the next step in ensuring safety and security while travelling.
Once Benecaid travel insurance is acquired, your clients’ employees can easily log into the Access Benecaid portal to print their benefits card and policy before leaving. For any questions concerning the options Benecaid offers for travel or medical insurance for small businesses, contact your Benecaid Executive Benefits Consultant or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.