Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What amount of insurance benefit should I purchase?
Immigration Canada recommends at least $100,000 of medical insurance coverage as hospital costs for visitors to Canada can run $3,500.00 – $5,000 per day.
2. When should I purchase visitors to Canada travel medical insurance?
You can purchase medical coverage at any time. We recommend that visitors insurance should be purchased prior to arrival to Canada. If the effective date is after the arrival date, most of the insurance companies do not cover expenses within 48 hours up to 8 days as a result of sickness occurring immediately following your policy effective date. Injury coverage is effective immediately.
3. What is a Deductible?
This represents the amount of eligible medical expenses that must be paid by the insured before the insurance company begins to reimburse for covered expenses. As an example, if you purchase a plan with a $50 deductible and incur $200 of expenses, the insurance company will begin to reimburse for expenses after you have paid the first $50 of your medical bills.
There are two different kinds of deductibles, per-claim and per-policy period. A per claim deductible means that the insured must pay a new deductible for each separate incident. (Example: pay the deductible once for a broken leg and then a second time for a flu treatment). A per-policy period deductible means that the insured must pay the deductible only once during the period of the insurance policy. If your plan has a $100 deductible, you pay the first $100 of the expenses and then the insurance company picks up the rest. The higher the deductible, the lower the premium cost and vice versa.
4. What is a Pre-existing Condition?
Generally, pre-existing conditions are defined as any sickness, injury or medical condition for which the insured consulted a physician, has symptoms, has been hospitalized or was prescribed medications within a certain period before the effective date of coverage. Each insurance company treats pre-existing conditions differently and this is a major reason for declined medical claims. The look back period may vary from 3 months to a life time. Please, read the exclusion section in the insurance policy booklet for exact definition.
There are certain visitors insurance plans in which coverage for stable pre-existing conditions is possible. Please call our customer service at 1-877-838-0020 for more information.
5. Can I buy visitors to Canada insurance, if I have a pre-existing medical condition?
Yes. If you choose a policy that excludes pre-existing conditions, you will be covered for new sicknesses and injuries.
6. Can I cover a pre-existing condition with a Visitors to Canada insurance policy?
Some insurance companies cover people if their medical conditions is under control and stable for certain period (3 to 6 months) before travel. Be aware that a simple change in medication can mean that the medical condition is not considered “stable”. Policy definitions are critical and the rules vary depending on the age of the policy-holder. It is up to each policy holder to make sure they qualify. Some insurance companies are able to underwrite and give individual quotes for people with pre-existing medical conditions.
Even policies that include pre-existing conditions do not reimburse expenses to maintain the condition, but complications that require medical attention, hospitalization or death from that pre-existing condition are covered.
Be honest and disclose all details for your pre-existing medical condition. If you have a $50,000 claim after suffering a heart attack in Canada, the insurance company will likely check into your medical history.
Please, call our customer service at 1-877-838-0020 for more details.
7. Is there any medical test required before we can buy Visitors Insurance?
No, there is no medical examination required for purchasing any Visitors Insurance plan. You can buy the policies online any time and get coverage from the following day.
8. Is it possible to extend a Visitors Insurance policy term?
Most Visitors Insurance policies can be extended. Just call us or your insurance company prior to the expiration of the policy. The insured person must be in good health and not have any pending medical claims. The disadvantage of extensions is that if the insured person(s) have symptoms or visited a hospital or a physician during the previous policy period, this could be considered a pre-existing medical condition for the new policy period.
9. Can I cancel an insurance policy and receive a refund?
Most plans can be cancelled and the premium can be refunded before the effective date of the policy. Some administrative charges may apply. Partial refunds (less cancellation fee) after the effective date, are available if the policy is terminated because of early departure to the country of origin or the insured becomes eligible for a provincial or territorial government plan, and no claim has been incurred.
10. Can I go to any doctor/hospital, or am I limited to specific medical practitioners?
There is no restrictions where you seek medical service in Canada, as long as the amount charged by the providers is Usual, Customary and Reasonable for a particular service, treatment, or supply.
11. What is covered by the Visitors Insurance?
Travel insurance is intended to cover sudden, unexpected, and unforeseeable circumstances. Please read the Benefits section for a summary of the available coverage.
12. Who is eligible for visitors to Canada medical insurance?
– Canadians who have returned to Canada who are not covered under a provincial health plan.
– Visitors to Canada who are here on business or vacation.
– Immigrants to Canada who are waiting on government health coverage.
13. What is not covered?
Travel insurance does not cover everything. This insurance has exclusions, conditions and limitations. Please read and understand the policy before you buy Visitors Insurance.
Generally, most policies do not cover pre-existing conditions. The definition varies from policy to policy. Other common exclusion is accidents or illness caused by abuse of drugs or alcohol. Also not covered are routine health-care, elective or cosmetic surgery, non-emergency care that could be done in your home-country or province. Many plans limit benefits if insured fail to get advance approval for treatment. Some policies don’t cover risky sports like bungee jumping, rock climbing, scuba diving or hang gliding. Self-inflicted injuries are not covered, nor are injuries caused while a policy-holder is committing a criminal act.
14. Can I purchase insurance for visitors over the age of 85?
Some insurance companies offer limited coverage for visitors over the age of 85.
Please, call our customer service at 1-877-838-0020 for more information.
15. Do you offer group visitors to Canada insurance?
Yes, some insurance companies offer discount prices for group travel medical insurance.
Please, call our customer service at 1-877-838-0020 for more information.
16. Do you offer travel insurance for Canadians?
Yes, we work with the major insurance companies on the Canadian market for travel and visitors medical insurance.
17. Will Visitors Insurance cover me for trips outside Canada?
Yes, provided that the majority of your period of coverage is spent in Canada. Some insurance plans have a limit for the time spend outside of Canada. Expenses incurred in your country of origin will not be covered.
18. If an insured with a pre-existing high blood pressure has a heat attack, is it covered?
A claim adjuster from your insurance company will determine whether it will be covered or not, based on an attending physician statement (APS) from the hospital and the insured medical history.
19. Why do I need insurance?
Travel insurance protects in the case of medical and family emergencies, delays, theft and the last-minute plan changes that can happen to both frequent and occasional travelers. Without travel insurance, a broken arm, even something as basic as the flu could turn into substantial medical bills costing thousands of dollars. Health care costs in Canada are very expensive. Hospitals can charge thousands of dollars per day. Without emergency hospital and medical insurance, you and your family would be responsible for these high costs, which can create a significant financial burden.
20. Why do I need to use a broker?
Insurance premium is the same whether the plan is purchased directly from an insurance company or through a broker like www.VisitorsInsurance.ca. Working with a broker gives you some advantages:
– We offer compare one stop shopping for Visitors to Canada Travel Medical Insurance.
– We work for our clients, not for an insurance company.
– We offer claim support for our clients.
– We offer experience and knowledge to help you make the right decision.
21. Are there any discounts for Visitors Insurance?
The published premiums from the insurance companies are the only rates available. Offering discounts from these prices initiated by an insurance broker or travel agent is strictly forbidden under the Codes of Conduct that apply to our operation. Any agent caught doing it could lose their license.
22. I have travel insurance from my credit card, Is the coverage enough?
Some credit cards provide basic travel insurance, but you must read the fine print to find out exactly what’s covered, under what conditions, and what the limits are. Many credit cards have very low coverage limits. The coverage may apply for a limited time period, or may be available only to a certain age.
There are many sources of travel insurance – travel agents, banks and trust companies, credit cards, and some general insurance brokers sell travel insurance, too. You may have coverage even from your work through the company benefits or from an association that you are member.
We, as insurance brokers, offer only personal health and travel insurance and we guarantee our expertise and service.
23. Why should I purchase insurance from a Canadian company and not buy insurance in my native country?
– Quick claim procedure in Canada (you get your money faster).
– Canadian medical providers prefer to work with Canadian insurance companies.
– Direct billing between hospitals and most of the Canadian insurance companies.
– Canadian insurance companies are regulated by the Canadian financial regulators. It is much easier to claim improper practice of a Canadian insurance company here in Canada than in a country somewhere else in the world.
– Canadian insurance companies are re-insured by Assuris – the Canadian government organization that will cover up to $60,000 of medical expenses in case of an insolvency of a Canadian insurance company. If total benefits exceed this amount, Assuris covers 85% of the promised benefits, but not less than $60,000.
24. My parents are healthy, should I buy Visitors Insurance?
No one can predict the future. Medical treatment in Canada is very expensive and it is always advisable to buy medical travel insurance from a reputable company.
25. One of my parents is very healthy but the other one is not. Is it a good idea to insure only one of my parent who is most likely to use the insurance benefit?
This is not an appropriate decision. If someone has a pre-existing condition, most likely the insurance company will not pay for expensed related to that condition. Accidents and sickness happens every day and it is recommended for everybody visiting Canada to have adequate medical insurance.
26. Can I buy Visitors Insurance at the time of an emergency? I can use your web site and receive instant coverage.
Insurance companies have waiting periods from 48 hours to 8 days for illnesses if Visitors Insurance is purchased after the arrival in Canada. Injuries are covered immediately but from the time of purchase, not before that.
27. What if I don’t pay for a medical service and I don’t have insurance?
Canadian residents who invite relatives or friends to Canada are responsible for their support. Hospitals and medical offices have legal right to collect unpaid bills from the person who sponsored a visitor in Canada.
28. How do I purchase insurance?
Buying or ordering insurance online is very simple. After filling out the “Free Quote” form you will receive quotas from all Canadian insurance companies. From that page, you can click “Direct Buy” or “Order Online” button in the first column. This leads you to the appropriate online application form. If you choose “Direct Buy” you will be transferred to an insurance company secure web site where you can instantly purchase a Visitors Insurance. If you complete “Order Online” form, you will be contacted by our customer service department for the method of payment. In both options you will receive an e-mail with an attached “Confirmation of coverage” document with a policy number and the information that you provided. The coverage will start from the start date as indicated on the form. Within a few days you will receive a package by mail that will include a policy booklet and a signed “Confirmation of coverage”
29. What is used as proof of purchasing insurance?
When you purchase insurance online, you will immediately receive a confirmatory email with details of the insurance. This is you virtual insurance document. You will also receive paper confirmation by mail.
30. I made a mistake in entering my data while purchasing the insurance, what should I do?
Contact our customer service at 1-877-838-0020.
31. What should I do in the case of an emergency and/or hospitalization?
You must notify your insurance company as soon as possible of any emergency medical treatment or hospitalization. Failure to do so will result in decreasing your insurance benefit.
32. Why should I call the emergency assistance center immediately?
Most of the insurance companies have emergency assistance and claims personnel available to help you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Experienced multilingual staff verify coverage to hospitals, arrange emergency medical evacuation, coordinate payments, and contact your family doctor and relatives as needed.
They’re here to help you.
33. How do I make a claim?
To make a claim, you will need to complete a claim form and attach the original medical bills, receipts and invoices (always make a copy for your record) and mail them to your insurance company.
All claims should be reported in writing within 30 days of acquiring and all original documents have to be transmitted to the insurance company within 90 days.
All insurance companies have Claim Assistance telephone numbers.
For more information on how to make a claim, please, check our “Claims” page.
34. What if the insurance company do not pay my claim?
Insurance policies are legal documents and insurance companies are obligated to follow the conditions of the contracts. If you disagree with an insurance company’s claim decision, you may: 1.Request in writing from the insurance company to review your claim; 2.If not satisfied again with the second decision, you have the right of arbitration in accordance with the law governing arbitration proceedings in the province in which your policy was issued. Legal action to recover a claim must start within 12 months of the date of bodily injury or the date on which you first received any emergency medical service; 3.You also have the option of contacting the following regulating bodies: Better Business Bureau – www.bbb.org (enter your Canadian postal code to find nearest office) Canadian Life and Health Insurance OmbudService – www.olhi.ca
35. When are sports-related injuries covered?
Injuries related to sports are covered under the Visitors Insurance policy when the insured is involved in recreational sports while visiting Canada. Professional athletes, extreme sports and organized sport activities require the purchase the “Optional Sports Rider” or call our customer service for a quote.
36. My parents are not in Canada, yet. Can I purchase Visitors Insurance for them?
Yes. Anyone can purchase Visitors Insurance online on behalf of their family members or friends.
37. What is co-insurance?
After your deductible is met, co-insurance is the percentage of the covered medical expenses that you, the insured person, must pay.
For instance, if your health plan has an 80/20 co-insurance rate, your insurance plan pays for 80% of your eligible medical expenses and you are responsible for the remaining 20%.
38. What is a Policy Period?
“Policy Period” is the amount of time between the effective and expiry date of your insurance policy. Visitor Insurance policy periods can be as short as 5 days and as long as 12 months. For example, if you complete an application and pay for 6 months of insurance, the policy period for that insurance will be 6 months.
39. What is the meaning of Usual, Customary and Reasonable?
Usual, Customary and Reasonable charges represent the average or most common amount charged by medical providers for a particular service, treatment, or supply in the same geographic area. Typically information on rates for procedures is compiled into a data bank and updated periodically. So when a claim is submitted for a plan with UC&R benefits, the insurance company before making the claim payment reviews the UC&R rate and double checks that hospitals and doctors are not billing excessively for the particular service or procedure.
40. Should I take and read the official policy wording booklet?
The official policy wording booklet includes the terms and conditions of your insurance policy as well as important contact information you will need in case of an emergency. As with any insurance, some of those terms may limit the benefits payable. It is important to read your policy wording carefully. Take the policy booklet with you, so you can refer to it if necessary.
41. Is it safe to purchase Insurance online?
Yes. The application forms are in a highly secure ordering environment so you can enrol in the insurance plans with confidence. The insurance providers use Secure Socket Layers (SSL), for transferring information to process your orders. The SSL encrypts, or translates, your order information into a highly indecipherable code, which is processed immediately. You will remain in this secure zone for the entire purchase process.
42. Is my personal information protected?
43. Questions to ask before choose Visitors Insurance:
– What is the deductible? This is the amount that you have to pay before the insurance kicks in. It could vary from $0 to thousands of dollars.
– Does the insurance plan cover pre-existing conditions? Some policies cover stable pre-existing conditions.
– What is the look-back period for pre-existing conditions? The shorter the look-back period, the better for the policy-holders. Some companies require the condition to appear before 4 or 6 months not to be considered pre-existing. Other insurance policies have life-time look-back periods for medical conditions.
– Do I have to go to a pre-approved medical service providers in case of medical emergency? Some plans limit or refuse payments if you use unapproved providers for medical services.Please, read all the fine print and ask questions before you buy. Carry proof of your insurance with you on your trip. And shop around – there is a big difference in policy features and costs. But do not pick a policy on price alone.
All questions on this web site have been answered to the best of our knowledge. Since insurance companies can change their policy wording and premium rates at any time without notice, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information on this page. We will not be held liable in any case, for any problem arising from reading these questions and answers. Please, use this information at your own risk.