France travel insurance is an important consideration before international (or even domestic if you're already there) travel. As a visitor, it is important to determine whether you need travel insurance, and which plan is best, before you leave home. Here is a guide to the many different kinds of travel insurance and why you should check this out.
Before You Buy France Travel Insurance
The first step is to check with your own personal health insurance policy and see what it covers. If emergency treatment will be covered overseas (and without a big co-pay or deductible, or a long list of exceptions), then at least you know that the medical aspects of your trip will be covered. But you should check of the worst eventuality in case you find you have to be transported home in an emergency.
Travel insurance will typically also cover a few extras, such as the cost to transport you home for treatment if you have a medical emergency, and lost baggage.
Types of France Travel Insurance
If you will be visiting France for a long time, you must take out travel insurance. There are several options, starting with the simplest. This travel insurance will cover items like You can either the cash lost on a trip which has been canceled due to emergency, lost luggage and some medical emergencies.
You can also purchase decent short term medical insurance for trips betweem 15 days and one year which include treatment for illnesses. If you plan to visit for a year or longer, there are many options for annually-renewable plans.
If you require a visa to visit France, proof of health coverage is mandatory before you even apply.
The good news is that France's health care system is wonderful, and actually is ranked higher than that of the U.S. by the World Health Organization. In 2017 it was named the best in the world.
Comparing France Travel Insurance Plans
If you do decide to buy travel insurance, look for a plan that includes:
- Treatment for emergencies AND illnesses. Some plans also feature a small mount of coverage (say $100) for dental emergencies.
- Emergency medical evacuation in case you need to be flown back to the U.S.A.
- Trip interruption (which usually only covers you in case of the death of an immediate family member or damage to your primary home).
- Policies with small deductibles ($100 or $250) and co-pays (most international insurance pays 100 percent of medical costs).
- If you travel often, consider an annual membership which has an emergency evacuation program such as MedjetAssist in case you need to be flown home. You can choose which hospital in the USA you will be taken to.
Pitfalls of France Travel Insurance
Buyer beware of the following out-of-pocket costs and exceptions:
- Shop around for the best rate, first of all. Many comparable plans have a wide range in costs.
- Watch out for low rates in exchange for crazy deductibles of $1,000 or $2,500.
- Know that maternity treatment and childbirth is rarely covered.
- Routine vaccinations and preventative treatment is rarely covered.
- Pre-existing conditions, basically anything you have been treated for before or should have known existed before, is rarely covered. Some policies do, however, allow some coverage (usually around $2,500) for the sudden recurrence of a pre-existing condition.
- Most won't cover injuries sustained while drunk or on drugs.
- If you are getting longer-term insurance for an extended stay overseas, check to find out whether you will be covered if you return to the U.S. for a visit. Some policies require that you purchase that extra when you start your policy period.
The crucial thing is to scour the policy itself. You want to pay closest attention to the schedule of coverage or outline of benefits, which will say what is covered and at what level. DO read the small print; it might save you expense if you are claiming for something not covered.
What is more important, however, is to scrutinize the exceptions to see what will NOT be covered. That is where most people get unpleasantly surprised when they get treatment, then later learn it was not covered.
Cost of France Travel Insurance Quote
Travel Guard is one company that handles travel insurance, and you can receive a quote from their site.
Check out More Essential Tips for your French Trip
- Top French Travel Tips before you Travel
- Top Essential Things to Pack for France
- More Travel Essentials