How Much Does International Health Insurance Cost?
The biggest factor influencing the cost of premiums is where you’ll require international healthcare. Most providers break down coverage by region rather than on a country-by-country basis, so you choose whether you’ll need medical treatment:
- In Europe only
- Worldwide excluding USA
- Worldwide including USA.
Europe-only cover will be the cheapest option, whereas a worldwide plan including the USA will be the most expensive. This reflects the cost of healthcare in these different regions.
As policies are based on regions rather than countries, if you’ll be travelling regularly in a region you’ll have coverage for medical care wherever you are, even if you cross an international border.
There are also some personal factors that will impact the cost of premiums. For instance, when setting up your cover, the insurer will want to know your:
- Smoker status
- Current state of health / pre-existing conditions.
Additional Policy Options
When buying global health insurance, there are a variety of policy options to choose from that either increase or reduce how comprehensive your plan is. These options will in turn increase or reduce the cost of your premiums.
Depending on your provider and the ‘tier’ of policy you choose, you may find that the following options are add-ons to your coverage for an additional premium:
- Routine dental cover (e.g. checkups, fillings etc.)
- Routine optical cover (e.g. checkups and prescription glasses)
- An annual health checkup / MOT
What Is An International Health Insurance Deductible?
An excess or a co-payment are two different types of deductible. These see insurers ask policyholders to contribute to the cost of their healthcare.
Excess vs Coinsurance
Both are essentially a sum of money you pay towards your treatment before the policy kicks in to pay for the rest. The higher the amount you’re willing to pay, the lower the cost of your premiums.
An excess is the most common option. You typically set this up so you pay an agreed fixed monetary amount towards your healthcare, usually every time you make a claim.
Opting for a coinsurance you agree to pay a percentage of the overall bill for your healthcare when you claim rather than a fixed cash amount.
Agreeing to a co-payment policy places more risk (i.e. more cost) on you as the policyholder. For example, imagine the $123,000 bill for a heart bypass in the USA mentioned above. A co-payment of 10% would lead to an out of pocket expenditure for this claim of $12,300.
Think carefully when choosing your deductible, working out just how much you can afford to pay towards your international healthcare. Naturally the more you are willing to contribute out of your own pocket the lower your monthly premiums.