Victoria Zidwick a RoamRight Blog Author

Should I Consider Travel Insurance If I Plan to Study Abroad?

Whenever you plan to travel more than 100 miles from home, or especially when you travel overseas, many travel professionals recommend that you purchase a travel insurance policy. It should be no different when you plan to study abroad.*

Why should you consider travel insurance when you are planning to study abroad?

Planning to study abroad is really not much different than planning an overseas vacation. There are a lot of things you need to consider and a number of things that can potentially go wrong – such as your luggage reaching the destination two days after you or you suffering an injury outside of your primary health insurance coverage network.

By purchasing a travel insurance plan for the time you plan to spend studying abroad, you may have coverage for these unfortunate events and more.

Do colleges/universities offer sponsored group policies for those studying abroad?

Yes, many colleges and universities with study abroad programs offer a travel insurance option to their students, but you are not necessarily required to purchase that insurance. You can also shop around for an insurance option that better fits your needs and your budget.

What is covered under a travel insurance policy?

There are a number of travel insurance coverages that are important to know as you compare plans and look for the one that best fits your needs.

The benefits and features outlined below vary from plan to plan. You can click on each listing for a more detailed description of each travel insurance feature, including exclusions and limits.

Under an Arch RoamRight travel insurance plan, your study abroad tuition does not qualify as a pre-paid, non-refundable travel expense and is not eligible for reimbursement via your travel insurance.

Do domestic health plans cover you abroad?

In general, many standard medical insurance plans do not cover care received outside of the United States. Travelers on these plans may want to consider travel medical insurance. Travelers who are unsure about coverage for overseas travel should contact their health insurance provider and ask the following questions:

  • Am I covered in the country or countries I am about to visit?
  • What types of situations am I covered for?
  • What are my benefit limits when I’m abroad?
  • Will you pay directly to a foreign hospital (or would I pay out-of-pocket and get reimbursed)?

Additionally, several traditional health insurance plans may not cover care received outside of your home state, meaning even domestic travelers may need a travel medical insurance policy.

Some countries, such as Cuba, Ecuador, and others, may also require you to show proof of travel medical insurance coverage before being granted entry.

If your health insurance does not cover you abroad, it is best to purchase a travel medical insurance policy like the ones offered by Arch RoamRight.

Arch RoamRight offers several travel insurance coverage options that you can adjust to your travel style, destination, and extent of coverage.

When should you buy travel insurance when planning to study abroad?

You should purchase your travel insurance when you first book your trip since many travel insurance plans have early purchase benefits that can be beneficial, such as a Pre-Existing Conditions Exclusion waiver and optional upgrades like Cancel for Any Reason.

A Pre-Existing Conditions Exclusion waiver can result in additional coverage to the trip cancellation and trip interruption benefits when it comes to claims arising from pre-existing medical conditions. This could apply to medical conditions affecting the insured, their traveling companion (insured or uninsured), or either of their family members, as defined.

To be eligible for the Pre-Existing Conditions Exclusion waiver, you must meet all of the following criteria:

  • Purchase your travel insurance plan within 21 days of making your first trip payment;
  • Insure the entire non-refundable cost of your trip;
  • Must not be disabled from travel† at the time your premium is paid; and
  • This must be the first and only booking for this same time period and destination.

†For definitions, please refer to the policy
* Please note that travel insurance including study abroad coverage is limited to trip durations of 6 months or less.

Note: Available plans and coverages may have changed since this blog was published.

About the Author

Victoria Zidwick

Victoria Zidwick, a RoamRight Blog Author RoamRight's Marketing Communications Specialist, Victoria Zidwick, has worked in the travel insurance industry for more than five years. She has traveled extensively throughout the United States and has a handful of international travel experiences.Victoria's travel experiences have changed in recent years, as her family grows and she is learning the ins and outs of traveling with children. Connect with Victoria on LinkedIn or follow her onTwitter or Google Plus.

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