Did you know that, according to CBC, seniors outnumbered children in Canada in 2016? According to Statistics Canada’s census figures, the total number of seniors in Canada that year was 5.9 million.
If you’re one of Canada’s many seniors, and you’re planning to travel, then you might be curious about how travel insurance works for seniors with pre-existing conditions. You may be asking yourself questions such as:
“Do I have any pre-existing conditions that might affect my travel insurance options?”
“What add-ons are important for travel insurance for seniors?”
“How do I find the best medical travel insurance for pre-existing conditions?”
“Should I consider a personalized travel medical plan?”
If you don’t have the answers to these questions, then you might be confused about how to find the best travel insurance for pre-existing conditions in Canada.
That’s why we’ve put together this guide. Once you have all the information you need about travel insurance and pre-existing conditions, you can find the right travel insurance for you. Read on to learn more.
Understanding Pre-Existing Conditions
If you’re looking for a travel insurance policy that covers seniors with pre-existing conditions, you first need to know what counts as a pre-existing condition. Usually, this includes health conditions such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, and heart conditions.
Even if you don’t have a diagnosis for these conditions, you may still be considered by insurance companies to have a pre-existing condition in certain situations.
This is the case if you are currently getting tests to determine whether you have one of these pre-existing conditions. This is also the case if you have symptoms of these conditions.
This may make you nervous.
Whether you’re in the process of finding out whether you have one of these conditions or you know you already have one, you might be thinking that you don’t have any options when it comes to travel insurance for seniors with pre-existing medical conditions.
But this isn’t the case at all. In fact, pre-existing condition insurance in Canada is common. When it comes to travel insurance, this is true, too.
The Stability Requirement
When you’re looking at different options for travel insurance for seniors with pre-existing medical conditions, you might notice that some of them have a stability requirement. Often, they will require your pre-existing medical condition to have been stable for 90 days.
This is before your travel insurance coverage is due to begin.
It’s important to understand how this works. This way, if you’re about to go on your trip and your pre-existing medical condition isn’t stable, you’ll know if you aren’t covered.
When your pre-existing medical condition isn’t stable, it means that in the 90 days before your trip coverage start date, the following may have occured.
- You have a new medication prescription
- You have a new diagnosis
- You have a new treatment
- You have a change in your medication (there are some exceptions to this)
- You have a change in your treatment
- You are experiencing your symptoms more frequently
- You are experiencing new symptoms
- You have test results that show that there was deterioration
- You are experiencing your symptoms more severely
- You were recommended to see a specialist
- You were referred to a specialist
- You were hospitalized
- You are waiting for test results related to the condition
Considering that this is such a long list, it may be hard for you to determine whether you meet the stability requirement. For this reason, we recommend speaking with the kind folks at Insurdinary to find out about each travel insurance company and their policies regarding your specific pre-existing conditions and their stability requirements.
Being Honest About Your Pre-Existing Conditions
Now that you know that you’re likely to be covered for pre-existing conditions, you’ll probably start contacting travel insurance for seniors companies. Because the premium might be more expensive if you have pre-existing conditions, you might be tempted to not mention those when applying.
However, it’s best to be honest about your pre-existing conditions.
This is for two reasons. For one thing, you don’t want to get into legal trouble for committing insurance fraud.
Additionally, if you have any issues with your pre-existing conditions and you haven’t disclosed them, you won’t be covered.
This can indebt you significantly. Worse, if you don’t have a way to pay, you could end up paying the price of your health or your life.
Considering that there are many options when it comes to travel insurance for pre-existing conditions in Canada, there’s no need for you to omit these details when you apply for insurance.
If you are honest in your application and answer to the best of your abilities, you don’t need to worry. You’re likely to be approved. In fact, 95% of travel insurance claims are approved within Canada.
Think About Services, Features, and Add-Ons
Once you have a list of the best medical travel insurance for pre-existing conditions for you, it’s time to compare them. To do this, you need to think about the services, features, and add-ons that come with these options.
For example, if you want to be able to travel with your pet, some companies will have more coverage for this than others.
And what if you have a medical emergency and you can’t take your pet home with you? Some travel insurance companies will have this pet-friendly perk.
There are other services, features, and add-ons to consider. These often include coverage for items that are lost or stolen while you travel.
Others will get you home if you experience a sudden medical emergency and can only get the procedure in Canada.
Others will provide you with coverage for flights that are interrupted or cancelled because of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
As you can see, in addition to thinking about how you’ll be covered for your pre-existing conditions, you should also think about any other factors you think might impact you while you’re travelling.
These include both other health factors and any coverage you might need regarding the travel itself, such as flight issues, car rental insurance, hotel cancellations, and more.
Understand the Limits
Once you’ve taken a look at how different insurance companies offer care, cover pre-existing conditions, and offer different services, features, and add-ons, you need to think carefully about the limits that go along with your policy.
These limits often include:
- Medicine stability clauses (which we’ve covered above)
- Required health clauses
- Restrictions on eligibility, such as age
- Trip duration limits
When it comes to choosing the right pre-existing condition insurance in Canada, it’s important to know what these limits are when you’re a senior. After all, if an insurance company doesn’t serve people over 75, and you’re over 75, then you can’t get coverage from them.
Trip duration limits are important, too. If you spend a lot of time abroad (to see your grandchildren, for example), then you need a plan that allows for annual coverage, longer visits, or both.
Additionally, don’t forget about the importance of health coverage that covers more than only medical emergencies.
If you come down with an illness that’s unpleasant but not considered an emergency—for example, a nasty cold—it helps to know you can go to a doctor without having to pay through the nose for it.
Speaking of nasty colds...you may be wondering about coverage when it comes to the current COVID-19 Pandemic. It’s important to think about this since there are some travel insurance for seniors companies that don’t currently cover trip cancellation or interruption if it’s caused by the current pandemic.
When researching companies that offer travel insurance for pre-existing conditions in Canada, you need to make sure that they’ll cover any medical services if you contract COVID-19.
Considering the health risks of this illness, this is paramount.
Additionally, if you have any pre-existing conditions that would be affected by having this illness, you need to know that treatment for them worsening, as a result, would also be covered.
Because this is a relatively new disease, we recommend you discuss this coverage with the insurance companies you’re considering over the phone.
We’ll go more into everything you need to do, including getting it in writing, in the next section.
In addition to health coverage for COVID-19 and health issues that are exacerbated by it, you also need to think about the logistic impacts of this pandemic.
When comparing different companies that offer travel insurance for seniors with pre-existing conditions in Canada, make sure that they cover all cancellations, interruptions, and delays related to the pandemic.
This should include flights, hotel reservations, and any other cancellations that could occur.
Tips When Getting Travel Insurance
Once you know which travel insurance for seniors is best for you, it’s time to apply. Because you might not get accepted for every single policy, we recommend following these steps with a few different potential insurers you’ve chosen.
Consider the Waiting Period
The waiting period for getting approved for travel insurance can take quite a long time. This is the case for people applying at any age with any health condition. For this reason, we recommend that you apply in advance as it may take anywhere from 90 to 180 days for your policy to be accepted.
Don’t book insurance at the last minute. This could result in you having to cancel your trip!
Review All the Details
When you’re researching the right travel insurance for pre-existing conditions in Canada, you’ll already know a lot about the coverage they provide and any added benefits you’re getting. However, once you’re in touch with the potential companies, we recommend you review all the details.
Review everything that’s covered. Ask any questions about coverage not listed on their website or in the policy overview they’ve sent you.
Regarding pre-existing conditions, ask any questions if you’re afraid there won’t be coverage. Ask about their stability clause, too. Ask what you need to report, specifically, if there are any changes with your pre-existing condition.
Get Everything in Writing
When you’re contacting insurance companies about coverage and details, they will reassure you that many different health issues and travel interruptions are covered. This will be the case for issues and problems that aren’t included in their policy.
For this reason, it’s important to get everything in writing. This way, if you experience one of the worries we have discussed here, you’ll have an official statement from the company saying they cover it.
This will make it far more likely that your claim will go through if and when you have to file one.
Report Any Health Changes
Let’s say that you’ve finally chosen the right travel insurance provider for you, and they’ve approved you. If you find that you have health changes, you should notify them immediately. This is the case whether or not this health change is related to your pre-existing health conditions.
However, if it is a change with your pre-existing health conditions, you should report it. This is because this might have an effect on whether you meet the stability requirement or not.
Even though contacting the company when you have health changes might bring up your premium price, it’s worth it.
This way, you’ll make sure you get covered if you have any health issues abroad.
Choosing The Right Travel Insurance for Seniors with Pre-Existing Conditions
Now that you’ve learned about the process of finding and applying for travel insurance that covers seniors with pre-existing conditions, you might need help choosing the right travel insurance for you. Maybe you’re worried about a specific condition, or you want help comparing rates.
Whatever information you need, here at Insurdinary, we’re experts when it comes to travel insurance.
We’re also experts about other types of insurance, mortgages, and more. To learn more about how we can help you at Insurdinary, contact us here.