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Compare Medical Travel Insurance to Canada

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What is travel insurance for visitors to Canada?

Travel insurance is not a legal requirement for entering Canada, for most visitors. Though some travel visas require proof of medical insurance coverage, many other travelers will be permitted entry without it.

Nevertheless, visitors to Canada should be aware that the universal health care coverage available to Canadian residents is not extended to them.

This means that visitors should seriously consider purchasing travel insurance in order to avoid expensive costs for medical care during a trip to Canada.

While visiting a walk-in clinic will cost about $2,000, emergency treatment at a hospital can be many thousands of dollars. According to data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information, the average cost of a standard hospital stay in Canada is $7,619.

Travel health insurance will protect visitors from unexpected costs due to sudden illness, accidents or other health and medical emergencies, including those treated at a hospital.

At RATESDOTCA, compare health insurance quotes and purchase a policy from a Canadian insurance provider that will cover you while you’re here.

Canadian insurance companies have a thorough understanding of the medical expenses you might face while in the country and can help coordinate coverage for care.

A Canadian insurance company will also be easier to reach and deal with as compared to a provider in your home country.

Visitor to Canada policies are designed for:

  • Tourists planning to come to Canada for up to a year
  • Foreign nationals coming to stay with their family or friends for up to a year
  • Recent immigrants who have moved to Canada and are awaiting coverage under a provincial health insurance plan
  • Foreign nationals who will be working in Canada on a temporary basis

Whether you will be in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver or anywhere else in Canada, hospital bills, prescription drugs, and other medical expenses can add up quickly. Don't be stranded without protection in Canada, compare quotes and save on travel medical insurance today.


Different types of travel insurance for visitors to Canada

  • Emergency medical coverage – Most travel insurance plans include it. This coverage will protect against the cost of hospital treatment for an unexpected medical event.
  • Trip cancellation protection – Covers you for some, or all, of the cost of a trip that’s cancelled before the scheduled departure.
  • Trip interruption – Covers you for costs such as food and accommodation if your trip is delayed or altered after you leave your home country. Some insurance companies will also include protection if your tour operator goes bankrupt while you’re on your trip.
  • COVID-19 protection – Is included in many travel insurance policies now that providers consider the virus a known event.

Some policies combine different aspects of traditional travel insurance coverage with newer coverage for COVID protection.

For example, you can find policies that offer protection of $1-5 million coverage if you require hospital treatment for COVID-19 while abroad. The coverage will also offer trip interruption protection if you’re forced to quarantine for 10 days while visiting Canada.

  • Sports activities – Most travel medical insurance policies have exclusions for high-risk activities. We recommend that you check your policy and buy extra coverage depending on what you plan to do during your trip.

Activities not usually covered by standard policies include:

  • Bungee jumping
  • Kayaking
  • Mountain biking
  • Mounting climbing
  • Scuba diving
  • Snowmobiling
  • Whitewater rafting
  • Windsurfing
  • Zip lining

If your trip to Canada includes boating, make sure you don’t inadvertently venture into international waters where your coverage may not be applicable.

Accidental death and dismemberment – Protects you financially if you’re in an accident that results in death or dismemberment. Like a life insurance policy, a lump sum is paid out to the beneficiary of the policyholder’s estate.

What is covered in a medical insurance policy for visitors to Canada?

Policies vary from provider to provider, but standard coverage for medical emergencies includes:

  • Emergency hospital accommodation and medical services
  • Diagnostic services such as X-rays
  • Emergency transportation
  • Emergency dental work
  • Prescription drugs needed as a result of a covered emergency

Visitors to Canada insurance plans available through our partners include:

  • Up to $1 million coverage of the eligible emergency medical expenses that you incur while visiting Canada
  • Coverage for trips lasting up to 365 days
  • Extended Health Care Coverage for; Physician Fee's, X-rays, Physiotherapist, Chiropractor, Prescription Drugs, and more
  • Dental Accidents Coverage, Emergency Hospital Services, Travel Accident Coverage, and more
  • Coverage for trips outside of Canada
  • Available as an individual, couple or family policy

Protection for COVID-related treatment is included in many travel insurance policies or can be purchased as additional coverage. However, before you leave your home country, we encourage you to review your policy and ensure that you understand the details, including what protection it offers if you require treatment for COVID-19 while visiting Canada.

Who needs travel insurance when visiting Canada?

Some travel visas require proof of medical insurance coverage.

Without it, entry will be denied. The universal health care that’s available to Canadian residents is not extended to visitors.

If you fall into any of the following categories, you’ll need travel medical insurance to enter Canada:

  • Tourists planning to come to Canada for up to a year
  • Foreign nationals coming to stay with their family or friends for up to a year
  • Recent immigrants who have moved to Canada and are awaiting coverage under a provincial health insurance plan
  • Foreign nationals who will be working in Canada on a temporary basis

While many visa visitors to Canada can remain in the country for no longer than six months, visitors arriving under the super visa program, such as for parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents, are not subject to the same limit. They may be allowed multiple entries for up to ten years.

One of the requirements for getting a super visa is that you have emergency medical insurance.

How much does a medical travel insurance cost for visitor to Canada?

As with all travel insurance, your policy costs depend on many factors, including your age, gender, any pre-existing medical conditions, the coverage limits you select, how long you plan to be insured for, and which provider you choose to become insured with.

On average, a 30-year-old woman with no pre-existing conditions, travelling to Canada on her own can expect to the following travel insurance costs:

  • Travelling for 7 days, you can get $50,000 in coverage starting as low as $10 CAD
  • Travelling for a month, you can get the same coverage for as low as $43 CAD
  • Travelling for 6 months, you can get the same coverage for as low as $272 CAD

At RATESDOTCA, we show you quotes from several companies offering travel medical insurance for visitors to Canada, so you can determine which policy best suits your needs.

Frequently asked questions about visitors to Canada travel insurance

What is the best travel insurance to Canada?

The best travel insurance policy in Canada is the one that’s tailored to your specific needs. Cost is determined by several factors – which vary between visitors – including: the coverage you seek, the coverage limits you select, the length of time for which you need protection, your age, gender, whether you have any pre-existing conditions and the provider you choose to purchase a policy from.

To get the best visitor to Canada insurance coverage, use our free online tool to compare costs from the most-trusted insurance providers in Canada.

How much does a doctor's visit cost in Canada?

Without travel medical insurance, medical treatment in Canada can set you back hundreds or thousands of dollars.

While specific costs vary depending on what province you’re in, you can expect to pay $100-200 to visit a walk-in clinic. You’ll also have to pay the full cost for any prescription.

If you require medical care in a Canadian hospital, expect to pay significantly more, including any costs associated with transport there. Again, those costs vary by province.

Emergency medical care, including ambulatory care can cost thousands of dollars.

According to data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information, the average cost of a standard hospital stay in Canada is $7,619.

It’s an expense you can avoid if you’re adequately protected by a travel insurance policy for visitors to Canada.

Where can I get the best coverage for COVID-19 related emergency medical conditions?

Treatment for emergency medical conditions, including COVID-19 is covered by most medical insurance policies that Canadian insurance providers offer. Protection is more widely available because COVID-19 is considered a known event.

Getting the best policy is a matter of deciding what provider will offer you the protection you want for the best available price.

Can I enter Canada if I test positive for COVID-19?

As of February 2023, all travellers entering Canada by air, land or marine mode do not need to show a proof of COVID-19 vaccination or COVID-19 test result pre-boarding or at arrival. However, emergency air travel requirements for COVID-19 are in effect for China, Hong Kong and Macao.

The government has removed requirements for health checks to board planes and trains and there is no mask requirements as well.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you shouldn't travel to Canada. If you feel sick or experience any symptoms of COVID-19 during your travel to Canada or upon arrival, you should inform the flight attendant, cruise staff or a border services officer upon arrival. You may be referred to a Quarantine Officer for a health assessment and further direction. However, there are no mandatory quarantine requirements at this time.

Does travel insurance to Canada cover COVID-19 quarantine?

If you purchased travel insurance when there was no travel advisory against travel issued by the government of Canada, it’s likely that a trip interruption policy will cover costs associated with quarantine, should you test positive for COVID-19 while you’re away.

Depending on the travel insurance provider, the cost of a COVID-19 test may not be covered.

Some insurance providers include trip interruption benefits in the event of quarantine up to $200 per insured person per day for your additional and unplanned hotel and meal expenses to a maximum of $2,800 if you are unexpectedly required to self-isolate or quarantine. Family coverage maximum is $400 per insured family per day to a maximum of $5,600.

Do I need to be quarantined in Canada if I tested positive for COVID-19 when I entered Canada?

The government of Canada has changed its COVID-19 travel rules and there is no mandatory quarantine requirement after you enter Canada. However, if you have symptoms of COVID-19, you shouldn't travel to Canada. If you feel sick or experience any symptoms of COVID-19 during your travel to Canada or upon arrival, you are expected to inform the flight attendant, cruise staff or a border services officer upon arrival. You may be referred to a Quarantine Officer for a health assessment and further direction. Check the provincial or territorial requirements for what you need to do if you’re symptomatic or have tested positive for COVID-19

Are there other types of insurance for foreigners in Canada?

There are different types of insurance available to different types of travelers to Canada:

If you are planning to stay in Canada for up to one year either for work or a vacation, visitors to Canada insurance is your best bet.

If you are a recent immigrant but not yet eligible for a health card in your province, you should also get visitors to Canada insurance until your coverage kicks in.

If you are a parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen and staying for longer than six months, you should look into Super Visa insurance.

If you coming to Canada to study, consider International Student insurance instead.

Why should newcomers to Canada get emergency travel health insurance?

If you are immigrating to Canada, or are a recent immigrant, you will find that most provinces have a waiting period before you are eligible for public health insurance.

The length of time you must wait will vary by province. To protect yourself, newcomers to Canada should get emergency medical health insurance coverage, to ensure you’re covered as you wait for your provincial coverage to kick in.

A visit to the hospital, even for a minor injury, could set you back thousands of dollars. Don’t gamble on your financial future in Canada. Compare visitors to Canada quotes today.

Resources from the Government of Canada

Looking for more information about trip insurance for visitors to Canada? The Government of Canada has many resources to help:

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