If you’re planning to jet off for your next adventure overseas, you might want to consider whether your destination requires travel insurance or travel medical insurance for entry. Every year more countries consider implementing insurance requirements for their foreign visitors.
COVID-19 coverage is now mandated by many countries that have opened their borders back up to visitors. You can arm yourself with travel medical insurance for unforeseen medical emergencies you may face abroad.
Why Are More Countries Requiring Medical Insurance?
The list of countries that require travel medical insurance upon arrival had been gradually increasing over the years before the COVID-19 pandemic began.
Negative experiences of unpaid medical bills by foreigners have caused hospitals and healthcare organizations to push for insurance requirements so that these incidents are less likely to happen.
Many countries have now implemented testing requirements, quarantines, and proof of health insurance that includes COVID-19 treatment coverage upon their reopening.
See which countries require travel insurance, travel medical insurance, or COVID-19 coverage for entry.
PRO TIP! WorldTrips has partnered with Sherpa to provide you with the information you need about travel restrictions for countries around the world. Use our interactive map to discover travel restrictions and entry requirements for you destination.
Jump Ahead to See Your Travel Destination’s Requirements
Countries That Require Travel Medical Insurance:
Countries That Require Insurance with COVID-19 Coverage:
- The Bahamas
- British Virgin Islands
- Costa Rica
- St. Maarten
- Turks and Caicos Islands
What’s the Difference Between Travel Insurance and Travel Medical Insurance?
Travel insurance serves to insure a financial investment in a trip. The core benefit of travel insurance is the trip cancellation benefit, which provides reimbursement for nonrefundable prepaid expenses if you must cancel your trip due to a covered reason. Many travel insurance plans provide additional benefits related to other travel expenses as well. Coverage for medical expenses may or may not be included depending on the plan.
Travel medical insurance provides coverage for unexpected health expenses you might incur while outside of your home country. Your regular health insurance may not cover you abroad, and there’s always a chance you could get injured or fall sick and need medical care during your trip. Travel medical insurance typically provides additional coverage for various travel scenarios but does not include a trip cancellation benefit.
List of Countries that Require Travel Medical Insurance
Those planning to travel abroad to the following areas must ensure they have a medical insurance plan that provides coverage in their desired destination.
Those without health coverage outside of their home country can purchase a travel medical insurance plan to comply with the requirements. A plan like Atlas Travel can provide travel medical insurance coverage you may need for your trip.
Travelers planning to explore Europe may need to obtain a Schengen visa. This is a visa that citizens from certain countries—not including the U.S.—must carry in order to enter the 26 European states of the Schengen Area.
Those who apply for a Schengen visa must provide proof of travel medical insurance “covering emergency medical, hospitalization, and repatriation (including in case of death),” according to the European Commission.
The minimum coverage must be at least €30,000, and the insurance must be valid for the entire stay in the Schengen Area.
IMPORTANT! Do you know which countries are included in the Schengen Area? See the list of included countries below:
- The Czech Republic
- The Netherlands
Learn more about the Schengen visa.
Planning a trip to the Cayman Islands? Travelers must apply for entry permission via the Travel Cayman portal first. Applicants are required to provide proof of travel insurance during the application process.
In addition, travelers must present a negative PCR test result from no more than 72 hours before departure to the country. Travelers will be subject to another test upon arrival and again on the 15th day after arrival.
All individuals are required to quarantine upon arrival to the country, regardless of their test results and vaccination status, and must wear a monitoring device. Unvaccinated individuals must quarantine until their 15th-day test. Those who are fully vaccinated must quarantine for 10 days.
PRO TIP! Find the most updated entry requirements at the Cayman Islands U.S. Embassy website.
What Is a PCR COVID-19 Test?
PCR stands for polymerase chain reaction. This COVID-19 test — also referred to as a molecular test — takes a fluid sample from the nostril by inserting a nasal swab into the nose.
This kind of test is a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved test for diagnosing COVID-19 and is considered very accurate. Many countries require this widely recognized test before entering to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
Check with your local testing site to ensure you are receiving the right test before traveling.
Cuba visitors must have proof of medical insurance before entering this Caribbean country. Cuba does not consider U.S. medical insurance as valid, so travelers must purchase a supplementary travel medical insurance plan. Contact the Embassy of Cuba for further information regarding medical insurance requirements.
There are no specific minimums or coverage requirements for Cuba—just proof of valid insurance.
PRO TIP! Visit the U.S. Department of State - Cuba website for up-to-date information about Cuba’s medical insurance requirements.
Tourists visiting Egypt must show proof of health insurance upon arrival to the country. Check to see if your primary health insurance provides coverage while you are traveling in Egypt. You may need to purchase a travel medical insurance plan to ensure coverage while traveling within the country.
There are no specific minimums or coverage requirements for Egypt. Visit the U.S. Embassy in Egypt website for more information on the country's entry requirements.
The Galapagos Islands (Ecuador)
Tourists planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands are required to abide by specific entry requirements including proof of health insurance. According to Article 49 of the Organic Law of the Special Regime for the Province of Galapagos, all visitors must provide proof of valid health insurance.
The Galapagos Islands doesn't have specific minimums or coverage requirements for health insurance, but travelers may need to purchase supplementary travel medical insurance if their primary health insurance does not cover them abroad.
Travelers visiting other parts of Ecuador are NOT required to provide proof of health insurance. Only those visiting the Galapagos Islands must have health insurance.
PRO TIP! Stay up-to-date on entry requirements by visiting the U.S. Embassy & Consulate in Ecuador website.
Non-Lebanese travelers are required to provide proof of health insurance valid in the country for the entire duration of the trip.
International visitors must also provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 96 hours of departure to the country. Upon arrival, visitors will be subject to an additional COVID-19 test and must quarantine for 3 days. Visitors will then be subject to a final COVID-19 test. Note that each test costs $50.
PRO TIP! Need more information before your trip to Lebanon? Visit the Lebanon U.S. Embassy website for the most updated information.
All visitors to Russia are required to apply for a visa to be allowed to enter the country. Upon application, the Consular Division of the Embassy has the right to request “medical insurance valid in the country to be visited and fully covering the period of the first trip” according to the Embassy of the Russian Federation.
Insurance minimums and coverage specifics are not listed, but ensure your medical insurance policy provides coverage while you are in Russia before applying for a visa. If your primary medical insurance doesn’t provide coverage, consider purchasing a travel medical insurance plan for your trip.
PRO TIP: Learn more about Russia’s visitor visa process at the Embassy of the Russian Federation in the USA website.
IMPORTANT! Medicare typically does NOT provide coverage outside of the U.S. Medicare participants can purchase a supplemental medical insurance plan to visit countries that require proof of insurance. Read more about Medicare coverage outside the U.S. and additional options.
Visitors to French Polynesia, who do not have French nationality, are now required to provide proof of travel insurance for entry or be held liable for all local healthcare costs.
Other requirements include:
- SARS-CoV-2 (molecular) RT-PCR negative results within 3 days of leaving for the country
- A travel itinerary
- A passenger contact point in case of emergency
- A completed health commitment form online at www.etis.pf
- A valid e-mail address where you can receive your ETIS receipt
Though COVID-19 coverage is not required, individuals must plan “to cover the health costs incurred in French Polynesia [due to COVID-19]” according to the Polynesian government. Consider purchasing a travel medical insurance plan with COVID-19 coverage to possibly reduce the costs of an unforeseen medical emergency.
This mandate came about on July 12, 2020, because of the COVID-19 health crisis, so it may be only a temporary requirement. The Government de la Polynésie française website provides additional information on health insurance requirements in the country and up-to-date information.
Do you need COVID-19 coverage for your trip abroad? Price your Atlas Travel plan with COVID-19 coverage today. Just make sure to check your destination’s specific requirements to ensure Atlas Travel fits your needs.
IMPORTANT! United Arab Emirates (UAE) residents leaving the country are required to purchase international health insurance for the entire duration of their trip. Additionally, residents must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test result before returning to the UAE.
Foreign visitors are NOT required to purchase travel insurance to enter the country, but should check the U.S. Embassy & Consulate in the United Arab Emirates website for updated information on country entry requirements.
List of Countries that Require Insurance with COVID-19 Coverage
Following the outbreak of COVID-19, many countries now require visitors to not only provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test with possible quarantine procedures, but also proof of health insurance that provides coverage for COVID-19-related expenses.
Consider the requirements in your desired location before traveling. A travel medical insurance plan like Atlas Travel can provide coverage for eligible COVID-19-related expenses along with coverage for other unforeseen medical emergencies.
Anguilla, a British Overseas Territory in Eastern Caribbean, requires its visitors to provide proof of travel medical insurance that "covers the cost of COVID-19-related treatment for 30 days" according to the U.S. Travel Insurance Association. There are no minimum coverage requirements.
Travelers are also expected to present a negative PCR test result upon arrival and submit to tests on days 10 and 14 of their stay in the country.
PRO TIP! Check out the East Caribbean COVID-19 page on the U.S. Embassy website for more information regarding entry requirements and the nation's current COVID-19 situation.
Foreign travelers to Aruba are now required to purchase the country-sponsored COVID-19 health insurance prior to visiting. Any other medical coverage CANNOT be substituted for the required plan.
Visitors can purchase the plan from the official Aruba Visitors Insurance website.
Other Requirements for Visiting Aruba:
- Completed online immigration card prior to travel
- A negative COVID-19 PCR test taken with 72 hours of arrival
PRO TIP! Find the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 coverage requirements on the U.S. Consulate General in Curacao COVID-19 page.
The Bahamas requires all visitors to fill out a Travel Health Visa application for entry into the country. This visa requires applicants to opt-in to the COVID-19 health insurance plan that covers them during their stay in The Bahamas.
The mandatory health insurance covers:
- Medical expenses incurred in the country due to COVID-19 (up to $50,000)
- Trip interruption/delay coverage for necessary quarantine or isolation because of COVID-19 (up to $500 per day with a $7,000 maximum)
- Medical evacuation coverage due to COVID-19 (subject to medical necessity, up to $50,000)
The cost of insurance is dependent on the length of stay and is included in the Travel Health Visa application fee.
All visitors entering the country are also required to obtain a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test taken within 5 days of arrival.
PRO TIP! Check the U.S. Embassy in The Bahamas for updated information and a link to the Bahamas Travel Health Visa application.
U.S. Residents traveling to Bermuda are required to provide proof of insurance that is valid outside of your home country. This insurance must include coverage for medical expenses related to testing positive for COVID-19, such as Atlas Travel Insurance.
Bermuda also has testing and tracking requirements for those visiting the nation. Visitors must:
- Provide a negative COVID-19 test result from within three days of arrival
- Provide proof of insurance that covers you outside of your home country and includes coverage for COVID-19 related expenses
Travelers visiting the country are also expected to submit to a COVID-19 test and wear a provided tracking bracelet for 14 days if not vaccinated. Additional tests on the 4th, 8th, and 14th day after arrival are also required.
PRO TIP! Visit the COVID-19 Information page on the U.S. Consulate for Bermuda website for more details.
British Virgin Islands
Visitors to the British Virgin Islands are required to submit an application for entry at least 48 hours before departure to the nation. Proof of insurance with COVID-19 medical coverage and quarantine coverage while visiting the nation is required to complete the application.
Visitors will also need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result dated within five days of arrival. Upon arrival, visitors will be subject to another test and must quarantine for four days before taking another test.
PRO TIP! The Eastern Caribbean COVID-19 page on the U.S. Embassy website features the most updated COVID-19 information and entry requirements.
This southeast Asian nation now requires foreigners to purchase a local health insurance plan for COVID-19 treatment from Forte Insurance Company. This plan costs $90, is valid for 20 days, and covers $50,000 worth of medical expenses.
Find this plan on the Forte Insurance Company website for details and purchasing.
Other Requirements for Entry:
- A valid visa issued by the Cambodian Embassy or Consulate (the Cambodian Embassies are currently not accepting applications for tourists)
- Pay a deposit of $2,000 upon arrival for a mandatory COVID-19 test and potential treatment services
- A COVID-19 negative medical certificate issued no more than 72 hours before the date of arrival
PRO TIP: The U.S. Embassy in Cambodia website provides additional information on the required health insurance policy and more information regarding COVID-19 in the country.
Travelers to Chile must present three documents before boarding a flight to the country:
- Affidavit of Travelers electronic form
- Proof of negative test result from PCR test taken within 72 hours of boarding a flight to Chile
- Proof of health insurance policy with COVID-19 coverage and a maximum of at least $30,000
PRO TIP! Learn more about the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the most updated entry requirements for Chile at the Chilean U.S. Embassy website.
This country requires visitors to purchase one of two types of travel medical insurance plans that covers COVID-19-related expenses:
- A plan offered by authorized insurers in Costa Rica OR
- A plan offered by another international provider that provides COVID-19 coverage.
Travelers must purchase a travel insurance plan that covers accommodations in case of quarantine and medical expenses due to COVID-19. View Step 1 of the Republic of Costa Rica Health Pass for more details regarding coverage requirements.
Other Requirements to Enter Costa Rica:
- A negative COVID-19 PCR test 48 hours before the flight of origin
- Must not have symptoms compatible with COVID-19 (i.e., fever, cough, loss of smell or taste, respiratory symptoms, diarrhea, etc.)
PRO TIP: Find the most up-to-date information on the Costa Rica Republic Health Pass by the Ministry of Health website, as well as contact information for additional questions regarding COVID-19 coverage.
The nation of Curacao now requires travelers to be "adequately insured for medical care and any additional costs" according to the U.S. Travel Insurance Association.
International travelers must complete the following before traveling:
- Online immigration card
- Health Department Passenger Locator Card
- Negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours before arrival
International travelers must complete the following after arrival:
- Antigen test on the third day after arrival (booked when completing the Passenger Locator Card)
PRO TIP! Those planning to travel to Curacao can find the most updated information on the Curacao U.S. Embassy website. However, the U.S. Consulate General in Curacao is not able to answer questions about specific details of the entry requirements. Instead, write directly to the Curacao authorities at [email protected]
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Israel requires all foreign nationals to present proof of health insurance. This insurance must include coverage for COVID-19 related expenses.
Other requirements to enter Israel include:
- Proof of negative PCR test result within 72 hours of leaving the country of origin (see what cases could exempt you from this requirement if you are vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19)
- Approval from the Population and Immigration Authority or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
PRO TIP! Check the Israeli Population and Immigration Authority website for the most up-to-date information.
The country of Jordan requires all international travelers to provide proof of travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage and coverage for related medical expenses that covers the entire duration of stay in the country. There are no maximum requirements for this coverage.
Before boarding a plane to Jordan, individuals will be required to complete a health declaration form.
Also, travelers to the country must provide a negative COVID-19 test result and be subject to another COVID-19 test upon arrival. This test will be at the traveler's expense and must be prepaid online.
PRO TIP! Get the latest information about Jordan's entry requirements at the Jordan U.S. Embassy website.
According to the Ministry of Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation, visitors to Nepal are required to provide proof of travel insurance that includes coverage for "emergency search, rescue, treatment, among others" for the entire duration of the trip. Individuals must also be covered for COVID-19 with at least $100,000 in coverage.
In addition to this coverage, visitors must provide the following documents:
- Negative results from a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) COVID-19 test take less than 72 hours before boarding the plane
- A Nepal Visa or recommendation letter from the Department of Tourism or Nepal Tourism Board
- Bill of hotel booking or other accommodations in Nepal
Check out the Standards for Streamlining of Tourist Visits document by the Government of Nepal for more information regarding entry requirements and COVID-19 procedures.
Get the latest information about entry requirements for Nepal at the U.S. Embassy in Nepal website.
As of February 1st, some visitors to Singapore are required to provide proof of travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage. This includes those visiting the country via an Air Travel Pass (ATP) or Reciprocal Green Lanes (RGL).
Travel insurance must have a minimum coverage amount of $30,000 and must cover COVID-19-related medical treatment and hospitalization costs in Singapore.
Some travelers may be required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours before departing to the country. All visitors over the age of seven will be required to take a COVID-19 test upon arrival.
PRO TIP! Check out the Singapore Safe Travel website before planning your trip to the country.
Not to be confused with its northern French counterpart Saint Martin, Sint Maarten is the southern Dutch half of this Caribbean island and is its own country. Sint Maarten requires all travelers to have COVID-19 insurance coverage if this nation is their end destination.
Have a layover in Sint Maarten? Those with airplane layers in the country are not required to provide proof of insurance. There are also no specific requirements for the insurance coverage.
PRO TIP! Those who want more information can visit the Sint Maarten website.
Any medical costs incurred in Thailand are to be charged to the traveler's health insurance. Thus, visitors must ensure they have a medical insurance plan that provides coverage in the country. Medical insurance must have a minimum coverage amount of $100,000 and must cover expenses related to COVID-19.
U.S. citizens visiting Thailand can review the U.S. Embassy and Consulate in Thailand website for updated information on COVID-19 procedures in the country.
The Turks and Caicos Islands now require visitors to obtain-pre-authorization to enter the country through the TCI Assured Portal. Visitors must also have insurance which covers COVID-19 medical costs.
They must be covered for the following:
- Medical costs
- Full hospitalization
- Doctor’s visits
- Air ambulance
Additionally, visitors must provide results for a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 5 days of travel to the islands. Children under the age of 10 are excluded from this requirement.
PRO TIP: Find updated information at the U.S. Embassy in the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands COVID-19 Information page as well as the TCI Assured Portal.
Ukraine requires all foreigners to have proof of health insurance for entry. Insurance may be provided by one of several types of companies:
- A company registered in Ukraine,
- A foreign insurance company that has a representative office in Ukraine, or
- A foreign insurance company that is in the treaty relations with an insurance company partner in Ukraine.
The medical insurance plan must also cover costs related to COVID-19 treatment and must cover the entirety of the visit.
PRO TIP! Want more information on what type of coverage you need to travel to Ukraine? See the Visit Ukraine website.
Why Else Might I Need Travel Medical Insurance?
Even if you're traveling to a country that doesn't require travel medical insurance or COVID-19 coverage, there may be certain situations where travel insurance coverage can be helpful, like:
- Lost Checked Luggage or Travel Delay — When it comes to inconveniences like the airline losing your checked luggage or a travel delay that's more than just a few hours long, a travel medical plan can help compensate for necessary expenses. Reimbursement for clothes and toiletries as well as accommodations and meals are frequently provided in these situations.
- Illness or Injury — No matter how careful you are with your health, traveling can increase the risk of various illnesses and injuries. While insurance can't prevent these things from occurring, it can help pay for the cost of a necessary emergency room visit or treatment.
- Terrorism — Some countries have political and social upheaval that can pose a threat to travelers and locals alike. A travel medical insurance plan like Atlas Travel may include a political Evacuation benefit that could cover the cost of transporting you to the nearest safe country or back to your home country, depending on your current location's security status. It's also wise to seek coverage with a Terrorism benefit that can help pay for medical expenses for injuries from a covered terrorist attack. Review the policy wording for any restrictions or exclusions which may apply.
- Kidnapping — Express kidnappings - actual or attempted abductions and holding of someone against their will for personal belongings or ransom - are more likely to occur in certain countries. Tourists are especially easy to target due to their different attire and language.
When common sense isn't enough to keep you safe, a benefit like Atlas Travel's Crisis Response coverage can help pay costs associated with ransom and loss of persona belongings. Make sure to check your plan's policy documents for limitations regarding the Crisis Response benefit.
Requirements Are Constantly Changing
Countries are continuing to implement medical insurance requirements and COVID-19 coverage requirements for their visitors. The U.S. Embassy websites for countries often have the most up-to-date information on what the country may or may not require. Stay informed for your next foreign adventure.