As the weather turns colder, most of us dream of heading somewhere warm to escape our Canadian winter. In fact, over a million of us make that dream a reality and travel southward to avoid our frigid winter weather. This annual tradition, which is habit for so many of us, is why we have the Canadian Snowbird Association, with over 100,000 members strong, defending and improving our rights and privileges as travellers.
As any snowbird knows, there are always issues involved with spending extended periods of time away from home. So, the next time you are planning and making arrangements for your adventure down south, make sure you include travel insurance for Canadian snowbirds on your list.
What Is Snowbird Travel Insurance?
As Canadians, we're allowed to spend a maximum of 182 days out of the year outside of Canada. Most snowbirds use this extended period of time to enjoy the warmer weather and beaches south of the border. Of course, for the exact same reasons travel insurance is needed for regular vacationers, travel insurance should be considered essential for snowbirds. Of course, the more time you spend out of the country, the higher the risk you could be involved in a medical emergency which can be extremely costly if you don't have the proper coverage. This is why a significant area of protection involved in any Canadian snowbird travel insurance plan is with medical emergency coverage.
While you are covered by your Government Health Insurance Plan (GHIP) while at home, without snowbird travel insurance, you're placed at a risk of potentially losing hundreds of thousands of dollars should sickness or a medical emergency occur while in the U.S. This is why snowbird travel insurance should be non-negotiable must-have!
It is extremely important to note that some snowbird medical insurance plans tend to cover only the cost for any new medical condition that occurs once the policy is in force, and not any pre-existing conditions or routine check-ups. So make sure to avoid them and look for something that covers it all - from hospital stays including ICU, ambulance costs to prescriptions, recurrence of a medical or dental condition and more. Please note that travel insurance tends to frequently have exclusions for alcohol or drug abuse and mental health issues.
In terms of premiums, they depend on factors like age, policy limits, deductibles and length of coverage. These can vary widely with limits ranging from the thousands to millions of dollars, deductibles from zero to $5,000 and policy lengths from a few days to a few years. These variables allow us, the policyholders, to secure the protection we feel comfortable with, at a price we can easily afford.
How Does Snowbird Travel Insurance Protect You?
Beyond the obvious benefits of medical coverage, snowbird travel insurance can include a variety of benefits that include trip interruption insurance, trip cancellation insurance, accidental death, dismemberment coverage and even lost luggage coverage. Such comprehensive coverage can really help improve our peace of mind when travelling south of the border.
Whether you're flying, driving, or RVing south this winter, we're jealous of the warmer weather you'll be experiencing. Avoiding our delightful Canadian winters is never a bad way to spend the cold months. Just remember, whether it's your first time snowbirding or you're an annual snowbirder, having the right coverage will ensure you'll be able to relax and enjoy your trip.
For more information or to buy your snowbird travel insurance, visit our TuGo travel insurance page.