Medicare and Foreign Travel

When I was 23, I fell down a mountain while jobbing in Mexico. It was my 2nd trip. My tumble resulted in some serious scrapes and cuts. The nurse at the school I was studying strongly suggested that I get a tetanus shot since I couldn’t remember the last time I had had one. I found a doctor who under stood a little English and I supplied the rest in Spanish. I think he injected me with the right stuff because I didn’t die or turn green. I paid him $10 US dollars. I was no worse for the wear. It is easy to bounce back when you are 23.

I’m currently 53. I don’t think I would have bounced back as readily now, but I also probably would not been running up a mountain. Accidents, however, do happen. They happen at home, and they happen abroad. A common question I get from baby boomers who travel is: ‘what will Medicare cover abroad?’ The answer is fairly simple. Nothing. Now let me offer some nuance.

Medicare and Foreign Travel

Original Medicare will cover you if you find an American hospital in a foreign country. Not very likely. You could claim Medicare when you are on a cruise if you are within 6 hours of the mainland. Original Medicare is not your solution for medical coverage in a foreign land.
Medicare Advantage may cover you for emergency and urgency care needs worldwide with some plans. You need to check your specific Medicare Advantage plan. Check under emergency and urgent care.
Medicare supplements or Medigap plans offer some minimal coverage. You generally have a $250 deductible. They will pay 80% of the medical cost up to a $50,000 LIFETIME limit. Of course, any serious accident, heart attack, stroke etc. will eat into that amount very quickly. Check the specifics of your plan.
So what is the solution? One of two things. Cash. Don’t leave home without it, and travel insurance. You can purchase travel insurance for the duration of your trip to cover anything devastating at a reasonable rate.
Vacation is about fun, so plan.  Planning for the worst will insure that you have the best time during your time in the sun.

What Our Clients Are Saying About Omaha Insurance Solutions

Tom V.

I was very impressed with the knowledge Chris has of the Medicare system. He explained the different options available to me thoroughly and overall, the process went very well. I would recommend Chris without hesitation to anyone trying to make decisions in regard to Medicare.

George & Maxine I.

My wife is getting ready to retire and She was getting so frustrated with all the agents just wanting to sell their companies’ plans. I went to Chris when I retired so I gave him a call to set up an appointment for my wife. Chris took the time to present all retirement plans. he explained all the pros and cons of each plan and let us decide on the plan that best suited her needs. My wife, Maxine, was very happy with the choices Chris presented & explained and put her at ease about the plan choice. Chris and his team are Very Very good and we will recommend Omaha Insurance Solutions to anyone who is getting ready to retire. Chris and his team do an excellent job of getting through the Medicare Mayhem!

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I was referred to Chris by my financial advisor. I met with 2 other agents who just wanted to sell me ‘their’ plan. Chris took the time to explain the Medicare Advantage plans and the supplements with all their ‘letters’. He gave me peace of mind, knowing that I will probably have the best health insurance coverage I’ve ever had. I thank Chris for being a big part of this first chapter in my retirement!