Medicare Travel for Seniors

Many seniors want to know about Medicare Travel. The big question is will medicare cover my medical expenses should something happen to me while traveling overseas? You certainly don’t wan to be suprised with a huge medical bill upon your return home, so finding the best medicare plan in your state is important before embarking on a long trip away from home.


Medicare Travel Video
Here is what medicare.gov has to say about medicare travel. Posted at medicare.gov on 6-10-2009

Does Medicare cover me when I travel outside of the United States?
The Original Medicare Plan generally doesn’t cover health care while you are traveling outside the United States. Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands are considered part of the United States.

There are some exceptions. In rare cases, Medicare can pay for inpatient hospital services that you get in Canada or Mexico. Medicare can pay only if:

1.You live in the U.S. near a foreign hospital, and you need emergency or non-emergency medical treatment. If a foreign hospital is closer or easier to get to from your home than the nearest U.S. hospital that can treat your condition, Medicare may pay for the services.
2.You’re in the U.S. when you have a medical emergency. If a foreign hospital is closer or easier to get to than the nearest U.S. hospital that can treat your emergency, Medicare may pay for the services.
3.You’re crossing through Canada without delay between Alaska and another state, and you have a medical emergency. If a Canadian hospital is closer or easier to get to than the nearest U.S. hospital that can treat your emergency, Medicare may pay for the services.
Normal or other Medicare coverage criteria also applies to the services you get in foreign settings.

Some Medicare Advantage plans may provide worldwide coverage benefits for health care needs when you travel outside the United States. You should check with your Medicare Advantage plan prior to traveling outside of the United States regarding worldwide coverage benefits.

Medigap policies C, D, E, F, G, H, I, and J provide Foreign Travel Emergency health care coverage when you travel outside the United States. For additional information about what these Medigap policies cover and if they are offered in your area, please visit the Medicare Options Compare.

For additional information on medicare travel for seniors outsite of the United States, please view our publications, Medicare Coverage Outside the United States (PDF, 69.65 KB).

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