Where is Insurance Mandatory for International Travel?

Travelling to another country for the first time is rarely a cakewalk- you’ve to take care of flight tickets, visa requirements, stay, itineraries and so much more. Visa and entry-related doubts are common as different countries have their own requirements. Let us discuss one of the most common doubts: is travel insurance required for travelling abroad?

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What are the Entry Requirements for Trips Abroad?

Travelling to another country is more than buying flight tickets and getting a visa. Each country has varying requirements that incoming foreigners must fulfil before travelling. The documentation alone takes up a lot of time and energy. These range from certain documents, health conditions, and even the financial ability of the visitor.

Especially after the pandemic, many countries tightened their entry requirements to counter the spread of the virus. Negative RT- PCR test reports, vaccination certificates, and travel history declaration are some of the compulsory entry requirements that foreign travellers needed to know and fulfill.

One such requirement is travel insurance. Some countries need a travel health insurance covering major medical emergencies in case the traveller falls sick while visiting. During the pandemic, countries like Thailand, Dubai, Japan etc. made it compulsory for visitors to buy appropriate COVID-19 insurance. Without this insurance, the visa procedure wouldn’t proceed.

In the next section, let’s take a look at countries where travel insurance is mandatory to enter.

List of Countries Where Travel Insurance is Mandatory

Manadatory Travel Insurance

Countries where international travel insurance is mandatory need every visitor to buy a certain insurance plan before they are allowed entry. Even if some of these countries are visa-free or offer visa on arrival to Indians, they expect you to meet their specific entry requirements; including international travel insurance.

Some countries need you to buy it before applying for a visa as without the necessary coverage, your visa will be rejected. Schengen countries are infamous for this as without buying the 30,000 EUR travel insurance you won’t be issued a visa.

On the hand hand, some countries that mandated medical travel insurance during the pandemic have eased the restrictions but still advise strongly. As of now, you need to buy a mandatory travel insurance to visit these countries:

Country Specific Requirements (If Any)
Turkey Required for visa
The UAE Required for multiple-entry visa holder (5 year)
Cuba Travel medical insurance covering sudden illness and repatriation
Schengen Countries Minimum EUR 30,000 coverage
Singapore (26 countries) Minimum SGD 30,000 COVID-19 travel insurance for Non-vaccinated travellers
Seychelles Insurance with COVID-19 cover
Fiji COVID-19 travel insurance mandatory for foreigners
Romania Travel health insurance of minimum EUR 30,000
Togo Insurance with COVID-19 cover
The USA Student travel insurance compulsory for full-time programs
Israel COVID-19 covered travel insurance mandatory
Ecuador Required for entry
Antarctica Required for entry
Nepal Required if trekking or mountaineering
Jordan Travel medical insurance necessary

Specially after the pandemic, many countries made it compulsory for foreigners to buy international travel health insurance. While some countries like Thailand and Japan no longer mandate travel insurance, they have strongly advised it.

Countries Where Travel Insurance is Strongly Advised by the Government

Some countries have flexible entry requirements for tourists and travellers when it comes to buying travel medical insurance. They don’t stop you from applying a visa or even entering their territory but still strongly recommend buying a travel insurance plan to safeguard your trip.

Country Specific Instructions
Singapore SGD 30,000 to cover COVID-19 expenses
Lebanon Advised, can also buy upon reaching Beirut
Thailand Strongly advised to buy coronavirus travel insurance
Togo Strongly advised
New Zealand Strongly recommended for medical and stay-related issues

Please note that entry requirements are subject to change with time. Please check the official website of the country you are visiting well before time to avoid any issues.

How to Confirm if Travel Insurance is Mandatory in a Country?

With changing guidelines it is easy to miss a detail or two during documentation. If you are facing any doubts regarding buying travel insurance for your trip, here are some helpful tips:

  • Follow news. Latest entry requirements are published on public domains so that travellers can stay up-to-date with important notifications.
  • Confirm with airlines. Flight tickets are the first thing any traveller books before proceeding with hotel, visa and other important travel documents. The airline you’re travelling to the designated country is bound to be aware of any latest requirements and travel mandates.
  • Always go to the official government website of the country you plan to visit. They provide the latest information and have contacts you can reach out to.
  • Reach out to an agent or tour company if you don’t have the time to confirm technicalities. They are well-versed with latest documents and requirements so you can trust them to get your visa and other required documents ready for your trip.
  • Contact the embassy or consulate of the country you’re visiting. This may be a hassle but if you don’t want to use an agent or don’t have anyone to help you, you can take help from their designated officials.
  • Buy travel insurance nevertheless! There is no harm in securing your trip at a fraction of the entire cost. This way, you will save the headache of confirming as well as enjoy the journey without worrying about uncertainties.

Over to You,

International travel is thrilling and often a rewarding experience. Be it your first visit or 100th, it’s good to have support in case of emergency. From missed flights, stolen bags, lost passports to hospitalisation, accidents or death, international travel insurance saves you a lot of extra expenses as well as stress. Don’t wait for countries to make travel insurance compulsory- buy it willingly to safeguard your upcoming trip!

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