Health insurance can be an expensive investment – though not having it can be even more expensive – especially when living abroad. Your family’s health and safety is important, which is why looking at different companies, comparing them, and finding what suits you best is a key element when doing your research.
Before you purchase international insurance for your family speak to other expats and friends. Getting opinions on different companies can help you narrow down your choices until you have what you need.
We spoke to J. Rouse, an expat from Ireland currently residing in Ethiopia, about her experience with international health insurance: “The excellent, reliable and swift customer service, the flexibility and understanding of the underwriting department, and the overall professionalism (…) have certainly made renewing my policy a very easy choice.” After having spoken to other expats, she realised that her insurance company Integra Global gave her great value for money.
Measuring the value of your insurance
- Customer service – you want to find a company that is reliable, helpful and personal. They should be willing to go out of their way to help you feel comfortable without providing unwanted surprises on the bill.
- Underwriting – companies provide underwriters to evaluate the risk of insuring you, but many take one look at the family history and make a decision. The underwriting department should look at individuals in your family and evaluate them separately to offer the best coverage possible for each one of them.
- Flexibility – most companies work with general plans and fit you into one. Make sure your company can tailor a plan specific to your family’s needs.
- Professionalism and transparency – many companies will not answer the phone when you need them most and will start charging you for things never discussed. Find a company that is doing everything possible to make your situation better without charging you extra for minor things.
- International coverage – as expats, it isn’t just about living abroad; many take the opportunity to travel worldwide. Make sure your health insurance covers your family wherever you may go (and discuss costs before purchasing!).
Checking and comparing to find an insurance company should be the first thing on your mind before moving abroad. If you’re not sure where to start, take a look at these helpful tips!
Health insurance companies should be willing to go the extra mile for you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and propose extreme scenarios to your agent – it’s better to be in the know rather than receiving unpleasant surprises when it’s too late!
[Image: Tax Credits]