Home / Health & Fitness / Medicare while Traveling Abroad

Medicare while Traveling Abroad

By: Octavio Cortez, MBA

Traveling might be very important for those who have worked all their lives, have retired, and are now ready to enjoy retirement years. If you are 65 or older, or perhaps have a permanent disability, chances are you rely on Medicare for your health care needs. However, many people covered under Medicare are not fully informed about what exactly is covered while traveling outside the U.S. Therefore, if you have Medicare, the following information might be helpful when traveling outside the U.S.

It is very important to know that in general, any health-related expenses incurred outside the U.S., or its inhabited territories, are not covered. However, there are a few unusual cases were Medicare may pay: 1. You are in the United States when a medical emergency occurs, and the closest hospital available happens to be outside of the U.S. 2. You live in the U.S. and a foreign hospital is closer to your home than the nearest U.S. hospital that can treat your medical condition, even if an emergency doesn’t exist. 3. In some cases, medically necessary services may be covered if you are in a ship within territorial waters adjoining the land areas of the U.S. and are less than 6 hours away from a U.S. port.

So, if you plan to travel outside the U.S. you have some options that can potentially cover your medically necessary health care costs that Medicare won’t cover. First, if you know when and where you will be traveling, it is highly recommended you purchase an International Travel Medical Insurance. This type of insurance provides necessary protection to you in the event of an illness or injury when traveling outside your country of residence. Second, purchasing a Medicare Supplement insurance may also offer foreign travel emergency health care coverage. Additionally, some Medicare Advantage plans might also offer some coverage for services you get outside the U.S. Regardless of what option you choose, make sure to talk to an experienced insurance agent that can help you make the right choice.

Don’t let foreign health care expenses discourage from traveling because you have Medicare. Remember you have options that can help you cover what Medicare won’t. Happy Traveling!


Octavio Cortez, MBA

Belellano Insurance Services
343 S. 8th St. Ste. A
El Centro, CA 92243
Ph: 760-370-3090
Fx: 760-370-3092
E-Mail: octavio@belellanoinsurance.com
CA License Number: 0F46585



San Diego Office

4045 Bonita Rd. Ste. 102

Bonita, CA 91902

Ph: 619-267-7600

Check Also

The Heavy Toll of Alzheimer’s on Women

-Editorial The primary risk factor for Alzheimer’s is age, and California is older than it’s …

Leave a Reply