Travel insurance question for foreigner travelling back to Europe

#1 May 6th, 2018, 16:20
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  • Magik is offline
#1
Hi,

I write on behalf of a Swiss national who has made India his home since many years. He is here on a X-visa with a residence permit. He applies annually for a renewal in India with the local FRRO and obtains a renewal in a few weeks. He owns his own apartment in India and has no permanent ties with Switzerland anymore.

This year the Indian Home Ministry refused to renew his visa and asked him to go back to Switzerland and come back with a fresh visa. This is not a problem since he travels every year to Europe in any case.

However, he is in a bind regarding travel insurance. Every year when he used to travel, he used to buy travel insurance from local Indian companies (ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz, etc.). These companies would sell him insurance on the basis of his residence in India (his stay visa) and treat him on par with an Indian travelling abroad.

Now, he no longer has a valid Stay Visa so cannot buy insurance from Indian insurance companies. He will be travelling for five months in Europe and does require travel insurance. We've googled for companies that sell travel insurance but cannot make out any that are reliable. Some require the traveller to have health insurance in his "home" country, some are clearly out to offer you insurance so that you can apply for a Schengen visa and seem very shady, etc.

Does anyone here have any recommendations or suggestions?

Thanks.
#2 May 7th, 2018, 00:35
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#2
Not sufficiently knowledgeable on Indian travel insurance scene but why is travel insurance such a necessity to this person? The typical travel insurance covers things like trip insurance, emergency evacuation, emergency medical (with very strict limits), lost baggage. It's usefulness has been a matter of debate (with strong opinions on both sides). The only thing of any real use to this person iis the emergency medical insurance. If that's what he is after - it is better that he looks specifically for that.
#3 May 7th, 2018, 06:46
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#3
You are right. The medical insurance aspect of travel insurance is the most important. But I do not know whether one can purchase medical insurance separately from travel insurance if one needs coverage during travel to several countries.
#4 May 7th, 2018, 07:14
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#4
It is worth looking into. There are such products. I haven't looked closely but the following is an example:

https://www.allianz-assistance.ch/en...vel-insurance/
#5 May 7th, 2018, 12:39
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#5
Use the worldnomads online tool to determine what kind is most appropriate for him.

https://pp.worldnomads.com/
#6 May 8th, 2018, 08:33
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#6
That's the sort of thing I was looking for. Thanks. Costs more than Indian insurers but at least there is an option.
#7 May 12th, 2018, 17:16
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#7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magik View Post Hi,

I write on behalf of a Swiss national who has made India his home since many years. He is here on a X-visa with a residence permit. He applies annually for a renewal in India with the local FRRO and obtains a renewal in a few weeks. He owns his own apartment in India and has no permanent ties with Switzerland anymore.

This year the Indian Home Ministry refused to renew his visa and asked him to go back to Switzerland and come back with a fresh visa. This is not a problem since he travels every year to Europe in any case.

However, he is in a bind regarding travel insurance. Every year when he used to travel, he used to buy travel insurance from local Indian companies (ICICI Lombard, Bajaj Allianz, etc.). These companies would sell him insurance on the basis of his residence in India (his stay visa) and treat him on par with an Indian travelling abroad.

Now, he no longer has a valid Stay Visa so cannot buy insurance from Indian insurance companies. He will be travelling for five months in Europe and does require travel insurance. We've googled for companies that sell travel insurance but cannot make out any that are reliable. Some require the traveller to have health insurance in his "home" country, some are clearly out to offer you insurance so that you can apply for a Schengen visa and seem very shady, etc.

Does anyone here have any recommendations or suggestions?

Thanks.
I found the best travel insurance possible was one of many perks of a top-tier bank (UBS) Visa card. There was an annual fee for the card ($500), but this was less than the premium quoted for similar, broad-coverage (repatriation etc.) travel insurance. If your Swiss friend banks at UBS he should take a look at their credit card offerings. Other banks have similar benefits, probably.
Kathy
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#8 May 12th, 2018, 17:29
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#8
The EU offers a medical card to citizens, called EHIC. Basically one can obtain free medical assistance anywhere in the EU, as far as I know...
Maybe a Swiss national would also be eligible for this card?

Ed.
#9 May 12th, 2018, 19:34
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#9
Quote:
Originally Posted by OldandRambling View Post The EU offers a medical card to citizens, called EHIC. Basically one can obtain free medical assistance anywhere in the EU, as far as I know...
Maybe a Swiss national would also be eligible for this card?

Ed.
A Swiss national is definitely eligible, but it requires that the EU national be covered by statutory social security scheme of a member country. The OP should definitely look into it.
#10 May 12th, 2018, 20:25
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#10
It's not that simple.

I'm a British national with thirty-plus years of National Insurance contribution (and a state pension to boot). Apparently, I am no longer eligible for free National Health medical treatment, due to not having been there. Mind yu, I don't know what I could get in the rest of Europe from now to Brexit.
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#11 May 13th, 2018, 12:12
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#11
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmalik View Post A Swiss national is definitely eligible, but it requires that the EU national be covered by statutory social security scheme of a member country. The OP should definitely look into it.
He does make annual contributions to OASI/AHV. I do not know whether that qualifies as a "statutory social security scheme". In case of expat Swiss, this scheme is voluntary, at least when he signed on several years ago.

I'll ask him to check out EHIC.

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