Tips for Traveling with a Pre-Existing Condition

Having a pre-existing condition is not necessarily a reason to avoid traveling but it does make it essential to purchase travel insurance before the trip. This type of insurance offers several benefits, including compensation for cancellation, losses from theft while vacationing, medical care and early return due to illness. Because health problems are one of the most common reasons people file claims on travel insurance, insurers want to know about pre-existing conditions.


A traveler with a pre existing medical condition should expect to pay more for their insurance than their healthy friends and family members. There are some ways to cut costs but failing to disclose the condition is not one of them. Regardless of whether the condition is under control or is not expected to cause any problems on the trip, leaving the condition off of the application could nullify it.

Every traveler should compare prices before purchasing insurance but those with medical conditions that could affect the price of the coverage should start early. Although group coverage is typically less expensive, this is not the case when it comes to pre-existing conditions. To reduce the cost for a group, the person with the medical condition should purchase their policy separately. If unable to find an affordable policy and the condition is under control, a traveler may consider asking an insurer to exclude their medical issue.


Pregnancy is not classified as a pre-existing condition but travel insurance policies may not provide coverage in some instances. For example, a policy may cover a mother only to a certain number of weeks in the pregnancy. Although the coverage may exclude the costs of a normal birth abroad, most policies will cover pregnancy-related complications and emergencies. Expectant mothers should carry a letter from their doctors stating their expected due date to provide to the insurance company if necessary.

Pre-existing health conditions may not prevent someone from traveling but they could make it more expensive. Purchasing a policy that will cover a traveler if they need medical care while they are far away from home might be worth the cost. For those who are going to buy a policy, it’s important to purchase it early in case that condition prevents them from taking the trip.

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