When visiting the USA, travel insurance can be purchased from a US-based company or an India-based company. There are many travel insurance companies in both US and India, and there are many choices. How can you easily compare the travel insurance choices from both countries? What is the best medical insurance for visitors to USA from India?
If you're seeking medical insurance for your parents visiting the USA from India, you are likely curious about your different options.
This article describes the general information about benefits and features (or lack thereof) and is not targeted towards any specific company or product.
Travel Insurance from the USA vs. Travel Insurance from India
|USA-based companies||India-based companies|
|Insurance companies are well known in US and other countries, and have been in business for a long time.||Even though well known in India, they are not known in the USA.|
|Fixed and comprehensive coverage plans are available for all ages.||For age 60+ (or 50+, 55+), most plans are only fixed coverage with sub limits severely low compared to actual expenses. Some plans are available only for those below 70 years. As many are seeking travel insurance from India to the USA for senior citizens, this may be too restrictive.|
|Provides insurance ID card that doctors and hospitals utilize.||Many companies don't provide an insurance ID card.|
|Direct cashless billing locally.||Mostly not available. Doctors and hospitals are not willing to bill to a company in India. Claims are filed after returning to India and in Indian Rupees.|
|Many plans have a PPO network, which means cashless network, direct billing and discounted charges.||No PPO network in the USA.|
|Extendable. Maximum 1 year to 3 years.||Not extendable, or only extendable if there are no claims made. Maximum of 180 days.|
|Convenient local customer service in USA.||Customer service from India makes it difficult to deal with providers locally in USA. Even US toll-free numbers simply ring in India.|
|Outpatient benefits provided.||Some companies exclude outpatient benefits.|
|Easy online purchase with instant ID card.||Online purchase may or may not be available.|
|Sold by licensed agents with extensive knowledge.||Mostly sold through travel agents who are clueless about healthcare in the US.|
|Acute onset of pre-existing conditions coverage for all ages.||Even if some coverage related to pre-existing conditions is available, it may be too restrictive to be of any practical use.|
|Strict government regulations. Can alert authorities easily and locally in USA.||The US government does not have jurisdiction over Indian companies. Relaxed government regulation in India. Complaining in India may not be practical and may lead nowhere.|
|Companies must honor what is promised in the certificate wording.||Many companies promise too much, which makes it practically impossible to honor when they charge too little premium.|
|Prices are all-inclusive. No additional taxes or hidden fees.||In addition to the premiums, you must pay 18% GST (Tax).|
After reviewing the above points, it is obvious to see that it is preferable to purchase travel insurance from a US-based company when compared to an India-based company.
Right on this website, you can get instant quotes from various US based travel insurance companies, compare them side-by-side, and make an instant purchase online.