Visitors Insurance

Is Travel Insurance Required to Enter the United States?

Is Travel Insurance Required to Enter the United States?

Many people ask the questions: Is travel insurance required to enter the United States? Is travel insurance mandatory for the USA due to COVID?

The short answer is no. Purchasing travel insurance is not mandatory for entering the United States as a tourist on a B1/B2 visa. There are currently no U.S. travel insurance requirements for tourists. 

That is different from Schengen countries, where Schengen travel insurance is required to get the Schengen visa, a visa for more than two dozen countries in Europe.

Millions of tourists travel to the United States every year and visit famous sights such as New York, Niagara Falls, Washington, D.C., Florida, Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, California and more. Many of them go through the arduous visa process for the trip of their lifetime. As the United States is a vast country with many amazing sights, most tourists visit anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.

Among all other preparations, it is important to remember that travel insurance while in the USA is vital. 

USA Healthcare System

The biggest healthcare system in the United States is private. There is almost no government healthcare or free facilities. In fact, U.S. citizens and residents are required to purchase adequate health insurance and keep it year-round.

Many visitors traveling from countries with socialized medicine (such as the U.K.) may not realize the importance of buying visitors insurance. Your healthcare in your home country will not cover you in the United States. The U.S. government is not going to provide free healthcare to you as a tourist.

Travelers from countries where healthcare costs little (such as India) just may not realize the importance of having proper travel medical protection, as they are used to being able to pay out of their pocket for healthcare. (Even so, many poor people are not able to afford even that extremely low-cost treatment. However, here the reference is specifically to those people traveling to the United States. Those who can afford to travel to the United States can easily afford to pay out of pocket for treatment in their country.)

U.S. Healthcare is Very Expensive

Even though the United States has the best healthcare in the world, it is also among the most expensive. A simple visit to the emergency room may easily cost a few thousand dollars.

U.S. healthcare costs are so high that it is just not affordable, and clearly out of reach for most people who don't have proper medical insurance.

You can't avoid the unexpected. While traveling to the United States, you may run into a sudden illness or injury. Without proper travel insurance, you will be responsible for the cost of treatment out of your own pocket. You do not want to burden yourself or your host relatives with massive healthcare bills in unexpected situations.

While travel insurance will not eliminate all the risks associated with traveling to the United States, it can reduce them to a great extent.

Other Benefits

Apart from coverage for emergency medical expenses, the best medical insurance for visitors to the USA can also provide coverage for emergency medical evacuation, repatriation of remains, loss of checked luggage, AD&D, emergency assistance and much more.

Other Considerations

  • While granting a visitor visa to foreign tourists, the consular officer at the U.S. Consulate may want to ensure that the visitor will not become a financial burden on U.S. taxpayers. Therefore, if they think that a specific visitor is more likely to fall ill, they may ask for proof of proper travel insurance.

    It is not possible to say with any guarantee how many visa applicants are being asked about this or whether travel insurance would improve one's chances of getting a visitors' visa, but it is worth considering.

  • All visitors' visa holders must pass through inspection by a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at a U.S. airport. Among other things, the CBP officer may want to make sure that a visitor is not going to be a burden on the United States. Therefore, especially in case of elderly visitors, they may want to see proof of proper travel insurance before letting them enter the United States if they feel that they are more likely to encounter a medical emergency while visiting.

    Not everyone will be asked for proof. Just because the parents of your friend and in-laws of your cousin were not asked to show such proof, it does not necessarily mean that your parents won't be asked either.

    In any case, it is necessary to carry proper travel insurance while visiting the United States. Buying it upfront from a U.S.-based company before traveling, and bringing proof, will give you additional peace of mind and a worry-free vacation.


There are many U.S.-based travel insurance plans available to choose from. You can get instant quotes from multiple products, compare them side-by-side and make an immediate purchase online. For any questions or help in selecting the right travel insurance plan for the United States, U.S.-based licensed insurance agents are available seven days a week.

Did you know?

Prices are regulated by law.

You cannot find a lower price anywhere for the same product.

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Why buy insurance from Insubuy?

Same Price. Better Service.®

There are many advantages in purchasing from Insubuy and no disadvantages.

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Visiting USA?

Healthcare costs are very high in the U.S.

Buy U.S. based visitors insurance and enjoy your trip.

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Traveling abroad?

Did you know that your insurance may not cover you abroad or that it may only provide limited coverage?

Purchase travel medical insurance that includes emergency medical evacuation.

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New immigrant to USA?

You are not eligible to enroll in Medicare for the first 5 years.

Purchase new immigrant medical insurance to bridge the gap.

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Going on a vacation?

You could lose your non-refundable trip costs if you had to cancel your trip.

Buy a trip cancellation insurance package plan and be worry-free.

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Are you an exchange visitor to USA?

The U.S. Department of State requires all J visa holders to purchase compliant insurance.

Buy J visa medical insurance to meet your requirements.

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Traveling to Europe?

Schengen countries require most non-US citizens to purchase Schengen visa insurance.

Make an instant purchase online and get instant visa letter.

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Traveling frequently throughout the year?

You don't need to purchase travel insurance for every trip.

Purchase annual multi trip travel insurance for your travels.

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International student in the U.S.?

Most schools require international students to purchase health insurance.

Purchase international student health insurance that meets most school requirements.

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