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Travel Reward Credit Card Medical Insurance Coverage

 

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With the emergence of Credit Card Emergency Travel Medical Insurance coverage over the past 7-8 years, we have been receiving more and more requests from some of Rewards Canada 'seasoned' readers about coverage once they hit 65 years old. I did look into this a few years back and just personally responded via email to those who asked. But somehow when 2013 hit, I have already received numerous emails asking about which credit cards provide Emergency Travel Medical Insurance coverage for people over the age of 65. So we figured it was best to summarize all the information into one post.

We have gone through all of the major Travel Rewards credit cards in Canada that provide this insurance benefit and summarized their age coverage in the chart below.

We do want to stress however that if you are picking a card primarily for the Travel Medical Insurance coverage be sure to read the policy before you get the card to see what is and what isn't covered, coverage periods and more as each card has their own 'exclusions' and such. Here are some of the things that stood out for us:

  • Most of the plans will only cover you for pre-existing conditions (known or unknown in some cases) when those conditions are/were considered stable prior to traveling. Now the difference comes in in the time period that you have to be stable, I found most cards require 90 days prior to travel but some were as high as 180 days. Now a pre-existing condition can be different than a Medical or chronic condition which is controlled but once again during that 90 or 180 day period there usually can't be any changes or other treatment for the condition. Some will not cover routine care for a chronic condition.

  • If you are traveling 9 weeks prior to or after giving birth many of the cards will not cover you if any medical issues arise that are related to the pregnancy.

  • If you are young (or young at heart) and go party in Cancun during Spring Break, many of the cards will not cover you for medical emergencies that happen while you are intoxicated.

  • Certain dangerous or professional sports are not covered, even Scuba Diving is an exclusion unless you hold a basic designation from a certified school or licencing body.

These are only a few of the conditions and/or exclusions. Key word here in many of the cases is Emergency, so if you are getting routine care for something prior to travel there is a possibility it may not be covered. Also many of the policies require you to contact the insurer as soon as possible and get approval for the treatment except where the emergency is life threatening: This excerpt is taken from the Scotiagold Passport Visa policy:

"No benefits will be payable for surgery or invasive procedures (such as cardiac catheterization) without prior approval by Scotia Assist, except in extreme circumstances where a request for prior approval would delay surgery needed in a life threatening medical crisis."
So please, before you choose a card based solely on the medical insurance please read the policies of those that you are considering before making your decision.

Emergency Travel Medical Insurance Coverage Periods by Age:

Bolding with the green background represents the best offer(s) for that age category.

Card / Age Group

54 or under

55-59

60 - 64

65 - 75

76+

American Express AeroplanPlus Platinum Card 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
American Express AeroplanPlus Reserve Card 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
American Express AIR MILES Reserve Card 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
American Express Gold Rewards Card 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
The Platinum Card from American Express 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
BMO AIR MILES World Elite MasterCard 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage No Coverage
BMO World Elite MasterCard 21 Days 21 Days 21 Days No Coverage No Coverage
Capital One® Aspire Travel™ World Elite MasterCard® 22 Days 22 Days 22 Days 8 Days 8 Days
CHOICE REWARDS® World Elite® MasterCard® Credit Card 31 Days 31 Days 31 Days 31 Days No Coverage
Gold CHOICE REWARDS® MasterCard® Credit Card 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days No Coverage
CIBC Aerogold Visa Infinite 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days
CIBC Aerogold Visa Infinite Privilege 31 Days 31 Days 31 Days 10 Days 10 Days
CIBC Aventura Visa Infinte 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days
Desjardins Odyssey World Elite MasterCard 60 days 60 days 31 Days 15 days No Coverage
Desjardins Visa Odyssey GOLD 60 days 60 days 31 Days 15 days No Coverage
Desjardins Visa Module GOLD 3 days 3 days 3 days 3 days No Coverage
Desjardins Visa Elegance GOLD 3 days 3 days 3 days 3 days No Coverage
HSBC Premier World MasterCard 17 days 17 days 17 days No Coverage No Coverage
HSBC Premier MasterCard 17 days 17 days 17 days No Coverage No Coverage
National Bank of Canada World Elite MasterCard 60 days 31 days 31 Days 15 Days (to 74) No Coverage
National Bank of Canada World MasterCard 60 days 31 days 31 Days 15 Days (to 74) No Coverage
National Bank of Canada Platinum MasterCard 60 days 31 days 31 Days 15 Days (to 74) No Coverage
RBC British Airways Visa Infinite 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days
RBC Cathay Pacific Visa Platinum 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days
RBC Rewards Visa Preferred 31 Days 31 Days 31 Days 7 Days 7 Days
RBC Visa Infinite Avion 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days
RBC Avion Visa Infinite Privilege 31 Days 31 Days 31 Days 7 Days 7 Days
Scotiabank American Express Card 8 Days 8 Days 8 Days 3 Days 3 Days
Scotiabank Gold American Express Card 25 days 25 days 25 days 10 days 10 Days
Scotiabank Platinum American Express Card 31 days 31 days 31 Days 10 days 10 Days
Scotiagold Passport Visa 31 days 31 days 31 Days No Coverage No Coverage
TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card 21 days 21 days 21 days 4 days 4 days
TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Privilege Card 22 days 22 days 22 days 4 days 4 days
TD First Class Visa Infinite Card 21 days 21 days 21 days 4 days 4 days
WestJet RBC World Elite MasterCard 15 Days 15 Days 15 Days 3 Days 3 Days


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Do you have any other tips for credit card out of province travel medical insurance? Have you ever used your medical insurance? Tell us in the comments section below or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter!

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