Sunday, June 5, 2016

You are travelling at home in Canada, travel insurance is a must.


As a travel insurance expert, we never miss an opportunity to tell you how important travel insurance is for trips to the US and beyond. But we wonder if you know that the same applies when you are planning to travel within Canada?

If it’s not every time, now is a great time to start or to get back into the habit. We would like to remind you following, so that you can make informed choices your protection needs: 

  • Healthcare in Canada is expensive.
  • Even if you’re a Canadian, once you step outside of your province or territory, your government plan coverage is limited.
  • If you were to need emergency medical attention, treatment can be expensive, and you need to be prepared with the funds to cover it.
  • Emergency hospital and medical benefits can help pay for an unexpected visit to the doctor.
  • Plus, it’s a lot easier to fit into your travel budget than the associate medical bills.
  • Let me ask you a few more questions to help find the right plan for you.



Saturday, April 16, 2016

Honeymoon Travellers

Tips for a Happy Honeymoon 

With 62% of newly married couples paying for their honeymoon, there is a lot to consider when planning for the big trip.1 Whether it's a getaway to enjoy white sand beaches and sun or to tour ancient ruins and learn about a different culture, take note of some of these important honeymoon travel tips that may make planning and enjoying the trip a bit easier. Know someone getting married soon? Forward them these helpful honeymoon tips; they'll be grateful for the insider information! 

Honeymoon Registry
Have you heard of the latest craze? Have your wedding guests pay for part of, or your entire honeymoon. Honeymoon registries allow wedding guests to contribute funds to your special trip and even sponsor specific activities you wish to enjoy while you are there! 

Say "I do" to your Differences
Do you like adventure travel while your significant other would much rather be sunbathing on a beach all day? So that you don't create rifts when planning your trip of a lifetime, make sure you communicate before you begin to plan so that both of you can get maximum enjoyment out of your vacation. 

Honeymoon, Under Wraps
While you're planning your honeymoon, refrain from sharing the type of trip it is if you're on a tight budget. Some entities may charge you extra because they know that couples are willing to splurge on their special getaway. However, after your travel planning is complete and your reservations are made it may pay to share that you're arriving for your honeymoon – some places will give you free upgrades or complimentary items. 

Details, Details...
Planning a honeymoon can be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to pull out all the stops, upgrade from average to amazing, and enjoy special splurges. Some ideas? How about planning a private helicopter tour or a luxury spa day together? Have a chef prepare a custom meal just for the two of you, or arrange to take a private tour of the nearest escape. 

Copies of Documentation
After you've created your itinerary be sure to make copies of it to share with family and friends. Keep an additional copy for yourself. That way, your family will know where you are in case problems arise back home. Additionally, you may want to register your travel plans with the U.S. State Department. Registration allows the Department of State to assist you and contact family or friends in case of an emergency. 

Pack Travel Insurance
Your honeymoon is a time to relax after the stressful planning of your wedding. A travel insurance plan with 24/7 assistance may help to take stress off your mind so that you can concentrate on enjoying your vacation. Travel Guard's 'round the clock assistance can go to work on your behalf re-booking flights and hotels, finding lost luggage and more. Plus a travel insurance plan can cover you for things like travel delays due to inclement weather, trip cancellation/interruption and medical expenses so that you can book your vacation with confidence. To find out more simply ask your travel agent, call800.851.0048 or visit www.biis.ca. 

Check out more tips on planning a romantic getaway here! 

Sources: 
1 http://honeymoons.about.com/cs/eurogen1/a/weddingstats.htm

Travel Guard 

Bridges International Insurance Services
http://biis.ca




Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Travel insurance for heatlhy travelers.




Travel insurance is critical for those with "pre-existing medical conditions". But what if you don't have any? YES, you still should purchase private travel insurance to cover medical emergencies.

Your Provincial Health Insurance Plan helps so little in paying overseas medical bills. For instance, "OHIP will only reimburse up to a total of $50.00 CDN per day for this service regardless of the severity of the situation."(*1)  And how much will you have to pay from your pocket?   The following claim examples give you a hint of how much you'll be billed without travel insurance.

Case A - 62-year-old female. In Costa Rica, while zip-lining through the rain forest, she was stung by bees multiple times.  She stayed ER overnight and left with antibiotics.
Ambulance fees..............................................................$450.00
Hospital fees ............................................................... $4,300.50
Doctors’ fees ..................……..……………...……..………...............$350.72
Prescriptions .................................................................. $117.80
Provincial medical ............................................................ -$80.00
Total Cost paid by the insurer..........……................... $5,139.02 

Case B - 40-year-old Male. He was on a ski trip in Montana when developed a fever and chills. ER doctors diagnosed him with pneumonia. Prescribed antibiotics and followed up at a walk-in clinic. 
Hospital fees ............................................................... $35,456.00
Doctors’ fees ................................................................ $1,325.90
Radiology fees .................................................................. $985.00 
Prescriptions ..................................................................... $113.65
Walk-in clinic fees ............................................................... $152.00
Provincial medical .............................................................. - $410.00
Total Cost paid by the insurer...................................... $37,622.55 

Case C - 56-year-old Female. While visiting Wisconsin, she began experiencing pain with urination. Walk-in clinic doctor ordered bloodwork and a urinalysis. Antibiotics  for urinary tract infection prescribed.
Walk-in clinic fees ............................................................ $225.10
Doctors’ fees ...................................................................$687.00
Pathology fees .............................................................. $1,706.40 
Prescriptions ..................................................................... $75.23
Provincial medical ........................................................... - $150.00 
Total Cost paid by the insurer..………............................ $2,543.73



This is a great place to start.  Call us today and find out what you need to save you from unexpected medical bills.

Toll Free: 1-888-298-6526(Toronto, ON)  1-888-267-4461 (Vancouver, BC)
Email inquiry: info@biis.ca


(*1) Government of Ontario  
http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/public/programs/ohip/outofcountry/travellers.aspx
(Case A-C) by the courtesy of our partner TuGo

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Medical expenses at Sun Destinations - Mexico, Bermuda, Florida and California



Dear Canadian Snowbirds,


Are you heading down to Florida this winter?  If yes, please take a look at this case profile. According to RSA Travel Insurance, medical expenses in sun destinations could be thousands of dollars. Below is an example. 


Richard is an active 72 years old. Since his dignosis of high blood pressure and cholesterol, he still finds ways to balance his health all while enjoying the foods he loves.
Richard and his wife Elizabeth were already aware of the importance of travel insurance, but when Richard was caught off guard by his first ever stroke while between sailing outings, it just confirmed what they already knew - they could not afford to leave home without it.

 
by the courtesy of our partner RSA http://www.rsatravelpartners.com/article/2015-08-13/infographic-claims-profile-sun-seeker-edition



 First step to take out the right travel insurance plan is to know your health and ask questions. We are here to help.  Contact info@biis.ca or call us at 1-888-298-6526(Toronto)/1-888-267-4461(Vancouver)












 

 






Tips for US-bound Canadian Snowbirds.




Summer is over but that's all right. Let's get ready for your winter vacation.

Here are some tips from CBC US-bound Canadian Snowbirds. 
Q.How long can Canadians stay in the U.S.? 
A. Maximum 182 days during a 12 month period.

Q. How long can a Canadian stay in the U.S. without paying U.S. taxes?
A.  The America Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a form that may allow you to spend the full 182 days in the U.S. without paying U.S. income tax.  Please refer to Substantial Presence Test of IRS to see if you're deemed to be a U.S. resident for tax purposes.

Q. How long can snowbirds be away from Canada and keep their provincial health insurance?
A. B.C., Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia require at least five months of residence in the province to maintain your eligibility. Newfoundland and Labrador requires four months. Some provinces allow longer absence when pre-approved.


Q. What are the rules for snowbirds buying supplemental travel health insurance?
A. The key is to know your health and understand the exclusions of coverage including limitations on pre-existing conditions.

Q. How can snowbirds maintain their home insurance coverage in Canada while they are away?
A. It depends the individual policy. Some insurers require policy holders to have someone competent to regularly check the property.


Shopping for travel insurance is tiring.  Let us help you in choosing the right plan for you insurance needs.
 To inquire about travel insurance, contact info@biis.ca or call us at 1-888-298-6526(Toronto) /1-888-267-4461(Vancouver).

 To access to the full story, please visit CBC website.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Canada does not pay for hospital or medical services for visitors.



Cost Sample-Two days hospitalization for severe food poisoning
Do you have a friend or a family member coming to visit you in Canada?
Cost Sample-Two days hospitalization for severe food poisoning
If "YES", you may want to look for Travel Insurance for them.  "Canada does not pay for hospital or medical services for visitors"(1).
Many Canadians are unaware of real medical costs in Canada as publicly funded healthcare system covers essential care for individuals who are enroll in.
The following chart is an example of medical cost(2).
Yes, it is expensive.  If you're a visitor to Canada, total cost will be $8,769(Canada Average).  Even if you're enrolled in Provincial Health Care, you still are responsible for some costs. 
 The choice is yours.  We hope you make a good decision to protect your financial security. 
 Need more information? Contact info@biis.ca
See for visitors plan details: http://www.biis.ca/visitors-to-canada-insurance/


(1) Government of Canada
 http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/answer.asp?q=424&t=16 
(2) By courtesy of our partner RSA Travel Insurance. Based on the past industry research.
http://www.rsatravelpartners.com/article/2015-06-16/infographic-claims-profile-visitors-canada-edition



Monday, June 8, 2015

Emergency Evacuation Benefit




Today's topic is "Emergency Evacuation Benefit", which differs from "Emergency Transportation" you can find in most Travel Insurance products.

"Emergency Transportation" benefit in Travel Insurance is for emergencies from covered sickensss or injuries.  The insurer will pay the cost of transportation to the nearest appropriate medical facility or to a Canadian hospital, when medically necessary and pre-approved by the insurer.
The costs includes land/sea/air ambulance, stretcher, and/or medical attendant(benefits varies by insurer).

Meanwhile, "Emergency Evacuation Benefit" responds when the Government(*) issues a travel warning to your destination for natural disaster or civil emergency.  The cost of transportation to the nearest county of safety or to policy holder's Home Country will be on the insurer's shoulders. The most important thing here is this is only the case when the warning issued after your departure.  Moreover, pre-approval by the insurer is required, the amount paid is limited and determination of the country to be evacuated to be determined by the insurer.
(*) Please refer to your policy wording to clarify with whom the insurance company complies.  
 
On April 25, 2015, a strong magnitude earthquake shook Nepal.  Our partner Allianz Global Assistance(formerly TIC) organized the evacuation and repatriation of 55 travelers, including 14 Canadians, from Kathmandu.(1)  Although a lot of conditions apply to "Emergency Evacuation Benefit", it's worth to consider if you travel for a long period or to the area of safety concern.

Lastly, please note that not every travel insurance lists this kind of benefit. If you're interested in, please contact: info@biis.ca





(1) Travel Agent Central
http://www.travelagentcentral.com/nepal/allianz-global-assistance-sends-relief-team-nepal-51234