To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.

Bill Bryson

Dear Traveler,

Many expats struggle with healthcare. There are so many options and promises from insurance companies that promise more support than they deliver. When I first became an expat, I chose a policy that worked for my visa process but was dreadfully expensive and not useful at all when I needed to see a doctor. Thankfully, a local friend recommended a local insurance company that was much less expensive and covered much, much more.

When you are looking for healthcare in your new country, you may have access to public healthcare options, too. On the other hand, purchasing healthcare a year in advance is required for some visas, so you will have to carefully read the requirements of the visa application process.

As you make your healthcare plans, you might want to start with the following questions:

  • How do other expats feel about healthcare in your target location? What health plans do other expats use?
  • What are your mental healthcare options in your new country?
  • What health-related concerns or conditions are part of your current healthcare plan? Do you have medications or therapies that need to exist for you in your new home?
  • When looking for healthcare insurance, can you compare coverage, premiums, deductibles, and co-pays? Will it fit within your budget?
  • How will you access healthcare in your new home? Are there hospitals, clinics, and service providers for your specific needs or treatments?
  • Will your healthcare plan cover international health costs? If you plan to travel as an expat, will you be able to obtain healthcare during your adventures?

Of course, there are many more considerations for planning healthcare abroad, but finding your personal solution will take some time and research. You may also want to find an insurance broker who helps people, often expats, identify a solid healthcare plan.

One final note: I strongly suggest that you take a first-aid course, either online (there are some for free, too!) or by a local organization. Professional medical help may take some time, so being able to treat minor injuries is a useful skill.

Keep exploring!

The Clever Expat

We can help with your expat healthcare planning!

As you embark on your expat journey, prioritizing your health and well-being is paramount. Adapting to a new healthcare system, navigating cultural differences in healthcare practices, and maintaining your mental health in an unfamiliar environment can be challenging. This LIVE Expat Healthcare course equips you with the knowledge and resources to confidently manage your health and well-being as an expat.

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