A Guide to Expat Insurance

When moving abroad, you want a sense of security, but choosing which type of insurance coverage for you and your family can be overwhelming. Learn about the different options you have when it comes to choosing insurance coverage as an expat.

Country-specific considerations

When moving overseas you’ll need to consider what regulations and options are available to your specific host country. When you’re researching your international move to host country, be sure to reach out to the expat forums and find out what your fellow expats decide – public or private insurance. Some countries offer government funded subsidies for healthcare others don’t. Finding out as much as possible in advance of your trip is a vital step in the process.

Auto insurance

Being able to drive in your new country will mean independence and freedom to explore your new surroundings. You’ll need to get used to different traffic conditions and driving abroad but you’ll also need to figure out what auto insurance is appropriate for you. If you’re only visiting abroad for a short period of time (extended business travel or short researching trip) your normal auto policy should be fine. Be sure to check with your auto policy carrier first, though.

International car or auto insurance policies will switch to minimum coverage once you’re abroad and car insurance for travelers may be limited to a certain period of time. Investing some money could allow you to upgrade your policy for international travel, but you may be required to pay a higher premium than your average quote.

Find out what the basic cover for foreign drivers is in whichever country you’ll be moving to and make sure you meet the requirements.

Health insurance

If you’re moving abroad for work, your company may already be offering you health coverage for yourself and your family. As most expats are covered under the employer’s insurance you still might need to purchase more if you have a chronic or pre-existing condition. Travel insurance may be sufficient if you will only be visiting for a short period of time and don’t have any pre-existing conditions.

Life insurance

Expats with dependents should seriously consider purchasing life insurance policies. For obvious reasons, researching a life insurance policy is something most people try to avoid – who wants to think about their own death? No one. But unfortunately it’s something that should be taken seriously. What will happen to your spouse in the event of your death? What would their financial situation be like? This is where life insurance comes into play.

When it comes to purchasing life insurance, review your current situation. What will you need your life insurance plan to cover? You may already have a life insurance policy that you’ve forgotten about. If you have an old contract whose details you don’t remember, contact your insurance company as soon as possible. Your coverage might only need a bit of tweaking and updating to be current again.

Insurance isn’t something you constantly think about and it’s not even something that is in the back of your mind. But when the time comes and you need to use it, you’ll be glad you have it.

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