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Travel Insurance to Canada: Plans for US Visitors

  • Despite having a robust public health system, there is no free health insurance in Canada for visitors, and most US health insurance will not work in Canada.
  • You’ll have to pay out of pocket for any medical treatment you receive while in Canada unless you have a travel insurance policy.
  • Based on our research, our top picks for Canada travel insurance come from Tin Leg, Seven Corners, Generali Global Assistance, Travel Insured International, and IMG. (skip ahead to view these insurance plans)
  • To help you find the right travel insurance for your trip to Canada, try using an online comparison tool. This way you can get multiple quotes and compare your options easily in one place.

Our top picks for the best travel insurance for Canada

Advertiser Disclosure
Best for High Medical Coverage

Tin Leg

GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
4.6
Preferred Plan
Gold
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$500,000 / $500,000
Best Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions

Seven Corners

GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
4.37
Preferred Plan
Trip Protection Choice
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$500,000 / $1,000,000
Best Basic Coverage

Generali Global Assistance

GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
4.34
Preferred Plan
Standard
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$50,000 / $250,000

Does US health insurance work in Canada?

US government health plans such as Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare, and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program will not pay for health care while in Canada. This includes treatment such as hospital visits and the supply of prescription drugs.

The only exceptions to these rules are where you require emergency medical treatment within the US and the closest hospital is across the Canadian border. Also, if you are passing through Canada between Alaska and a US state and a medical emergency arises.

Why should I get travel insurance for my trip to Canada?

When planning your visit to Canada, insurance may not be top of mind. However, an emergency can happen at any time, making travel insurance helpful in the following situations:

Our best travel insurance for visitors to Canada

Advertiser Disclosure

Best for High Medical Coverage

Full Policy Details

Tin Leg

4.6
GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
Preferred Plan
Gold
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$500,000 / $500,000
Why We Like It

Editor's take

Tin Leg’s Gold policy is renowned for offering top-quality travel insurance at reasonable prices and at a competitive rate.

AM Best rates all of Tin Leg’s policies at A- or higher when it comes to their financial strength and Tin Leg’s Gold plan is no different. What makes this policy stand out is its great medical and evacuation coverage limits, all offered at an affordable price.

With both trip cancellation and interruption coverage offered for numerous instances, including COVID-19, you will covered should the worst happen while visiting Canada. The high coverage of $500,000 for emergency medical expenses and up to $500,000 in emergency medical evacuation coverage both make the Tin Leg Gold policy a popular travel insurance choice.

PROS

  • Excellent primary coverage for medical expenses
  • High limit for emergency evacuation coverage
  • Optional cancel for any reason (CFAR) coverage available
  • Comes with coverage for hurricanes and inclement weather
  • Coverage for pre-existing conditions is available if purchased within 14 days of the trip deposit

CONS

  • Baggage delay coverage requires a 24-hour waiting period
  • Low coverage limits for baggage and personal effects

Best Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions

Full Policy Details

Seven Corners

4.37
GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
Preferred Plan
Trip Protection Choice
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$500,000 / $1,000,000
Why We Like It

Editor's take

This Trip Protection Choice plan from Seven Corners offers great all-around coverage at a competitive price. Although at the lower end of the price spectrum, Trip Protection Choice provides travelers to Canada with a reassuring $500,000 in primary medical coverage. To match this high level of coverage, this plan from Seven Corners also offers $1 million in medevac and repatriation coverage, which is some of the highest around.

Further popular additions include trip cancellation, interruption, and delay coverage, accidental death & dismemberment coverage, baggage damage and loss coverage, and a 14-day money-back guarantee.

Trip Protection Choice is a great choice for those with pre-existing conditions. The pre-existing conditions waiver stipulates you can be covered if:

  • The policy payment & enrollment form is received within 20 days of the initial trip payments/deposits and within 15 days of payment for any subsequent travel arrangements added to your trip
  • You or your traveling companion are medically able to travel and at the time your premium is paid based on the assessment of a physician.

PROS

  • Offers coverage for pre-existing conditions
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Cancellation & Interruption coverage standard
  • Covers action sports & equipment

CONS

  • Cancel for any reason not included standard
  • Must meet waiver for pre-existing conditions to be covered

Best Basic Coverage

Full Policy Details

Generali Global Assistance

4.34
GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
Preferred Plan
Standard
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$50,000 / $250,000
Why We Like It

Editor's take

Generali Global Assistance offers high coverage limits for medical expenses, emergency dental expenses, emergency medical evacuation coverage, and so much more for your visit to Canada. With an A rating from AM Best, it is no wonder that Generali Global Assistance is one of the more popular choices when it comes to travel insurance.

Generali Global Assistance’s Standard plan is fantastic for those who are looking for basic coverage at an affordable price. Offering both trip cancellation and interruption, this standard plan is perfect for countering those unforeseen circumstances.

Other Standard plan perks include $1,000 per person in baggage coverage, up to $50,000 in medical coverage, and $250,000 in medical evacuation coverage.

PROS

  • Lowest cost of all Generali Global Assistance plans
  • 24/7 emergency travel assistance included
  • Telemedicine included

CONS

  • Lower coverage than other Generali plans
  • Pre-existing conditions are not covered by the Standard plan
  • No coverage for accidental death and dismemberment during on-land travel

Best for Medical Evacuation Coverage

Travel Insured International

4.39
GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
Preferred Plan
Worldwide Trip Protector
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$100,000 / $1,000,000
Why We Like It

Editor's take

Travel Insured International’s Worldwide Trip Protector offers superior coverage and is ideal for those looking to take a trip over the border to Canada. This plan covers 100% of the insured trip cost due to cancellation, 150% of the insured trip cost due to interruption, and $1,500 for trip delays.

A popular perk is the Worldwide Trip Protector $500 coverage for baggage delays after only 3 hours. When it comes to medical coverage, Worldwide Trip Protector provides $100,000 of secondary medical coverage and $1 million of evacuation coverage - ideal if the worst should happen in the Canadian wilderness.

PROS

  • Travel delay coverage kicks in after just six hours
  • Generous $150,000 non-medical evacuation coverage
  • 24/7 emergency travel assistance included

CONS

  • CFAR and IFAR coverage not included
  • Baggage delay coverage only kicks in after 12 hours
  • No rental car coverage

Best for Travelers Aged 80+

Full Policy Details

IMG

4.24
GET A QUOTE via Squaremouth’s secure website
Preferred Plan
iTravelInsured Travel LX Basic
Covers COVID
YES
Medical & Evacuation Limits Per Person
$500,000 / $1,000,000
Why We Like It

Editor's take

IMG’s iTravelInsured Travel LX Basic is a great plan for travelers of all ages and offers fantastic coverage for surprisingly low prices. For example, with this plan, you will be covered for up to $500,000 of primary emergency medical coverage - meaning you won’t be out of pocket and waiting for a reimbursement while traveling.

This plan also comes with travel cancellation, interruption, and travel delay coverage as well as $40,000 in rental car damage protection included. Protection for baggage delays and baggage loss also comes standard.

Elderly travelers to Canada will also see the appeal of the iTravelInsured Travel LX Basic’s ‘look-back period of 60 days’ This means it only considers pre-existing conditions as “an illness, disease, or other condition during the 60-day period immediately prior to the date your coverage begins.”

PROS

  • 10-day money back guarantee
  • Generous limits for trip delays, emergency evacuation, and more
  • 24/7 emergency travel assistance included
  • Coronavirus-related medical expenses covered
  • Rental car coverage included

CONS

  • Recently developed pre-existing conditions may not be covered
  • CFAR and IFAR coverage only available as an add-on with premium plans
Passport and Plane Ticket

How much does travel insurance for Canada cost?

According to official sales data from Squaremouth, travel insurance for Canada averages at around $238.46.

Based on our official sales figures over the past year, our customers’ average travel insurance costs for Canada are ?221.97.

Comprehensive travel Insurance for Canada costs around $8 to $10 per day. That said, you can usually find plans that cost as little as around $1 per day for the cheapest, most basic coverage.

To give you some examples of the travel insurance costs for Canada, we got price quotes from a few popular companies.

The table below shows quotes for basic travel insurance plans.

Cost Example Where Travel Insurance Plan Doesn’t Reimburse the Full Trip Cost

Provider Plan Name Plan Cost Cancellation / Interruption Limits Medical / Medevac Limits
Tin Leg Standard $5 $0 / $0 $30,000 / $300,000
Trawick International Safe Travels Explorer $18 $0 / $0 $50,000 / $200,000
Seven Corners Trip Protection Basic $25 $0 / $1,000 $100,000 / $250,000

While searching for a travel insurance plan, you may wish to have more comprehensive protection for your trip to Canada. To give you an idea of how much this costs, we compared quotes for plans that reimburse the full cost of a trip for the table below.

Cost Example Where Travel Insurance Plan Reimburses the Full Trip Cost

Provider Plan Name Plan Cost Cancellation / Interruption Limits Medical / Medevac Limits
Tin Leg Standard $58 $2,000 / $2,000 $30,000 / $200,000
Trawick International Safe Travels Explorer $62 $2,000 / $2,000 $25,000 / $250,000
Seven Corners Trip Protection Basic $75 $2,000 / $2,000 $100,000 / $250,000

The above quotes were for a 35-year-old going on a 7-day trip to Canada in September 2024 that cost a total of $2,000. When searching for travel insurance, keep in mind that several factors impact how much you’ll pay.

Factors that influence the cost of travel insurance include:

What types of travel insurance do I need for Canada?

Travel insurance plans are typically divided into two distinct categories:

  1. Medical-based travel insurance
  2. Comprehensive travel insurance

What is included in your overall coverage depends on the type of policy you purchase.

Medical-based travel insurance

The most basic level of travel insurance for Canada visits should be a policy that is medical-based. Medical insurance for Canada is often the cheapest level of insurance you can buy. Medical insurance will cover you should you experience any illness or accidents during your vacation.

As noted above, Medicare and other US private insurers won’t cover you while you are in Canada, so those without medical-based travel insurance will be left out of pocket should the worst happen. Therefore, when visiting Canada, health insurance should be at the top of your travel checklist.

Medical-based travel insurance policies usually cover two separate coverage limits for medical emergencies and emergency medical evacuations:

Medical plans will not include far more in-depth travel insurance add-ons such as trip cancellations or trip cost reimbursement. If you require this additional coverage, you will need to purchase a more comprehensive travel insurance plan.

Comprehensive travel coverage

When selecting a travel insurance policy, you have the option of purchasing plans that reimburse you for non-refundable prepaid trip expenses and plans that don’t. You may want to be insured for things such as trip cancellations, trip interruptions, travel delays, and the loss of personal items. If this is the case, you will need to select an insurance policy that covers you for trip cost reimbursement.

Some medical-based plans may reimburse you for a canceled or interrupted trip if it is the result of a pre-covered illness or injury. However, your trip may be interrupted or canceled based on unforeseen events such as a terrorist attack or natural disaster. In this case, you will need to purchase a policy that covers cancellation and interruption coverage for prepaid, nonrefundable expenses to make a claim.

Further below, you will see a cost example that shows the difference in prices of medical-based plans versus comprehensive travel insurance coverage.

Optional Add-ons

Some travel insurance plans will also offer cancel for any reason (CFAR) insurance. With this type of coverage, you can cancel your travel plans for any reason at all and still get back around 50% to 75% of your prepaid travel expenses. Including this will allow you far more flexibility should you change your Canadian vacation plans.

What doesn’t travel insurance for a trip to Canada cover?

Generally speaking, most travel insurance policies exclude coverage for the following scenarios:

  1. Claims resulting from illegal activities
  2. Claims related to medical tourism
  3. Injuries resulting from intoxication from drugs or alcohol
  4. Cancellations due to fear COVID-19 (See COVID-19 travel plans)

Aside from the highly obvious reasons, some travel insurance providers will also include restrictions are the following situations:

Passport and Plane Ticket

Tips for choosing the best travel insurance for Canada

Before you purchase travel insurance for your trip to Canada, follow these tips to find the best plan:

1

Shop around and compare

Just because a plan has the highest premium doesn’t mean it offers the best coverage. Use the LA Times Comparison Tool to determine which company offers the most benefits at the lowest price.

See More See Less
2

Think about additional coverages you may need

Travel insurance doesn’t usually cover injuries associated with skiing, rock climbing, and other adventure activities. If you plan to do one of these activities, look for a plan that includes extra coverage.

See More See Less
3

Adjust your transportation plans

Travel insurance doesn’t cover trip delays unless you’re traveling via a common carrier. You may want to adjust your transportation plans to ensure that you’re eligible for this type of coverage.

See More See Less
4

Purchase a policy early

You may be able to get a better deal on travel insurance if you purchase a plan as soon as you make your initial trip deposit.

See More See Less
5

Buy coverage based on seasonal risks you face

The season in which you visit Canada can greatly influence the risks you face. Apart from this, some travel insurance plans may not cover certain sports or seasonal activities. It’s important to consider things like winter or summer sports and look for plans that offer adequate coverage. Below are some common examples of seasonal risks.

See More See Less

Hazards in Canada’s national parks

Canada is home to 38 national parks. These great expanses of wilderness are incredible places to explore and are populated with wildlife of all kinds. These parks offer great opportunities to hike, ski, climb, and camp. As we can see from the official Canadian National Park website, they are also volatile regions, susceptible to extreme weather fronts and close encounters with potentially dangerous animals.

Travel insurance for emergency medical evacuation, medical coverage, and adventure sports coverage are a must while exploring the vastness of the Canadian wilderness. However, not all plans automatically cover adventure activities, so it is important to compare plans before purchasing.

Wildfire season

Wildfire season in Canada typically runs from May through to October. In recent years, particularly in the west of the country, Canada has begun to experience far more extreme and prolonged wildfires. While predicting the movement of wildfires and their effects can be difficult, downloading local alert apps and keeping yourself updated via government websites all help avoid any disastrous situations.

Ensure your travel insurance policy has high-quality emergency evacuation and trip cancellation insurance. This will allow you to be far more prepared and flexible should wildfires affect your vacation plans.

Winter weather

Canada’s winter weather can be some of the most extreme in all of North America and the beginning of 2024 brought one of the worst snow storms of recent years. Having high-quality emergency evacuation and trip cancellation insurance will ensure you are covered should your trip be hit by heavy snow storms and adverse weather conditions.

Winter sports

Canada is famous the world over for its winter sports. Numerous tourists come to Canada every year to experience the thrill of skiing, snowboarding, and riding snowmobiles on its many trails. As highlighted in Canada’s official government website on the issue, you should take extreme caution by avoiding closed trails and keeping up-to-date with local weather reports, especially where there is a risk of avalanches and winter storms.

Similarly to those exploring Canada’s grand national parks, it’s advisable to ensure your policy offers adventure sports coverage and emergency medical evacuation coverage, should the worst happen during your trip.

Canada entry requirements & travel information

The table below provides an overview of entry requirements and travel information for your trip to Canada from the United States, according to the US Department of State.

Query Details
Tourist visa required? No visa required for stays lasting less than 180 days
Passport requirements Valid US passport with at least one blank page
Local currency Canadian dollar
Average 5-year exchange rate 1 USD = 1.3038 CAD, according to the Bank of Canada
Vaccine requirements None
COVID-19 test required? No
Travel advisory level Level 1 (exercise normal precautions)
Emergency services phone number 911
Accepts US health insurance? No
Travel insurance required? No

Do I need a passport to visit Canada?

Yes. Under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, all U.S. citizens must present a valid passport when crossing the US-Canada border.

Do I need to be vaccinated to go to Canada?

Do Americans need travel insurance in Canada?

You may not have to use your travel insurance in Canada, but, it’s worth bearing in mind that you won’t be financially covered for medical expenses if you require emergency care.

That means that the Canadian government will charge you for any treatment received and you could be left out of pocket should anything unexpected happen. This is also the case even if the services or medications provided would normally be covered in the United States.

Canada travel insurance FAQs

Do I need travel insurance to visit Canada?

You are not legally required to buy travel insurance to visit Canada, but it should be a top priority. You should always purchase travel insurance before you travel outside the United States. This type of insurance reimburses you for expenses associated with trip cancellation, trip delays, and other travel issues, limiting your losses.

Can I use my US health insurance in Canada?

No. Both private and government-sponsored health insurance plans only cover expenses incurred in the United States.

Do I need travel health insurance for Canada?

It’s a good idea to purchase travel medical insurance before you go abroad. This type of insurance covers emergency transportation, physical exams, diagnostic tests, medications, surgical procedures, and other health expenses. Most travel insurance plans will also include coverage for COVID-19 as standard.

Can Americans travel to Canada without a COVID-19 test?

No. Canada no longer requires tourists from the United States to take a COVID-19 test or quarantine before entering the country.

What happens if I get sick in Canada?

If you get sick in Canada and don’t have travel medical insurance, you will have to pay for your own hospital or medical services. This is why it’s so important to purchase travel insurance with medical coverage before you embark on your trip.

About the Author

Sarah Stasik
Sarah Stasik Personal Finance

Sarah Stasik is well versed in personal finance thanks to her previous role as a Revenue Cycle Manager for a Fortune 500 healthcare company. Using her inside knowledge and expertise, Sarah often covers topics ranging from insurance and the economics of private healthcare to personal finance and small business management.

With more than a dozen years of writing experience, Sarah has tackled niches that range from technical advances in fintech to personal budgeting challenges. She has covered topics such as insurance and the economics of private healthcare, small business management and accounting, and credit and savings. Her writing focuses on making complex or seemingly daunting financial topics more accessible and providing helpful and relevant resources for readers.

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