Is Health Insurance Required to Travel to Europe?

  • Author: Admin
  • September 27, 2022
Is Health Insurance Required to Travel to Europe?

Travelers to Europe should be prepared to manage and afford medical care in the event of an accident, injury, or other unforeseen circumstance. Travel insurance has been shown to provide travelers with financial support and comfort to handle unforeseen costs, allowing them to continue their tour without worry.

Schengen Visa Insurance Requirements

Medical insurance for a Schengen visa must meet the following criteria:

  • A minimum coverage of medical costs: at least 30,000 EUR (equivalent to 30,800 USD as of August 2022).
  • It should cover all member states of the Schengen Area.
  • Cover any expenses which might arise in connection with repatriation for medical reasons, urgent health attention and/or emergency hospital treatment or death.

** Europ Assistance and AXA provide the mandatory insurance certificate required when applying for a Schengen visa.

Although it is recommended for all visitors to Europe to obtain travel health insurance, it is not a requirement. Only travelers who need to apply for a Schengen visa are required to have travel insurance. No matter if they come to Europe for business, pleasure, education, vacation, or another purpose, this group of travelers must always have the required coverage for the duration of their stay.

While it is strongly advised, it is not obligatory of foreign visitors to Europe who enjoy visa-free access to the Schengen area to purchase their preferred travel insurance policy.

The travel insurance policies Schengen Plus from Europ Assistance and Europe Travel from AXA give enhanced coverage wherever you go in the Schengen area or in the EU in addition to the mandatory insurance certificate required for a Schengen visa. The Schengen region as well as Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Cyprus, and Ireland as members of the EU are covered.

Is It Mandatory to have Travel Insurance When Applying for a Schengen Visa?

Extract from “Regulation (EC) No 810/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 July 2009”, which entered into force on April 5 of 2010:

"Applicants for a uniform visa for one or two entries shall prove that they are in possession of adequate and valid travel medical insurance to cover any expenses which might arise in connection with repatriation for medical reasons, urgent medical attention and/or emergency hospital treatment or death, during their stay(s) on the territory of the Member States. The insurance shall be valid throughout the territory of the Schengen Area Member States and cover the entire period of the person’s intended stay or transit. The minimum coverage shall be EUR 30,000".

Anyone travelling temporarily to Europe from a country that is subject to visa requirements, be it individual visitors or group visitors, tourists, or business travellers.

How Much Does Schengen Insurance Cost?

Schengen travel insurance can be very affordable, with prices for a one-week insurance policy as low as €18 – €20.We recommend buying Schengen visa insurance from Europ Assistance or AXA.

However, the cost of Schengen insurance ultimately depends on several factors – your age, how much coverage you want, the trip duration, as well as the specific insurance company.

Here are the insurance premiums from AXA Assistance:

Duration of travel AXA Low Cost
(Schengen area only)
AXA Europe Travel
(Extended protection, Schengen + EU countries)
up to 8 days 20 EUR 30 EUR
up to 16 days 36 EUR 55 EUR
up to 31 days 56 EUR 74 EUR
up to 45 days 65 EUR 103 EUR
up to 62 days 73 EUR 117 EUR
up to 90 days 89 EUR 152 EUR
up to 105 days 110 EUR 176 EUR
up to 180 days 168 EUR 271 EUR
up to 365 days - 298 EUR (AXA Schengen Multi Trip)

Here are the insurance premiums from Europ Assistance:

Duration of travel Schengen
(Schengen area only)
Schengen Plus
(Extended protection, Schengen + EU countries)
up to 7 days 18 EUR 28 EUR
up to 15 days 30 EUR 49 EUR
up to 31 days 46 EUR 73 EUR
up to 45 days 56 EUR 85 EUR
up to 63 days 72 EUR 99 EUR
up to 90 days 88 EUR 125 EUR
up to 105 days 107 EUR 159 EUR
up to 158 days 165 EUR 239 EUR
up to 365 days 285 EUR 429 EUR

Where Do I Find Schengen Travel Insurance for Seniors (Over 75)?

Some of the best and most reputable travel insurance companies offer Schengen insurance which does not have age limits, such as AXA, MondialCare, and DR-WALTER. These companies offer travel insurance plans for pensioners travelling to Europe which are both affordable and adequate.

To purchase a Schengen travel insurance policy for a senior citizen, you must:

  • Visit the website of one of the companies which offer it:
  • Select the plan which you think is more adequate.
  • Complete the application form. You will be asked to give your name, nationality, the duration of the trip, as well as your age.
  • Pay for the insurance policy. You must pay via a credit or debit card, or PayPal.
  • Download and print the Insurance Certificate. If you need to apply for a visa, you can send this Certificate to the Embassy.

Do Schengen Visa Insurance Plans Cover COVID-19?

Yes, some Schengen insurance policies cover COVID-related illness, provided that when you travel, you respect the laws and regulations of your country’s government and the World Health Organization (WHO). COVID-19 insurance covers the following:

  • Health emergencies related to COVID-19, including medical treatment, medication, and hospitalization.
  • PCR test (sometimes).

Expenses related to quarantine requirements, such as accommodation, are not covered.

Is It Possible to Extend European Travel Health Insurance?

If your trip in Europe is extended due to COVID travel bans, and your travel insurance is about to expire, you can purchase a new insurance policy or renew your existing one. You will, of course, have to pay an additional charge. Check with your travel insurance company regarding their rules on the extension or renewal of a policy.

What Does Europe Travel Health Insurance Policy Usually Cover?

A good travel insurance policy for Europe should cover the following costs:

  • Medical emergency (accident or sickness) while in the Schengen Area
  • Emergency evacuation
  • Repatriation of remains
  • Return of a minor
  • Trip cancellation
  • Trip interruption
  • Accidental death, injury or disablement benefit
  • Overseas funeral expenses
  • Lost, stolen or damaged baggage, personal effects or travel documents
  • Delayed baggage (and emergency replacement of essential items)
  • Flight connection missed due to airline schedule crash
  • Travel delays due to weather
  • Hijacking
  • Usually, the insurers cover pregnancy-related expenses, if the travel occurs during the first trimester. After that, insurance coverage varies from insurer to insurer.