Best Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance – Review & Comparison

Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance protects us if we have a stable medical condition.

Insurance is designed to provide cover for unforeseen events. So, if a traveler has a medical condition before he leaves for a vacation, then the insurer normally will not provide cover for it. That seems to make sense. If we have a known problem, then it is not unforeseen – it is something we live with on a regular basis.

Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance | AardvarkCompare.com

But, luckily, most travel insurers are able to support Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance.

However, what we may think of as a Pre-Existing Medical Condition and what a travel insurer thinks are probably quite different.

For a travel insurer, you only have a Pre-Existing Medical Condition if:

  • your condition is new, or
  • your condition has worsened recently, or
  • your medication has changed or increased recently.

The time period that the travel insurer cares about is known as a Look-Back Period.
The shorter the Look-Back Period, the better.

The best Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance Policies have a Look-Back Period of only 60 days.
That’s 60 days where if your condition has occurred, got worse, or needed a change in medication, then as far as the Insurer is concerned, doesn’t really exist.
They are not bothered by stable problems.
This makes sense – you could have been taking a small aspirin for mild hypertension for 10 years. Of course the insurer doesn’t care about this.

So, stable illnesses are not a problem.

But, of course, some of us will have new illnesses or injuries. Or, we could have had a change in medication – a new medicine that our Doctor thinks will be better for us.
Well, if this happens within the Look-Back Period, then we have a problem.
Because this is definitely a Pre-Existing Condition, and the travel insurance carrier is going to exclude it from cover.
This means that if this particular condition were to get worse and cause you to cancel your trip, or be admitted into hospital whilst on vacation, the insurer will not financially support you.

This is the type of financial risk that none of us should take. Surely there must be a way to maintain cover for a Pre-Existing Condition?

There is, thank goodness. The travel insurance carrier can grant a Waiver to the Exclusion.
To get a Waiver you must buy travel insurance within the ‘Time-Sensitive Period’.
This Time-Sensitive Period is a short period of time, typically 14-21 days, after your initial trip deposit.
Once that window has passed you will not be granted a Waiver.
So, please, book your travel insurance early.

Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver

This is going to read like a flow chart, but hopefully will make sense.

  • You have a Pre-Existing Medical Condition, as far as the travel insurance carrier is concerned.
  • The insurance carrier will exclude your Pre-Existing Condition from cover.
  • You book your trip insurance policy promptly after your initial trip deposit, within the Time-Sensitive Period.
  • The insurance carrier now Waives the Exclusion of your Pre-Existing Condition.
  • Your Pre-Existing Condition is now brought back into cover.

 

 

Worked Example

In the quote below we are looking at supporting a traveler heading to Mexico for a week. Our traveler is 59 years old and has a Pre-Existing Medical Condition.

His medication has been changed within the last 60 days.
So, we need to find him a Waiver for his Pre-Existing Medical Condition.

Best Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance - AardvarkCompare Quote | AardvarkCompare.com

The RoamRight Essential is a really interesting plan for customers who have Pre-Existing Medical Conditions.
It is a low-cost plan, but it does offer a Waiver – this is most unusual.

RoamRight Essential

Look at the cover options.

Best Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance - RoamRight Essential | AardvarkCompare.com

So, we have Pre-Existing Condition Waiver.
The Look-Back on this policy is normally 180 days, which is an incredibly long time.
However, with the Waiver, we do not need to worry ourselves as to whether we have had a change in medication in the last 180 days, or if there was a recent Doctor’s visit.

All we need to care about is whether we book our travel insurance within the Time-Sensitive Period of 21 days from our initial trip deposit.
Now, the RoamRight Essential does not have strong medical benefits, so we do not recommend it for an overseas trip.
When traveling overseas we always want to see travelers take at least $100k of Travel Medical Insurance.
Most of us have health insurance that does not work outside the USA, so that will be of no use to us in an emergency.

Medicare won’t support a traveler outside the US.
Even Medigap, if with a supported policy, only offers $50k in Cover Overseas as a Lifetime Limit.
Plus, Medigap will require a 20% co-pay, which in itself could be financially devastating.

So, RoamRight Essential – not great for overseas medical protection.
But, absolutely fantastic for trips inside the USA, where the traveler has health cover.

Great All-Rounder Policies – iTI Travel SE & TII Worldwide Trip Protector

These are two of our most popular policies.

Best Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance - iTI SE and TII WTP : AardvarkCompare.com

When you review the iTI Travel SE and TII Worldwide Trip Protector it becomes obvious why they get such great reviews.
They have a strong set of travel protection benefits, that suit most customers most of the time.

More importantly for the purposes of this article, they have only 60-day Look-Back Periods and a Waiver for Pre-Existing Medical Conditions.

Let’s take a look.

iTI Travel SE – 60-Day Look-Back and 20-Day Time-Sensitive Waiver

We have explained already that the shorter the Look-Back Period, the greater the chance that we will need to worry about having a Pre-Existing Condition at all.
60 Days is the best that we see in any policy. Most low-cost travel insurance policies offer 180-Day Look-Back – just too long for many travelers.

The iTI Travel SE offers a 60-Day Look-Back.
Great, but if a change in medication or a new illness means we still have a Pre-Existing Medical Condition to worry about, then the Waiver comes in.

With this trip insurance policy we get 20 days from the time that we make our initial trip deposit to buy the policy and be granted a Waiver.
Again, we think that this is plenty of time for an organized traveler to get the cover they need.

Please do not delay booking your travel insurance – so many benefits fall away if the cover is not booked promptly.

Standard Cancellation Benefit

  • Covered Cancellation: 100% refund
  • Job Termination: 100% refund

Medical Benefits

  • Medical Cover: Primary
  • Hospital of Choice: No
  • Medical Sickness: $150,000
  • Medical Evacuation: $500,000

Free Look Period

10 days

Extra Cancellation Benefit

  • Cancel for Work Reason: 100% refund
  • Cancel for Any Reason: N/A
  • Time Sensitive Period: 20 days

Pre-Existing Condition Benefit

  • Look Back Period: 60 days
  • Waiver of Look Back: Yes
  • Time Sensitive Period: 20 days

A.M. Best Rating

A

TII Worldwide Trip Protector – 60-Day Look-Back and 21-Day Time-Sensitive Waiver

TII Worldwide Trip Protector offers an extra day – 21 days – to get the policy in place so as to enjoy the Waiver for the Exclusion of Pre-Existing Medical Condition.
That might not sound terribly helpful, but we frequently see quotes from travelers who have left insurance a little too late for the iTI SE, yet have just enough time for the TII Worldwide Trip Protector. Sometimes that extra day is all that is needed.

In other areas the policies are similar.

Standard Cancellation Benefit

  • Covered Cancellation: 100% refund
  • Job Termination: 100% refund

Medical Benefits

  • Medical Cover: Secondary
  • Hospital of Choice: Yes
  • Medical Sickness: $100,000
  • Medical Evacuation: $1,000,000

Free Look Period

14 days

Extra Cancellation Benefit

  • Cancel for Work Reason: 100% refund
  • Cancel for Any Reason: N/A
  • Time-Sensitive Period: None

Pre-Existing Condition Benefit

  • Look Back Period: 60 days
  • Waiver of Look Back: Yes
  • Time-Sensitive Period: 21 days

A.M. Best Rating

A

If you run a quote with us and find that the prices of both policies are similar, then which policy to choose?
We like that the iTI SE has Medical Cover that is Primary. Why do we like Primary Medical Cover Travel Insurance? We would always prefer to let the travel insurance carrier take over the responsibility of direct payment as soon as possible. Primary Cover in Travel Medical Health Insurance ensures exactly this. So, that is a win for the iTI Travel SE.

Pre-Existing Medical Condition Policy Language – TII Example

This is a good time to look at the policy definition of a Pre-Existing Condition. Ultimately, it is the contractual language that matters. Here is the language that TII uses.

“Pre-Existing Condition” means an illness, disease, or other condition during the 60 day period immediately prior to the date Your coverage is effective for which You or Your Traveling Companion, Business Partner or a Family Member:

1) Received or received a recommendation for a test, examination, or medical treatment for a condition which first manifested itself, worsened or became acute or had symptoms which would have prompted a reasonable person to seek diagnosis, care or treatment; or

2) Took or received a prescription for drugs or medicine.

Item (2) of this definition does not apply to a condition which is treated or controlled solely through the taking of prescription drugs or medicine and remains treated or controlled without any adjustment or change in the required prescription throughout the 60 day period before coverage is effective under this Policy.

So, if you got ill in the previous 60 days, or had a change in medication, or the condition had become more severe, then the medical condition will count as Pre-Existing.
That is why we like shorter Look-Back Periods. Much better to only have 60 days to worry about, than 180.

But, if you do have a Pre-Existing Condition, then you will need a Waiver. And here, there is some critical language differentiation between the iTI SE and the Travel Insured Worldwide Trip Protector.

Medical Exclusion Wavier – Contractual Language – iTI SE and TII Trip Protector

Here is what we get from iTI SE:

 

Waiver of the Pre-Existing Condition Exclusion – iTI SE

The exclusion for Pre-Existing Condition will be waived provided:

a) Your Payment or Deposit for this Policy and enrollment form are received within 20 days of the Date your initial Payment or Deposit for your Trip is received; and

b) You are not disabled from travel at the time Your premium is paid.

No particular problems here – this is exactly what we have been discussing.

Now, take a look at the policy language for the TII Worldwide Trip Protector:

 

Waiver of the Pre-Existing Condition Exclusion – TII Trip Protector

The exclusion for Pre-Existing Condition will be waived provided:

a)  Your Payment for this Policy and enrollment form are received within 21 days of the date Your initial Payment or Deposit for Your Trip is received; and

b)  You insure all Prepaid Trip costs that are subject to cancellation penalties or restrictions and also insure within 21 days of the Payment or Deposit for those Travel Arrangements the cost of any subsequent Travel Arrangements (or any other Travel Arrangements not made through Your travel agent) added to Your Trip; and

c)  You are not disabled from travel at the time Your premium is paid.

This is a big difference. TII Trip Protector slips in another clause – you must insure the entire trip cost in order to qualify for the Waiver.
We don’t particularly like this.

So, on balance, the Waiver on the iTI Travel SE offers more flexibility to a customer than the TII Trip Protector.

Pre-Existing Medical Condition Travel Insurance – Shop Around

Whenever you are reviewing different policy options at AardvarkCompare, make sure that you take the time to look at the policy benefits. With this overview of only three policies we hope that you can see that policies will have very different benefit levels. Each quote will have a good overview of the benefits in each policy. It is always worth reviewing the policy document before you purchase a travel insurance policy, and we provide links to every one of the policies on the site.

For most customers we will allow you to compare over a dozen trip insurance plans from some of the largest US travel insurers.

In doing so, you can save time and money, whilst getting the correct plan for your particular needs. Each of our insurers has their own call-center ready to support you with any telephone query that you have. They can take you through the detail of each insurance policy that they offer, in order to make sure you get the trip insurance plan that you need.

Irrespective as to your pre-existing medical condition, there is probably a policy that can cover you.

We wish you a healthy trip.

Safe travels.

Recent AardvarkCompare Travel Insurance Customer Reviews

TP1|AardvarkCompare.com

TP3 | AardvarkCompare.com

I Panicked When I Discovered
I panicked when I discovered the Travel Insurance I had through Expedia had expired when I changed my flight reservation.
When I went to renew I was told I couldn’t.
I discovered Aardvark on my AARP site and I was excited I could purchase an even better travel plan with cover starting with my trip departure, at a cost I could afford.
I was confused with the initial site and Mr. Breeze reached out to me for clarification.
He explained the policy more thoroughly and addressed all my concerns, can’t get any better than that!
Thank You Aardvark and thank you Jonathan for your assistance.
I can go on my trip now knowing I’ll be covered for medical emergencies and then some. 
Barbara

 

TP6 - AardvarkCompare Review | AardvarkCompare.com

Good Choices, Well Explained
I liked the way insurance was explained. I had read an article your company had written explaining Expedia trip cover versus other choices.
I used this advice to make the best choice for me and my traveling companions. That choice was to take a policy that provided much better medical and evacuation primary care.
Your site allowed comparisons, and I think I got the best value for my money. I don’t like constant follow up emails, though. You could back off a bit!!
Louise

 

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