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Canada and India enjoy a close relationship, with many individuals and families travelling between the two countries often.

In fact, about 4% of the entire population of Canada has Indian heritage – that’s almost 1.5 million people!

However, the distance, along with other factors like Canada’s often costly medical fees and the rising cost of travel, make it challenging to deal with emergencies or other issues if you’re visiting Canada from India.

In this article, we’ll delve into some of the reasons why Canadian travel and health insurance can be so important. Then we’ll explain the insurance Indian travellers to Canada may obtain before their trip.

Why Do Indian Travellers Get Travel Insurance for Canada?

Planning a trip or move to Canada from India is not easy. Even a short vacation requires a visitor visa, which costs $100 CAD plus additional biometrics fees and requires a complete application to be submitted along with your passport details, several photographs, and documentation proving that you do not intend to stay in Canada. Check processing times for visitor visas from India here.

Other types of visas for work, study, or other purposes may take much longer to process.

The process of traveling or relocating to Canada from India can be intense, and that’s if everything goes to plan. Dealing with an unexpected illness, trip interruption, or even baggage loss can throw a wrench in your plans and require you to spend a great deal of money.

This is especially true if you become sick or injured and require medical attention. Healthcare in Canada is typically accessed through provincial health insurance, which is often not available to visitors, students, and other temporary residents. Travel and health insurance can help protect you from paying out-of-pocket if you require emergency medical attention while in Canada.

If you’d like to see what insurance options are available to Indians bound for Canada, we’ve partnered with Cigna, a reliable provider of Canadian travel insurance. Check out their site to get a free quote today.

As an Indian travelling to Canada, what should my Canadian travel insurance cover?

Travel insurance isn’t one-size-fits-all. Each plan offers a different type and level of benefits. You should only decide what’s right for you after exploring all the possibilities.

Let’s investigate which coverage options are the most important for Indian travellers to Canada.

Emergency medical and hospitalization

This type of coverage will protect you if you need to seek emergency medical attention at a hospital while in Canada. Typically, your travel insurance should cover expenses such as ambulance transportation, medical bills, and hospital room fees.

Medical evacuation

Medical evacuation coverage is a must if you’re planning on traveling outside of a major city. This benefit covers you if you need to be medically evacuated or airlifted to a hospital, which can happen if you’re somewhere an ambulance can’t travel. This may also be required if you are seriously injured or ill and need to be airlifted to a facility that offers more specialized care.

Pre-existing conditions

Most standard travel insurance does not cover pre-existing conditions, which means that if you need to seek medical attention for this reason it would not be covered. Pre-existing medical condition benefits help ensure coverage for any illness or injury, regardless of why it occurred.


If you were to pass away while on your trip, repatriation coverage ensures your remains will be returned to your home country. Without this coverage, the cost of this service can be exorbitant.

Trip cancellation or trip interruption

If your trip is cancelled or interrupted by something out of your control, this benefit helps reimburse you for the cost of rescheduling.

Baggage loss or delay

Arriving in Canada with lost or delayed luggage is not only frustrating – it can be expensive to replace all of your items, too. This coverage provides reimbursement for your lost or delayed baggage, allowing you to buy clothing and other necessities.

Canadian Travel Insurance Considerations for Indian Travellers based on immigration status

There are a variety of factors that influence your travel insurance needs, including the purpose of your trip, age, and health. If you’re unsure about the best way to travel to Canada, take our immigration quiz to learn more about your options.

Here are some of the primary considerations you should keep in mind when purchasing insurance, depending on your immigration status.

Tourists and Temporary Visitors

If you’re away from home for any length of time, you should protect yourself with comprehensive travel insurance. At minimum, you should consider insurance that offers baggage loss or delay coverage, trip interruption or cancellation coverage, and emergency medical benefits.

Unfortunately, illnesses and injuries can arise at any time, and the last thing you want is to have to pay out-of-pocket for Canadian medical expenses. Having health insurance helps ensure you’re covered if you need to seek emergency medical attention for any reason.


Tens of thousands of international students from India come to Canada every year. Typically, students will be in Canada for months or even years at a time, but are only eligible for a Canadian health insurance card in certain provinces.

Even if you are eligible for provincial health coverage, it may not be accessible to you immediately. That’s why obtaining private travel health insurance might be a priority for Indian students studying in Canada.

However, check in with your school before you make a purchase. Many schools require students to join their private health insurance plan, while others have a mandatory level of coverage students must purchase to maintain their enrolment.

Foreign Workers on a Temporary Work Permit

International workers on a valid work permit are typically eligible for Canadian health insurance as long as they meet the requirements to be eligible for the province’s health care program.

However, obtaining private health insurance to cover you while you establish residency is essential. Accidents or injuries can happen at any time, and protecting yourself with adequate health insurance ensures unexpected medical bills won’t derail your career.

Permanent Residents

While temporary residents may qualify for public health care in certain circumstances, becoming a permanent resident of Canada allows you to access Canadian health care the same as citizens. However, many provinces including Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Quebec require a waiting period, typically three months, before coverage can begin.

During this time, it’s smart to have private health insurance that can help protect you as you’re getting settled in your new home. Without it, you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket for any medical bills, including something as simple as visiting the doctor for a check-up.

Explore your options for travel insurance for Canada as an Indian traveller

Whether you’re arriving in Canada for a family vacation or settling here permanently, it’s essential to ensure you have the proper Canadian travel insurance. These plans typically cost a few dollars a day and can prevent you from having to pay out-of-pocket for unexpected expenses like medical bills and rescheduled flights.

If you’re not sure where to start, we can help. We’ve partnered with BestQuote, which provides free instant price comparisons between different travel insurance plans. They can help you determine which is suitable for your needs, so you can stay protected throughout your trip.

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