If you’re applying for Canada’s new Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, the Government of Canada needs you to prove that you have purchased Canadian medical insurance.
Parents and grandparents brought to Canada under the Super Visa are not covered by Canada’s national health care program.
The Super Visa allows parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents to stay in Canada for up to two years.
Super Visa medical insurance must:
- be valid for at least one year after entry to Canada
- give a minimum of $100,000 medical coverage
- cover health care, hospitalization, and repatriation (return to their country of origin)
- be valid for each entry to Canada and available for review by a port of entry officer
You must provide insurance for each parent or grandparent.
Do I Need to Buy Super Visa Insurance from a Canadian Company?
The government of Canada says that you must provide proof of Canadian medical insurance as Super Visa insurance.
Purchasing medical insurance from a Canadian company is a good idea for several reasons:
- Canadian insurance companies know the medical system in Canada, and are easier to contact if there is a medical emergency in Canada.
- Because Canadian hospitals and insurance companies work together, a Canadian hospital usually bills the Canadian insurance company directly. This means:
- that you don’t need to pay for treatment, and get reimbursed later, as may happen with a non-Canadian insurance company.
- claims will be faster with a Canadian insurance company than with a company from another country.
- Proof of insurance must be given to the government of Canada before immigration/entry into Canada, and it is best if this proof is in English or French.
- Canadian insurance companies are reputable and highly regulated. Assuris, a not for profit agency, ensures that you will retain up to $60,000 or 85% of the promised benefits, whichever is higher, in the unlikely event a Canadian insurance company goes bankrupt.
How Much Should I Buy?
You should get a minimum of $100,000 in medical insurance coverage. This is the minimum required by the Canadian Super Visa. Hospitalization in Canada can easily cost $3,000 a day, and air ambulance costs to return you to your home country can reach 25,000.
Can I Buy Insurance for a Family Member?
Yes! Anyone can buy a visitor’s insurance policy on behalf of someone coming to Canada.
Can I Buy Super Visa Insurance if I have a Pre-existing Condition?
You must inform your insurance company of any pre-existing condition, or your insurance may be void (cancelled).
You can get insurance, depending on the exact pre-existing condition, although you will probably pay more than if you did not have a pre-existing condition. Most insurance companies require that your condition is stable for a certain period of time (from 3 months to three years). In addition, some policies allow pre-existing conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure, while others do not.
If you develop a medical condition in between the time you buy your policy, and the time you leave on your trip, you must tell your insurance company. A condition that develops in this period of time may be considered a pre-existing condition.
Many insurance companies consider pregnancy to be a pre-existing medical condition.
If you have a pre-existing medical condition, read your policy especially carefully, and consider consulting with an insurance agent. Fill out any medical questionnaires honestly.
Do I Need to Take a Medical Test?
No, you do not need to take a medical test to get Canadian Super Visa insurance. You will need to fill out a medical questionnaire honestly. If your insurance provider finds out you have lied on a questionnaire, your insurance may be void, and any claims may be denied.
You will need to take an Immigration Medical Exam (IME) from the government of Canada to apply for a Super Visa. However, Canadian insurance companies should not require another test.
Where can I Buy Super Visa Insurance?
You can buy Super Visa insurance from almost any Canadian company that sells travel insurance.
A great place to start is RATESDOTCA (formerly called Kanetix.ca). Rates.ca is an online site that will let you compare costs and coverage for several different insurance companies. See our review of RATESDOTCA (formerly Kanetix.ca) travel insurance for more information.
Will Super Visa Insurance Cover Routine Medical Care?
No. Super visa insurance currently only covers emergency medical treatment (for example, and accident). Routine medical care, like annual doctor’s exams, are not covered by super visa insurance policies. Super visa insurance policies also don’t generally cover routine dental care (although some emergency dental accidents may be covered), or preventative services like chiropractic or massage services.
How can I Save Money?
You can save money on insurance by:
- getting quotes from several different insurance companies. Rates.ca is a great online quote system that will let you get compare several different quotes at one time.
- increasing your deducible. A deductible is the amount of money you will need to pay, out of pocket, if a medical emergency occurs. Deductibles can range from zero to $5,000.
- trimming the extras from your policy. Some policies offer extra perks like baggage and trip cancellation insurance. If you want to save money, you can consider getting a policy without these perks.
What if my Super Visa is Denied or Delayed?
Most insurance policies will allow you to advance the effective date of your policy by up to six months to allow for delays. There is often a administrative fee. You must tell the insurance policy before the effective date of your policy.
Read your policy carefully, and consult a travel insurance agent if you have any questions. Travel insurance policies are legal documents. Many claims have been denied because a customer didn’t understand what was covered under their policy.
How do I Compare and Buy Super Visa Insurance?
The easiest way to compare Super Visa travel insurance policies is to use a comparison website.
Comparison websites, like ratesdotca, let you compare quotes for travel insurance from several different companies at once. You type in a few details about your trip, and compare policy coverage and prices to help narrow down your choice. Check out our review of Kanetix.ca.
*As always, the information on this page is from one Canadian traveller to another. We have spent years abroad and have gotten to know the ins and outs of the industry however we are not travel insurance agents. If you have any travel insurance questions, please talk to a qualified travel insurance agent or broker. Finally, policies and plans can and do change all the time, without warning, so always consult your insurance policy since that is the legal document to which you are agreeing to.
*This article is only intended as general advice. Please check your own policy carefully.