Why you need travel insurance if you’re working & travelling in Canada under the IEC visa

13 January 2017

Travel Insurance Working Holiday

If you’ve jumped through all the bureaucratic hoops necessary to obtain an IEC visa for working and travelling in Canada, the very worst case scenario would be to arrive off the plane in Canada, and be packed straight back to the UK – all because you hadn’t taken out travel insurance…

One of the key documents that you will be asked to show Canadian Immigration officials on arrival, is “proof of health insurance” which is of course, the most essential element of any travel insurance policy. If you haven’t got travel insurance in place, the above scenario, is a very real outcome that you could face.

Your insurance must cover:

  •  medical care
  •  hospitalization, and
  •  repatriation (returning you to your country in the event of severe illness, injury or death)

Healthcare in Canada is not ‘free’ as it is in the UK, and can be very costly, so the Canadian government (understandably) wants to know in advance that you have the means to cover the costs of your own healthcare, whilst you’re there, should the need arise.

Taking out an IEC visa is a popular option for people who want to travel for a prolonged period in Canada, as it allows them to fund their travels by taking temporary work along the way.

The maximum duration that you can stay in Canada under this visa currently, is 2 years. This is quite a lengthy period, that a fair proportion of UK travel insurers wouldn’t be able to cover, as it exceeds their maximum trip duration.

Another potential pitfall to avoid falling foul of, is not to take out travel insurance for the entire duration that you will be staying in Canada under your visa entitlement. If, for example, you had got a visa for 2 years, but only taken out travel insurance for one year – you could get your visa duration shortened to mirror your travel insurance, when your documentation is checked by Canadian Immigration officials. If this occurs, you wouldn’t then be able to apply to change the conditions of your work permit at a later date – you would be stuck with the reduced entitlement to be there.

Our Working Holiday Policy is a great choice when deciding which travel insurance policy to take out to cover your adventures in Canada. Here are some of the benefits to take advantage of:

  •  Our Working Holiday policy is a specialist policy to provide reassurance that you would be covered for emergency medical expenses (and repatriation back to the UK if necessary) if you are injured whilst you’re at work, as well as in your leisure time. You have the flexibility to choose the correct Work Pack to encompass your work plans, and you can upgrade your Work Pack whilst you’re away, if you get in touch.
  •  You can take the Working Holiday Policy out for a maximum duration of 2 years, which reflects the maximum time that you can be in Canada under the IEC.
  •  Our Working Holiday policy covers travellers for up to £10, 000, 000 , which includes cover for costs associated with seeing a doctor, being admitted to hospital, the costs of ongoing treatment, or being repatriated back to the UK (as long as you have declared any related pre-existing medical conditions, and paid any additional premium quoted)
  •   Our Emergency Assistance line is manned 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by medical professionals, who can offer advice about the best places to receive medical care, as well as liaise directly with medical facilities to pay your medical costs, if this is appropriate.
  •  There are lots of other invaluable benefits included under the policy too, including cover for your personal belongings if they are lost or stolen (up to £1,000), cancellation cover of up to £2, 500, plus cover of up to £500 for your personal money, as well as £200 to replace lost or stolen travel documents. Take a look at the full list of policy benefits here.
  •  If you do need to make a claim, you can do this whilst you’re still away from the UK, by emailing your claims form and the supporting documentation
  •  We are very flexible, so if you need to extend the duration of your cover or add on an Activity or Work Pack, just send us an email and we will then reply with a quote and a link to pay the additional amount – quick and easy!
  •  You are allowed up to 2 return visits back to the UK (of up to 21 days duration each time) during the policy duration
  •  It’s not essential to have a return ticket booked, for the policy to be valid, but you would need to meet one of these requirements regarding ‘proof of intention to return‘ in order for your policy to be valid.
  •  99 sports, activities and leisure pursuits are covered as standard (without extra cost) , but you can also cover a multitude of other activities with the addition of further Activity Packs

Take a look at more useful information about the Working Holiday policy here and get a quote for your travel plans here.

We pride ourselves on offering great customer service and going the extra mile for our policy holders, take a look at our customer reviews via the independent review site Feefo.

Visa requirements change from time to time, so you need to check the current visa requirements for your working holiday to Canada, here, for up-to-date information. This article was written in January 2017. Policy terms and benefits are also correct at time of publication, but please check our website for up-to-date information.

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