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Study Abroad Student Insurance – Complete Guide


Good health is one of those things we all take for granted – it’s only when we get sick that we remember just how important being healthy really is.

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When a person’s health deteriorates, it can be not only worrying but also quite expensive. That’s why health insurance is so important.

The insurance provides a safety net that prevents financial ruin when a person needs expensive medical treatment. It also provides preventative care, which is one of the most important aspects of health.

Therefore, in this article we will be discussing all the insurance an international student needs before applying to study abroad.

First, watch this video below for more information.

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Let’s begin…


Insurance is a means of avoiding financial loss viaprotection. It is a form of managing risks. Its primary use is in primarily used to avoid the risk of a loss that is either incidental or uncertain.

Insurance is provided by entities and they are they are known either as an insurer, insurance company, insurance carrier or underwriter.

 A person or entity who purchases insurance is known as a policyholder oran insured. In insurance transaction, there is the involvement of the insured taking on the assumption of a guaranteed and known relatively small loss in the form of payment to the insurer in exchange for the promise by insurer to see to the compensation of the insured in the event of a covered loss.

The loss may either be financial or not financial, but it mandatorily to be reducible to financial terms, and usually has the involvement of something in which the insured has an insurable interest with its establishment being by ownership, possession, or pre-existing relationship.

A contract called insurance policy is received by the insured and which bears the details of the conditions and circumstances under which the insured will be compensated by the insurer.

The term premium, is the amount of money charged by the insurer to the insured/ policyholder for the coverage set forth in the insurance policy. If a loss is experienced by the insured which happens to have a potential covering by the insurance policy, a claim is submitted by the insured to the insurer for processing by a claims adjuster.

Its own risk may be avoided by the insurer by taking out reinsurance, whereby there is the agreement by another insurance company to carry some of the risk, especially if the risk is deemed too hard by primary insurer to carry.

History of Insurance

Since early times, the search for methods to see to the minimization of risks have been on bymerchants.

The practice of methods for transferring or distributing risk were practiced by traders of Chinese and Babylonian origin as long ago as the 3rd and 2nd millennia BC, respectively. There was the redistribution of wares across many vessels by Chinese merchants travelling treacherous river rapids. This was aimed at limiting the loss due to any single vessel’s capsizing. A system was developed by the Babylonians which was recorded in the famous Code of Hammurabi, C. 1750 BC, and practiced by Mediterranean sailing merchants of early times. If a loan was received by a merchant for the funding of his shipment, the lender was to receive an additional sum as a pay in exchange for the lender’s guarantee to cancel the loan peradventure the shipment be stolen or lost at sea.

The ‘ general average ‘ was created by the Circa 800 BC, the inhabitants of Rhodes. Through this, groups of merchants were allowed to pay to insure their goods being shipped together. The collected premiums would be used to compensate any merchant whose goods were discarded during transport, whether due to storm or sinkage with payment.

The invention of separate insurance contracts came through in Genoa in the 14th century, likewise insurance pools backed by pledges of landed estates. Separate insurance are insurance policies not bundled with loans or other kinds of contracts.  The first known insurance contract was initiated from Genoa in the year 1347, and the next century that followed had wide development of maritime insurance and there was intuitive variation of premiums risks. Through these new insurance contracts, insurance was separated from investment, a separation of roles that its usefulness was first proved in marine insurance.

Types of Study Insurance

  • Student Health
  • Travel Medical
  • Major Medical
  • Student zone

International Student Insurance

The international student insurance discusses plans on health and travel insurance aimed at fitting the unique needs of the study abroad and international or study abroad student, at the most affordable rate imaginable.

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Study Abroad Insurance

Overtime, making sure that one has the right international health and travel insurance plan in place is sometimes not near the utmost prior of international students not to talk of being the highest priorityof students who are planning to study abroad. The thought of most students needing coverage do not occur to them, or they may just have it left to the last minute and not have the time to find the best option by researching all the plans. This research is aimed at locating a range of plans that are ideal for students studying abroad and offering the highest quality coverage at the right price.

Study Abroad Insurance Tips

In researching on study abroad insurance, many plans available will be known to you. We’ve got a few tips to help you look for and get the right insurance plan:

  • 1. All ratings of all insurance carriers is by either AM Best or Standard and Poors – some countries place a requirement on your insurance plan being rated above a certain level so be sure to have this checked out.
  • 2. Ensure you read the exclusions –Exclusions are items not covered by an insurance policy. All plans do have exclusions, some will be more stringent than others. To that regard, be sure to check them out and ensure you understand what is not covered under the plan. This will enable you decide which plan to go for.
  • 3. Does the plan participate in a network – Some plans have a network known as PPO, which happens to be a network of doctors/ hospitals, and their requirement is that one visits these providers, and other plans will not placeany restriction of such on you. So, this needs to be checked out.
  • 4. 24-hour assistance –The standard time/duration on all plan taken for an assistance service is 24 hours. Most plans will offer you a 24-hour assistance service while others won’t. Hence, ensure that you can easily call them from your home country.
  • 5. How claims are paid – A pay up front, claim back later procedure may be adopted by all insurance plans, but international students are to ensure that they are aware of the length of time within which a claim will be processed, it should really be at most 2 weeks.

Student Health Insurance

The Student Secure plan is international student health insurance plan that is usually scheduled for a month. It is ideal for students who are undertaking an international program outside of the USA. The fantastic benefits offered by the plan include hospitalization coverage, prescription medication, doctors’ visits, mental health coverage, maternity, sports coverage, evacuation, the list continues. The plan can be purchased in monthly increments. The monthly payment is renewable if one needs further coverage. It offers the ultimate flexibility for students.

Student Travel Health Insurance

For students who are not in need of the flexibility offered by the student secure for monthly payment and do not require benefits such as mental health, maternity, etc., Atlas International plan is ideal for such students who are looking for more travel related benefits. The plan can be purchased from 5 days up to 1 year and can be renewed if one purchases a minimum of 3 months at the beginning. The plan provides coverage for the following, hospitalization, doctors’ visits, prescription medication, evacuation, repatriation, trip interruption, lost luggage to mention but a few.

Student Health

International students studying in the United States of America and around the globe, as well as US Students studying abroad are provided worldwide health insurance coverage.

The StudentSecure, an international student health insurance plan, is designed for study abroad and international students and is available in four plan levels: Smart, Budget, Select and Elite. A range of benefits is offered by each level

Discussion on the four plan levels


It has a maximum of $200,000

It is $50 deductible in PPO

Smart has 80% coinsurance

It starts from $24/month


It has a maximum of $500,000

It is $45 deductible in PPO

Budget has 80% coinsurance up to $25,000

It starts from $35/month


It has a maximum of $600,000

It is $35 deductible in PPO

Budget has 80% coinsurance up to $5,000

It starts from $66/month


It has a maximum of $1,000,000

It is $25 deductible in PPO

Budget has 100% in PPO

It starts from $93/month


International and study abroad students have the Student Secure, International Student Health Insurance plan made available to them in four main plan levels; Smart, Budget, Select and Elite. Different coverage limitsare offered by each plan level. The Smart is the most affordable of the three plans and the Elite the most comprehensive.

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

During the first six (6) months of coverage on the Elite and Select, during the first twelve (12) months on the Budget, charges resulting directly or indirectly from any pre-existing conditions are excluded from this insurance, except charges resulting directly from an Acute Onset of Pre-existing Condition, an Emergency Medical Evacuation, or Repatriation of Remains, subject to the limits set forth in the Schedule of Benefits and Limits.

Pre-existing conditions is not covered by the Smart level, except charges resulting directly from an Acute Onset of Pre-existing Condition, an Emergency Medical Evacuation, or Repatriation of Remains. This is subject to the limits set forth in the Schedule of Benefits and Limits.”

Pre-existing Condition means any

  • 1. condition for which recommendation or medical advice, diagnosis, care, or treatment (includes receiving services and supplies, diagnostic tests or prescription medicines, consultations) occurs during the 12 months immediately preceding the certificate effective date
  • 2. condition that had being made manifest in such a manner that would have caused a reasonably prudent person to look out for medical advice, diagnosis, care, or treatment (includes receiving services and supplies, consultations, etc.) during the 12 months immediately preceding the effective date of the certificate;
  • 3. injury, illness, sickness, disease, or other physical, medical, mental, or nervous conditions, disorder or ailment (whether known or unknown) that, with reasonable medical certainty, existed at the time of application or within the 12 months immediately preceding the certificate effective date.

With student health insurance, Emergency Medical Evacuation will be provided for international or study abroad student,only to the nearest hospital that has the qualification to provide the medically necessary treatment, services and supplies to prevent the loss of a student’s life or limb.

Circumstances which are not within control can cause the timeliness of arrangements. These circumstances include: availability of transportation equipment and staff, delays or restrictions on flights caused by mechanical problems, government officials, telecommunications problems, weather and other acts of God. The insurer shall not be held liable for any delays that are not within its direct and immediate control.

Nevertheless, the preceding, and if the student is visiting the U.S., his/her expenses to return to his/her home country will be paid. This will be the case if there is an agreement between the attending physician and medical consultant that transfer to the student’s home country is more appropriate than transfer to the nearest qualified hospital.

Repatriation of Remains

The health insurer will be harmless and shall not be held liable for loss of or any damage or other sort of impairment to bodily remains incurred during the repatriation process or otherwise.

Emergency Reunion

Accidental Death and Dismemberment

Accidental Death is caused solely external, visible means resulting in physical injury to you and your subsequent death. It occurs by means a sudden, unintentional and unexpected occurrence. Death is mandated to occur within 30 days of the sudden, unintentional and unexpected occurrence and not be led to by illness or disease.

Accidental Dismemberment is known to be a sudden, unintentional and unexpected occurrence caused solely by external, visible means and leading to complete severance from the body of one or more limbs or eyes. It is not contributed to by illness or disease. For purposes of the benefit of Accidental Death and Dismemberment, the term “limb” is known to mean: the arm when the severance is at or above (toward the elbow) the wrist, or the leg when the severance is at or above (toward the knee) the ankle. Loss of eye(s) is also known to mean: complete, permanent, irrevocable loss of sight.

The person who is to benefit from this insurance is the individual whose name appeared in your application to be in receipt of any accidental death benefit.

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Exclusions of Students Health

There is the exclusion of charges for the following conditions

  • 1. Illnesses present from birth (Congenital)
  • 2. Disorders of mental health, if thetreatment is obtained at a student health center
  • 3. Physical therapy, if the student obtainstreatment at a student health center
  • 4. Chiropractic treatment, if treatment is not obtained at a student health center.
  • 5. Elective termination of pregnancy.
  • 6. Promotion or prevention of conception
  • 7. Venereal disease, including all diseases transmitted through sexual intercourses and conditions relating to it.
  • 8. Transplants of organ or tissue or related services.
  • 9. Voluntarily using any drug unless under the prescription by a physician.
  • 10. Eye surgery, such as surgery relating to corrective refractory, when the primary purpose is to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism.
  • 11. Corrective devices and medical appliances
  • 12. Orthoptics and training on the eye.
  • 13. Hair loss including wigs, hair transplants or any drug prescribed or not, that causes hair growth
  • 14. Acne, skin tags, moles, diseases of sebaceous glands, seborrhea, sebaceous cyst, hypertrophic and atrophic conditions of skin, nevus.
  • 15. Sleep disorders such as apnea, etc.
  • 16. Psychometric,competency, intelligence, behavioral and educational testing.
  • 17. Cosmetic or aesthetic reasons
  • 18. Modifications of the physical body aimed at improving the psychological, mental or emotional well-being, including but not limited to sex-change surgery.
  • 19. Obesity or modification of weight, including but not limited to wiring of the teeth and all forms of intestinal bypass surgery.
  • 20. Exercise programs, whether with prescription or recommendation by a physician.
  • 21. Incurred due to exposure to non-medical nuclear radiation and/or material(s) that are known to be radioactive.
  • 22. Charges caused by the outbreak of a disease in a country or location for which the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Warning on the following conditions:  a) the warning has been in effect within the 6 months immediately prior to a student’s date of arrival, or b) within 10 days after the date the warning is issued, a study abroad have failed to depart the country or location.
  • 23. Investigational, experimental or for purposes on research basis.
  • 24. Complicated health issues that may arise or consequences of a treatment or condition not covered here under.
  • 25. Incurred outside the certificate period of a student.
  • 26. Submitted to the insurers for payment more than 60 days after the last day of the certificate period.
  • 27. Exceeding usual, reasonable and customary.
  • 28. No necessity medically necessary.
  • 29. No medical treatment administered by or ordered by a physician.
  • 30. Provided by a relative, the member of your family or any person who ordinarily resides with you.
  • 31. Provided to an international student at no cost.
  • 32. Consultations via telephone or failure to meet up with a scheduled appointment.
  • 33. When one departs from the home country for the purpose of obtaining treatment in the destination country/countries.
  • 34. Payable under any system of government, including the Australian Medicare system.
  • 35. War, military action or while performing one’s duty as a member of a police or military force unit.
  • 36. No inclusion as Eligible Expenses as described herein and lots more.


A premium is the amount to be paid for an insurance policy.

Coverage is provided for international studentsand study abroad students around the world outside of their home country by the StudentSecure plan.

An international student can choose to pay upfront or in monthly installments with his/her debit or credit card.

With the option to renew for up to four years in total, coverage is available from 15 days up to 364 days.Coverage that excludes the United States can ONLY be purchased by US citizens.

If one chooses to pay with a monthly installment, there is a $5 administrative fee added to the monthly rate.

Sports and Activities

Interscholastic,Intercollegiate, Intramural, or Club Sports (Budget, Select and Elite only)

Leisure, Recreational, Entertainment, or Fitness Sports and Activities

Personal Liability (Elite Only)

Specific Conditions

  • 1. The student or his/her legal representatives will send a written notice across to the insurer immediately if he/she has received notice of any prosecution or inquest in connection with any circumstances which may bring about the liability under this section.
  • 2.Without the insurer’s prior written consent, no admission, promise, offer, payment or indemnity shall be made by or on behalf of an international student.
  • 3. There shall be an immediate forwarding of every claim letter, notice, writ or process or other document served on a study abroad student upon receipt.
  • 4. Against all other persons orparties, the insurer shall be entitled to take over and conduct in the name of the international student the defense or settlement of any claim or to prosecute in one’s name for the insurer’s benefit, any claim for indemnity or damages.
  • 5. The insurer may pay the student in connection with any claim or series of claims the sum insured. This is to be after deduction of any sums already paid as compensation, or any lesser amount for which such claim(s) can be settled. At making this payment, the insurer shall relinquish the conduct and control and be under no further liability in connection with such claim(s) except for the payment of costs and expenses that can be recovered or was incurred prior to the date of such payment.
  • 6. Consideration on paying or advancing, but without any obligation or contractual duty to do so, up to $2,500 to the international student or for his/her benefit to settle and compromise an asserted claim against an international student so long as:
    • The asserted claim is such that may have eligibility for coverage under this insurance;
    • No filing of lawsuit has taken place, or, if already filed, no response has been filed;
    • The student obtains a full written release and/or covenant-not-to-sue satisfactory to the insurer; and
    • There is the provision of satisfactory necessary documentation of full proof of claim.

Terrorism (Budget, Select and Elite only)

If we cite that by reason of this exclusion this insurance does not cover any loss, damage, cost or expense, the burden of proving the contrary shall be upon the international student.

In this event, the remainder of the exclusion shall remain in full force and effect if any portion of this exclusion is found to be invalid or unenforceable,


In a situation where after reading, one is not happy with the cover provided by this policy because this insurance does not meet with your requirements, a notification of your wish to cancel is to be made known and have your premium refunded.

Full refunding of premiums will be made in full if cancellation request is received prior to the certificate effective date.

Subject to the following provisions,premiums may be refunded after the certificate effective date:

1. For administrative costs incurred by the insurer, a $25 cancellation fee will apply;

2. A refund will only be made for unused days, if paid in full, of the planor unused whole-months, if paying in monthly installments, or;

3. The international student cannot have filed any claims to for premium refund eligibility;

4. No grant shall be given to the refund of premium after 60 days.


1. You are mandated to be below age 65; and

A. Be obtaining full-time study at a college or university. Online colleges and universities are excluded; or

B. Before 31 days of being a full-time student at a college or university; or

C. A student below the age of 19 enrolled in a secondary school; or

D. A scholar obtaining full-time studies in affiliation with an educational institution and performing work or research for a minimum of 30 hours per week;

2. You must be residing outside your home country for the purpose of the pursuit of international educational activities; and

3. You’re mandated to have obtained residency status in your host country; and

4. If in the U.S., the international students must hold a valid education-related visa. There may be a requirement for a copy of the I-20 or DS2019.

J-1 and F-1 visa holders: Within the US, the full-time student/scholar status requirement is waived. If a student has a valid F-1 visa (including OPT) or a J-1 visa. For individuals holding M-1, or other category visas,full-time status requirements remain in force.

Benefit Period

The benefit period does not apply while the certificate is in effect.The payment of eligible medical expenses for up to 60 days beginning on the first day of diagnosis or treatment of a covered injury or illness while one is outside his/her home country and while this certificate is in effect will be made upon the termination of the certificate.Inpatient. On the termination date of the certificate, the benefit period applies only to eligible medical expenses in relation to a condition for which one is hospitalized.

Home Country Coverage

Benefit Period – In the event, a benefit period is begun while the certificate is in effect, and the certificate terminates because one returns to his/her home country. The payment of eligible medical expenses which are incurred in the student’s home country during the benefit period will be made. In the termination date of the certificate,home country coverage applies only to eligible medical expenses for which one is hospitalized as an inpatient.

Incidental Home Country Coverage –For every three-month period during which you are covered, there is the covering of up to a maximum of 15 days for any three-month period for eligible medical expenses.

There’s no accumulation of any benefit incurred under a single three-month period to another period. Any home country coverage provided under the terms of this agreement Failure to continue your international trip or your return to your home country for the sole purpose of obtaining treatment for an illness or injury that began while traveling shall be void.

No coverage is provided within the U.S., except for citizens or residents of U.S. during an eligible incidental home country visit or an eligible benefit period for all non-U.S. citizens electing coverage “Excluding the U.S.” and for all U.S. citizens or residents.

The coverage provided under this Master Policy is for a duration of at most 364 days, except for a benefit period. The basis of any extension is upon the eligibility rules in force and is solely at the discretion of the insurer.

Nevertheless, the preceding, the termination of coverage under all plans shall come on the date the insurers, at our sole option, elect to cancel all members of the same sex, age, class or geographic location, provided a minimum of 30 days is given in advance written notice by mail to a student’s last known address.

Travel medical

This type of study insurance proivides international students with world class international travel health insurance protection when one is traveling outside of his/her home country. The insurance can be accessed from a minimum of 5 days up to 364 days in the USA and up to 365 days for other countries (with options to undergo renewal). For anyone in search of an affordable travel medical insurance plan, this plan is optimal.

What Travel Assistance Services are Included?

The Travel Assistance Services has the following Assistance Services included in it:

Pre-Trip Destination Information

This provides a current information regarding the required travel restrictions,vaccinations, health risks, and weather conditions definite to your home country.

Medical Monitoring

This concerns consultations with attending medical professionals during a student’s hospitalization and establishment of a single point-of-contact for family members to be in receipt of ongoing updates with regards to one’s medical status.

Provider Referrals

The study abroad student should obtain information for Western-style medical facilities and medical and dental practices and pharmacies in his/her destination country where English is spoken.

Travel Document Replacement

This talks about assistance with obtaining replacement passports, birth certificates, visas, airline documents, and other documents that is travel-related.

Lost Luggage Assistance

This travel assistance service is responsible for tracking service to assist in locating luggage or other items lost by an international student in a transit.

Aside the aforementioned travel assistance services, other important travel Assistance Services include:

Dispatch of Physician

Prescription Drug Replacement

Emergency Travel Arrangements

Translation Assistance

Credit Card/Traveler Check Replacement

The discussed Travel Assistance Services are not benefits of insurance and provision of any travel Assistance Service does not guarantee any other benefit under the plan.

Major Medical

This insurance plan is available is open to both citizens of US origin and non-US origin who are making plans to live, study or work outside of their home country for a minimum of one year or more. The design of this annual insurance plan is such that is aimed at providing comprehensive international health insurance coverage for when one is abroad for any duration.

This plan is available in the following levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold, Gold plus and Platinum. Available for you from each of the level is a more comprehensive range of benefits and coverage limits to satisfy your needs.

Student Zone

The ability to manage the international student health and travel insurance that is purchased is provided by the Student Zone. There is the accessibility of the account feature for 24 hours a day.


We recommend a Study Abroad Student Insurance for you. With this article, it is obvious how advantageous to international/study abroad students insurance coverage is. So, get insured now!

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