Insurance in Poland: all you need to know
Can you think of anything worse than falling ill or finding yourself in a situation where you need emergency or vital medical treatment while in a foreign country? What about your luggage failing to arrive with you, or experiencing some unforeseen and unavoidable emergency that requires you or yours to be expatriated?
If you are asking do you need insurance in Poland, these are some of the reasons for taking out travel insurance while away from your home country.
The Difference Between Schengen Visa and ETIAS
The Schengen Visa is currently a requirement for travelers who must be in possession of a valid visa to travel to Europe and EU countries. A Schengen Visa allows travel within Poland as well as the whole Schengen Area.
ETIAS is a newly proposed electronic travel authorization for those travelers who may currently travel to Europe without a visa. In other words, ETIAS is a travel authorization waiver for visa-free visitors. Find out all about ETIAS Poland. ETIAS will be a must for the more than 60 countries in the Schengen Zone and those with visa-free access to the Zone at the moment which includes U.S. citizens. Check the ETIAS requirements to see what you might need to do before traveling and how to proceed with your ETIAS application.
Is travel insurance mandatory when applying for either a Schengen Visa or ETIAS?
To apply for a Schengen Visa to enter Poland, a travel insurance policy is a mandatory requirement. When applying for ETIAS authorization, travel and medical insurance are not compulsory.
To qualify for a Schengen Visa to enter Poland, the travel insurance policy must cover emergency medical expenses and repatriation for a minimum amount of €30,000. A basic insurance policy will suffice or additional protection can be added to ensure a worry-free visit.
You are planning to spend some time in Poland as a foreigner visiting the country, and you want to be sure you are covered for any eventuality. A Travel Insurance Plan is exactly what the doctor ordered for just this scenario.
This is what you can expect a worthwhile policy to cover:
Emergency Medical Expenses can crop up unexpectedly, that’s what makes them emergencies. Being caught off-guard in a foreign country such as Poland by a medical emergency can leave the traveler overwhelmed and without the necessary support, financially and emotionally. Hospitalization and medical bills are however fully covered by travel insurance in Poland in the event of illness or injury. It is suggested you opt for cover for the cost of emergency transportation and evacuation services should an appropriate medical facility be some distance away. An added optional benefit is the daily hospital cash allowance that pays out while you are hospitalized in Poland.
Trip Cancellation And Curtailment cover the costs if you are forced to cancel travel plans already booked and paid for due to an insured reason such as illness, a death in the family, or an unforeseen weather disaster or crisis in Poland. Trip curtailment covers costs in the event you have to cut your trip short after embarking because of an unavoidable emergency. This covers reimbursement of hotel reservations and other prepaid expenses and the cost of an emergency return flight. Compensation is also covered for flight departures delayed beyond a specified amount of time. The cover is also in place for the cost of substitute flights should any connecting flights be missed due to unavoidable reasons.
Loss Or Delay Of Baggage covers checked-in luggage that fails to arrive at the same time as you do at your destination – or it does not arrive at all.
Loss Of Passport covers the cost of arranging a new passport while some policies also cover the cost of arranging a duplicate International Driver’s License lost during your trip.
Personal Liability covers expenses paid to a third party should you accidentally cause damage to someone or their property while in Poland.
Optional benefits that are optional with certain carriers include a hijack distress allowance; compassionate visit cover; emergency cash advance cover; and visa rejection cover.
Medical Care for Foreigners in Poland
Medical costs can add up quickly, even in a country such as Poland where high standards of treatment are often significantly cheaper than elsewhere. Think about facing the expense of surgery, hospitalization, or emergency transportation home while visiting Poland. Without insurance in Poland, can you afford to pay for any or all of these unfortunate eventualities? A good Poland insurance policy can be the answer to a state of affairs you do not even want to contemplate.
European Health Insurance Card
Citizens of the European Union are eligible for state treatment no different from that enjoyed by Polish nationals, but they must be in possession of a valid EU Health Insurance Card – EHIC. Do not labor under the misconception that the EHIC can be seen as a replacement for travel insurance, though. EHIC offers limited coverage and does not fully cover all aspects of the risks, needs, or dangers travelers might face.
An EHIC allows holders access to state-run healthcare while temporarily in any of the EU states, or in Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, or Switzerland. While in Poland, EHIC holders can get healthcare benefits needed for medical purposes, provided by the healthcare services contracted to provide such care by the Polish National Health Fund (NFZ). The offices of associated facilities will bear the symbol of the Polish NFZ or the National Health Fund.
EHIC covers state-run healthcare, either substantially cheaper or at no cost whatsoever to the cardholder. Pre-existing, chronic medical conditions and non-urgent maternity care are covered should a need arise for care while in Poland. Women planning to give birth while abroad are not covered but an unexpected birth during the visit to Poland will see the EHIC covers the cost of the health treatment for the mother and baby that is linked to the birth.
Kidney dialysis and oxygen provision are covered, too, but only if arrangements are made and booked ahead of travel.
Proof Of Insurance Required
Poland insurance must be proven when accessing care at a clinic or hospital in Poland. Without proof of valid insurance, the risk of treatment being denied is very real, even if the situation at hand is life-threatening.
Mandatory Cover Required from a Travel Insurance Policy
Do you need insurance in Poland? Yes, you do. You will also need a hard copy proof of insurance to take with you to Poland, so make sure your carrier provides this. Travel insurance in Poland must offer the following cover:
- It must be valid in Poland
- Cancellation: if you have to cancel your travel plans, this will cover the costs of hotel reservations, plane tickets, and expensive excursions or tours.
- Lost/stolen/damaged possessions and luggage.
- Full medical and evacuation: All potential medical expenses and hospitalization must be covered as well as ambulance fees, inpatient and outpatient care, and the cost of evacuation to your home country.
- Adventure travel insurance for extreme sports and hazardous activities: plans mays exclude certain activities, so check on possible exclusions before you choose your Poland insurance If you plan to ski, rock/mountain climb, trek, ride a motorcycle, enjoy certain water sports activities, and the like, be certain you have full coverage for accidents incurred while partaking in these while in Poland.
Home-Country Health Insurance Validity in Poland
Health insurance usually covers the following 2 categories: events while residing and events while traveling. Check with your carrier whether they cover events for emergency while on the road and if so, ask:
- Which countries are covered?
- What events are covered and are their limits?
- What will be max benefit?
- Will it be paid directly to the health provider or do they reimburse you once you have settled the costs?
- Is there a max period you be out of your home country to yet be eligible for benefits?
It remains possible that you may get caught short while out of your home country in the event of an emergency. This is where travel insurance brings peace of mind that is indubitably priceless.
Hopefully, all your questions related to Do you need insurance in Poland have been adequately answered and explained. It is really worth the nominal premium to ensure that you have full coverage while visiting Poland.