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Do I need travel insurance when travelling within Canada?

Whether road-tripping across Canada or spending a long weekend in another province, one thing you might forget to consider is travel insurance. You might assume you can skip it within national borders, but this isn’t quite the case.   

Is travel insurance necessary within Canada? There are several important factors to consider when deciding whether to purchase travel insurance for domestic travel. 

Why consider travel insurance within Canada?

You may assume the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) will cover all unexpected medical costs in another province or territory. But that isn’t the case. OHIP does provide some coverage for emergencies or immediate medical care, but it does not cover all medical expenses when you’re outside of Ontario. 

The Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) recommends that Canadians protect themselves by purchasing medical insurance even when travelling within Canada. Not all medical expenses are covered by OHIP once you leave Ontario. Travel insurance can fill these gaps. Some services not covered by OHIP in another province or territory include ambulances (including transport and paramedics), airlifts, prescription drugs provided outside a hospital, or anything not already covered under OHIP in Ontario. For example, the cost of returning a rented vehicle if the driver is unable to do so would need to be paid out of pocket.  

Aside from the emergency medical services mentioned, OHIP also doesn’t take care of trip cancellation or interruption insurance – which is why you’ll want to buy travel insurance. If there is a medical emergency, the last thing you want to worry about is if you’ll get your money back from hotels, flights and tours that need to be suddenly cancelled. 

When should you get travel insurance for domestic travel?

Lake Peyto in Banff National Park, Canada. Mountain Lake as a fox head is popular among tourist in Canada
fokkebok | iStock

It is a smart idea to have travel insurance when travelling outside of Ontario, but there are several situations where it is highly recommended. 

Expensive trips: Did you book a costly train tour, accommodations, activities or flights? If so, travel insurance is a wise choice to protect your financial investment. 

Medical concerns: Don’t skip travel insurance coverage if you have pre-existing medical conditions1 or are concerned about potential medical expenses. 

Remote locations: When flying to Iqaluit or other remote areas where medical facilities are limited in what they offer, travel insurance is especially valuable to cover transportation to a larger hospital. 

Adventure activities: If your trip involves skiing, snowboarding, hiking, or other adventure sports, insurance can cover injuries related to these activities. 

Travel worry-free wherever you go. No matter where you choose to travel, CAA Travel Insurance has options designed to protect you against the financial impacts of illness, emergencies, and unexpected mishaps.

What is the Canada Plan?

The CAA Canada Plan provides coverage for trips outside your home province as long as government health insurance covers them. There are two options: Emergency Medical Insurance², which covers medical expenses, and the Canada Package Plan, which includes emergency medical insurance, trip cancellation and insurance, baggage coverage, infant protection, holiday protection, and travel accident insurance. 

In addition to comprehensive coverage, the Canada Plan has no age restrictions or pre-existing medical condition exclusions, and medical questionnaires aren’t required. Plus, family coverage³ includes three or more immediate family members, including spouses, children, and grandchildren, under the same policy. 

Still have questions? Our CAA Travel Consultants are happy to help answer your questions and help you get the right travel insurance coverage. Did you know Members save up to 20% on CAA Travel Insurance? Get a quote online today in just a few simple steps. 

CAA Travel Insurance, an Orion Travel Insurance product, is underwritten by Echelon Insurance. Certain exclusions, limitations and restrictions apply. Subject to change without notice. A Medical Questionnaire is required if you are 60 years of age and older. Quotes are valid for 30 days.  

  1. All pre-existing medical conditions must be stable within 7 days prior to departure. Certain exclusions, limitations and restrictions apply.
  2. Up to $5 million CAD. Maximum $25,000 for all Emergency Medical Insurance benefits for Canadian residents without active Government Health Insurance Plan (GHIP); and/or without GHIP authorization to cover trip days in excess of 212 days in Ontario in a 12-month period.
  3. Family Coverage is available for 3 or more family members insured under one policy. Premium calculation for Emergency Medical Plans equals 2 times the premium of the eldest traveller and 2.75 times the premium of the eldest traveller for the Vacation Package Plans. Family pricing is not available for Trip Cancellation and Interruption Plan. For full Family Coverage details, please see our policy at [].
  4. Applies to CAA Members in good standing (CAA Membership dues paid in full by Membership expiry date). Up to twenty percent (20%) savings applies to the total premium excluding applicable taxes. Minimum premium applies. Subject to change without notice. Excludes Visitors to Canada Insurance. CAA Everyday, Classic®, and Plus® Members save 10%. CAA Premier® Members save 20% at CAA Stores or by calling 1-800-267-8713. CAA Premier Members save 10% and earn 10% in CAA Dollars® when booking online.

®CAA trademarks are owned by, and use is authorized by, the Canadian Automobile Association. 

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