Canada's Largest Selection of Super Visa Insurance
Super Visa Insurance Requirements
Canada's new 'super visa' insurance requirements were created on November 4, 2011 when the government announced that it would take action to cut the backlog of permanent resident applications for parents and grandparents. With more than 165,000 parents and grandparents having applied for permanent resident (PR) status in Canada, application processing times were exceeding seven years. The new “Parent and Grandparent Super Visa,” is a temporary resident visa valid for up to ten years, depending on the time available in one's passport.
As a multi-entry visa, the Super Visa allows 'visitors' to remain in Canada for up to two years at a time without the need to renew their visa. The visa has lowered application fees and wait times, making it a lot easier to come to Canada on short notice - and allows PR visa applicants now waiting for processing to come to Canada after only a short (8 weeks on average) super visa application process.
Applicants are required to obtain private Canadian health insurance during their stay, hence the newly created term - super visa insurance. This requirement initially caught the Canadian travel insurance industry offguard, but the industry response has since lowered insurance costs.
Specifically, (see gov't super visa webpage.) applicants must submit proof "that you have private medical insurance valid for a minimum of one year from a Canadian insurance company and that it
a) covers health care, hospitalization and repatriation; (all of the plans on our quoting engine do);
b) Provides a minimum coverage of $100,000; (higher amounts are available) and
c) is valid for each entry to Canada and available for review by a port of entry officer (must have insurance each and every time coming to Canada and bring evidence with you to port of entry).
Check here for our up to date information on available insurance rates for super visa applicants.
Private health insurance that meets the Super Visa application requirements must cover healthcare, hospitalization and repatriation (return to home country in the case of death) costs. Coverage must be continuous during the entire length of stay in Canada, meaning that there can be no breaks or gaps of coverage while in Canada during use of the visa. The Visitors to Canada insurance offered here by Canada's top travel insurance companies meet these requirements.
So that we can be extremely competitive and unbiased, we have compiled an exhaustive selection from all of Canada's super visa insurance providers - we currently have more policies to choose from than any other online broker in Canada! And, by regulation, we have the exact same prices that are offered by the insurance companies themselves, or other brokers for that matter. Canadian brokers can't compete on price (rebating commissions is illegal), but the insurance companies do. So finding a good price means looking at the widest selection of companies, which is what we do for you. We compete for your business against other brokers - (most of whom are not travel insurance specialists), based on that wider policy selection, as well as our quality advice and customer service.
Getting a free instant quote to research Canada's super visa insurance options:
Most of the useful policy information (prices, benefits, important secondary benefits, refund policies, etc.) that you can review and compare are presented to you on the quote presentation page once you request an instant online quote by completing the (green) quote request form at the top left of this page. If you came to this website to research your super visa insurance options, you can't really do that without getting a quote!
Simply choose some dates (it's OK to estimate now and then change to exact arrival date after visa approval) and provide the traveler's date of birth and the quote will appear instantly - we'll also email you a link back to your quote for future reference. If you have any problems receiving a quote, or have some specific questions you'd like to ask about coverage or policy details, please don't hesitate to call us (1-888-888-0510).
After purchasing online, confirmation of coverage and policy document(s) are emailed to you as soon as your purchase is processed, so you (or your parents/grandparents) will receive a copy to print and submit with their application and to bring with them to show port of entry officer.
Purchasing appropriate health insurance for Super Visa holders
We've made it easy to quote, compare and buy super visa insurance online with our secure, Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant servers, encryption technology and simple online agency storefront system.
Buying private health insurance for the super visa insurance requirement won't be inexpensive, although price shouldn't be your only concern. One company won't offer exactly what another company does in the way of policy details. Important differences that you need to compare include: emergency expense benefits, policy exclusions, deductible options, refund policies and coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. The online quote that you instantly receive allows you to click 'summary' (under each logo) to look at exact policy wordings concerning any part of the policy you'd like to view. Or click 'compare' to view the wording of each policy, side by side.
You'll find that our site has the very lowest Visitors to Canada insurance costs, that many of our plans can cover illnesses related to pre-existing medical conditions, and that the plans can be purchased easily online without lengthy medical questionnaires. We provide the widest policy choices, and personalized advice. We don't always recommend the same company, and we don't sell policies without making all the details available first. Those details will matter at claim or refund time.
Frequently asked questions about insurance for Canada's super visa application
Q: Is the insurance premium refundable if my parents return home earlier than one year?
A: That depends. Buying a visitors to Canada policy for 365 days is a super visa application requirement and must be paid for in full at the time of purchase. If the visa is not issued, or for some other reason the parent(s) decide not to come to Canada, they can cancel the policy and get a 100% refund. The insurance policy won't start until the departure date. If the departure dates end up being different than those stated on the insurance policy, you can contact us through email or over the phone to have the dates on the policy changed to the exact departure dates.
Many parents will come to visit for less than a year on their first visit, so being able to obtain a refund for the unused portion of their policy is an important consideration. Normally, the lower the deductible the better. However, if the 12 month policy costs $2000, and the visitor returns home after 6 months, then about $1000 will be refunded as long as no claim has been made on the policy. A policy with a $zero deductible (where the insurance immediately pays all eligible expenses), will cost more - but even if a small claim (ie. visit to a medical clinic) could be filed in the first six months, you may not want to file because the $1000 refund would be lost. So, it may be better to use a higher deductible to lower policy cost (by 20% or more) and pay any small expenses to keep the expected refund valid.
Almost all the policies offered here at BestQuote are partially refundable. The exception is the 'Annual Visitors to Canada' plan offered by GMS Insurnace which allows policy holders to return to their home country for a quick 'trip break' without the policy ending. So after 7 months if the parent returns home for two weeks, they can come back to Canada on the same policy, which would have 4 1/2 months remaining. GMS also offers their other visitors to Canada plan that is partially refundable, but no trip break is permitted. If a parent returns home on that plan, the policy will end, and they would need to buy another 365 day policy before returning to Canada.
Q: When I buy a policy from BestQuote's website or over the phone with BestQuote, do I end up paying extra fees or incurring extra costs? Why wouldn't I just call the insurance company directly?
A:We don't charge any extra fees. The prices on this website are same that you would get directly from the insurance company, or from another broker for the same policy. Canadian insurance regulations don't allow the insurance companies to charge different rates than brokers, and brokers can't charge extra fees over and above the advertised rates. Nor can brokers rebate part of their commissions and compete against each other based on price. The regulators want to prevent that because 'cutting out the middleman' has proven to not be in the public's best interest.
We have had customers call us after they have tried dealing directly with insurance company representatives that didn't explain important options, or 'didn't mention' important details that would effect coverage - usually dealing with pre-existing conditions coverage. The insurance company representatives are paid to sell what the company has to offer - even if it doesn't fit the customer's situation.
By using us as your broker, we work on your behalf to find you the best policy and to help you manage the decisions around your insurance choices. We offer many different policies from Canada's top insurance companies for you to have a wider range of coverage choices, and so you can conveniently compare prices and coverage details to help come to a good decision. And we'll help change dates, get extensions, and advise you during refund or claim time if you need extra advice - something that the insurance claims adjuster won't do.
We've worked hard to build our website database, which hosts more super visa insurance options than any other online resource in Canada - earning your business by helping you during your purchase decision. If you find the website and our toll-free (1-888-888-0510) answers helpful, we'll appreciate you choosing us as your agent. We even have regular customer appreciation contests just to show you we do!
Q: Can I buy a policy from an insurance company in my parents home country?
A: The Canadian government has indicated that applicants must show proof of private Canadian health insurance, so using insurance from a country not regulated by Canadian authorities would jeopardize the chances of getting the visa application approved. Don't take that risk!
Also, Canadian medical providers prefer to work with Canadian insurance companies. There is direct billing between hospitals and the Canadian insurance companies. In the event that you have to pay for expenses and then file a claim, Canadian insurance companies will have a faster claim procedure as they can verify Canadian medical expenses faster than providers in foriegn countries (so you get reimbursed faster).
And, Canadian insurance companies are regulated by Canadian regulators, at some of the very highest standards around the world. In fact, they are also re-insured by Assuris - a Canadian government agency that will cover up to $60,000 of medical expenses in case a Canadian insurance company becomes insolvent. Not that that is likely, but it's nicer to know that you are insured no matter what happens. For proof of insurance at immigration/entry time, paperwork is best shown in English or French.
Q: Who is eligible for Canada's super visa?
A: Here's the exact answer provided on the government of Canada website:
Parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residents who have been found admissible to Canada and meet some other conditions are eligible for the Super Visa. Visa officers consider several factors before deciding if the person is admissible. This means they are a genuine visitor to Canada who will leave by choice at the end of their visit. Among the things that could be considered are:
•the person’s ties to the home country,
•the purpose of the visit,
•the person’s family and financial situation,
•the overall economic and political stability of the home country, and
•invitations from Canadian hosts.
In addition to being found admissible to Canada, the parent/grandparent must also:
1) provide a written commitment of financial support from their child or grandchild in Canada who meets a minimum income threshold;
2) prove that they have bought Canadian medical insurance for at least one year to cover the period of time that they will be in Canada; and
3) complete an Immigration Medical Examination (IME).
For more information please visit the Canadian government website concerning details about the new Super Visa.
Q: On the green quote request form, BestQuote refers to visitors insurance and super visa insurance as emergency medical insurance, so do these policies cover regular checkups or only emergencies?
A: Visitors to Canada insurance covers medical expenses and other expense benefits related to accidental injury and sudden 'unforseeable' illness, and does not cover discretionary (when you choose to go) medical expenses that are not of an urgent nature. So for example, regular checkups are not covered, nor are vaccinations, medications or professional services of a therapist, etc. If a person is defined as being covered for emergency situations related to a pre-existing medical condition (i.e. high blood pressure), they will be covered in the event of an emergency - but not covered to go in and get the condition monitored.
Q: What amount of Visitors travel medical insurance should I purchase?
A: Hospital costs for visitors to Canada can amount to well over $3,000 per day, and air ambulance charges to return you home could very easily be in the ten's of thousands of dollars. The minimum purchase for application purposes has been set at $100,000, although sometimes a $150,000 policy could be even lower cost (we have a discount policy available under age 60), or provide more peace of mind.
Q: Can I purchase a policy for my family members who are planning to come for a visit?
A: Yes. Anyone can purchase a visitors insurance policy on behalf of someone coming to Canada. In fact, you should know that if a person is coming to Canada and you have sponsored their stay, you will be responsible for their medical bills if they cannot pay for them. So even if they don't want to pay for higher coverage, you might want to buy it for them anyway.
Q: Are there any discounts for two or more travellers buying at the same time?
A: Some company's do offer discounts for companion travel, or larger group travel insurance policies. Your quote will determine if such a discount applies.
Q: If I have a pre-existing condition, can I get coverage for that with visitors insurance?
A: Maybe. It depends on the pre-existing condition, and the terms and conditions of the policy. Some insurance companies offer plans that cover pre-existing conditions as long as they have been stable for a certain period of time (usually 6 months) before departure from your home country. Sometimes, pre-existing conditions will not be covered. It is important to read your entire policy to make sure you are aware of the definitions affecting coverage, as well as the possible exclusions that may apply.
Only some of the available plans will cover pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes, highblood pressure, heart conditions, etc. Other policies, while they do cover stable pre-existing medical conditions, use strict eligibility questions to screen out applicants (for example, no coverage available if you use an ICD (pacemaker), oral steroids for lung conditions, diagnosis of stroke, blood clots, congestive heart failure or heart murmur in past 12 months, etc.). For a direct comparison of the exclusions concerning pre-exisiting medical conditions, click here to compare policy wording and stable periods.If you have any questions about your pre-existing conditions and obtaining coverage, please contact us.
Q: Is my father allowed to bring in a year's supply of his prescription medication?
A: There are some restrictions that the Canadian government sets out regarding importing prescription medications (whether you are a Canadian citizen, or a visitor): Generally, you are limited to bringing two 90 day (total 180 day supply): Government website
So, trying to bring in a whole year's supply may cause some problems at the border.
Q: Do I have to take a medical test before I can buy Visitors to Canada insurance?
A: No. There is no medical exam required prior to purchase. There may be some medical questions that are asked as a part of your online application. You must answer all questions truthfully, as not doing so may void (cancel) your coverage. If you have to submit a claim, the insurance company will investigate to determine if your condition was a pre-existing one, and/or whether you were truthful on your application. Separately, as part of the super visa application process, applicant's are required to complete a medical assessment, but that is not a requirement for buying the insurance.
We have lot's more information on our Q&A information for Visitors to Canada page.
Visitors to Canada or their Canadian friends or family can get a travel insurance quote, compare policies and purchase online, or if you have any further questions please call toll free for assistance at 1-888-888-0510 in North America; 1-604-259-2544 or 1-647-799-2032 (outside North America).