Should I Buy Travel Insurance From India Or The US (2024)

When planning a trip from India to the US, one essential consideration is visitor insurance. Insurance provides a safety net, offering coverage for unexpected medical events. However, a familiar dilemma travelers face is whether to purchase an insurance plan from India or the US. Let us explore both options and understand what the best way is to get an insurance plan.

Should I Buy Travel Insurance From India Or The US (1)

Travel Insurance Expert Opinion:

Chiranth Nataraj, a renowned travel insurance expert, expressed, ‘Consider your travel destination, the duration of your stay, and your specific needs. If you are traveling to the US for an extended period and anticipate needing comprehensive coverage, purchasing insurance in the US might be the better choice.

He further added, ‘Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all answer, so it is essential to evaluate your unique circ*mstances.’

Buying travel insurance from the USA


  • Extensive network: US-based insurance companies typically have a vast network of hospitals and service providers across the country. This ensures that you have easier access to in-network care, reducing out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Local customer support: Dealing with a US-based insurance provider means you can access customer support during US business hours, reducing communication delays and time zone issues.
  • Understanding of US healthcare system: US insurance companies are familiar with the intricacies of the US healthcare system, making it easier to navigate medical facilities, billing, and claims processing.
  • Specialized coverage: US providers may offer specialized coverage tailored to US-specific risks and activities, such as extreme sports, which can be crucial if you plan to engage in such activities during your trip.
  • Familiarity with US regulations: US insurance providers are well-versed in US travel insurance regulations, ensuring that your policy complies with local laws and requirements.

Travel Insurance for USA from India


  • Higher costs: Travel insurance premiums can be relatively expensive when purchasing coverage for trips within the US. Visitors get various medical and trip-related coverage under one roof.
  • No pre-existing condition coverage: Most visitor insurance plans primarily focus on providing coverage for unforeseen medical expenses that may arise during your trip and typically do not include coverage for pre-existing medical conditions. However, many plans offer coverage to the acute onset of pre-existing conditions.

Buying travel insurance from India for US trip:


  • Familiarity with Indian healthcare: When you purchase travel insurance in India, the policies are often better suited for the residents and tourists traveling inside the country.
  • Affordable: Travel insurance policies purchased in India are often considered more affordable than their US counterparts. This can be especially beneficial for budget-conscious travelers.
  • Ease of communication: Dealing with insurance providers in your native language can be a significant advantage. It makes it easier to understand the terms and conditions and seek clarification.
  • Accessible customer support: Indian insurance companies usually provide accessible customer support services, including helplines and assistance for claim processing, offering peace of mind and support during your trip.


  • Limited network: Indian insurance companies may have a limited network of hospitals and service providers in the US, potentially leading to challenges in finding in-network care, which could result in higher out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Currency fluctuations: Exchange rate fluctuations can affect the value of your coverage, potentially impacting the amount you receive in the event of a claim, especially if you are paying premiums in Indian Rupees but making claims in US Dollars.
  • Limited coverage abroad: Some Indian travel insurance policies may have limited coverage outside India. This can be problematic if you plan to travel extensively within the US.
  • Policy exclusions: Indian travel insurance policies may have exclusions or limitations that are specific to their coverage, which may not align with the requirements or risks you face during your US trip.

Customer Experience: A Tale of Two Travelers

Raj purchased travel insurance in India for his trip to the US. When he fell ill during his visit, he faced difficulties in understanding the local healthcare system, and the claims process was complicated. However, he appreciated the cost savings he gained from buying Indian insurance but paid a lot more from his own pocket because the coverage was limited.

Priya, on the other hand, bought travel insurance from a US provider. She found it easier to navigate the US healthcare system and had a more straightforward claims process. Though it was a little more expensive, the insurance plan was well-recognized by the hospitals and clinics, reducing her overall stress.


Can I buy travel insurance for a one-way trip to the US?

Yes, you can purchase one-way trip insurance for your journey to the US. These policies typically cover you for the duration of your stay.

Do Indian travel insurance policies cover pre-existing medical conditions?

Coverage for pre-existing conditions varies by policy. Some Indian travel insurance plans may offer some coverage for pre-existing conditions, while others may not. It is crucial to review the policy details and inquire with the insurer.

Do US visitor insurance policies cover COVID-19?

Most visitor insurance policies do provide coverage for COVID-19 and related medical treatment if the insured contracts the virus during the trip. Many plans treat COVID-19 like any other illness if contracted after the effective date of the policy.

Can I extend my US visitor insurance if my trip is extended unexpectedly?

Depending on the plan, many insurance providers offer the option to extend your coverage if your trip is extended. Check with your insurer about the possibility and process for extending your policy.

Do travel insurance policies from different countries have similar coverage?

Travel insurance policies can vary significantly in terms of coverage, limits, and exclusions. It is essential to compare policies from different providers and countries to find the one that suits your needs.

How do I compare travel insurance plans from different countries?

To compare plans effectively, consider the coverage limits, deductibles, exclusions, and the reputation of the insurance provider. It is also important to see if the plans have PPO (Preferred Provider Organizations) networks in the US and if there is a US number to reach in the event you or the provider’s office needs to reach for verification of benefits and eligibility. Also, assess the price and value for the coverage offered.

Is it possible to buy travel insurance from both India and the US for the same trip?

It is possible to purchase separate travel insurance policies from different countries, depending on the insurance provider. However, make sure you understand how coordination of benefits works in case you need to make a claim, as double coverage may have limitations. It is always recommended to buy US visitor insurance for US trips because the plans are well-recognized by the hospitals and offer smoother claim process.


The choice of whether to buy travel insurance from India or the US depends on your specific circ*mstances and priorities. Buying a visitor insurance plan from a reputable US provider can get you broader coverage, a hassle-free claim process, 24/7 travel assistance, evacuation coverage, and more. On the other hand, buying a plan from an Indian insurance provider may leave you with limited coverage in the US. It is recommended to carefully assess your travel goals, understand your medical history, and compare policies before buying a plan.

Contact Visitor Guard® for more concerns and queries.

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Pallavi Sadekar

Travel Insurance Expert

Pallavi Sadekar is a seasoned insurance professional with over 17 years of experience in the industry. As the Head of Operations at Visitor Guard®, she brings a wealth of expertise to the field. With a profound understanding of insurance, Pallavi has consistently demonstrated her commitment to helping clients make informed decisions about their coverage.

Pallavi’s insights and advice has earned her recognition in esteemed publications, including Forbes, USA Today, and various online platforms. Her contributions to these outlets have solidified her reputation as a trusted authority in the insurance domain. Whether it’s navigating the complexities of visitor insurance, finding the right coverage for clients, or understanding the intricacies of visitor health insurance, Pallavi’s in-depth knowledge allows her to offer practical and informed guidance to her clients.


Should I Buy Travel Insurance From India Or The US (2024)
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