Travel coverage for Medicare insurance

Get travel benefits with your Medicare plan

If hitting the road or jumping on a plane is on your to-do list after retirement, it’s essential to know that your Medicare plan has you covered. Whether you’re traveling in the U.S. or internationally, understanding your travel coverage can make a big difference.

If you’re traveling within the United States and have Original Medicare, all the regular Medicare rules apply. As long as the doctor, specialist, clinic or hospital you visit accepts Medicare, you’re covered like you would be at home.

If you have a private Medicare plan (like Medicare Advantage or Medicare Cost) and need non-urgent or non-emergency care, your domestic travel benefits – like who you can see and what’s covered – can vary.

If you’re traveling internationally and have Original Medicare, your benefits won’t follow you. As a result, you’ll be responsible for 100% of your medical costs if you need care out of the country. Some private Medicare plans may offer some coverage when traveling abroad or overseas, but details can differ from plan to plan.

Most HealthPartners Medicare plans include in-network coverage for up to nine consecutive months of the year when you travel inside the U.S. but outside your plan’s service area. And most plans also offer access to pre-travel consultations, and worldwide emergency and urgent care coverage, with additional assistance available through Assist America®.*

Pre-travel consultations

Make sure you’re ready for your next vacation by scheduling a pre-travel consultation with your doctor or visiting a covered travel medicine clinic. Most of our Medicare plans include pre-travel consultations for $0 in network, where you’ll be able to:

  • Get needed travel vaccines (check your benefits to see what’s covered)
  • Discuss any safety considerations with your doctor
  • Complete other preventive care that might be needed before you travel

Emergency support through Assist America

If something unexpected happens when you’re more than 100 miles from home or in a foreign country, you’ll have access to a full range of travel-related services with Assist America . Whether you’re navigating a medical emergency or need help replacing prescription drugs that you left behind, Assist America’s vast network of resources can support you.

Tips for traveling with Medicare

Before you travel, these tips can help you prepare:

Medicare plans may cover out-of-state care differently, so it’s important to check your coverage by calling your insurance company. At HealthPartners, our Member Services team is ready to help you travel confidently.

Let us know when you plan to travel. Just call the number on the back of your member ID card or sign in to your account to activate your travel benefits.

When you get care while traveling, you might need your red, white and blue Medicare card and your health insurance card. Sometimes your doctor needs both cards to correctly bill Medicare and your insurance company.

If you see a doctor who doesn’t participate in Medicare, your plan might not cover the costs. Confirm with them that they accept Medicare before you receive care. Some Medicare providers may require you to pay a portion up front. If you have to pay a copay or coinsurance, you can submit a reimbursement claim to your insurance company if it’s covered under your plan.

Make sure to pack any medications you use regularly in a place where they won’t get lost (if you’re flying, putting your medication in a carry-on bag you always have with you is a good idea). It’s also a good idea to create a travel first-aid kit with items like adhesive bandages, antiseptic wipes and more.

We’re your partner in making Medicare as simple as can be for travel lovers.

Legal information

* Assist America services are only available during the first 90 consecutive days that you're away from your home and all arrangements must be made through Assist America.

Out-of-network/noncontracted providers are under no obligation to treat HealthPartners members, except in emergency situations. Please call our customer service number or see your Evidence of Coverage for more information, including the cost-sharing that applies to out-of-network services.

Last updated October 2023

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