How to choose the best expat insurance

  • insurance
Published 11 months ago

If you are getting ready to move abroad, preparation is key, and part of that is insuring against the unforeseen. From your health to your belongings, you will need to find the right kind of insurance to protect against any accidents or unpredictable events. Before you part with your money, make sure you are thoroughly informed of the available options.

Nisha Sawon

Editorial staff

Health Insurance

assurance sante

Possibly the most important cover, health insurance is a must in most countries. While you may be covered or incur low fees in those that have universal healthcare, to ensure that you are well covered, health insurance is a worthwhile investment. Even if you are moving with work and they have provided some level of health insurance as part of your relocation package, you may want to top this is up with supplementary cover, as it may not be adequate for your situation. If you have moved with your family, you might want to consider a family plan, which will likely be better value and more simple than trying to find cover for each family member. It is also important to check whether you will need to pay any extra premiums for certain services, as these will vary from company to company.

Life insurance

assurance vie

Once you have picked your life insurance policy, you may not have to think about it again, and the direct debit will just slip out of your assigned account. However, moving abroad could invalidate your existing policy altogether if you do not consult your insurer about the move. Life insurance policies are based on a range of factors, such as health conditions, age and location. Your insurance premium may go up or down, depending on the risks associated with the destination you have selected.

If you do not have life insurance but are considering a policy for your move abroad, you may want to look into whether a term or whole life insurance policy would be more suitable. Term life insurance is a cover for a set period, such as several years, while whole life (as it implies) insurance will cover you throughout your lifetime. It is important to bear in mind term life insurance often has more conditions and may not pay out upon death in every event, so choose carefully.

Home insurance

assurance habitation

Home insurance in the traditional insurance may only be necessary if you are buying a house abroad. If not, you will need to investigate renters insurance which will insure your belongings within your home. There are international companies that offer this, but you may be able to get a better rate from a company once in your destination. If you decide to buy home insurance abroad, you might need to consider a different level of coverage to what you are used to. For example, if you come from a mild climate that suffers from natural disasters highly infrequently and are moving to a destination with a more extreme climate that is highly prone to natural disasters, you may need to pay a premium to insure against this. Insurers may have a policy against force majeure, so it is worth assessing what your requirements will be in detail before you choose a policy.

In addition to the traditional home or renters insurance, you will also have to consider protecting your belongings if you are shipping them to your new home. This is known as damage insurance and may be offered by large shipping or moving companies. You will be required to make an extensive list of your belongings beforehand, so make sure to make a note of things as you pack.

Car insurance

assurance auto

If you decide to ship your car or buy a car abroad, not only will you have to ensure you have a valid license, but you will require car insurance. Your existing insurance policy may cover you abroad for a brief period. However, this will unlikely be anything more than the basic cover. You will need to shop around in your new home to find the right kind of insurance for you.

If you are simply looking for third-party liability coverage, this will cover any accidents that cause damage to the other party's vehicle. The comprehensive cover will also insure against any other accidents that may occur, such as vandalism or if another vehicle isn't involved.