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From Manitoba? Here’s What You Need To Know About Travel Insurance

Family in airport with luggage ready to travel
May 3, 2022
Updated: January 7, 2024


We’ll admit it: Travel insurance is complicated. And, it’s not exactly fun to figure out. Especially when you have to interrupt your beach-themed daydreams to research it.

So now that we’re in the thick of another Manitoba winter, it makes sense that the question we’re being asked the most right now is:

“What do I need to know about travel insurance?!”

In this post, we channel that super-confident Speedo guy on the beach and put it all out there. (There’s always one Speedo guy, right?)

Consider this your one-stop shop for everything you need to know about travel insurance as a very, very cold Manitoban.

What To Know About Travel Insurance as a Manitoban

Buying travel insurance should always be part of your vacation planning checklist. Sure, you may already be partially covered through your employers’ group benefits plan or credit card, but this coverage is often not enough. So what’s a travel-loving Manitoban to do?

We know buying travel insurance can be overwhelming, especially when you’re trying to decide if you actually need it. Don’t worry; we’ve done the work for you! We’ve chatted, checked, and created a list of six things every Manitoban needs to know before they head out on their next trip. So you can get back to choosing if you want an ocean or jungle view.

Travel Directly To The Info You Need Most

Basic Travel Insurance: What It Covers & What It Doesn’t

All Manitobans need basic travel insurance, but depending on your health, your itinerary, and your idea of holiday fun, you may want to look into extended insurance, too.

Basic travel health insurance plans only cover emergency medical expenses. That means pre-existing or chronic conditions aren’t covered. Neither are trip-related issues like cancellation and lost baggage. Think of these plans as a carry-on suitcase: they’re cheaper, but they’ll only take you so far.

That’s why, if you’re opting for basic insurance, we recommend that people opt for these travel insurance add-ons:

Extended travel health insurance plans are more like a checked bag. It’s got everything you know you need to have plus a few things you want to have for peace of mind. (Like the backup hair dryer you pack just in case the one at the hotel is no good.) 

This much more extensive plan covers things like:

  • Trip interruption/cancellation
  • Accidental death & dismemberment
  • Baggage insurance
  • Rental car insurance
  • Insurance for sports & activities

…and more, depending on which policy you get and which add-ons you choose.

Why Travel Insurance on Credit Cards Isn’t Enough

Sure, most credit cards offer some form of travel insurance, but often, it’s just not enough. Be sure to read your policy details in depth before you take off, and as you do, be wary of the limitations and maximums of the coverage your card offers. There may be exclusions or fine print that, if missed, can leave you without the reimbursement you need. 

Bottom line: While it’s great to have a credit card that offers travel insurance benefits, be sure you know and understand what it covers and get additional insurance to fill in the gaps!

When To Buy Travel Insurance

Travel insurance must be purchased BEFORE you leave on your trip. Even 30 minutes before while you’re driving to the airport will work! Once your plane goes wheels up or you drive over a border, sadly, it’s too late (in most cases) to get insured. Doing your research and buying early can help you truly unplug during your time away!

Travel Health Insurance Start & End Dates

No matter what plan you choose, you’ll want to make sure your coverage extends the whole duration of your trip, including the day you leave and the day you come home.

To find the policy that fits you as well as that brand new outfit you bought for your trip—one that considers any coverage you already have, where you’re going, and what you’ll be doing—get in touch with us! We’ll help you sort out your options and make the best choice.

Insurance For Manitobans Travelling Within Canada

There’s no doubt that we’re lucky to have access to a universal healthcare system in Canada. We can rest easy knowing that most of the illness or injury expenses we incur while visiting another province would still be covered under our provincial health plans. But many travellers are surprised to learn that our public health system doesn’t cover everything that happens to us—or everywhere we go.

Certain prescription drugs, dental emergencies, and even ambulance services aren’t always covered and could cost you a pretty penny if you need them. For this reason, even if you’re just traveling within Canada, we recommend buying an additional travel insurance plan!

Get The Best Policy: Travel Insurance Tips and Tricks

Want to get the best policy at the best price?

  • Make sure you’re covered for the entire duration of your trip.
  • Purchase your insurance before you hop on a plane or cross a border.
  • Buy from an Insurance Broker. They’ll help you shop around!
  • Know the exclusions and limitations on your coverage before relying on your employer’s health plan or credit card. (These plans often have big coverage gaps!)

Tips For Buying Travel Insurance as a Manitoban

Traveling soon? Keep these tips for getting travel insurance in mind:

#1 Cover Your Whole Trip

Make sure to purchase coverage for the entire duration of your trip. This way, you’ll be covered right up until you get home. Remember, you can usually extend your coverage once you are away. If you need to do this, be sure to extend it before your coverage runs out.

#2 Purchase Before You Go

Once you leave the country, most insurance companies can no longer offer you travel insurance for your trip. Make sure getting travel insurance is on your pre-trip checklist so you know you have the protection you need.

#3 Don’t Settle for Basic Insurance

Unless you’re certain it’s enough for you, don’t settle for a basic travel health insurance plan. Discuss where you plan to go and what you plan to do while you’re there with your Insurance Consultant who will help you make sure you’ve got all the coverage you need.

#4 Don’t Rely On Credit Card or Group Insurance

Your employer’s group insurance package or your credit card travel insurance may offer travel insurance, but don’t just assume it will be enough. Read the fine print and look specifically for limitations and exclusions so you’re never surprised by insufficient coverage.

This rings true for other types of insurance as well. Don’t assume that because you are young and healthy or because you have coverage through another source– like your work or spouse– that you are covered.

If you’re young and don’t hold your own insurance outside of group plans, we recommend you check out our free Guide To Insurance For Manitobans in their 20s and 30s and start to familiarize yourself with the insurance options you have. Insurance is the cheapest and easiest to get when you’re young, so what are you waiting for?

Manitoba Travel Insurance FAQs

You’ve got travel insurance questions, and we’ve got answers!

You sure can! If you come back early or end up not going, you can cancel the policy. Just be aware that you may or may not receive a refund for any premiums already paid, so best to ask before booking.

Yes, all of your vehicles and vehicular equipment need to be insured when travelling! Be sure to speak with an Insurance Consultant about your specific needs, and they’ll set you up with the appropriate coverage.

Unfortunately, it is very unlikely that you’ll be able to purchase travel insurance once you’ve left home. However, you are usually able to extend the coverage you’ve already purchased if your trip ends up being longer than you planned for. Every policy and insurance company is different though, so just make sure to ask about this while buying your travel insurance.

It’s relatively easy to purchase travel insurance nowadays. There are websites you can access wherever you have data and wifi and even travel insurance companies inside airports. So long as you haven’t started your trip, you can buy insurance at the airport! That said, we recommend making your airport check-in easier by having your insurance purchased in advance.

The amount you pay will depend on:


  • The duration of your trip
  • The country or countries you’re visiting
  • The type of policy you’re getting
  • Your travel plans (participating in extreme sports like SCUBA could cost you more)
  • Your age


But with all of that said, a 7-day comprehensive plan for a healthy, 40-year-old person typically costs around $50.

Wondering where to get travel insurance? The best place to buy is always through an Insurance Broker (like us!).


Brokers represent you, not the insurance companies. So we can:


  • Make sure you have the right amount of coverage
  • Help you shop around for the best policy and price
  • Answer questions you have along the way
  • Help if you need to claim your insurance

Booking The Trip? Get The Insurance!

Ready to get this to-do off your list? Get in touch with us

We’ll answer your questions, address your concerns, and help make sure you have the protection you need for your trip.