Travelers' insurance?


Sep 26, 2009
Hi, all. I'm considering purchasing travelers' insurance for my next BsAs trip, and was wondering if anyone has any feedback or recommendations? I didn't bother purchasing insurance before any of my first 3 trips, but this one will be considerably longer (4 months), plus I recently lost my US health insurance coverage. Has anyone had a positive experience with a travelers' insurance company? Thanks!

If you are worried about having coverage here
1) You can utilize the public hospitals here for free (yes, even as a tourist)
2) If you prefer, you can purchase private health insurance here which would give you access to the private hospitals, etc.

I don't know that I would think travelers insurance would have any real value here and would probably cost more than purchasing private insurance here (if you choose to do that).

I know quite a few people who have chosen to go without as they can go to the public hospital for anything serious.
Travel insurance is more than just health insurance: you might want to consider some of the other benefits and decide if you think things like flight cancellation, lost baggage, money and documents etc. are worth anything to you. As Citygirl says, public hospitals are free. They are also very good at what they do. If the idea of coming from a rich country and using a poor country's medical resouces troubles you, use travel insurance - or offer to pay a fee when you use the facility. There is always a cashiers' office in a hospital and the money you pay will go directly into their service provision. As someone who has done this in the past I can tell you that those fees will be pitifully low compared to where you come from - wherever you come from.
Travelers insurance is (usually) great if you get your purse/camera/laptop stolen. All you have to do is fill out a police report saying your things got stolen, and they replace them (or give you money to replace them).
Public hospitals are not good here. Sorry. The Fernandez can be OK for some emergencies but you don´t want to count on it. An Argentine surgeon friend always told me that the public hospitals in BA are good. When he was in a car accident recently he was taken to the Fernandez public hospital. He called his son who got him to Swiss Medical in a hurry. He didn´t want to receive treatment at even the best public hospital. About a year ago an American friend had a heart attack. He was taken to a public hospital. Actions speak louder than words. Fortunately an Argentine friend got there quickly. The surgeons told her that they were not equipped to save his life. The surgeon told her that if he could pay for the Diagnostico Argentino (a great private hospital here) he would have a good chance of living. He survived thanks to the excellent care he got there. Please don´t advise people to take risks with their health. Unless you can afford to pay out of pocket for a good hospital here, get some insurance.
I'll absolutely disagree with you - in a traumatic injury, I think one of the best places to be is a public hospital like Fernandez. The top doctors graduating from medical school do their residency in public hospitals because of the exposure they get. And on a personal note, a friend of mine suffered extensive trauma after falling several stories and was treated in Fernandez - they saved her life. I don't think Swiss Medical would have been able to give her the immediate trauma care that she needed. (For long-term or rehabilitative stays, I wouldn't want to be in a public hospital however).

As I noted, if someone wants to have private health insurance, there are several options available and at what will probably be lower cost than traveler's insurance. I have private health insurance as for me, the routine checkups, etc are best handled with a private health company - no waiting, less headache.

If you want traveler's insurance for other reasons (in case you are robbed, etc), that is a different story but I would certainly not have it if your main reason is medical care.
Medical insurance for an Argentine visiting the US?
Want some short term medical insurance for sweet thang while we visit the fatherland. Any suggestions.
Just a point on public hospitals...

The quality of the surgeons and physicians is top notch. No doubt. You are unlikely to be seen by anyone with the depth of experience in a private hospital. Public hospitals here have some of the best trained and most experienced staff you'll find anywhere. But.... You have to pay for all the components for your treatment. I have a friend who recently broke his leg badly. His family had to buy all the drugs, equipment and all the screws required to repair his leg before the surgeons could perform the operation. That alone came to several hundred dollars - not something you want to have to manage in the event of an accident, if you don't have friends or family who can help you. The talent might be free, but the equipment is not.

Outside of health coverage, you might find it cheaper and more affordable to insure any specialist items such as musical instruments, computers or photographic equipment on a travel insurance or home insurance policy than risk getting them stolen whilst you're here.