Best Medicare Supplement Plans for Travelers

Medicare Supplement Plan G is an excellent option for beneficiaries traveling outside the United States and its territories due to its extensive benefits, including coverage for foreign travel emergencies.

Medigap Plan G provides:

  • Coverage for emergency care during the initial 60 days of your trip if Medicare does not cover it.
  • Payment of 80% of the billed charges for medically necessary emergency care outside the U.S. once you have met the $250 deductible for the year.

Having quality healthcare coverage is essential while traveling. Unfortunately, Original Medicare doesn’t usually provide coverage outside the United States except in certain cases, leaving many beneficiaries with significant gaps in their healthcare.

That’s where Medicare Supplement plans, also known as Medigap, come into play. These plans help fill in the gaps left by traditional Medicare. 

According to, when traveling outside the U.S., most Medigap plans offer some coverage for emergency healthcare, with a lifetime limit of $50,000.

Top Medigap Plans for Travelers

Our team of experts has identified three Medigap plans shown below that are highly recommended for frequently traveling Medicare beneficiaries.

  • Plan G: Plan G is one of the most comprehensive Medicare supplement plans, covering everything except the Medicare Part B deductible. It also includes coverage for foreign travel emergencies, making it a popular choice among travelers.
  • Plan N: While Plan N requires a small co-payment for some services, it offers foreign travel emergency coverage similar to Plan G and has a lower premium. It is cost-effective for those comfortable paying out-of-pocket for minor medical expenses. However, it does not cover the Part B deductible.
  • High Deductible Plan G: This plan offers a lower premium for the same comprehensive coverage as regular Plan G but with a higher deductible. High Deductible Plan G is perfect for travelers who want more control over their healthcare costs while still having emergency coverage abroad.

Besides a Medigap plan, another option is a Medicare Advantage plan, which combines medical and prescription drug coverage. Some Medicare Advantage plans also offer coverage for emergency medical services while traveling abroad.

Remember, while these plans offer foreign travel emergency coverage, it’s crucial to thoroughly review the specifics of the coverage to ensure it meets your travel needs.

How Does Foreign Travel Coverage Work?

Medigap plans that include foreign travel emergency benefits typically cover 80% of the costs for emergency care abroad (provided that care begins during the first 60 days of your trip), leaving the remaining 20% for you to pay out of pocket. You’re responsible for a $250 yearly deductible before you receive coverage, and a $50,000 lifetime limit applies to foreign travel emergency coverage.

If you have a Medicare Supplement plan, it will offer coverage for emergency health services during foreign travel. However, if you only have Original Medicare, this additional coverage will not be available outside the United States. 

Are Medigap Plans Accepted Everywhere?

No. While Medicare supplement plans are accepted in many countries, they’re not always accepted everywhere.

In the United States, your Medigap coverage is determined by whether or not your doctor accepts Medicare. Medigap plans are specifically designed to align with Medicare, ensuring that if a doctor accepts Medicare, they will also accept your Medigap plan, regardless of the insurance provider or plan letter you have chosen.

How to Apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance

Applying for a Medicare Supplement plan is simple, and it’s best to do so during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period for maximum benefits. The Medigap OEP starts the first day of the month that you are 65 or older and are enrolled in Medicare Part B. This period lasts six months, so taking advantage of this period ensures the best outcome for your Medicare coverage.

This six-month period offers the advantage of guaranteed issue rights, ensuring that insurance providers cannot deny coverage, even if you have pre-existing conditions. By taking advantage of the OEP, you can maximize a Medicare Supplement plan’s benefits and peace of mind.

You can apply online, over the phone, or in person with any private insurance company that sells Medicare supplement plans. Compare quotes from several insurers to find the best fit for your needs.

Bottom Line

We highly recommend Medicare Supplement Plan G, Plan N, and High Deductible Plan G as the top choices for travelers. While most Medigap plans offer foreign travel coverage, these three provide the most comprehensive benefits.

Consult with a licensed Medigap insurance agent to explore Medigap policies further and learn more about available options that best fit your needs. We are happy to provide valuable insights on Plan G and other Medicare Supplement plans.

Sources: NCOA | AARP |


Mark Prip

Since 2003, Mark Prip has been leading  Policy Guide, Inc., providing knowledgeable information about Medicare, life insurance, and dental coverage to clients in over forty states. With his unparalleled hands-on experience aiding countless Medicare beneficiaries in selecting an appropriate health plan, he is a prime example amongst other competitors for expertise and assistance. Mark has held his Florida Health & Life Insurance License (E051889) since 2003. View his license profile on the Florida Department of Insurance website.