Online reprint from CanPara
January - March 2020
Written by: Ned Ambrus
In the past, we have printed articles about how important out-of-country medical insurance is and who is selling a product that covers skydiving and/or BASE jumping. We try to update it yearly as things tend to change in this industry, so if you are planning on traveling outside of Canada to skydive, this article is for you!
Our last printed article was in the January of 2019 and the changes you need to be aware of is that Manulife Travel Insurance does not cover BASE jumping anymore (as of Nov 28th, 2019).
There is a lot of conflicting information out there about skydiving insurance and many companies that used to cover it no longer do. As of January 2020, if you purchase Manulife’s Emergency Medical Travel Insurance through our agency (and others that have the same policy) it does cover skydiving. Here is the exact wording from the policy stating what sports they don’t cover:
Exclusion Number 12: An emergency resulting from an accident that occurs while you are participating in:
- Any sport, snorkeling or scuba-diving when that sport, snorkeling or scuba-diving is your principal paid occupation;
- Any sport or activity indicated below:
- any form of BASE jumping;
- rock climbing;
- any competition, speed event or other high-risk activity involving the use of a motor vehicle on land, water or air, including training activities, whether on approved tracks or elsewhere.
Because skydiving is not listed as an exclusion it is covered, it’s truly that simple. If you were to call Manulife in general and ask if they cover skydiving they will say no because only certain policies do cover it. That is why I write this article every year to help simplify emergency medical insurance.
Skydivers often book things last minute and so, to make things easier, I want to bring your attention to our online insurance purchase option. Simply go to www.thetraveldesk.ca and click on the tab Medical Insurance. Fill out the information, making sure to use the drop-down menu on destination and change it to USA or international. Once you have chosen “Emergency Global Medical” and completed the policy, I get a copy of the policy sent to my email and I look it over to ensure it is done properly.
IMPORTANT – you must cover yourself for the entire time you are out of Canada, no exceptions. If you only book insurance for the days you are jumping and get hurt and Manulife finds out you were in the country for a few days without coverage, it voids your policy. Trust me don’t cheap out on the $3-$4/day cost, just cover the whole trip!
We set up this link because people forget to insure themselves until the last second, and sometimes we are closed or we simply don’t have the time to issue the insurance for you at that moment. We are here for questions you may have and we encourage people to book their insurance early, but it doesn’t always work that way!
Hopefully this article helps you understand that insurance options are available to skydivers and are not that expensive and still cover, regular illness, injuries etc. Please note: this is not a life insurance for disability or lost/stolen gear. This is only medical insurance with coverage up to $5,000,000 including air evacuation, hospital, surgery, bringing a family member to you if it is serious, flying you back to Canada (one way or another), plus medical bills. And it is affordable and worth its weight in gold. If you are on vacation, going to a Boogie, going to an event, an Airspeed Camp, a Flight-1 Canopy course etc. please purchase insurance.
Most provinces only cover you for the value of what it costs in your home province so if you live in QC and get hurt in Ontario, you are responsible for the difference, so getting insurance when traveling in Canada is an option too. Again, it is available on our website and it is less than the international coverages.
Here is an example of what the costs/rates are as of January 2020 with Manulife Travel Insurance for their Global Medical out-of-Country Insurance (assuming you are in good health and have no pre-existing illness and have provincial health care):
- 1-week emergency medical insurance: $32-$42 depending on age
I want my sky brothers and sisters to be safe, to have fun, to enjoy their vacation, and come back with more experiences, knowledge and wonderful memories. I simply hate hearing about people getting hurt, and even more than that, I hate hearing about people getting hurt and not having coverage. If you have medical work benefits, check your policy to see if you are covered. Phone your credit card company to see exactly what is covered. Buy a cheap policy just to be safe, whatever you do please travel with Medical Insurance. It can save your life, figurative and literally.