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Protected Families Have More Fun

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It's that time of year again! The kids are anxiously watching the days, hours and minutes tick by until the last day of school. In addition to stocking up on frozen treats and sunscreen, and steeling your nerves against plaintive cries of "I'm bored, can I have a snack?" several times a day, you may be planning a summer holiday. Before you hit the road or board the plane, keep these few things in mind.

Check local travel advisories

It’s easy to forget when planning a trip that life in different countries and cultures isn’t always the same as it is here, and that the media doesn’t cover every event in every country. This doesn’t mean don’t travel, it just means travel safely. When choosing your destination, check the Government of Canada’s country travel advice and advisories and travel health notices. The news provided at these sites gives warnings and the latest updates on threats and conditions the Government of Canada considers unsafe for Canadians around the world.

See your doctor or visit a travel health clinic

As part of the regular vaccination schedule most Canadians are protected from a host of conditions, but infectious diseases like Yellow Fever, Malaria and Typhoid are not parts of our standard vaccine schedule. If you are travelling to a country or region where these diseases are prevalent, you should give serious thought to getting the additional vaccines available at a travel health clinic for yourself and your family.

These extra vaccines aren’t covered by provincial health insurance, but they may be covered by your private health and dental insurance plan.

Day trips over the border are still out of the country

It’s fun to take a short trip over the border to the United States to see the sights and sounds. Because our nearest neighbour is so easily accessible, it’s easy to forget that you are actually visiting a different country. Visiting a different country means that our provincial health coverage is no longer applicable in the event of an illness or serious injury. While we all hope every journey will be a safe one, travel insurance is one area where it’s always better to be safe than sorry. The deals of a cross-border shopping trip disappear pretty quickly if you have to pay out-of-pocket for medical care!

Think about the rest of the year

In most cases, travel medical insurance that protects you and your family in the event of an emergency for multiple trips doesn’t cost much more than single-trip insurance. If you’re already planning a trip to visit the grandparents in Florida this winter in addition to your summer holiday, you can save a lot of money by buying a multi-trip policy right now. You’ll be covered medically for both trips and you’ll have one less thing to worry about when you’re getting ready to leave.

It’s going to be a great time filled with laughter and fun for everyone. Enjoy it! And don’t forget the sunscreen.

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