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Best Health and Travel Insurance for International Students in USA

Tumul Buch

If you are reading this, it means 90% of the challenges on your path to studying in the US have been covered. We congratulate you on that and wish you luck in all of your future endeavours.

The next few months will be spent planning various aspects of your journey. Studying abroad needs a lot of preparation and adjustment to a new culture, managing your food and lodging costs, etc. Out of everything, access to medical facilities and services is a crucial factor that many students tend to overlook. Insurance for international students in USA should be one of the top priorities on your list.

International students must obtain insurance, in part because some universities may view it as a prerequisite for enrollment. If your institution or college does not have such a requirement, you must make the decision that is best for you.

In this blog, we will cover all you need to know about health and travel insurance for international students studying in the USA.

Table of Contents

Why is Insurance Important for International Students in USA?

Let us begin by knowing why travel insurance for international students in USA is so crucial before we analyze the finest alternatives available to international students studying in the USA.

Before beginning your studies at US universities, a student should ideally obtain travel and health insurance for a number of reasons:

Travel Protection

Travel insurance, as its name implies, guards you against any dangers you might encounter while travelling overseas. Travel insurance is therefore essential if you're travelling from your native country to the US and want to keep yourself and your possessions safe.

Your student insurance USA international students, which is necessary for an F1 visa, is not identical to your US travel insurance because it is short-term and does not provide the same level of protection. In essence, student health insurance will pay for any medical costs you incur during your time living to study in the US, whereas travel insurance will protect you and your possessions while you are travelling from your native country to the US on a brief trip.

Travel disasters like an accident or illness, missing flights, lost or delayed luggage, or even losing your passport and other important documents are typically covered by travel insurance. This is very useful for students when their luggage is lost or delayed.

For a variety of reasons, many Indian travelers to the US experience suitcase delays or losses. Therefore, having travel insurance is best. Your travel insurance policy will generously reimburse you if this were to occur.

You should budget about INR 1500 for excellent travel insurance coverage that covers a duration of two to three weeks. This expenditure pales in comparison to what you will spend over a thousand times that much on your education over the next two years!

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Health Insurance

For international students, the alternative option is US health insurance. Like many other countries, the United States does not possess a nationalized healthcare system. As a result, if a person does not have insurance, they must spend for their care out of pocket. The expense of healthcare for foreign students in the US can be quite exorbitant, putting their finances in serious jeopardy. Thus, having a reliable health insurance plan is crucial. It offers coverage for any medical costs you might incur while you are residing in and attending school in the United States.

The availability of inexpensive or free public healthcare is quite restricted in the United States, while private healthcare is very exorbitant. Additionally, state healthcare programs frequently do not accept international students as recipients. International students must consequently have US health insurance.

Foreign students may need health insurance to enrol in the US.  As a result, the university where you plan to enrol, not US law, has imposed this criterion for having proper health insurance coverage, and then you are required to obtain health insurance for studying overseas at the university.

It is ideal for you and should be required that everyone have health insurance. Deciding on your medical insurance is much more crucial because the US healthcare system is significantly more advanced and different from the healthcare system in India. Let's examine your options for the finest health insurance for foreign students in the USA:

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How to Get Health Insurance for International Students in USA?

You must take steps to obtain student health insurance in the USA:

  1. Check to see if your US college, institution, or school has a required group health insurance program in place.
  • If they do, you must first determine whether they are part of the tuition bills or whether you must pay them separately before continuing with the payment process.
  • Check to see if you qualify for any mandated group health insurance plans that offer a voluntary exemption. If it doesn't, request a waiver form from them.


  1. If they do not have any insurance plan, look for organizations or brokers that provide health insurance to foreign students studying in the US.

(Or you can compare the two to determine your best option.)

  1. List the perks you believe are important to you and the waiver form and contrast them with the plans offered by the businesses you have researched. 
  2. Choose the plan best suits your needs and buy it.

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Types of Health Insurance for International Students in the US

You must familiarize yourself with your options before selecting medical insurance for international students in USA. Your principal choices are:

Health Insurance from your Country of Origin

Although it would be the least effective option, this is most likely the least expensive health insurance for foreign students in the USA. The process for filing claims would be the issue with these insurance programs.

Let's say you are an Indian student who purchased a health insurance policy from a company in your country. Since we are an Indian insurance firm, processing your claim would be difficult. Additionally, when it comes to basic medical care, it gets very pricey. as the deductibles on these insurances are very large.

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The Healthcare Center at Your University Offers a Major Insurance Plan

Many American institutions provide and occasionally require international candidates to enrol in a school-sponsored insurance plan. Universities often provide two choices: a Basic Plan and a Complete Plan. The latter pays for all medical costs, from serious accidents to flu virus treatment. The health centre at your university is covered by this insurance plan in full. But there's a problem. They will typically set you back a fortune. These plans are incredibly pricey.

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Private Third-Party Insurance

This is one of the best health insurance plans for foreign students studying in the USA among all the other choices. Some private insurance businesses offer exceptionally excellent and reasonably priced insurance coverage, particularly for students. Our suggestion is ISOA. It is among the most affordable and effective health insurance options available to international students in the US. It specializes in insurance policies for students.

The majority of foreign students in the US favour this insurance strategy. Nearly all of the country's top universities are covered by it. You'll pay barely $31 a month for the Compass Silver plan, which is what the majority of US students choose. It is a very small transaction. The only drawback to having this insurance plan on your own is that essential medical care will still cost you a little while having very low deductibles.

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Basic Plan of the University plus Third-Party Private Insurance Plan (ISOA)

This is the greatest health insurance for students in the USA among all the alternatives. Along with paying for your medical expenditures, it will save you a great deal of money. Now, if your university offers a basic plan, enrol in it in addition to the private insurance plan offered by organizations like ISOA. As a result, you can utilize the third-party insurance plan for any major concerns while using the regular college plan for minor illnesses. 

Wonderful, isn't it? It is by far the least expensive and most effective choice for you, covering everything and making it effectively free.

5 Best Health Insurance plans for International Students living in the US

Here are the 5 of the best health insurance plans for international students in the USA:

  1. Patriot Exchange Program
  2. ExchangeGuard
  3. Student Health Advantage
  4. Student Secure
  5. Navigator Student

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In the US, health insurance is crucial, particularly from a financial perspective for overseas students. Therefore, carefully consider your study of USA health insurance alternatives and select the one that best meets your needs. For any further queries, do not forget to subscribe to our Yocket Premium and connect with our study abroad experts!

Frequently Asked Questions About Insurance for International Students in USA

Is purchasing health insurance through the university required?

What is covered by the international students' health insurance plan?

Do Foreign Students Need Health Insurance to Apply for an F1 Visa?

When should students from other countries purchase health insurance?

What is the price of health insurance for foreign students studying in the US?

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