Travel Health Insurance: Mandatory for Travelers to Dubai

Dubai’s health services are internationally recognized to be of high standard when compared to other developed countries and hospitals. Dubai boasts modern facilities, which are strategically located for greater accessibility. Healthcare in the United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is one, is regulated at both the Federal and Emirate level, so the landscape between the different levels leaves some grey areas to be resolved – specifically with regard to visitors to Dubai.

Why Travel Health Insurance is Required for Dubai

The cost of medical treatment for patients in Dubai is relatively high, however, and while the healthcare needs of its citizens are covered, treatment for foreign visitors is isolated to emergency, life-saving treatment only and foreign visitors are expected to pay for the cost.

Where to Buy Travel Health Insurance for Dubai

Travelers can purchase visitors insurance plans from outside Dubai to insure their trip as long as it meets the minimum requirements.

  • Emergency medical care and hospitalization (at least $100,000)
  • Medical evacuation coverage (at least $50,000, depending on how far you’ve traveled)
  • Return of mortal remains
  • Reimbursement of trip deposits
  • Compassionate bedside visits
  • Accidental death and permanent disability
  • 24/7 emergency hotline

Health insurance policies for visitors can be obtained from special counters to be set up at the GDRFA’s headquarters in Bur Dubai, and other branches in Abu Hail, the Jebel Ali Free Zone, Dubai Airport, Dnata office on Shaikh Zayed Road, Umm Suqeim, Jebel Ali and Bin Souqat Centre in Rashidiya.

Prices depend on how long the visitor is staying: Dh40 for short-term visas valid for only 30 days, for example. The health insurance plan does not cover non-emergency medical treatment, chronic illnesses, or pre-existing conditions. Travel health insurance purchased outside of Dubai is more comprehensive and you will have greater control over how much you pay and whether you need special waivers such as those for pre-existing conditions.

What are the Insurance Requirements for a Visa to Dubai?

How the mandatory health insurance requirements will be interpreted for visitors and tourists applying for visas remains a grey area. Few healthcare providers in Dubai are set up to accept health insurance, which leaves visitors to pay for their treatment upfront and seek reimbursement afterward. In addition, Dubai government officials have indicated that entry visas will not be processed unless proof of health insurance is submitted with the application.

No matter how the Dubai government interprets the insurance needs for visitors, a visitor from a foreign country will always have better success and more support if they have a travel health insurance policy in hand before leaving their home country. Dubai, like any other foreign country, has many travel risks; travel medical insurance can help protect you from these risks and give you peace of mind.

Erin FraboniAbout the Author:
Erin Fraboni writes about travel insurance and trending travel topics. She graduated from UC San Diego with a degree in Literature & Writing and specializes in composing articles on travel health insurance.

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