From currency and cuisine to electrical outlets and hand gestures, traveling outside of the United States is, well, different. And your insurance is no exception. Fortunately, just like your jet lag, coverage can come with you overseas. Many dental insurance plans cover at least some portion of dental emergencies.*
If you find yourself traveling to a dental chair while abroad, take these steps:
1. Find a reputable dentist.
You can find dental care in many parts of the world. For example, most European countries have highly comparable dental education programs to those in the United States. Check and see if the country you’re visiting has its own professional dental association. Oftentimes they can provide a list of dentist referrals.
2. Pay at time of service.
Prepare to pay the dentist at the time of your procedure. Your insurance will usually convert currency for reimbursement, and will pay you after you file your claim.
3. File the claim yourself.
Airport security isn’t the only process that takes longer when you travel internationally. Because you’re out of the country, insurance companies must follow more stringent steps. In order to receive reimbursement, ask for a detailed billing statement after your procedure has been completed. Make sure it includes:
• English translation (if possible)
• Treatment provided
• Tooth or teeth numbers
• Date of service
• Cost of service
So, in case of emergency, stash these steps in your back pocket (with your passport and guidebook, of course).
* Check with your insurance provider before your trip to confirm your plan’s coverage.