If you have ever considered travelling to Europe and have never thought of getting yourself an EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), then it is time to change your ways. While an EHIC is not enough to cover you for every single medical emergency when you holiday in Europe, it certainly goes a long way in ensuring you stay safe on your travels and can entitle to free or significantly reduced cost healthcare when in a European country. Many people forget just how expensive health care is abroad due to the fact that we have such a fantastic, free system in place under the NHS. So, don’t be caught out if you suffer from an accident or feel ill while on holiday and keep yourself protected with an EHIC!

A European Health Insurance Card entitles you to free or cheaper healthcare when visiting a country under the European Economic Area- this includes Switzerland, Lichtenstein and even some countries in the Caribbean like Saint Martin and Guadeloupe! It is so important to keep in mind that healthcare in foreign countries is not the same as it is in the UK. The EHIC card is so important to attain by all British nationals as will help give you and your family some peace of mind when travelling.

If you are looking to get hold of an EHIC card for yourself and your family, head to this website: https://www.ehic.co.uk/. It is imperative that every member of your travel party has their own EHIC card as well as travel insurance when they go to Europe- even children. If you are a parent of children under 16, you will need to apply for the EHIC on their behalf. Be sure to keep in mind the fact that an EHIC does not cover you for the costs associated with lost luggage or delayed travel. A European Health Insurance Card is for medical emergencies only. If you are an expectant mother and are worried about your health when travelling, you can rest assured that your EHIC will cover the costs of any maternity care you may need when abroad.

All you need when applying for your card online is your name, address and NHS number. A European Health Insurance card can take up to 10 days to process and be delivered to you so be sure to apply for your card in good time before you travel. The card is then valid for 5 years, which means you can take the card on as many trips as you desire over this period of time. All you need to do when it runs out is renew it via the same process as the initial application. Many people tend to confuse the EHIC with the E111 so be sure you know the difference. An EHIC is the replacement card for the E111- if you have an E111 it will be void now, so be sure to replace it with an EHIC quickly and easily.

Don’t delay when it comes to applying for your EHIC card- there is nothing more important than the health of you and your family after all.