Does Travel Insurance Cover Dental?

Does Travel Insurance Cover Dental

Does Travel Insurance Cover Dental?

Sorry but no. We breakdown travel insurance coverage.

Let’s dive straight into a common question I often tackle: does travel insurance cover dental care? As you prepare for your travels, it’s crucial to understand the scope of your insurance coverage, particularly for dental emergencies that could interrupt your plans. 

I can tell you now, travel insurance has a very low chance of covering dental, it’s extremely unlikely. 

I’ve seen many travellers caught off guard by the limitations of their travel insurance, particularly when it comes to dental care. I’ve also got a full guide on if travel insurance covers medical here.

Take, for example, a client of mine who faced a dental emergency in Thailand. Assuming her travel insurance would cover the costs, she was shocked to find herself with a hefty bill and no recourse. 

This is not an isolated incident; such stories are all too common.In this blog, I’m going to clarify what travel insurance usually covers and highlight the importance of distinguishing between travel insurance and medical insurance for dental care.

By the end of this, you’ll be well-equipped with the knowledge to make informed decisions for your next trip.

No. It’s Extremely Unlikely Your Travel Insurance Will Cover Dental Costs

No. Travel insurance will not cover your dental costs.

Travel insurance typically doesn’t cover dental costs because it’s designed for unforeseen incidents and emergencies, not dental care.

This type of insurance mainly protects you from unexpected travel-related issues like lost luggage, flight delays, or accidents. It also covers medical emergencies that require immediate attention, such as severe injuries or sudden, life-threatening illnesses.

Travel insurance policies often exclude routine dental treatments and checkups, as they are not unforeseen emergencies. Even for dental emergencies, many travel insurance plans offer limited or no coverage.

If you need dental treatment while travelling, you’ll likely have to pay for it yourself unless you have a medical insurance policy that includes dental coverage which is going to either be ultra expensive or not cover dental.

Always check your travel insurance policy details to understand your dental coverage extent.

Medical Insurance Would Be The Correct Coverage For Dental

When you’re considering dental coverage, medical insurance is the way to go. It’s tailored to cover healthcare needs comprehensively, which includes dental services. 

Medical insurance policies often encompass a variety of dental care aspects, from routine checkups and cleanings to emergency dental procedures and sometimes even orthodontics, depending on the level of coverage you choose.

In contrast, travel insurance is designed to protect you during your travels by covering emergencies that are not related to dental care. It’s important to understand that while travel insurance is essential for unexpected travel and health emergencies, it does not typically extend to include dental care unless it’s a direct result of an accident.

Therefore, if you’re looking for protection against dental costs, you should look into medical insurance plans that offer dental coverage. 

These plans are specifically structured to address dental health, providing a safety net for both anticipated and unexpected dental expenses. 

Travel Insurance Only Covers Major Medical Emergencies

As mentioned briefly above, travel insurance aims to assist with significant medical emergencies during your travels. It’s not designed for routine or planned dental care. 

This type of insurance steps in when you face major, unexpected medical situations that demand immediate attention, such as a serious accident or a sudden, severe illness. Here’s an article on what’s covered in major medical insurance

It’s crucial for travellers to understand that travel insurance is not a catch-all for all medical needs, especially not for dental care unless it’s a part of an emergency arising from an accident. 

For comprehensive dental coverage, you would need to look at specific medical insurance plans that include dental care benefits. Usually, this comes in the more comprehensive covered medical insurance plans like fully comp. 

travel insurance only covers major medical emergencies - man with hospital bed

You Will Not Be Covered For Dental Checkups or Visits With Travel Insurance

Travel insurance does not cover dental checkups or visits because it does not classify these as emergencies. This is technically called outpatient benefits, and travel insurance will never cover this. 

The primary purpose of travel insurance is to provide financial assistance during unexpected medical crises that require immediate action, not to maintain routine health needs. 

If you need a dental checkup or any kind of non-emergency dental visit while travelling, you should be prepared to pay for these services yourself, as they fall outside the scope of what travel insurance policies typically cover.

If you are living abroad, and want to be covered by routine check ups for your dental care, then you will need to consider being covered by yearly medical insurance that includes your dental care and checkups in the policy.

If You Rely On Travel Insurance For Dental Emergencies, You Will Be Left Out Of Pocket

From what I’ve seen, the only dental coverage you might find in a travel insurance policy is for acute pain relief or for accidents that result in injury to your teeth. 

Even then, the coverage is usually quite limited and may not include the full cost of the necessary dental treatment.

Therefore, you could be left very out of pocket if you are under the impression travel insurance will cover your dental costs. 

In my experience, many travellers have the false impression that travel insurance will cover any medical issue abroad, including dental emergencies so you’re not alone. 

Remember, it’s always best to read the fine print of any insurance policy you’re considering to fully understand what is and isn’t covered. 

This way, you can make an informed decision and choose the insurance that best fits your needs.

Expat left out of pocket due to high dental bills without medical coverage

Dental Costs Worldwide Are Fairly Expensive

Dental costs can indeed be quite steep around the world. For instance, a routine procedure like a filling or a crown can set you back significantly, depending on where you are. 

This is especially true in places like Australia, Canada or certain European countries, where dental treatments can come with a hefty price tag.

Without the right coverage, you could find yourself in a situation where you’re facing a dental emergency, with the only option being to pay out of pocket for expensive treatment. 

This could be a significant financial burden, especially if you’re in a country where medical costs are high.

Looking for a nomad insurance policy that offers comprehensive dental benefits is super important because it will be saving you from unexpected and costly dental bills in the long run.

Dental costs can hit your wallet hard, no matter where you are in the world.


In conclusion, travel insurance and medical insurance cater to different needs, particularly when it comes to dental care. 

Travel insurance is your ally against unexpected travel issues and medical emergencies, but it falls short on covering routine dental care and certain dental emergencies. 

Recognising this difference is essential to avoid surprises and ensure you have the appropriate coverage for your requirements. For the global nomads among us, securing a medical insurance plan that encompasses dental benefits is a smart choice. 

It’s all about being prepared, staying informed, and selecting the right insurance for your adventurous lifestyle. The world is out there for you to discover, but always with the right protection in tow.

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With a decade of experience in medical insurance, Damon crafts solutions for nomads and global entrepreneurs. Often seen at global seminars or featured in industry publications, he’s dedicated to simplifying medical insurance for all.

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