Medi-Quote Blog

Two common assumptions about travel insurance are made by many people that are false. There are many many more out there, but we are highlighting two examples that have been discussed in the news recently.

1) They assume that going to a non-US destination like Mexico doesn't require having travel insurance because your provincial healthcare will cover the costs.

The article above discusses the ways that provincial health care does provide some coverage for Canadians who are traveling abroad. Provincial healthcare will pay for services at predefined levels, which will often not cover your entire medical bill. There is also no provision in provincial healthcare plans that would pay for you to back to Canada in the event of an accident or illness.

Private travel health insurance is necessary in this situation because you will need the extra coverage in the event of a severe illness or accident.

2) They assume that the travel insurance that comes with their credit card is sufficient without looking into the details.

A woman from Headingly, MB was recently injured in a boat accident in South Africa. She was travelling with the understanding that the coverage provided by her BMO Mastercard would be enough protection in the event of an accident. She and her family were horrified to find that the coverage was not sufficient and they were left on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars in medical costs.

If they had read their policy details the travel insurance on their credit card, they would have known the limitations and could have purchased additional insurance to top-up their credit card insurance. Many cards will cover only a tiny fraction of what private travel health insurance would. Most travel insurance policies obtained from a travel insurance brokerage like Medi-Quote, would cover in the range of two to five million dollars, while many credit card companies cover in the range of 20 to 50 thousand dollars, and sometimes the coverage is only valid if the trip was purchased on the card.

The bottom line is that we all need to read our insurance policies to understand the coverage that we have. And getting additional insurance above and beyond what may be provided from credit card or work benefits is most often the right decision.


From The Canadian Press via Winnipeg Free Press

Snowbirds should review the details of their travel medical insurance policy to see if there is a time limit for out-of-the-country coverage and what they need to know about pre-existing conditions and limitations.

"If a snowbird has visited a hospital or switched medications in the past 12 months this information needs to be disclosed to their insurance provider because failure to do so may impact coverage should they make a claim," says David Minor, vice president at TD Insurance.

Read the rest of the article here.

From The Canadian Press via Winnipeg Free Press

Or at least that's what they should be thinking, say experts in the field. The problem is many Canadians don't want to think about the unthinkable — that they may face a catastrophic medical emergency while on vacation and will need to be treated in a U.S. hospital.

According to a recent survey conducted for TD Insurance, only about half of Canadians aged 50 and over bother to check their coverage before leaving for vacation, and only 16 per cent call their insurance provider to determine if they need to update their policy.

Read the rest of the article here.

Medi Quote Insurance Calgary Staff spread their Christmas Cheer to others in the way of volunteering their time to Calgary Food Bank.The experience was touching, rewarding and without a doubt extremely eye opening.

They arrived to the volunteer area to begin their 2 ½ hour shift. They were told that the area that needed help was with client assistance, where the people who standing in line for their food hamper would come to pack their food received and take it out to their car.

The lines were long, really long. There was every age, race and lots of various aged kids in tow. Some were in dress clothes looking like they just came from work, other looking like perhaps they weren’t so fortunate. But all shared one thing, the look of desperation and even disappointment in their eyes.

As Tera, Wanda and Katie arrived at their station they didn’t know what to expect.   They were given quick instruction and got to work. There they were for 2 ½ hours talking to the people, trying to bring a smile to their face and saying they were here just to help them. They received smiles, good wishes and also tears, hugs and confessions of the embarrassment they felt being in the situation to receive this food.

They worked tirelessly- packing, lifting, carrying and pushing carts through the parking lot filled with snow to get the items to the client’s cars. After getting through the line of approximately 200 people, they were tired, exhausted in fact both physically, emotionally.

They left their area and the now empty building, that moments before were bustling, had a certain hush to it. They didn’t take photos;  they didn’t say much, but they all shared the same thought, and that was, no matter how hard their life had seemed at times, or how many complaints they had, they were grateful that providing the basic necessity of food was never a struggle for them.

We wanted to share this story with all of you, to remind you that there are others in your community that share this struggle, they can be of any age, any race, and may even work at a store you visit or an business you go to.  Donate if you can and if you can’t give money or items remember that the donation of your time by volunteering goes a long way too.


2013 was a very busy year here at Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers. This was our first full year as Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers after changing our name in 2012 to reflect our expanded range of insurance products beyond travel insurance.

2013 saw us adding four new brokers to our sales team, who all came from our administrative team. In turn we added four administrators and a travel agent. We also expanded our management structure to catch up with the last few years of growth. 

Core Values and Value Proposition

We spent some time defining what we value most as a company and as a group.  We also came up with what we call our “Value Proposition” where we came up with the acronym TEAM to explain the type of relationship we have with our clients. We work with clients to Track (medical history), Educate (clients about issues that affect them), Advocate (on your behalf) and Mitigate (risk). Read about our value proposition here.

Travel Agency

This year we began offering travel agency services in partnership with Travel Professionals International, TPI. We are new, but we have added some very experienced travel agents to our team and combined with our understanding of travel insurance, we think it’s a natural fit that will be a big benefit to our clients.

This year we used our travel agency resources to plan an Alaskan cruise to celebrate our 20th anniversary in 2014. We are excited for the cruise and to meet all of our clients who will be joining us.

Arizona Trip

Lori made her annual trek down to Arizona to visit our clients who spend their time down there. As a Senior Broker at Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers, she really goes out of her way to reach Snowbirds in their winter habitat. She was so happy to see so many old and new faces come by the booth at the marketplaces in Yuma and Mesa.
In 2014, Lori will be joined by fellow senior brokers Sandy and Shirley who will both be making the trip down for the first time.



We embraced our commitment to educate clients more than ever this year. We have held a number of online training sessions for clients as well as our broker partners.  We understand that travel insurance can be complicated, and feel like our knowledge and expertise needs to be shared with others. We will have more webinars in 2014, so keep your eyes open for announcements in our monthly email newsletters.
Volunteer work and Charity Fundraising

2013 wasn’t all good news. Floods caused massive destruction to the homes of many Albertans. Our Calgary staff spent a day in High River volunteering and saw the devastation first hand. You can read about that here.
Recently we have been collecting food in our Winnipeg office for Winnipeg Harvest, and the Calgary team spent some time volunteering for the Calgary food bank, which you can read about here.

In August, Lori rode her bike from Stonewall to Gimli and back to raise money for the MS Society of Canada. That is 84 km’s each way.  We were all very proud of Lori’s accomplishment and made donations to the cause.

Refer-a-Friend contest

If our attention to detail and great customer service wasn’t enough, when someone refers a friend to us, both the referrer and the referee are entered into a contest. This year’s winning entrant, B. Trotter of Belmont, MB won a trip to anywhere in North America that Air Canada flies.
New Partners and New Markets
This year we were happy to begin a relationship with Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services, adding one more parter to our roster of insurance providers.
For years we have been licensed to sell insurance from BC to Ontario, now we are licensed to do business in Nunavut, too. The north tends to be an underserved market, so we look forward to hearing more from potential customers in the North.


Highlights for the coming year, 2014

2014 will mark our 20th anniversary as a company and we will be celebrating this milestone all year long. Stay tuned to our website and email newsletters for updates.

- Annual Plans: If you take more than one trip per year, you will probably save money with an annual plan, even if you just come home for the holidays and go back.  An annual plan is a set amount of days that can be used multiple times. If a trip is longer than the annual plan, top-up days may be purchased for the rest of the trip. 

- Book as early as possible: Every year travel insurance companies increase their prices. Luckily you can book travel insurance six months before your departure date. Book in the late summer or early fall to make sure you get the best rates for your trip that leaves in the fall or winter. Be sure to ask how much  you are saving to ensure it is worthwhile to book so early.

-  Book your insurance before an upcoming birthday: Travel insurance plans are priced based on medical conditions, but also on age bands. An age band might be 55-60 on one plan, but it might be 55-59 on another plan for example. Once your age increases, it could mean a big jump in the price of your travel insurance, so book before your birthday.

- Call your utility companies and let them know that you are leaving for a period of time: Some companies may be able to suspend your services so that you won't have to pay for them, or pay less, when you are away for an extended period.

- Early Return Refunds: If you return home early and you have a travel insurance policy that is still inforce for days you are not using, you can should call us, and see if you qualify for an early return refund.

We are on your




We Track your medical history based on the information you provide each time we provide a full consultation to ensure the plan options we recommend work best for your specific situation.

We Educate you in the important matters of travel and medical insurance and shop around for the best option for YOU - we don't sell you travel insurance, we help you buy it.

We Advocate on you behalf when dealing with the insurance companies with claims, refunds and extensions.

We Mitigate your risk of denied claims by recommending the best coverage for you and ensuring you understand the parameters of the plan you've purchased.

CBC's consumer watchdog program, Marketplace, has featured segments about travel insurance in the past. This most recent episode, titled You're Not Covered, looks at some issues that affect people dealing with home, auto and travel insurance.

When stories like the ones described on Marketplace are told in the media, it raises awareness about the importance of using a specialized travel insurance broker who understand the ins and outs of how to navigate the sometimes murky waters that is the travel insurance industry in Canada.

 Watch the episode here

Christmas Eve - Tuesday, December 24: Open from 8:00AM to 1:00PM CST

Christmas Day - Wednesday, December 25: Closed

Boxing Day - Thursday, December 26: Closed

New Years Eve - Tuesday, December 31: Open from 8:00AM to 1:00PM CST

New Years Day - Wednesday, January 1, 2014: Closed

Q. How long have you been with Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers?
A. Since Feb 4th, 2013

Q. What did you do before working at Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers?
A. I was a Western Canada Area Sales Manager for Merit, Travel CUTS & ATC. (with this company for 12 years in total)

Q. What is your favourite thing about working at Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers?
A. the staff, training and management all are wonderful

Q. What is your hometown?
A. Melville, Saskatchewan

Q. What are your hobbies or favourite pastimes?
A. Travel...and being a mom to my 17 month old daugher (Tayvia). Reading and yoga too when I find time.

Q. What is your favourite vacation destination?
A. Tanzania Africa (where I lived and met my husband)

Q. Do you have a positive memorable client moment at Medi-Quote Insurance Brokers?
A. nothing yet

Q. Which of our core values do you identify with the most?
A. Buld a positive Team and Family spirit ---but other choice is Have Fun - Unleash your creativity and be Entrepreneurial (this I believe sets us apart from many other companies out there)

Q. Which of our Value Propositions do you think is most important?
A. Mitigate