Health and Protection in Vancouver



Canada’s efficient and top quality public health and social services are universal to all Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Expats can apply for permanent residency and go on the waiting period to access public services, however, most expats especially those who are not going to stay for longer than 2 years choose to get private insurance instead. Other expats who prefer private insurance choose international plans to get specific expat related services to get the most out of the expat experience and save money in Vancouver. 

Getting Insurance 

British Columbia’s CareCard can be acquired in Vancouver by applying for permanent residency and waiting on a 3 month waitlist. Once you do have the CareCard, however, the health and social service insurance you can get are excellent but are also very limited to local coverage. Most expats in the city prefer to get private international insurance plans for the global coverage which can be transferred in case they move again and also for special customised expat services and benefits such as repatriation and medical evacuation. Aside from limited medical coverage, social services are also limited and cannot cover for property or other general insurance services. 

Vancouver has a large local and international private insurance industry that can offer coverage for everything that the public services cannot. Some of the most prominent international insurance companies in the city are Bridges International Insurance Services and HUB International Insurance Brokers

Importance of Insurance

Vancouver’s public health and social service system are efficient indeed, but as we mentioned, it can be quite limited especially for expats who do not intend to be permanent residents. This gap in public service access cannot be filled by simply setting an emergency savings fund because the cost of medical emergencies, as well as other kinds of accidents and damages, are almost always underestimated. Without the proper insurance coverage, you can risk losing your entire savings and even risk going into debt to pay off the cost of emergencies. Aside from being a safety net, insurance can also help you save money by providing additional services that could cost you a lot of money such as dental care or roadside assistance services. 

Local Insurance in Vancouver 

As a city in British Columbia, Canada, we mentioned earlier that access to public services can be acquired through BC’s CareCard. This will only be available for citizens and permanent residents, and there is a 3 month waiting period for anyone who wishes to apply. If you prefer to get a private insurance plan, check the Insurance Bureau of Canada for guidelines.


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Expat Insurance Services in Canada