How to Get Free Medical Cover Abroad

What? I don’t understand, free or subsidised health cover all around the EU? Yes, it’s real and it’s called the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). I have one and you’re probably eligible too if you’re working in the UK. Read on to discover the full eligibility criteria and how to apply.

What is it:

The EHIC lets you access state healthcare in other European countries and Switzerland at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. With the card, you essentially have access the NHS’s of other countries within the European union.

Applying for the EHIC is totally free. Avoid all scams that charge you to apply!


Are you working in the UK and do you have a National Insurance (NI) number? If you answered yes to both, then you’re eligible. Easy.

How to apply:

1. If you’re from the UK:

You can apply online, through the government website here.

2. If you’re not from the UK, like me:

Unfortunately, you cannot apply online, you must apply by post. Don’t let the hassle of going to the post shop to get a stamp stop you from applying. The benefits of having the card far outweigh that hassle.

There are a few ingredients you need to include when applying by post. These are:

  • A filled-out copy of this form
  • A copy of your passport (photo page) and your visa (your right to be in the UK).

Note: Your card will only be valid until the end of your visa.

Important note:

This 100% does not replace the need for comprehensive travel insurance.

More info:

If you would like to read more about the EIHC on official government websites, you can do so here. (Remember if you’re non-UK you will still need to apply by post).

Safe travel guys x


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