Insurance FAQ

Items two through four on this page are dedicated to questions about the University of Illinois System Board of Trustee's International Travel Policy, which took effect August 1, 2019. The full announcement can be found in the Safety Abroad Blog. As an extension of that policy, the University of Illinois System will pay the international insurance fee for faculty and staff who enroll their travel via the insurance enrollment portal.

The university’s international insurance policy covers the cost of medical care to treat COVID-19, monkeypox (MPV), and other infectious diseases. The university has added a quarantine benefit to the policy as well.

Quarantine Benefits

  • The benefit value is a maximum of $2,000 for all covered expenses.
  • It covers quarantine up to 14 days (consecutive or nonconsecutive).
  • This benefit only pays through reimbursement. Travelers must pay first and then request reimbursement with documentation.
  • The quarantine must be required by a recognized government authority, their authorized deputies, or medical examiners.
  • Testing must be ordered and administrated by a provider with written results; at-home tests are not accepted for documentation (proof) of disease

Covered Expenses for Quarantine Include

  • The reasonable expenses incurred for lodging and meals;
  • the cost of a one-way economy airfare ticket to either the Insured Person’s Home Country or to re-join the group; and
  • non-refundable travel arrangements.

NOT Covered

  • Mandatory arrival quarantine. The quarantine benefit will NOT apply to mandatory quarantine upon arrival as a precaution required by the host government. This is a known cost and should be planned for accordingly.
  • Limits. The quarantine will NOT be covered once you exceed 14 days or $2000, whichever happens first.
  • Quarantine based on a traveler’s desire to isolate, it must be recognized by an authorized authority.


  • Quarantine upon suspected exposure and/or symptoms. The benefit will apply to a required precautionary quarantine because of suspected exposure or if the traveler is displaying symptoms.  Any reasonable charge for meals is also covered.
  • Quarantine upon confirmation of aninfection. The quarantine benefit will apply to quarantine if testing positive for COVID-19, monkeypox, etc. This applies to quarantine in a hospital, other government facilities, designated hotels, or special program accommodations set aside for quarantine. Any reasonable charge for meals is also covered.

Other Details

  • Symptoms of the infection must first present themselves after starting the trip. Travelers sick before departure will not be covered for quarantine and should not travel.
  • For any claim, travelers must submit documentation of the requirement to quarantine and receipts or proof for all requested costs. Quarantine must be required by a recognized government authority, their authorized deputies, or medical examiners.
  • Claims must be filed within 90 days of payment. Reimbursement will be paid via check mailed to the traveler’s designated location in the U.S.

Per the Board of Trustees’ new International Travel Policy, faculty and staff are required to enroll when traveling with students or when traveling to high-risk destinations. It is encouraged for all other university-related travel. The University of Illinois System will pay the insurance fee when faculty and staff enroll their university-related travel.

Graduate students participating in university-related activities abroad have been required to enroll in international insurance for years. This policy reinforces that requirement. The change is graduate students must enroll as students (not as staff or faculty). Units can still pay for the international insurance as appropriate using a CFOP or the cost can be billed to the student account.

This policy reinforces that undergraduate students must be enrolled in international insurance if participating in university-activities or programs abroad. If you are participating in a pre-approved program, you will be automatically enrolled. If you are unsure, please contact your college's study abroad office.

No, this initiative does not change the terms, benefits, limitations, and exclusions of the insurance policy. However, students (graduate and undergraduate) and faculty/staff will have different policy numbers.

Procuring visas is the responsibility of the traveler. If the country requires proof of insurance, the Student Verification Letter received in your insurance welcome package can be used to prove insurance coverage. General information about passports and visas is available on the Education Abroad website.

When traveling abroad, healthcare providers may require payment before treatment. Payment is the responsibility of the traveler. Payment may be made in cash, credit card, or as a guarantee of payment (GOP) from the international insurance. To secure a Guarantee of Payment you must contact the international insurance and ask for assistance in the form of a GOP. Please note that some remote locations may not accept a GOP. If a GOP is not accepted, the traveler must pay for medical care up front and seek financial reimbursement later. For the more information on how to seek reimbursement, please visit the Claims for Reimbursement page.

Some education abroad programs may require that students have their program-specific insurance, plus national health insurance. By university policy, students must also purchase the university-approved international insurance. There is no exception to opt out of the university-approved international insurance (Gallagher). The university recognizes the financial implication of having multiple coverages, but each organization has identified their own insurance requirements that must be upheld. Additionally, for us to assist travelers, we must know the policy coverages, exclusions, and how to access the insurance. We do not have that information for partner program insurance. If multiple insurance policies are required, these costs should be reflected in your program budget.

Travelers abroad must maintain their U.S.-based medical insurance during their time abroad. This ensures that travelers have medical insurance should they need to return to the U.S. unexpectedly.

You must maintain your U.S.-based coverage while abroad. However, it can be any policy approved by the Office of Student Health Insurance. The international insurance is separate from the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) and therefore, opting out of SHIP will not interfere with traveler enrollment in the international insurance.

University property is automatically insured, but with a $500,000 deductible. This insurance should not be relied upon for traveling with computers due to the high deductible.

The university offers a Computer Insurance Plan that can cover computers and other electronic equipment. This coverage is not automatic. Colleges, Departments, or units must contact Risk Management if they want to participate in this plan. Visit the Risk Management website for more information.

When traveling abroad, it is important to know whether your medications and supplements are allowed and available in your destination country. Not all medications and supplements that are legal in the U.S. are legal abroad. Please consider the following tips for carrying medication abroad:

  • Call international Insurance (Gallagher) to check on the legality of the medications in your country of destination.
  • If you require large amounts of a medication due to the length of your travel abroad, please contact international Insurance (Gallagher). They can assist in determining how much of a medication you can legally bring into a country, and also help you arrange refills of your medication once in country.

In many cases, yes! Many students with a pre-existing or chronic condition successfully study abroad every year. To mitigate potential challenges, you are encouraged to assess your individual needs early in the study abroad planning process and consult with the appropriate resources (attending health care professional, university DRES representative, and/or family members) to plan for any needed accommodations or support. You must be proactive and advocate for yourself. To help inform your planning, you are required to complete the Study Abroad Health Assessment Form as part of your application.

The International Insurance (Gallagher) will not pay for routine treatment or care associated with pre-existing conditions, with the exception of mental health counseling. However, it will provide coverage up to $10,000 in the event of emergency treatment related to a pre-existing condition.

  • International students are required to purchase the university-approved international insurance (Gallagher) if participating in education abroad, even if they are returning to their home country.
  • International students who have paid for care upfront or with their own money in their home country must use their permanent U.S. address when filing a Claim for Reimbursement or it will be denied due to policy exclusions and limitations.
  • The dates of Coverage for your international insurance (Gallagher) can be found in the document titled “Verification Letter.” This document can be located in your enrollment email from the insurance irovider as an attachment.
  • If there is a discrepancy between the Verification Letter and the program dates, please contact us.
  • The reason for the extension must be associated with an education abroad or university-related requirement. The extension cannot be for personal or leisure travel. If you would like to extend the coverage dates for your international insurance (Gallagher), please email International Safety and Security. In your email please include your Name, UIN, Original Travel Dates, New Travel Dates, and reason for the date change.

Gallagher provides 24/7 travel assistance services. When calling please be ready to provide the following information:

  • Name of caller;
  • Relationship to insured person;
  • Insured’s name, age, sex, and policy number (Student Policy Number: GLM N10893392, Faculty/Staff Policy Number: GLM N14287310);
  • If medical, provide name, location, and telephone number of the hospital;
  • If non-medical, provide the reason you are calling.
  • You can contact Gallagher by phone or email.

Students can review information concerning benefits and assistance in the International Insurance Student Guide (PDF). Students are encouraged to download the mobile guide (PDF) to their smartphone, tablet, or other device before travel. After reviewing the guide, students with remaining questions can contact International Safety and Security.