Travel Insurance for the Philippines
Last updated on 07/20/2023
Do I Need Travel Insurance for the Philippines?
The Philippines recently removed the travel health insurance requirement for visitors to the country. Previously unvaccinated travelers needed to purchase mandatory coverage for treatment costs for COVID-19 from a "reputable insurance provider" in order to enter the country. Although coverage is no longer required, we recommend that travelers purchase travel insurance for the Philippines to protect against not only illness or injury but also unforeseen travel mishaps, like weather issues, transportation delays, lost baggage, and more.
Travel delays and transportation service disruptions can happen for many reasons. Most tourists and business professionals heading to the Philippines fly with an airline. In some cases, mechanical problems, inclement weather, and other issues can cause temporary or permanent service disruptions resulting in missed connections, lost time, or even canceled flights altogether. Flying internationally comes with a variety of challenges, so purchasing travel protection for the Philippines is a great way to plan ahead and prepare for disappointing outcomes.
Additionally, airlines sometimes mishandle luggage resulting in lost or damaged personal effects. If you are concerned about any of these scenarios adversely affecting your travel plans, consider purchasing relevant coverage to ensure you are protected. Seasoned travelers tend to choose a comprehensive plan, which often includes typical travel medical coverage as well as several benefits for travel delays, disruptions, and lost baggage. Bundling these coverages together is a great way to maximize benefits without overpaying.
For travelers who want even more coverage and are concerned about having to end their travel plans early or cancel them entirely, we offer trip cancellation and cancel for any reason (CFAR) options. Read about the difference between cancel for any reason plans and trip cancellation as well as the restrictions to see which makes the most sense for your travel needs. InsureMyTrip even offers a convenient eligibility tool to help travelers quickly understand the requirements and limits that apply to CFAR. Comparing different providers, benefits, and coverage levels is the only way to ensure you get the best travel insurance for your Philippines trip.
What are the COVID-19 Testing & Quarantine Requirements for Visiting the Philippines?
According to the Philippine Embassy website, foreign nationals aged 18 or older who have received primary series COVID-19 vaccine and at least one COVID-19 booster shot, foreign nationals aged 12 - 17 who are fully vaccinated with primary series COVID-19 vaccine, and foreign nationals under 12 years old, regardless of vaccination status, accompanied by parent or guardian who have received a complete primary series and one booster shot no longer need to present a pre-departure RT-PCR/ART test. Those who do not belong to any of the mentioned categories must present a negative Reverse Transcription – Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test taken within 48 hours or laboratory-administered antigen/ART test taken 24 hours prior to departure from the country of origin.
Once admitted into the country, fully vaccinated foreign nationals are no longer required to observe mandatory facility quarantine but shall self-monitor for any COVID-19 signs and symptoms for seven days, with Day 1 as the date of arrival in the Philippines. They are required to report to the local government unit (LGU) of their destination should they manifest any symptoms. Failure to fully comply with the conditions set forth shall be denied admission and shall be subject to appropriate exclusion proceedings.
What is Philippines Travel Health Insurance?
Perhaps the most common reason to buy travel insurance for a Philippines trip is to cover the cost of international healthcare. Most domestic health insurers do not extend coverage overseas, so travel medical plans provide the perfect solution for protecting those traveling abroad in the event they become unexpectedly injured or ill. Paying for medical expenses out of pocket at foreign hospitals gets expensive fast, especially if treatment requires medical evacuation. Luckily travel medical plans for international trips are also some of the most affordable plans available, making them them a great choice for travelers of any age.
Does Travel Insurance for the Philippines Cover COVID-19?
On January 21, 2020, COVID-19 became a named event, which affects the available travel insurance coverage for new policies purchased. For those buying travel insurance AFTER 1/21/2020 (exceptions may apply if traveling to a country with a Travel Health Notice issued by the CDC), benefits included in comprehensive plans may apply in the following unforeseen scenarios:
- Emergency Medical Coverage: a sick traveler must see a doctor and/or go to the hospital during a trip.
- Emergency Medical Evacuation Coverage: in rare cases, a sick traveler requires an emergency medical evacuation to the nearest appropriate hospital or back home for recuperation.
- Trip Interruption: an extremely sick traveler cannot continue with a trip and must return home.
- Cancel For Any Reason: if you are looking for trip cancellation coverage because you are concerned about the coronavirus, we recommend a plan that includes Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) coverage since the COVID-19 pandemic is a known event and the travel warnings are foreseen. This benefit is time-sensitive and has other eligibility requirements, so not all travelers will qualify.
Keep in mind that travel insurance helps to cover unexpected events. Similar to a weather event, once an event becomes a "known" event, it may not be a covered reason for cancellation if a traveler purchases insurance after that date. Some plans may also exclude epidemics/pandemics and may not provide coverage for related issues. Please be sure to read the plan details carefully before purchasing.
Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, many traditional travel insurance providers have expanded or adapted their existing coverage for travelers. In addition to the coverages above, examples of these may include:
- Reimbursement for covered medical treatment during your trip due to a COVID-19 illness
- Get sick with COVID-19 and must cancel your trip by physician’s order
- Physician orders a quarantine before your trip
- Lost a job during the coronavirus pandemic by no fault of your own
For travelers concerned with cancellation, Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) offers the most flexibility for trip cancellation and is the only option available to cover fear of travel. CFAR is an optional, time-sensitive benefit with eligibility requirements. Not all travelers will qualify. Full terms of coverage will be listed in the state-specific policy. If eligibility requirements are met, reimbursement is up to 50% - 75% of the insured pre-paid non-refundable trip cost.
Where Can I Get Travel Insurance for a Philippines Trip?
InsureMyTrip makes it easy to compare plans and coverages from many providers all in one place. To get a travel insurance quote for your trip to the Philippines, simply enter your information and trip details into the quote form.
How Much is Travel Insurance to the Philippines?
Most travelers heading to the Pacific want to know how much travel insurance for the Philippines will cost. The overall cost of travel insurance varies based on the ages and number of travelers in your party, how long the trip will last, and the types of coverage purchased. Typically, travelers can expect to pay higher premiums when their travel includes higher risk. For example, a plan covering a multi-month trip will cost more than a week-long getaway to the same destination. Additionally, older travelers, especially those with medical issues or pre-existing conditions may pay more for coverage. In some cases, travelers may be able to insure their total trip cost, which can also affect the final price of the plan.
Travel Tips & Safety for the Philippines
Money & Currency Exchange
The official currency of the Philippines is the Philippine peso (PHP). While in the Philippines, you may see prices denoted by the symbols ₱, P, P$, or PHP. Both coins and color-coded banknotes are exchanged in the Philippines. As a general rule of thumb, it's best to use the largest banknote where you can because it may be hard to break a 1,000 or 500 peso note at smaller businesses or outside a big city. Coins can be kept and used for tipping, paying for transportation, and many other scenarios.
In larger cities, some businesses may accept USD, but this won't always be the case. Credit cards may be used for booking domestic flights or upscale hotel stays, but cash remains king for daily transactions. Some businesses that do accept cards may charge an extra 10% commission when you pay with card. Additionally, ATMs out in public areas may not always be safe to use due to a growing identity theft problem, but banks are a great option to stay on the safe side. Whenever possible, try to use an ATM at a bank in a large city or airport before heading to smaller islands.
Transportation in the Philippines is generally very affordable. Taxi services are common and even when not using meters, the price of a taxi trip is usually a great value. For a unique experience, travelers may opt to try riding a jeepney, an open vehicle similar to Thailand's tuk-tuk. Buses and rental cars are also available in the Philippines, however, due to poor road conditions and crowding, taxis are often more comfortable and convenient. When it comes to long-distance travel within the Philippines, flying is recommended. Domestic flights run between many of the 70+ airports dotting this island nation and are remarkably affordable.
Risk & Crime
Tourist hot spots in the Philippines are generally safe, but they're also where petty crime tends to take place. To avoid becoming a target for pickpocketing or identity theft, it's best to keep your personal items hidden from view and as close to your body as possible. Stay vigilant, stay in bright, public places, and dress modestly whenever possible. Keep an eye out for common scams targeting tourists. Additionally, the U.S. State Department recommends travelers avoid the regions of the Sulu Archipelago, Sulu Sea, and Mindanao due to the risk of crime, terrorism, civil unrest, and kidnapping. For more information, save and refer to the U.S. State Department's complete travel advisory for the Philippines.
Top 10 Travel Destinations in the Philippines
U.S. / Philippines Embassy and Consulate Locations
U.S. Embassy and Consulate in The Philippines
- U.S. Embassy Manila
1201 Roxas Boulevard
Manila, Philippines 1000
- U.S. Consular Agency Cebu
Waterfront Hotel, Lower Ground Floor
6000 Salinas Dr, Lahug
Cebu City, Philippines
Philippine Embassy and Consulate in USA
- Washington DC — Embassy of The Republic of The Philippines
1600 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington DC 20036 United States
Phone: 1.202.467.9300, 1.202.467.9363
- Los Angeles, California — Philippine Consulate General
3435 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 550
Los Angeles, CA 90010 United States
- San Francisco, California — Philippine Consulate General
447 Sutter Street, 6th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94108 United States
- Honolulu, Hawaii — Philippine Consulate General
2433 Pali Highway
Honolulu, HI 96817 United States
Phone: 1.808.595.6316 to 19
- Chicago, Illinois — Philippine Consulate General
122 S. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1600
Chicago, IL 60603 United States
- New York, New York — Philippine Consulate General
556 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10036 United States
- Houston, Texas — Philippine Consulate General
9990 Richmond Avenue, Suite 100N
Houston, TX 77042 United States
- Guam — Philippine Consulate General Agana
590 S. Marine Corps Drive, Suite 601
Tamuning 96913 Guam
Phone: 1.671.646.4620, 1.671.646.4630
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article serves as a general overview of benefits and should only be used for informational purposes. Refer to your individual certificate of insurance for specific coverages, exclusions, and benefits. When in doubt, please contact one of our licensed agents for additional assistance.