Medical Evacuation Cover

Although experts in mitigating risk, we can never guarantee that things will work out as planned. Being covered for the cost of medical-related expenses is recommended, and mandatory on some trips.


We recommend you are covered for unforeseen medical, repatriation and medical evacuation expenses. In Antarctica you must have medical evacuation cover to the value of US$150,000 and $350,000 if South Pole is on your itinerary.

Keep in mind the following criteria when selecting a policy:

  • nationality and residency
  • age
  • geographic location of activity
  • risk activities (opt for the highest level, sometimes referred to as a sports rider)
  • medical evacuation or search and rescue
  • whether the policy offers insurance or a membership that covers expenses

It is important to understand the distinction between medical evacuation and search and rescue (SAR) cover.

Medical Evacuation Cover (most common)

Search and Rescue Cover

This assumes that your location is known. With modern communications and tracking it is highly likely that your position is known or will be accurately transmitted by your guide.

Your location is not known to rescuers and a search team requires time, resources and capability to find you, all of which are chargeable.

This may only cover you on a final leg of evacuation, eg. from Antarctica airbase to a gateway town such as Punta Arenas and may not cover flights within Antarctica eg. from point of incident to Antarctica airbase. Contact the provider for details.

A SAR policy will cover all flights from point of pickup to city of hospitalisation but always check with provider before purchase.


Providers that may offer cover appropriate to your requirements:

World Trips

IM Global

Travel Guard

World Nomads


GEOS (Garmin)

Global Underwriters

MedJet Assist

American Express Travel Insurance

The French Alpine Club insurance (CAF Club Alpin Francais)

Global Rescue

Some of these providers may not cover Antarctica, South Pole, Greenland or North Pole. Most will cover Svalbard (usually listed as Svalbard-Jan Mayen).

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