Erasmus is one of the more popular programs offering the students’ exchange in European countries. The major target group of the program is individual students, but also the entire academic organizations may participate in the exchange.
The paramount objective of this project is to promote equal opportunities and fair access to education for students from various regions in Europe irrespective of their financial standing. Erasmus offers the opportunities for development and obtain new, unique academic experience in many majors and universities, guaranteeing assistance when organizing the stay and partial funding.
What is more, the program has an extensive cultural and social offer ensuring multi-cultural and multi-national integration of young people.
Who may participate in the exchange?
As you can read at https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/, Erasmus+ program can be used by the following people apart from EU member states:
- Members of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) being the members of the European Economic Area (EEC): Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein,
- Acceding countries, candidate countries and potential candidate countries: The Republic of North Macedonia, the Republic of Turkey and the Republic of Serbia,
- Moreover, according to Article 17 of the regulation, entities from other third countries not associated with the program may qualify for activities within Erasmus+ program in duly justified cases. This is possible if those countries act in the interest of the European Union.
Erasmus — what is it worth knowing about it?
Deciding to participate in the students’ exchange within Erasmus+ program, you should prepare for the trip appropriately. Apart from completing any required formalities, including preparing a set of documents or any ongoing formalities at the original university, it is worth ensuring good preparation for the trip so that you do not worry when you are abroad.
Accommodation, learning the new city or minor formal issues, including e.g. semester tickets, registering with libraries or canteens are important aspects of your trip. You will have to obtain the relevant documents in advance, including the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).
Going to Erasmus and EHIC
Although most countries participating in Erasmus program belong to the European Union, the rules concerning free health care are not identical in all of them. As EU member states’ nationals, we may benefit from discounts guaranteed by EHIC.
However, this is not full coverage and the benefits of holding it differ. Choosing a specific destination, you should check the scope in which EHIC will help in case of any problems.
Unfortunately, in most cases the Card ensures foreign tourists free access solely to the basic health care. All the same, it does not protect from more serious expenses generated by the necessary treatment in the case of accidents and unforeseen situations
Hospital stay, specialist examinations, procedures and medications, and even a private visit to a specialist in another country usually mean high costs which we will need to pay ourselves. They are usually very high, in particular for the students whose budget is limited and low.
What policy to choose?
This is why it is worth ensuring extra protection which will safeguard from any unexpected expenses related to the required treatment. As in the everyday life, during the stay abroad for several months we are exposed not only to unforeseen accidents, but also to diseases and other sudden events with severe consequences.
To avoid not only unnecessary problems, but also losing a lot of money, it is worth buying a relevant policy before you leave. The most important components of the policy include:
- Treatment cost insurance — this is probably one of the most important components of every foreign policy, including but not limited to the one covering a longer stay abroad. When you go to study abroad, every sudden disease, injury or accident often entails the need to use the local, unfortunately mostly private, health care. Even more often the consequences of such incidents require not only urgent medical intervention, but also expensive examinations, procedures or even subsequent rehabilitation. The prices of medical services abroad are very high. The total expenses to be paid in connection with hospital stay and treatment may reach even several dozen thousand EUR.
- Assistance — this will enable to obtain fast, basic and free assistance in the case of an accident or another incident. Those are not only practical tips concerning what to do in the case of unforeseen incidents, but also 24h assistance in emergency. The insurance company will offer e.g. medical transport to Poland and free organization of the trip for a family member or carer to the injured one to the tourists holding the assistance package (the insurance covers e.g. the costs of traveling and accommodation). For foreign students, the assistance of an interpreter, legal assistance or the opportunity to consult with the insurance assistant urgently over the phone may turn out helpful.
- Accident insurance — will ensure the reimbursement of costs incurred as a result of the permanent health detriment during the accident to the student. If the injured student dies, it will also ensure the compensation to their family. However, before you buy, ensure the insurance sum is sufficient.
- Third party liability insurance — it should be bought by any student planning to go for a foreign students’ exchange. During such a stay, you can easily become an accidental perpetrator or participant of an accident, the consequences of which may affect not only ourselves but also other students or third parties. Buying a third party liability policy, we will safeguard ourselves from such circumstances, and the insurance will cover any losses and treatment of the injured people who suffer as a result of our activity.
What is more, the policy can be extended with incidents under the influence of alcohols (they are excluded in the standard coverage) and practicing high-risk or extreme sports (e.g. skiing, bungee jumping, balloon flight, high-mountain hiking etc.).
To choose the appropriate policy matching your needs, it is worth comparing several offers of tourist insurance for such a trip. Thanks to that, you can check the coverage of particular policies and learn the guaranteed sums and possible extensions which will increase the sense of safety and allow you to avoid many problems.
Source: insurance comparison site rankomat