The free NHS card all holidaymakers are being warned not to leave the UK without

·2-min read
The GHIC card is free and can be applied for online through the NHS website.
The GHIC card is free and can be applied for online through the NHS website.

For many of us this summer will be the first time we've left the UK in a few years and with Brexit and the pandemic not far behind us, a few things have changed.

One of the key things that's changed for Brits is that the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) has been reinstated as a Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) and every holidaymaker is being urged to get one.

The GHIC card is free and can be applied for online through the NHS website.

READ MORE: Explained: The rules for going abroad on holiday from the UK

I still have my EHIC card, can I use it?

If you still have your EHIC card and it's not expired, then it is still fine to use and you do not need to replace it.

Bournemouth Echo: Travellers are advised to ensure they have adequate travel insurance both in 2020 and beyond Credit: Nick Ansell/PA
Bournemouth Echo: Travellers are advised to ensure they have adequate travel insurance both in 2020 and beyond Credit: Nick Ansell/PA

Travellers are advised to ensure they have adequate travel insurance both in 2020 and beyond Credit: Nick Ansell/PA

What does the GHIC card entitle you to?

An EHIC or GHIC covers state healthcare, not private treatment.

With an EHIC or GHIC you can get emergency or necessary medical care for the same cost as a resident in the country you’re visiting. This means that you can get healthcare at a reduced cost or for free.

In which countries can I use the GHIC card?

You can use the GHIC or EHIC card for free or subsidised healthcare in any of the following countries:

  • an EU country

  • Norway

  • Iceland

  • Liechtenstein

  • Switzerland

Do I still have to get travel insurance if I have a GHIC card?

In short, yes, you must still have travel insurance if you go on holiday and have an EHIC or GHIC card.

The health insurance card does not cover everything, such as mountain rescue or being flown back to the UK (medical repatriation).

Make sure you have both the GHIC and insurance before you travel.

You’ll need to pay in full for treatment if you do not have an EHIC, GHIC or provisional replacement certificate (PRC).

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