I am an Italian citizen who has been living in Switzerland for a couple of years. Thus, I have an Italian passport, but my health care is Swiss.

I am planning to go to the US for about 20 days as a tourist. I will visit Texas and maybe a couple of the neighboring states, and I may rent a car. I will not be going to Mexico.

Do I have to take any special precautions regarding health care?

  • 3
    What kind of precautions are you referring to? Travel and health insurance? Safety when out and about?
    – Traveller
    Mar 28, 2023 at 7:49
  • 1
    Maybe ESTA or visa?
    – Willeke
    Mar 28, 2023 at 8:12
  • Hi @Traveller, I am referring especially to health care. Thanks!
    – Dom9301
    Mar 28, 2023 at 8:40
  • Hi @Willeke, I'm going to get the ESTA, yes. Thanks!
    – Dom9301
    Mar 28, 2023 at 8:41
  • 7
    It’s well known that health care costs in the US are exorbitant. You need appropriate travel insurance eg for unexpected medical evacuation or local treatment. What has your own research on the topic so far revealed? What does the Swiss government advice to travellers going to the USA say?
    – Traveller
    Mar 28, 2023 at 9:41

1 Answer 1


You will need an ESTA but otherwise that should be fine.

Healthcare is indeed ridiculously expensive in the US. The easy solution to that problem is to get travel insurance that covers medical expenses while travelling which tends to be fairly cheap.

  1. Check with your current health insurance what they cover for travel and if they offer options or supplements for travel coverage.
  2. Check private providers for your specific dates and travelers online . A quick google search (from a Swiss IP address) should give plenty of options.
  3. Make sure to separately evaluate medical coverage from travel cancellation. Personally I always use medical (which is cheap) but never travel cost (which is expensive)
  4. Read carefully the coverage and exclusions. Insurances do vary quite a bit.

When my daughter lived in Germany but came frequently to the US she got some supplemental medical travel insurance that less than €100/year.

  • Note that some credit cards include more or less extensive travel insurance (including medical costs), check the terms of any you may have.
    – jcaron
    Mar 29, 2023 at 8:18
  • @jcaron Free credit card insurance tends to be quite limited, I definitely would not rely on this alone especially for medical care in the US. Mar 29, 2023 at 10:28
  • @lambshaanxy this varies a LOT between cards. Just checked the Amex/AF levels for instance: Silver: none, Gold: 50K euros, Platinum: 2 million euros. On a Visa Premier at my bank: 155K. So one should definitely check. Also there may be conditions attached.
    – jcaron
    Mar 29, 2023 at 13:06

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