What seniors should know before visiting the EU and U.S.

One of the best things about retirement is almost limitless free time to travel. If you’re like many Canadian seniors, you may have plans to head to the sunny Florida Keys or other warm destinations in the U.S. Just as migrating birds move south for the winter, so do many Canadian seniors, or snowbirds, during harsh winters in Canada.

But the U.S. isn’t the only place where Canadian seniors are flocking at all times of the year. While the U.S. and Mexico are the most popular travel destinations for Canadians, several nations in Western Europe are also very popular. And it’s no surprise that The United Kingdom and France hold the top two spots for European countries most visited by Canadians, due to our shared history and traditions, and world-famous destinations in both European nations.

If you’re one of millions of seniors planning to visit the U.S. or E.U. in 2023 and beyond, you’ll want to be aware of new requirements for travelling to the EU, when you need a visa for visiting the EU, and limitations on extended stays in the U.S.

  • Before you book that room in Paris, note that starting in 2024, Canadians will need to register with ETIAS, the European Travel Information and Authorization System, prior to visiting the EU, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Romania.  
  • You don’t need a visa to visit Europe. But visa-free stays for leisure and business are limited to up to 90 days.
  • Canadians must apply for a visa to stay in Europe for more than three months. A visa is also needed to travel for purposes other than business, tourism or transit
  • Croatia was added to the Schengen Zone earlier this year, so EU visa rules also apply to visitors of the Baltic nation.  
  • Be sure not to wear out your welcome. You can stay in the U.S. up to 182 days as a visitor. Any longer than that, you’ll have to pay income tax.
  • Canadian nationals entering the U.S. by air must present either a passport or NEXUS card.
  • If entering the U.S. by land or water, Canadian nationals 16 years or older must present one of the following: a passport, a Trusted Traveler Program card, an Enhanced Driver’s License, a Secure Certificate of Indian Status.

To protect your financial investment and health, you may consider purchasing travel insurance before your next trip to the EU or U.S. It’s important to know your government issued health insurance plan may not fully protect you abroad. Allianz Global Assistance may provide coverage for health emergencies for travellers through its Medical Plan and Medical + Cancellation Plan. If you want the added security, our Medical + Cancellation Plan goes beyond medical coverage with reimbursement of covered expenses if your trip is cancelled or delayed. 

As a world leader in travel protection, we help more than 8 million Canadians annually answer the call of adventure with confidence every year. Let us be there for you too.

Travel insurance is underwritten by CUMIS General Insurance Company, a member of The Co-operators Group of Companies, administered by Allianz Global Assistance, which is a registered business name of AZGA Service Canada Inc.
Travel protected with Allianz Global Assistance
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