People often choose to travel in their free time. Although Spain attracts large numbers of tourists, as Spaniards, we are increasingly choosing to travel abroad more, mainly to other European countries.
Being part of the European Union is a big asset in this regard, as it means you don't have to exchange money or cross borders, which often entails numerous bureaucratic obstacles such as requesting a visa, having to use your passport, etc.
Another benefit of being a member of the European Union is the option to apply for a European Health Insurance Card.
Having an accident that affects your health could ruin your holidays. Therefore, it's essential that you take out adequate health cover every time you travel, irrespective of destination. You can apply for a European Health Insurance Card if your destination is within the European Union, (Germany, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Denmark, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Romania, Sweden), the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway) or Switzerland.
The European Health Insurance Card gives us the same coverage as any insured person in our country of destination on our temporary trips. Therefore, if you need treatment, you can visit a doctor just like any other resident of the country you're in, with the same rights and obligations.
There are several ways to get a European Health Insurance Card. We can request it online using the Social Security E-Office, or in person by going to any Social Security Assistance and Information Centre.
Within a period of ten days, your European Health Insurance Card will be sent to the address you indicate during the application process or, failing this, to the address registered on the Social Security database.
The validity of the card will be indicated on it and it may not be used to undergo a specific treatment in a member state other than your own country of residence or to access health care if you relocate to another country within the European Union.