European Health Insurance Card

Understand more about the EHIC in conjunction with your ski insurance policy. Don't confuse the EHIC, it wont cover all your medical needs whilst skiing, read more and ensure that you are well covered before you hit those slopes.


Since the start of January 2006, the E111 has been deprecated in favour of the EHIC - European Health Insurance Card. The EHIC is a useful addition to sit alongside your comprehensive policy and it is free of charge - but don't think you can rely on just the EHIC for your ski break.

What is the EHIC?

The European Health Insurance Card provides the holder with free or reduced price medical treatment if you are unlucky enough to fall ill in the EU. Simple to use, if you need to go to a hospital (not private hospitals).The cards are simple to use. Simply show your EHIC to local health officials at the hospital and you should be treated for free.

The EHIC may also cover treatment for certain pre-existing illnesses like diabetes or maternity care - you will simply need to check and pre-arrange this to be covered. Carrying the card is the best route you have to ensuring you do not get a sizeable, retrospective, bill from the hospital that treated your injuries.

Are there restrictions to the EHIC?

As such the only restrictions are :

  • The EHIC is for EU treaty countries - in Switzerland for example the EHIC is worthless - the ski countries covered are:

    Austria, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania,Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden
  • The EHIC does not cover repatriation costs - you need proper ski insurance
  • It does not work for private hospitals. This can cause problems especially when you are carted off in a private ambulance or helicopter!

More information

For more information why not go to Department of Health or the dedicated EHIC website where you can apply online or call the partner helpline on 0845 606 2030.

Our advice

The EHIC is a great backup for minor injuries but is not a substitute for ski insurance. Therefore, for the small policy fee (typically around £30 for a week in Europe) you would be mad to skimp and save and assume you won't have an accident.


Get a Ski Insurance Quote


By Will Smith



Find resort guides, guides & tips

Select your areas of interest