Canadian Snowbirds get extra month in the sun with health coverage

Alberta extends time limit for out-of-country coverage to 212 days

Albertans who head south for the winter can now soak up the sun a little longer while they keep health benefits back home.

Snowbirds will be allowed to stay out of the country for up to 212 days — seven months — of the year.

The old limit was 182 days.

The changes are effective immediately and apply to Albertans who have already left for the season.

“This is welcome news for our members who told us they wanted the option to visit other countries for several months at a time, without sacrificing their health care coverage,” said Michael MacKenzie, the Canadian Snowbird Association’s executive director.

The change brings Alberta’s policy in line with British Columbia, Manitoba and Ontario.

Newfoundland and Labrador lets its residents hang on to their health benefits for 240 days out of the country.

Originally published on

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  1. I do believe, We do not get health coverage while we are in Mexico as stated in this article headliner, but we do not lose our Medical Status in Canada.
    Can any one add or confirm?

    1. No you do not get health coverage from the provincial medical system while in Mexico – you would need extended travelers insurance for that. But the rules with each province differ, so it is best to check with the appropriate agency before coming to Mexico.

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