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Where you can use your card

There are 2 types of cards available for healthcare cover when you’re travelling abroad. You can apply for either: 

  • a UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC)
  • a UK European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

These both provide the same cover, but the countries they are valid in can change.

If you need temporary cover for emergency treatment abroad and do not have one of these cards, you can apply for a Provisional Replacement Certificate (PRC). A PRC gives you the same cover as a UK GHIC or UK EHIC would entitle you to, but you cannot apply for this in advance.

Countries where you can use each card

Country UK GHIC UK EHIC
European Union (EU) countries Yes Yes
Iceland No Yes
Liechtenstein No Yes
Norway No Yes
Switzerland Yes (in certain circumstances, see Using your card in Switzerland) Yes (in certain circumstances, see Using your card in Switzerland)

For more information on what is covered in the country you're visiting, check the guidance on the GOV.UK website

A UK EHIC or UK GHIC is not a substitute for travel insurance. It may not cover all health costs and never covers repatriation costs. Make sure you have travel insurance as well as a UK EHIC or UK GHIC.

Which countries are in the EU

The EU countries are:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Republic of Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden

Using your card in Switzerland

You can only use your card in Switzerland if you're a:

  • UK national
  • Swiss national
  • citizen of an EU country
  • refugee
  • stateless person
  • family member, dependant, or survivor of someone who holds one of these nationalities or statuses

You may be asked for proof of your nationality or your status when using your card in Switzerland.

Information for overseas students

If you’re a student studying in the EU or Switzerland:

  • both a UK GHIC and a new UK EHIC will cover you for necessary state-provided healthcare within the EU and Switzerland, including your country of study
  • you will not be able to use either card for treatment in Iceland, Liechtenstein, or Norway

If you’re a student studying in Iceland, Liechtenstein, or Norway:

  • a new UK EHIC will cover you for necessary state-provided healthcare in your country of study and when visiting EU countries or Switzerland
  • a UK GHIC will cover you for necessary state-provided healthcare when visiting the EU or Switzerland - you will not be able to use your card for treatment in your country of study

If you’re a national of a European Economic Area (EEA) country and lived in the UK before 31 December 2020, a UK EHIC will cover necessary state-funded healthcare in all EEA countries.