Choosing an expatriate healthcare plan can offer more security than country-specific cover, according to Norwich Union Healthcare.
Tailored expatriate cover also carries more protection than some of the deals offered in certain European countries, the insurer suggests.
As well as facing an initial language barrier, Britons who purchase local cover plans may not receive help in another country and could face a cap on how much help is given by health insurance providers.
"Whereas if you were to buy an expatriate plan, generally expatriate plans have a number of geographic regions of cover. So, for instance, Spain would fall typically within the European region of cover so you would be able to go elsewhere in Europe rather than being limited to just your country of residence." explains Martin Banks, Head of International at Norwich Union Healthcare.
An expatriate plan can be beneficial to retirees, who could be more likely to need treatment.
International health insurance: News update: July 2007