Visitors insurance plans fall into essentially two major categories: fixed coverage plans and comprehensive coverage plans. What is covered in fixed vs. comprehensive is essentially the same for most parts. However, how much is covered is what is different in these different types of plans.
Fixed coverage plan:
This type of visitors insurance is much cheaper than comprehensive coverage plans. It is also called a scheduled benefit plan. In such type of insurance plans, you have to first pay the deductible (which can be either once per every sickness/accident or once per policy period), then the plan pays a set maximum amount for every procedure such as $55 for doctor's office visit, $450 for ambulance service, $330 for emergency room visit, so on and so forth. You have to pay any difference beyond that yourself. There is no way to figure out how many percent of actual expenses would be covered in such insurance.
The $50,000 or $100,000 policy maximum
you see is the overall limit for the total of all the scheduled benefits, and it does not mean that all your medical expenses will be completely paid up to $50,000 or $100,000.
Even though prices for such visitors insurance plans are attractive, you should really understand what you are purchasing so that it will meet your expectations in case you need to use it.
If there is no PPO network in a particular fixed coverage plan, you can visit any doctor or hospital you like. You get a health insurance card that has all the information that the provider may need to bill the insurance company directly. Therefore, most providers would do so. However, in case a particular provider declines to do so, you would first need to pay up front and file for reimbursement.
Fixed coverage visitors insurance plans are basic medical insurance plans and don't provide many travel related benefits such as loss of checked luggage.