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5 Money Hacks to Help You Save on Your Private Health Insurance

5 Money Hacks to Help You Save on Your Private Health Insurance
Megan Fraser
Megan Fraser Updated: 25 March 2021
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There’s no denying that private health insurance is important. Not only could it help you avoid having to pay the Medicare Levy Surcharge (MLS) and Lifetime Health Cover (LHC) loading, but it also ensures that you won’t need to pay out of pocket for treatments and services not covered by Medicare.

However, the upcoming private health insurance premium increase may have left you wondering how to reduce your health costs. Fortunately, there are several tips and tricks which you can use to help you keep your monthly premiums as low as possible. Keep reading to find out more about these money hacks.

5 ways to save on your health insurance

Our top 5 Health insurance hacks to help you save

Take advantage of these money hacks to ensure that you are getting the best deal on your health cover:

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1. Prepay to save on your premiums

Paying your health insurance premiums in advance is a great way to save money. By paying a full year’s premiums in advance, some insurers may offer you a discount on the total amount. Funds like HIF and Australian Unity offer their members a discount of up to 4% for paying premiums annually.
Additionally, by paying your premiums a year in advance, you’ll also be able to lock in your payments at the rate for the previous year. So, if you were to pay the premiums for a full year’s cover before 1 April, you’ll generally be charged the pre-increase fees.
This is a great option that could potentially help you save a significant amount of money. However, it’s important to note that this hack requires a significant amount of financial planning as you need to spend a lot of money upfront.

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2. Sign up during the peak periods

There are typically two peak periods in a year where more people apply for health coverage. As a result, insurers typically offer a range of incentives for applying for health cover at this time, which they may not offer at other times throughout the year.
These peak periods for health insurance for Australians are generally in March and in June. The first peak period in March is related to the upcoming premium increases scheduled for 1 April. The second peak is generally in June before the LHC loading kicks in for 31-year-olds on 1 July.
You’re more likely to get a good deal on your insurance if you apply at this time, as insurers are actively trying to win more business than their competitors. So, they run a host of different sign-up promotions and benefits. Examples of deals you could take advantage of in these periods include gift vouchers, discounts on your premiums and waived waiting periods for Extras. Here’s one example from AIA Health Insurance – if you join by 31 March 2021 on an eligible policy and you can get up to 8 weeks free cover! *T&Cs

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3. Switch things up

There are no rules that say you need to use the same company for your Hospital and Extras policies. Keep an eye on the market, and look for the best deal to suit your requirements. This way, you’ll be able to get the right cover for your requirements at a price that you can afford.
It’s also important to note that your health insurance policy is contract-free. That means that you’ll usually be able to switch insurers at any time. Generally, you’ll be refunded for any premiums you may have paid in advance, and you typically won’t need to serve your waiting periods again. However, this is typically only the case if you switch to a similar policy that offers the same level of cover as your current policy.

price tag

4. Keep an eye on promotions

In preparation for the annual premium increase on 1 April, most insurers offer a host of discounts and promotions. Taking advantage of these special offers could not only help you reduce your premiums, but it could also offer additional value to your policy.
By setting up a direct debit for your premiums, select insurers may offer you a discount of between 1.5% and 4% on your annual premium. Alternatively, you could look for an insurer that offers members discounts or rewards for making healthy lifestyle choices. With AIA Vitality, you could earn a free apple watch by meeting your health goals each month. Or, you could join a fund like myOwn, which offer a discount of up to 5% on your premiums if you are able to maintain a specified fitness level.

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5. Get picky about how you compare

Trying to find the right private health insurance for the cheapest price may feel like an overwhelming task. You could spend hours navigating company websites or tools that claim to help you find the right cover without getting any closer to your goal. This wastes your time and your money as you can’t be sure that you’re getting the best deal out there.
The alternative is to use a service like ComparingExpert. We offer you the opportunity to get the best health insurance quotes without any hassle. You’ll also be able to access a vast library of up-to-date content that’ll help you make the best decision for your requirements. Take advantage of the obligation-free service with expert support along every step of your journey.

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Other easy ways to save on your health insurance premiums

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Before you go for the cheapest option

It’s a great idea to examine your health cover to ensure that you are getting the best value for your money. However, it’s essential to ensure that you are adequately covered for your stage of life. Make sure you carefully weigh the pros and cons so that you have enough health cover when you need it the most.

Frequently asked questions and answers

  • How do you get the most out of private health insurance?

    To make the most of your health insurance, it might be a good idea to check that you have appropriate cover for the stage of life that you’re currently in. If you are a singleton who has just started your first job, you won’t necessarily need cover for pregnancy. You may also want to make sure that you take the necessary steps to earn any rewards that may be built into your policy.
  • Why did my health insurance premium increase?

    Typically, several factors affect health insurance premiums and may cause them to continue rising. These reasons include population growth, rising inflation and cost of living. However, as soon as you’re notified of your April increase, it might be a good time to compare private health insurance funds to ensure your provider still offers you the best price.
  • Will I be able to find cheap health cover after the premium increase?

    Yes, you’ll still be able to find affordable health cover after the 2021 premium increase. The average increase for this year is 2.74%. However, some insurers increases are significantly lower. For instance, Australian Unity Health premiums increase by 1.99%, while HBF is only implementing a 0.94% increase. By looking for additional discounts and rewards, you’ll be able to keep your health cover even more affordable.
  • Is it cheaper to not have health insurance?

    You may be able to cut down on your monthly expenses by foregoing your health insurance policy. However, it might cost you more money later on in your life. If you become ill, you’ll need to pay out-of-pocket for any treatments or services not covered by Medicare. You may also need to pay the LHC loading for each year you did not have cover if you apply for health cover after your 31st birthday.
  • Will you save on the MLS fee by applying for health insurance?

    Yes, you can generally avoid paying the Medicare Levy Surcharge by purchasing a hospital policy from a registered insurer. Sufficient plans have a co-payment equal to or less than $500 for single policies and $1000 for a couple/family policy. It’s also important to note that an Extras only policy won’t exempt from paying the surcharge.

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