Health Fund Sign Up Bonus Report: February 2012
Looking to take out private health insurance soon, but not sure who to join? While it is always important to compare health insurance policies and premiums, other factors may come into play if you are still unable to decide.
Most Australian health funds offer sign up bonuses to persuade you to choose them, and these may make a difference in your health insurance comparison too. Don’t have the time to trawl around to see what is on offer right now? We’ve rounded up some of the best incentives right here so you don’t have to.
Waived waiting periods for extras
You will typically have to serve waiting periods before you can claim with a new health fund. This can be up to a year for some areas of cover, but 2 and 6 month waiting periods are common for extras cover. Join these health funds in February 2012 and usual two and six months waiting periods will be waived:
- BUPA Australia – You will have to take out hospital and extras cover to get this deal. The offer excludes Active Saver cover, which is aimed at young and active people who want affordable hospital and extras cover.
- Australian Health Management (AHM) – The offer excludes ambulance cover, Overseas Student Health Care policies and members joining through iSelect on the First Step package.
- Medibank Private – The offer also includes up to 100% back on opticals.
- NIB – The offer only applies to two month waiting periods. You will have to serve the usual waiting period for all other time frames.
- Health Insurance Fund (HIF) – Again, the offer only applies to two month waiting periods.
- The Hospitals Contribution Fund of Australia (HCF) – Check that your desired extras are included as not all will be. The offer excludes some extras which have a two month waiting period, including psychiatric, rehabilitation and palliative care.
Free cover bonus
Some health funds will offer one month free if you join in February. For BUPA, AHM and Medibank, this applies to the second month. CUA, on the other hand, give the first month free. Check the small print, though, as you will often need to pay premiums by direct debit to be eligible.
HIF are offering 43 free days worth of cover if you sign up now. Once you have paid for your first month of cover, the next 43 days will be free. You need to pay by direct debit for this offer.
Some health funds will give a free gift as a sign up bonus. One example of this is Peoplecare, who offer a free first aid kit if you join them in February. Queensland Country Health Fund are offering a free $150 gift card for use at Lorna Jane if you join before the end of February.
A word of caution
Everyone loves a good deal, but it wouldn’t be sensible to join a health fund purely because of its sign up bonuses. By all means, looks at the incentives, but don’t let them dictate your decision from the start. If you don’t compare health insurance policies in detail, you risk choosing a policy that may not meet your needs. A good bonus has no bearing on whether the private health fund and policy in question are suitable for you, so be sure to do your homework.
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