Top tips when looking around for the best pet insurance
3 February 2021
Top tips when looking around for the best pet insurance
Insurance can be daunting, and sometimes tricky business. Much like any kind of insurance it’s important to shop around and find the best policy for you, or in this case your pet!
Having insurance makes sure that in the event of any accident or injury to your pet, your cover is enough to provide the right treatment or surgery needed.
DID YOU KNOW? According to the Association of British Insurers, pet insurers pay out £1.2m in claims every day.
You need to consider a few key points before you start your search:
- What is covered as standard?
- Optional extras you might want to consider.
- Cover levels to excess levels ratio.
- Pre-existing conditions of your pet.
- Company reviews and reputation.
- Price point and value for money.
- Claims rates and turnaround time.
Here are our top 10 tips when looking around for the best pet insurance.
- Compare pet insurance providers.
Before you buy the first pet insurance that pops up on Google, do a bit of research and compare different pet insurance providers.
- What is the insurer’s track record?
Make sure you know the insurance company is genuine and has good reviews. British Pet Insurance uses Feefo to gain reviews from genuine customers who have bought a policy, and recently won the 2021 Feefo Gold Trusted Service Award, with a 4.8/5 rating.
- Research what’s included.
Most policies for pets will come ‘as standard’ and may have a few optional extras you can add on. Optional extra’s for pet insurance is great as it means you won’t have to pay for cover you don’t need. British Pet Insurance offers multiple optional extra’s and benefits for your horse, exotic pet, or pet business.
- Choose insurance that works for you and your pet.
Get an idea of what you will need from your insurance and past experiences of trips to the vet. Does your pet get injured often? Or do they have a long-term illness? How much can you afford to put aside each month? Write down everything you need from the insurance and find one that fits best.
- How much will it cost?
So, is cheapest best? With any kind of insurance, you get what you pay for. If your monthly direct debit is cheap, chances are the company isn’t a reputable one. However, there is also a value for money threshold, and after a certain point you are paying for the brand name. Therefore, you should look at what is covered, and what you are getting for your money.
Here’s a little example of the cover to excess ratio:
- Scenario 1: You’re paying £9.70 for £5,000 cover and an excess of £30.
- Scenario 2: You’re paying £9.20 for £1,000 cover with an excess of £130.
Although the second scenario may cost 50p less, you’re worse off if something happens. A top tip to remember is, the higher the cover and the lower the excess, the better value for money you will be getting.
- Insure your pet when they’re young.
It’s very important to insure pets when they are young and healthy, this avoids limited coverage due to pre-existing conditions.
- Discounts and multi-pet policies.
One of the most common misconceptions is that covering 2 or more pets under the same ‘multi-pet policy’ is better that covering separately. However, this can become problematic later down the line. This is because the cover level is per policy, not per pet. For example:
- If both of your pets fall ill and you need to make a claim, the cover level (£5,000 for example) is split between the two. Whereas if you had separate policies, each pet would have £5,000 of claimable pay out.
In the short run, yes, it’s cheaper – but an insurer that values the health and well-being of your pet won’t jeopardise the cover for the sake of a ‘buy one, get one free’ style policy. British Pet Insurance won’t offer multi-pet policies however they will offer you a 10% discount when you insure 2 or more pets.
- Check the policy wording.
It’s a well-known fact that insurance policies can be wordy and will take you a few times of reading it to understand what it really means! That’s why some pet insurers have a key in their policy booklets, this way you can look up the jargon as you go along. British Pet Insurance offers ‘jargon free’ policy booklets. Meaning that even with a key, the wording is specially designed by underwriters that understand the importance of knowing what your policy means, and values documentation that explains insurance in a way that your customers understand.
You must be aware that all insurance companies will have a ‘cooling off period’ at the beginning of cover. This is great if you change your mind on the insurance, meaning you can get your money back and policy cancelled. However, you must be careful and read the small print on how long this ‘cooling off period’ is, because this period is also an ‘injury only period’ – to combat fraudulent behaviour. Most pet insurance providers offer this as 30 days, but British Pet Insurance offers 14 days.
- Claim turnaround.
The whole reason you are getting insurance is so that when the unexpected happens, you don’t have to pay a fortune. So, make sure their claims have a quick turnaround (like British Pet Insurance – 5 days) and they have a high percentage of claims paid.
- Customer service.
Your pet is your best friend, family member and companion. You want the best for them, and so should the pet insurance company. Read their reviews and check out social media and see how they respond with their followers. Perhaps give them a call when you want to take out the insurance to see how well they communicate. British Pet Insurance prides themselves on their customer service – ‘Pet lovers. Some of us are pet owners, but all of us are pet lovers – just like you. This means we aim to provide the very best level of service throughout.’
British Pet Insurance Services offers a range of exotic pet, horse and pet business cover levels, select the level of cover to suit your needs.Get a quote today