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      September 23, 2019

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Careington vs Avia Dental

Best Dental Insurance Plans

To help you find the Best Dental Insurance Plans, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Careington and Avia Dental.

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Where can you get the best dental insurance? If you're one of the 74 million Americans who aren't covered by an employer or government plan, chances are you've asked yourself that question recently. One big reason people avoid dental insurance is because those plans can be expensive.

The price for dental insurance can vary depending on where you live, but it's not uncommon for a basic cleaning to cost $100 - and that doesn't include the x-rays, the exam, or the cost of any repair work or fillings the dentist discovers during your visit. Fortunately, you can purchase your own coverage.

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Best Reviews

2019

Dental Insurance Reviews

4 stars
Careington

CAREINGTON Visit Site

Cost:

Plans start at $8.95/month or $89/year

One-time processing fee of $20

Benefits:

No exclusions - anyone can join

Nationwide provider access (minus Vermont and Washington)

Vision and Telemedicine Add-ons available

Plans:

Discount Dental Plans

Careington wants to give you simple and affordable access to discounts on a range of healthcare services, ranging from dental to vision and including unique add-ons like telemedicine access. At the time of our most recent review, this dental discount plan provider was in good standing with the BBB: an A+ rating and accreditation, after being in business for nearly 30 years. (Note: Careington is not available in Washington State or Vermont.)

The site is very easy to use. Enter your zip code to see what Careington plans are available in your area. In our major metro area, these are the options:

  • Careington 500 Dental Savings Plan: the most popular coverage offered by this provider, this plan has premiums of $8.95/month for an individual, $13.95 for two individuals, or $16.95/month for a family of 3 or more. The payment schedule for this plan has a member pay of $34 to $44 for an adult cleaning and $60 to $74 for a filling. You'll also get a 20% discount on orthodontics for both children and adults.
  • Careington Dental Discount Plan: this coverage has the same premiums as the 500 plan. It also gives you a broader network of dentists to choose from, but the downside is that you'll pay more for the services you receive (like $95 for a filling instead of $74, for example).
  • Careington Dental & Vision Discount Plan: premiums for this coverage are $9.95 for one, $14.95 for two, and $17.95 for a family. In addition to the dental discounts described above, you'll also have access to discounts on eye exams, lenses and frames, and LASIK vision correction. The dental discounts aren't as generous on this plan ($60 for the cleaning, $98 for the filling), but that may be offset by the vision discounts (which are administered through VSP's Vision Savings Pass).
  • Careington Dental, Vision, Plus Telemedicine: for premiums ranging from $12.95 for an individual up to $21.95 for a family, you'll get access to discounts on dental and vision services and products. Additionally, you can also access telemedicine through DialCare for non-emergency medical issues and questions when your primary care doctor is unavailable. No need to go in for a visit when a telemedicine doctor can evaluate you remotely and even prescribe an antibiotic or other needed medication. Prescription discounts are also available through this plan.

Exact costs for services depend on where you live and the plan you select. Be sure to use the provider search to make sure there are dentists in your area. In our location, there was a good selection of dentists to choose from, many of which we knew to be reputable and skilled.

All plans require a one-time processing fee of $20. Your coverage begins immediately; if you need service right away, you can get your ID number through the toll-free number for Member Services.

Careington is a great option if you're looking for dental discount plans, and especially if you'd like some affordable extras like telemedicine or vision discounts. This company has a strong reputation, low premiums, and a good network of dentists and other providers.

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2.5 stars
Avia Dental

AVIA DENTAL Visit Site

Cost:

Plans start at $8.25/month or $99/year

$20 processing fee at time of registration

Benefits:

Prescription and Vision discounts included

Acceptance guaranteed

More than 40,000 dental providers

Annual and monthly payment options

Plans:

Discount Dental Plans

Avia Dental Plan has been in business since 1994 and is committed to helping individuals, families, and groups of any size to save money on dental care.

This service works as a discount dental plan and also includes discounts for prescriptions and vision expenses. You can expect to pay $8.25 per month or $99 per year for an individual, $12 per month or $144 per year for two people, and $13.25 per month or $159 per year for a family of 3 or more. All plans include a one-time $20 processing fee.

Avia has one of the lowest fee schedules on the market. This means that you will spend less money for your typical dental services. For example, Avia members will only pay $15 for a periodic oral exam, instead of the $50+ that most dentists charge for cash patients. An adult cleaning is only $35, and a children's cleaning and fluoride treatment costs $46. That could save you a lot of money for your routine care.

If you need something more involved like a root canal, you'll get even bigger savings as an Avia member. A molar root canal can easily cost upwards of $1100 if you're paying out of pocket, but with the Avia discount dental plan you'll only spend $490. That savings would easily pay for your membership with just one procedure.

We had some issues navigating the site. Specifically, when we tried to search for dental plans in our area by zip code, we were taken to a third-party site and told that our IP address disqualified us from their offer. We spoke with a very friendly Avia representative who said that it was a known issue and who walked us through a better route to get the information we needed (click on your state on the map, then click on the blue Sign Up Now button on the right side. Select your state in the dropdown box, and then scroll down past the sign up form to see detailed information about their discount plans in your state).

Unfortunately, despite having more than 40,000 dental providers who accept Avia dental plans, this provider doesn't offer coverage in a long list of states, which may include Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Arkansas, Mississippi, Illinois, Indiana, North and South Carolina, Alaska, Hawaii, Connecticut and Rhode Island.

And, in our major metro area, there were only a few practices that came up as part of Avia's network of dentists. Those offices have a reputation of low-quality service, recommending unnecessary procedures, and not practicing a high standard of care with their patients. None of the dentists with a great reputation in our area were in Avia's network.

For that reason alone, Avia ranks at the bottom of the providers of dental insurance and savings plans in our review: there are just too many prospective customers who won't find what they need on this site, just because of where they live. And, even if Avia is available in your area and seems to be a good way to save money, you'll need to be sure that there's actually a dentist you trust that accepts their plans - otherwise you might wind up with subpar dental care that costs you more in the long run. We recommend that you consider the higher-ranked dental insurance and discount plans in our review.

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Continued from above

When it comes to Dental Insurance, you have two main options: traditional dental insurance or discount dental plans. With dental insurance, it works as you'd imagine you pay a monthly premium, and you may or may not have an annual deductible.

On the other hand, discount dental plans give you access to savings on dental services and are often valid for use from the day you pay for coverage. Many of these dental savings plans have options for further discounts on vision, hearing, prescriptions, and even telemedicine services.

So, what's the advantage of using one over the other? It really depends on what you're looking for. Many people like the security of a traditional dental insurance policy, because they're already familiar with how they work. However, a growing number of consumers are opting for discount dental plans: even though you have to pay at the time of service, the amount you save compared with paying 100% out of pocket can be significant.

No matter which type of dental coverage you need, what should you consider as you choose the right provider and plan for you or your family? Here are several criteria to keep in mind:

  • Type of Plans Available. If you already know you want a discount dental plan or traditional dental insurance, does the site offer it? How many providers are included? Can you choose from a wide range of plans, premium levels, and options?
  • Pricing. What will you pay for your coverage? Do you have the option to pay monthly or annually as you prefer? Will the dental insurance or discount plan save you enough money to justify the premiums and any enrollment fees?
  • Reputation. What do others have to say about their experience using the service and/or the plans provided? Is the company rated by the Better Business Bureau?
  • Support. Many dental insurance websites have licensed agents available to help you with your decision, assist you in completing the enrollment, and so on. How easy is it to get help if you need it?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Dental Insurance and discount dental plans available today. We hope this information helps you find the best coverage for a healthy smile at the right price!

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