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      November 20, 2019

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Careington vs Dental Save

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 Dental Save.

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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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3.5 stars
Dental Save

DENTAL SAVE Visit Site

Cost:

Plans start at $9.99 per month or $99 per year

NO activation fee on yearly plans; $20 activation fee on monthly plans

Benefits:

Prescription, Vision and Hearing Discounts included

50,000 dental locations through Dental Save and Careington networks

No waiting period: discounts are effective from day one of membership

Plans:

Discount Dental Plans

Dental Save is a discount dental plan that "works like a wholesale price club for dental care", giving members access to discounts up to 50% on all dental procedures in their network.

Most of the providers included in the Dental Save plans use the Careington network, so we encourage you to read our review on that company and determine if it would make more sense to go directly through Careington or to use Dental Save for its other benefits. Some of these extras that are included are Hearing; Vision and Prescription discounts are included in both Dental Save and Careington plans.

Pricing with Dental Save is straightforward. On the main Pricing page, it's easy to toggle between yearly and monthly plans. Here's what you can expect to pay for this dental care discount program:

  • Individual: $99/year or $9.99/month + $20 activation fee
  • Dual: $165/year or $14.95/month + $20 activation fee
  • Family: $199/year or $17.95/month + $20 activation fee

When we visited the Dental Save website, we got a pop-up offering us a discount of 15% on our plan subscription if we entered our email address.

Figuring out what you'd pay for service can be time-consuming. Once you have a list of providers in your area, you can see the network in which they participate and the fee schedule used by their office. Almost every single in-network dentist in our major metro area used the Careington POS network with a CI-4 fee schedule. If you're scratching your head, wondering what a CI-4 fee schedule is, you're not alone. We had to go to the Careington site and pull up a PDF of prices.

Here's what we found there. A preventative visit like cleaning (for an adult) would cost $55, while fillings would be somewhere between $84 and $92. How much would those cost out-of-pocket at your dentist's office? In our area, the average cost for the cleaning alone would easily be $100. So, for a family of 6, you could spend $600 for those cleanings, or pay the $200/year in Dental Save premiums and $330 for the cleanings. That saves you a total of $70, just on cleanings. You'll save more if you need fillings or more extensive procedures.

We found a few stray typos on the Dental Save site that made this service feel less experienced and professional than some of their competitors. ("Countinue whitout 50% off" and "Lear More" on a pop-up, for example. We also got a chuckle out of an image used on the Fee Schedules page that showed a charge for a "temporary feeling" instead of "filling")

On a positive note, the company has been in business for nearly 40 years and had an "A+" rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau at the time of our review. Better yet, there were absolutely no complaints registered with the BBB regarding this dental care discount program. That's a big part of the reason behind our 3.5-star rating for this dental discount plan: despite the typos and the fact that they primarily offer Careington plans that can be purchased directly, this company has a good reputation for customer service.

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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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