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      May 30, 2020

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Petplan vs Nationwide

Best Pet Insurance

To help you find the Best Pet Insurance, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Petplan and Nationwide.

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Who has the Best Pet Insurance? Medical care is rarely cheap - and the same goes for our four-legged friends. While pet owners are grateful for advances in technology and medicine that make it possible to keep their "fur kids" healthy, these procedures and prescriptions often come with a hefty price tag.

Without pet insurance, a simple blood test can cost well over $200. Even a standard yearly checkup can set you back by hundreds of dollars. How's your wallet feeling now? Chances are, you would do almost anything to take care of your beloved pet - but you might find yourself having to make difficult choices, especially if your dog or cat experiences a traumatic injury or life-threatening illness.

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Best Reviews

2020

Pet Insurance Reviews

3 stars
Petplan

PETPLAN

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Cost:

Average of $21.93 to $124.35/month (depending on pet's breed/age/condition)

No enrollment fee

5% discount for signing up online

Petplan has been offering insurance coverage for dogs and cats for more than 14 years. As an "A+" rated, accredited business with the BBB, they've demonstrated that they respond appropriately to customer concerns and are trustworthy in what they provide.

When you're deciding if Petplan is the best insurance for your pet, you can use their handy Claim Calculator to see what you'd pay with various configurations of coverage limits, deductibles/reimbursement levels, and so on. We liked that we could get an idea of what we'd pay in premiums and out-of-pocket before giving them our contact information.

You'll be offered three plan packages to choose from:

  • Basic - this includes $5000 in annual coverage, a deductible of $500, and reimburses you for 80% of the total bill per claim. In our case, this was priced at $38.89/month.
  • Recommended - this level of coverage includes an annual limit of $15,000, a deductible of $300, and 80% reimbursement. For our pet, the monthly costs for this plan was $59.09.
  • Premier - for unlimited yearly coverage, a deductible of $250, and 80% reimbursement, we'd pay $80.15/month for our pet.

You can also use the Customize tool below your three-plan quote, to change your annual limits (anywhere from $2500 to unlimited), deductible ($250 to $1000), or reimbursement percentage (70% to 90%).

Every plan covers imaging, surgery/rehabilitation, prescription medications due to an accident or illness, non-routine veterinarian exam fees, accidents/injuries/illnesses, cancer treatments, and diagnostic treatments. You'll also get 24/7 veterinary assistance through PetCoach, and round-the-clock Petplan customer support.

However, Petplan does not cover wellness care, such as annual visits or vaccinations, because their plans are "designed to give you comprehensive protection against unexpected vet bills for injuries and illnesses". Your pet will also be ineligible for coverage if they have a pre-existing condition.

Despite their solid history at the BBB, customer reviews were mixed overall. We found more than a few people that said Petplan waited months to make a determination on a claim (all while still charging monthly premiums) only to then deny the claim anyway. Others said that they were asked to provide documentation starting from their pet's birth, in order to rule out a pre-existing condition, but their dog was a rescue and didn't have any; their claim was denied.

Given that Petplan's monthly premiums are almost always much higher than competitors with similar coverage, you could be paying a lot of money if you don't pay attention to the particular exclusions.

Petplan is a reputable provider of pet insurance, and we appreciate their strong reputation with the BBB and easy-to-use website. But, it seems that they also put a lot of effort into denying claims and taking a long time to do it. And, if you're looking for any kind of routine/wellness coverage, you won't find it with Petplan.

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3 stars
Nationwide

NATIONWIDE

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Cost:

Plans starting at $16.51/month

Unlimited annual maximum on all plans

Annual deductibles of $100 or $250

Plans available for birds and exotic pets

$2 monthly transaction fee if not paying annually

No enrollment fee

"Nationwide is on your side" - and that includes your pets. Originally selling pet insurance under the Veterinary Pet Insurance brand in 1982, their very first customer was the famous TV collie, Lassie. Since then, Nationwide has covered thousands of pets throughout the US - including birds and exotic animals.

There are a few things you'll notice right away that are different with Nationwide. First, when getting a quote, you'll only be offered two plans: Major Medical and Whole Pet with Wellness. Unlike most companies that let you customize plans based on annual deductibles, coverage limits, and reimbursement percentages, Nationwide reduces your decision-making to whether you want wellness coverage or not. The Whole Pet program reimburses at 90%, while the Major Medical pays based on standard costs, not actual. With both programs, you can use any veterinarian you like.

For a kitten, you can expect to pay $16.51/month for Major Medical - almost four times as much as the lowest-priced competitor plan - or $46.60/month for Whole Pet with Wellness. But, both plans have an unlimited annual maximum, and with $250 and $100 annual deductibles, respectively, those prices are well worth the investment. Even looking at an older, more expensive pet to cover - our 7-year-old dog - we were pleasantly surprised by the rates: $57.66/month for Major Medical and $102.95 for Whole Pet with Wellness.

You'll be asked for fairly detailed medical history/information on your pet when you apply, so be prepared to document any past conditions, diagnoses, or treatments. You'll also be asked to identify your veterinarian - but it's not a problem if yours isn't in the list. (Ours was, along with dozens of others in our area.)

If you're paying for your plan on a monthly basis, you should expect transaction fees of $2/month. Also, your first payment will automatically be for two months of coverage, and your policy won't go into effect until at least 14 days after you apply and make that payment.

Does Nationwide measure up when it comes to pay out on claims? As much as we wanted to love this company for having simple-to-understand pricing with such broad coverage, we were disappointed when we looked at what other people had to say. Their comments were almost entirely negative; in fact, it was hard to find a customer who said that they had no issues at all with their policy. Many people felt they'd gotten a bait-and-switch with conditions and procedures they were told would be covered but in the end were denied. We also found a significant number of complaints saying that unless you provide detailed medical documentation from your veterinarian, Nationwide will deny your claim; some customers never received the request for that paperwork and didn't realize it until their claims were rejected.

Nationwide has a strong reputation for being a quality provider of insurance, across a wide range of policy types. It is largely due to this reputation and to their comprehensive pricing and plans that we give them a three-star rating. However, we advise you to be cautious and thorough with providing your pet's medical history, preferably during the application process - and that you follow up to make sure Nationwide received it before you make a claim, if possible.

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Continued from above

Just like their owners, pets can be protected with pet insurance plans that help ease the financial strain of medical care. Pet insurance has become very popular in the last few years, with dozens of companies offering to help you keep your pet healthy for a long time. But, every pet insurance plan is different with respect to deductibles and fees, covered services, and claims processing.

As you decide which pet insurance company is the best fit for you and your pet, keep in mind the following criteria:

  • Cost. What will you pay for your coverage? Is there a deductible, and is it annual or per incident? Will you pay any enrollment fees?
  • Coverage. What services and procedures are covered in the plan you have selected? Does it cover preventative measures like annual checkups? Are there any noteworthy exclusions? Does the company offer a variety of plans to meet your needs?
  • Reputation. Is the pet insurance provider rated by the Better Business Bureau? What do other customers say about their experience? Are claims paid quickly, or do you have to jump through a lot of hoops to file paperwork? Do many claims get denied? Are the company's customer service representatives knowledgeable and friendly?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Pet Insurance companies available today. We hope this information helps you find the best pet insurance plan for you and your animal companion!

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