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Petplan - don't just continue the free cover

(18 Posts)
Elphame Fri 29-Sep-17 20:00:09

Just checked the premium if I was to continue my free, vet arranged, 4 week cover with Petplan.

It's £3 a month more than if I just took out a new plan with them! Over a (say) 12 year policy that adds up to a fair amount.

BiteyShark Fri 29-Sep-17 20:02:31

Does the continuation mean you don’t have the issue where you aren’t covered for health issues for the first two weeks when you take out a new policy?

Elphame Fri 29-Sep-17 20:52:34

That's true but for a healthy young pup it's a risk I'd take but they've now agreed to price match the online quote so I've potentially saved quite a lot of money by not clicking on continue cover!

I'm already double insured as pup came with Kennel Club cover which is far better value than the continuation policy.

Still not sure which insurer I'm going to use

BiteyShark Fri 29-Sep-17 20:54:53

Mine came with free kennel club cover but I had already decided to go with pet plan so started with a new policy so never came across that issue but good that they price matched it.

Are the t&cs the same for the same cover?

WeAllHaveWings Fri 29-Sep-17 20:56:23

The £3 discount will only be for your first year, not every year for 12 years. We had the same 1st year discount 3 years ago.

Elphame Fri 29-Sep-17 21:46:01

Ah then that makes the decision for me then Wings - I can get an extra £3,500 of cover for £1.50 more a month and I get 4 months half price cover too.

Bitey Are the t&cs the same for the same cover? I have no idea. It was like getting blood from a stone to even get the level of cover and the continuation premium out of them. After the 20 minutes it took to extract that basic information I was rather losing the will to live.

WeAllHaveWings Fri 29-Sep-17 22:20:19

All companies will increase your premiums every year as your dog ages. Our petplan insurance is now over £500 a year for a 4 year old Labrador, I fully expect it to be double that by the time he's elderly. but my claims will be in excess of £3k this year alone and he'll probably have ongoing issues so worth it. Petplan does not increase your premiums if you claim and most vets accept direct payments from them. My vets was very pleased we were with them as they never have any problems with claims.

Based on my experiences I would recommend petplan, but I don't have experience of others to not recommend them, the main thing to watch out is once you are insured it is difficult to change insurer or increase your cover once you have any hint of a pre existing condition.

BiteyShark Sat 30-Sep-17 05:51:33

I was trying to remeber why I didn’t go with KC insurance in the end as on paper they looked very good at the time. I think I saw somewhere about having to pay a percentage of vets fees along with the excess when the dog gets over a certain age and putting in a quote for a 6 year old dog it does come up with £95 excess but also 10% vet fees. As I was taking a life cover which makes it more tricky to swop I didn’t want to be tied to that as I wanted a know excess and nothing on top.

Elphame Sat 30-Sep-17 09:41:14

All insurers increase the premiums each year - I'm really not wanting to use Petplan now. They've left a very sour taste in my mouth.

I'll be shopping around each year as long as I can. Obviously if Elfpup does develop some sort of chronic condition then I'll be trapped but until then I'm happy to play the insurers at their own game.

Self insurance is also still on the table - I still have a month of the KC cover left before I need to make a decision.

Frouby Sat 30-Sep-17 09:50:36

Pet insurance is getting ridiculously expensive. I have a horse and a dog (whippet) insured and keep looking around.

Dog is with kennel club on a life time policy and its nearly £40 per month. Never claimed on it in 6 years. Horses is £32 a month but not a life policy so subject to exclusions following a claim.

I am currently paying £40 a month into a savings account and when it is up to 5k I will cancel horse insurance as that is the maximum claim. Doesn't help if you get 2 big claims in 1 year but it's there.

For the dog insurance I keep an eye on a new provider called Used By Many I think it is. It's about 1/3 of the price of most of the big names but it's a new provider so waiting to see how it is reviewed.

I also think how much you are willing to pay depends on how much treatment you are willing to have. For me horse would never have a colic operation for instance. Or any major surgery. Dog won't have life prolonging treatment for cancer etc.

Shambolical1 Sat 30-Sep-17 14:29:39

I've become very disillusioned with PetPlan.

In the beginning they were a fair and knowledgeable specialist insurer. Now they are a mere department of a general insurance organisation underwritten by a foreign corporation and their 'customer service' department are just call centre people, one of whom tried to inform me that the spine is a limb.

It is almost guaranteed - if you need to make a claim - that they will lose, or 'not get' the documentation they ask for, even when it is sent multiple times by multiple methods by you and/or your vet. They even state on their website 'if you haven't heard from us in two weeks, send your documentation again'. They are lazy about returning calls and emails and different members of their 'customer service' department will give you information which will be directly contradicted by the next person you speak to. You are often spoken to in tones of guarded suspicion, as if the customer service person is a one-man fraud prevention officer.

They are expensive, and milking the reputation they once had.

After twice sending me renewal notices ('We hope you and <ddog> are well...') weeks after being advised of the deaths of past dogs (ten years apart) and causing me six months of needless stress last year, they won't be getting my custom again.

It pains me that they are viewed as the gold standard of pet insurance.

CornflakeHomunculus Sat 30-Sep-17 14:58:44

Another thing to look out for when considering changing insurance is that several very popular companies who are all underwritten by RSA have introduced a "Preferred Referral Network". This is a list of specialists who are the only specialists you can take your dog to without paying an extra fee (which I think is £200) on top of your normal excess. There currently aren't that many specialists on the list (currently only 58 across the whole of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) and obviously it's a gamble as to whether the specialist you'd choose to see, whether because of their location or because they're the best person for the job, is on the list or you'd have to pay extra to see them.

I think currently it's only More Than and Tesco who use the scheme but RSA underwrites several other companies (M&J, John Lewis, Argo and Homebase) who they may be rolling it out to at some point.

missbattenburg Mon 09-Oct-17 20:04:17

Just thought I'd add that not ALL insurance companies increase premiums as the dog ages... BoughtByMany have a plan that remains the same price throughout the life of the dog so long as s/he is under 2 years old when you start...

missbattenburg Mon 09-Oct-17 20:06:15

In case it helps get an idea of prices, I insure a springer dog for £29 a month through the BoughtByMany scheme

BLUEsNewSpringWatch Mon 09-Oct-17 23:00:28

miss does that mean the price won't alter for anything (claims, long term conditions, moving to a different area, etc) and it's a proper life time policy so they won't restrict coverage after a claim or when there is a long term condition?

missbattenburg Mon 09-Oct-17 23:32:59

"Pet insurance premiums that will never increase, even if you claim

No price increase Your pet insurance premium will never increase at renewal, whether you claim or not. What you pay now for a dog aged one will be the same as when it is 10, 20 or even 30!

£20,000 of cover For a fixed monthly price you get £7,000 of vet fee cover per condition and up to £20,000 in total claims during your pet's life.

Comprehensive cover Vet fee cover includes complementary therapies and up to six months of behavioural treatments, and you get £2m of liability insurance as standard."

Elphame Tue 10-Oct-17 00:19:06

Just reading the small print of Bought By Many. Don't like the fixed cap of £7000 per illness. You could go through that very very fast if the pet gets a chronic illness.

I'm also not liking the fact you have to join and give access to your social media before they'll even quote.

Still very undecided but Kennel Club with a high excess is looking the most likely.

pigsDOfly Tue 10-Oct-17 00:26:42

That's interesting what you're saying about PetPlan Shambolical. I was really pleased with them as a company when I first joined them over six years ago.

The last couple of claims I've made the paperwork has gone missing and had to be sent numerous times. As a consequence it took them about 2.5 months to send me the last payment; received a cheque, when I've rung them several times to tell them that as I pay by DD I want it to go straight into my bank account, clearly they're not listening.

Also my premiums shot up this year. But I'm stuck with them as dog has an on going condition. Not happy with them though.

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