Why Feather’s private health insurance is a no-brainer for some expats
Many people are familiar with the key aspects of the public insurance versus private insurance debates, but expats are in a unique position, where the usual perks and pitfalls don’t always apply. When you’re an expat in Germany, your unique circumstances mean a whole different ball-game when you’re choosing between public and private insurance, or considering switching.
Feather offers unbiased advice for anyone who would like to talk through their options with a professional. They also offer an easy, fully digital sign-up process in English for private health and statutory health insurance.
If you decide private health insurance is for you, Feather offers one of the most competitive plans on the market
The public versus private insurance debate
Here’s how public and private insurance in Germany weigh up against each other for expats:
Benefits of private health insurance
If you are able to opt for private health insurance (as high earners, self-employed people and civil servants can do), it does offer a number of benefits, namely:
More comprehensive coverage
It’s no secret, when it comes to coverage, that private insurance is superior. Most private plans cover everything that public insurance covers, plus additional extras like more comprehensive dental care, alternative therapies and vision care.
Quicker access to more doctors
In Germany, getting an appointment with a specialist or paediatrician can be tricky, and waiting times can be anything up to a couple of months. If you’re specifically looking for an English-speaking doctor, this process can take even longer, which is stressful if you have a medical concern that you’d prefer to have treated right away. Private health insurance gives you access to a wider network of doctors and quicker appointment times, as some practices only deal with privately-insured patients.
Considerable saving on premiums
Often, you can expect to pay considerably lower premiums for private insurance contributions than you would for public health insurance - whether this is true for you and how much you can save depends on a few factors, which are outlined below.
Public insurance offers good, but standard coverage. No matter who you are or your personal needs, public insurance covers the same range of treatments for every policy holder. With private insurance, however, you can build and tailor your policy around your medical requirements, meaning you pay for what you need (and not for what you don’t).
When is private insurance the right choice for expats?
So, taking all of this into account, you as an expat will benefit the most from taking out of private insurance if:
You sign up when you are fairly young and healthy
Your premiums are calculated based on your age and the current state of your health, so the earlier you sign up for private insurance in Germany, the lower your monthly payments will be.
You don’t have multiple non-working dependents
Unlike with public health insurance, your dependents are not covered for free on a private health insurance policy, so paying for additional family members will increase your monthly premiums. For younger families, it's currently possible to still cover a partner and single child for less than you would contribute for your public insurance premiums, but this outlook changes when there are multiple children or the couple is a little older.
You aren’t planning to retire in Germany
If you stay in Germany for fewer than five years, your premiums will be much lower, as old age savings are excluded from the calculation. If you stay more than five years, but leave the country before retirement age, private insurance is still a good choice, because you don’t need to worry about losing your employer's contribution upon retirement and your monthly contributions increasing.
Everyone’s circumstances are different, so it’s always a good idea to have a consultation with an objective professional who can help you make the decision.
Feather offers free consultations to anyone considering private health insurance. Talking things through with an insurance expert who can advise you based on your personal situation can help you make this decision which - while important - can pay off in many ways. Feather’s insurance team is not biased or incentivised to sell - their commitment is to always offer tailored, honest advice that’s right for you.
Are you an expat considering private insurance? Consider Feather
Making decisions about your insurance can be daunting, especially when you are a little unsure of how things work in Germany. Feather was built with expats in mind, to provide support in a number of ways. Here are a few reasons why private health insurance from Feather is a good choice:
Feather offers one of the most competitive private health insurance plans, up to 15 percent cheaper than other insurers on the German market. So if you decide private insurance is for you, you can maximise your savings even more.
Bigger discounts for short-term residents
Good news for expats - Feather’s premium is even lower if you plan to stay in Germany for fewer than five years. This is because private health insurance providers don’t require you to pay into an old age savings plan to cover your medical needs for the rest of your life, as you won’t be in Germany and using those savings. If you decide to stay longer, you’d simply move to the full private insurance plan that covers old age savings too.
Speedy sign-ups, all in English
Feather provides consultations, quick online sign ups, contracts and claims processing, all in English. If you’re ready to apply, Feather is one of the only insurance partners out there that allows you to sign up online without a mountain of German paperwork, or forcing you to schedule a call.
Book a free consultation with Feather
With Feather, you’ll never have to fight with an insurance provider for your reimbursement, you’ll submit your claims on your Feather dashboard, and they’ll take care of the rest. If you’re ready to sign up for private health insurance with Feather, you can get started on their website. Still trying to figure out if private health insurance is for you? Book a free consultation.