Are you aged between 18 to 29 and keen to access hospital cover at a discounted price?

Well, you could enjoy a discount on your hospital policy premiums – a discount that could apply until you hit your 40s!

Friends celebrating at sundown

What’s this discount all about?

This discount is known as the age-based discount. It forms part of the Australian Government’s private health insurance reforms and is available for eligible hospital policies held by Aussies aged 18 to 29 as of 1 April 2019.

Check out which discounts are available, and what these savings could mean for you:

DiscountAgeDiscount on a $1,500 hospital policy
10%18-25$150… or a night away
8%26$120… or a fancy dinner for two
6%27$90… or a new pair of shoes
4%28$60… or a tank of petrol
2%29$30… or a movie and popcorn
Source: Department of Health (2019)

So, if you’re paying roughly $1,500 a year for hospital cover, you’d save up to $150 each year – a percentage discount that you’d enjoy every year until you turn 41! At this age, it’ll start to decrease two per cent per year until it’s no longer available to you.

Keep in mind: you need to hold continuous cover in order to enjoy the discount, which means you can’t have any gaps in your cover or you might lose it.

The discount’s ultimate goal is to help make health insurance more affordable for young Aussies, encouraging them to take out cover earlier in their lives.

Okay…what’s the catch?

Age-based discounts are optional for health funds, meaning insurers can choose whether or not they offer them to customers. This means if you have hospital cover, there’s a chance your current insurer might not offer the age-based discount on your product.

You also won’t be able to receive the discount if you’re listed under your parents’ health insurance policy. You’ll need to have your own policy – or a couples policy with your partner – to be eligible.

So, how could I get the age-based discount?

    • Aged between 18 and 25? You can enjoy a 10% discount if you take out a policy where the fund has elected to offer the age-based discount.
    • Aged between 25 and 29? Your discount will be smaller (two per cent less for each year you take out cover after you’re 25).
    • Aged 30 years or older? When you take out a health insurance policy, you won’t be eligible for a discount. Sorry!

However, taking out cover before the 1st of July following your 31st birthday could still save you from incurring Lifetime Health Cover loading, which makes your hospital insurance premiums more expensive if you take out cover later on.

Are you within the eligible age-range? Compare your health insurance with us to find a policy with benefits you’ll actually use – at an affordable price. It only takes minutes!

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Frequently asked questions

Can you tell me more about how the age-based discount works?

If you hold an eligible hospital policy on 1 April 2019, your discount is based on your age at this date. Otherwise, your discount applies to the age you are when you purchase or renew an eligible policy after 1 April 2019. You’ll then receive that same percentage discount until you turn 41, so long as you stay on the same policy.

If you move to another policy with your current insurer or a different insurer, you may lose this discount, as it is linked to specific products.

From the age of 41, your discount rate will begin to decline by two per cent every year until it reaches zero and is no longer applicable.

For example, say you took out a hospital policy at the age of 27 and received a six per cent health insurance discount. This discount will drop to four per cent when you turn 41 years old, a two per cent discount at 42, and will no longer apply once you turn 43.

Be aware that the age-based discount only applies to policies that include hospital cover. Policies that only cover care and treatment outside of hospital, known as extras cover, will not attract the age-based discount.

Also, if an insurer does offer age-based discounts on a certain policy, they must also provide the discount to everyone else who has the same policy that is of an eligible age as at the 1st April; this includes both new and existing policyholders.

What if my health fund doesn’t offer an age-based discount?

With the private health insurance reforms coming into effect, it’s important you go over your policy to understand how these changes will impact you. If you are aged between 18 and 29, it’s worth checking to see if your health fund will apply an age-based discount to your cover.

If your insurer doesn’t offer the age-based discount, it’s important to find out which other funds will. Along with cover that suits your specific healthcare needs, the discount may also help ensure you’re on the most cost-effective policy, now and into the future. However, there may still be other policies without the discount that are more suitable for you and your budget.

I’m the right age and already have health insurance. Will I receive a discount?

If your health fund offers the age-based discount on your policy, you’ll automatically receive the discount based on your age when the discount takes effect (e.g. from 1 April 2019). Your discount does not take into account the age you were when you first took out health insurance.

For example, if you took out hospital insurance when you were 25 but will be 28 when the discount takes effect, you’ll receive a four per cent discount on your premiums, not a 10% discount.

What happens if I cancel my policy and take out cover later?

If you move from a policy that has an age-based discount and you’ve had a gap in cover before you take out another with the same health fund – or you move to another health fund offering the discount – before you turn 30, you’ll receive the discount based on your current age. The gap in cover means you may lose your original discount.

Wait, so I can keep my discount if I change my health fund or policy?

Some health funds may offer a retained age-based discount, which means your original discount will apply if you switch to an eligible policy. As such, be sure you confirm with the health fund whether or not you will receive a discount before you switch.

How does the age-based discount work on a couples or family policy?

If you and your partner are both eligible and have a couples or family policy that offers a discount, this discount will be calculated as an average of both your applicable discounts.

For example, if you have a two per cent discount and your partner has a six per cent discount, it will balance out to a four per cent discount off your couples or family policy premiums.

So, what are you waiting for?

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Or call us on 1800 304 709