Finding affordable health insurance that fits your needs and budget can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to find one. We’ve done the legwork for you.
Everyone has different health care needs and budget. What works for you may not work for someone else and vice versa. This is one of the main reasons why health insurance companies design their plans at various price levels. Whether you’re an individual who only needs coverage for emergencies or a family of five with many doctor appointments, it’s always a priority to find an affordable health insurance plan that can match your needs.
To find the cheapest health insurance for you and your family, you should start by entering your zip code and other required information at the companies’ websites. You’ll be directed to the available policies in your area and can compare premiums, deductibles, and other out-of-pocket costs and find your best option.
But because we know how hard it is to even begin sorting through the multiple options, we’ve done some legwork for you. We’ve gone through several health insurance companies in the U.S. and we can confidently say that these are the cheapest health insurance companies around.
Cheapest Health Insurance Companies for 2021
The following health insurance companies offer the cheapest health insurance plans for 2021.
Aetna: Best for Employer-Based Plans and Medicare Advantage
A pioneer in the Medicare industry, Aetna has been serving Medicare beneficiaries in the country since 1966. Serving over 9.2 million Medicare members countrywide, Aetna has expanded some of its plans to offer $0 premiums, which makes it one of the cheapest health insurance companies in the country.
An estimated 81% of the Medicare-eligible beneficiaries in the country can now access a $0 monthly premium through the Aetna Medicare Advantage plan. This plan is offered in 27 states and is particularly designed for veterans to boost their VA health care coverage.
Again, Aetna has an excellent reputation as the largest provider of employer-based plans. It provides employer-based health insurance plans in all 50 states, as well as affordable private health insurance plans.
The best part of using Aetna is that it has one of the largest provider networks, so it’s easy to find Aetna-approved doctors and hospitals no matter where you live in the country. It also offers various health insurance plans including HMO, PPO, POS, HDHP, and EPO.
Blue Cross Blue Shield: The Best and Most Affordable Nationwide Coverage
Offering private health insurance in the U.S. and also in over 170 countries, there’s a reason why over 100 million Americans are insured by Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS): it’s quite affordable. To put it into perspective, one in every three Americans is insured by BCBS.
The company also has other health insurance affiliates in over 36 states including Wellmark, Highmark, Hawaii Medical Service, and Anthem Independence to name just but a few. More importantly, over 96% of hospitals and 95% of doctors across the nation are in partnership with BCBS. This means that you can find BCBS-approved doctors and hospitals even in the remotest parts of the country.
BCBS also gives you easier access not just to HSAs but also to FSAs (Flexible Spending Accounts). The FSA account enables you to save money tax-free for health insurance deductibles and other health-related costs.
Cigna: Best for Telehealth Care and International Coverage
If you’re looking for one of the best and most affordable health insurance companies that offer the most flexible out-of-network plans, Cigna should be up in your list of options. This is a health insurance company that serves over 180 million consumers worldwide and even has a product known as Expatriates Insurance!
Rated as a top performer in customer satisfaction, Cigna has one of the lowest complaint rates in the health insurance industry. In addition to the out-of-network plans, it gives you the option of accessing some of the most affordable in-network plans. You can also enjoy numerous benefits including the Cigna Telehealth connection program, flu shot information, home delivery pharmacy, rewards programs, health information helpline, and many more.
Scott & White Health Plan
Offering a variety of cheap, easily accessible, and comprehensive individual and family health insurance plans, Scott & White Health Plan is, without a doubt, one of the cheapest health insurance companies in Texas. It has over 400,000 members in Texas alone, which is a clear testament that it’s among the most affordable health insurance providers.
Having earned “the best in the state” accolade and exceptional reviews from the National Committee for Quality Assurance, you can have peace of mind knowing that this health insurance provider will most likely offer plans that suit your needs and budget.
It offers several plans through its easy-to-use app that keeps your information for faster access whenever you have a doctor or hospital appointment within Texas. The plans are also available in HMO and POS not just to give you the required flexibility but also to make your health insurance plan very affordable.
Humana: Best for Umbrella Coverage
As one of the widely known countrywide health insurance companies that are operating in Texas, Humana is best known for its affordable rates for Medicare plans, as well as individual and family health insurance plans. Normally, many health insurance companies do not cover expenses such as eyeglasses and dental exams. However, Humana goes beyond this norm.
It’s essentially a broad-based health insurance company that offers a wide range of coverage and goes beyond what’s normally covered by other health insurance companies. For example, it offers a variety of plans for people living with chronic conditions with plans that include the transition from a hospital stay to home care and meal delivery.
It also offers special needs coverage for people with disabilities and severe chronic conditions. Better still, this company leads the way in customer satisfaction and its HMO policies are among the cheapest nationwide.
Choosing the Cheapest Health Insurance Plan
Although you now know some of the cheapest health insurance providers, that wouldn’t be enough if you do not know how to choose the cheapest health insurance plan for you. The problem starts when you consider that it’s not just about being cheap; it has to be cheap while perfectly suited for you.
That being said, choosing a health insurance plan that’s affordable and right for you and your family is a huge decision. For this reason, you should focus on these three essential areas:
- Understanding the plans offered under Obamacare
- Cost of each plan, and
- Doctors and hospitals networks available under the plan
Understanding the Insurance Plans Offered Under Obamacare
Under Obamacare, health insurance plans are categorized into metal tiers including Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. There is no much difference in these categories except for how the health insurance provider shares these costs.
Let’s take a brief look.
Bronze – This offers the lowest monthly premium but has one of the highest deductibles. It can be an ideal option if you rarely visit the doctor and only want peace of mind knowing that you’re covered just in case of any medical emergency.
Silver - This plan offers an average monthly premium and a lower deductible than a Bronze plan. You can save a lot with a silver plan, especially if you qualify for various subsidies such as cost-sharing reductions and Advanced Premium Tax Credit. It’s ideal if you have loved ones and never know when medical attention might be required.
Gold – This plan comes with higher monthly premiums but with low deductibles. It’s an ideal option if you anticipate lots of medical care in the coming year. You should make sure that the plan covers all the routine medical care costs.
Platinum – Like the Gold plan, this plan comes with very high monthly premiums but almost zero deductibles. It’s an ideal option if you are anticipating regular visits to the doctor during the year.
Compare the Costs of Each Health Insurance Plan
You now have an idea of the type of Obamacare plan that might suit your healthcare needs. You can now look at the costs of each plan and closely compare the costs of each health insurance plan.
You have to keep in mind that the costs of health insurance plans go beyond the monthly premiums. In addition to the monthly premiums, you have to consider the deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs as they all affect the final cost of your health insurance plan. This makes it a lot easier to get a more accurate estimate of your entire health insurance costs.
You can also find out if you qualify for any subsidies that might help in reducing the costs of healthcare insurance. These are typically financial help and discounts from the government and are meant to help those who are eligible to pay for health care coverage.
Learn More about the Available Networks
As far as plan networks are concerned, you should know your options when it comes to doctors, hospitals, and clinics that are available within your chosen network and whether you can easily access them.
In-network plans may cost less than out-of-network plans. You, however, have to ensure that the in-network providers are conveniently located near you. Let’s briefly highlight the most common network plans.
PPO – Offers reduced costs if you use in-network care providers
HMO – It limits your coverage to doctors, specialists, and hospitals that are under contract with the insurance company. You must have a primary point of contact to take care of all your medical services and have the authority to refer you to see a specialist or other doctors. EPO – It offers a local network of doctors, specialists, and hospitals to choose from. You can, however, receive care outside the network but it won’t be covered. Learn more about these types of network plans.
You should also remember about your dental and vision coverage. You have to keep in mind that not all health insurance providers include dental and vision coverage in your overall health insurance coverage, so you have to make sure that you have this stand-alone coverage.