When you’re young and in school, health insurance is the last of your worries. But as a college student, it’s important that you have coverage in case of emergencies so you’re not saddled with more debt.
Young adults have the highest uninsured rate of any group; in fact, about 30% of young adults don’t have insurance coverage, leaving them in jeopardy if they face medical bills. The average cost to fix a broken leg is $7,500, while the average cost of a three-day hospital stay is a staggering $30,000. Without health insurance, you’re stuck covering the entire bill on your own.
When you’re in college, you have multiple options to get health insurance, including coverage from your parents’ plan or school-offered insurance. But if you don’t have access to those types of policies, you can get coverage on your own. To help you find the best insurance plan for your needs, we examined 17 health insurance options and companies and evaluated them based on plan cost, coverage options, and provider network. These are our selections for the best insurance plans for college students
The 5 Best Health Insurance for College Students in 2021
- Best Overall: Cigna
- Best for Low-Income Students: Aetna
- Best Short-Term Coverage: Everest
- Best for International Students: IMG
- Best for Convenient Access: School-Offered Insurance
Best Overall: Cigna
Your best option for health insurance as a college student is Cigna because of its coverage options and cost. The majority of Cigna customers receive financial help with their premiums, with more than half paying less than $100 per month.
Best for Low-Income Students: Aetna
If you’re a low-income student, our top pick for health insurance is to purchase a catastrophic insurance policy through Aetna. With Aetna’s catastrophic plans, you’ll get coverage against major emergencies at a low cost.
Best Short-Term Coverage: Everest
If you’re looking for a short-term insurance policy, consider Everest Insurance. With Everest, you aren’t confined within a fixed provider network, and wellness benefits cover preventative care.
Best for International Students: IMG
IMG is our top pick for international students because of its multiple plan options, high maximum limits, and the ability to opt for a low deductible. It also offers maternity coverage and mental health coverage.
Best for Convenient Access: School-Offered Insurance
School-offered insurance plans are our top pick for students who are looking for convenience, affordability, and don’t want to be overwhelmed by options.