How do full-time RVers get health insurance and what is the best health insurance for full-time RVers? Learn how you can get an insurance plan that is right for you.
The big question out there for RVers is, does healthcare exist for us? Most have the opportunity to access healthcare through their state and can even receive benefits from an employer. But what if you work freelance and don't have access to corporate health insurance? What if you travel a lot and having health coverage in only one state is inconvenient? Most current or future nomads leave behind their corporate jobs to take on freelance work and do not have insurance readily available.
Everyone out there hopes they do not get sick, but the reality is that people do get sick and sometimes it is just out of our control. Now more than ever, health has become a big priority and when you need medical assistance, the last thing you want to worry about is how you're going to cover it. Below are steps that you can take to ensure your health and well being while on the road if you need to see a doctor or require medical assistance.
Step 1: Plans, Residency, and All things to Consider
First things first, what do you want out of your healthcare plan? Take into consideration emergencies, underlying conditions you may have, current medications that you may need to acquire and how often you may need to visit a doctor. You will definitely want coverage nationwide and that is not always easy to find in all insurance policies. Healthcare options also depend on residency, so even though you are not living full time in one state this will be needed when purchasing a policy.
Step 2: Establishing State Residency
To establish residency here are a few steps that you may follow. This will vary for each state and these are just recommendations made from personal experience and the experience of some friends. There are three states that are popular amongst full timer Rvers and that includes, Florida, Texas, and South Dakota. All three of these sates do not have income tax and they have low level rates for vehicle registration/car insurance.
The easiest way to deal with this, for most RVers and full-time nomads, is to see if there’s a friend or relative whose home address you can use as your own for the purposes of your driver’s license, mailing address, vehicle and voter’s registration. That way, you officially have an “address” in the state no matter where you actually may be physically. If this is not an option for you, get in contact with the state you currently reside in or wish to to get further detail on the requirements to establish residency.
Once you have your state you will:
Need a driver’s license from that state
Register and insure your vehicle in that state
Register to vote in that state
Acquire your health insurance through that state
Pay income taxes for that state
Step 3: Browsing Health Care Options
Once you have established residency at a state, it is time to browse all health care options available to you. As stated above Florida offers great and affordable benefits to their residents. If this happens to be your established residency Florida Blue, one of the state’s most prominent insurers, offers two types of Florida Blue EPO/PPO plans (Blue Select & Blue Options) which act as EPO in-state, but take advantage of an extensive and highly reputable “Blue Card” network that will function out of state as well, essentially making them PPO out of state. That makes it a great option for full time RV health insurance, and it doesn’t cost as much as you might think.
Affordable Care Act Marketplace is a great way to find an affordable policy that you are able to filter in your needs. Of course after establishing your residency you can come here to narrow down policies that are affordable and appropriate to you. Be sure to filter in "out of state" benefits for your policy so you are covered nationwide.
Rver Insurance Exchange is a group of licensed professional; that specialize in assisting you in choosing the right insurance plan. Most of the agents are Rvers themselves making it easier for them to understand your situation and needs.
If all else fails and you are unsure where to start you can contact an insurance agent in your residing state to help you step by step on what policy will be beneficial to you. You don't want to buy an insurance package that doesn't suit your needs. Be sure you are picking a policy based on your needs and your pocket. Find your happy medium.
If you don't want a full health insurance plan, consider getting a catastrophic plan to cover emergency services. This can be found on both ACA and RVer Insurance Exchange.
Step 4: Choosing the Right Health Insurance Option
Choosing the right health insurance plan is really important because it can help save you hassle and money in the long run. If you don't want to go through the process of getting ACA health insurance, you can opt for private ACA-compliant insurance options. They are sometimes a cheaper alternative, but be sure to check if they really are ACA-compliant, you might get penalized otherwise.
There are also short-term health insurance plans that can be a great option if you're in-between jobs or staying in a different state long-term. You can get these for a duration as little as one month and as much as a year. Telemedicine is also an option if you don't have any serious pre-existing medical condition but want a safety net in case of emergencies. But beware, the monthly cost of telemedicine normally only covers consultation fees.
You Got This
I know this is a lot to take in but to sum it up in a nut shell, establish your residency, pick a plan that suits you, and travel your butt off!! Life doesn't stop just because you are on the road. I know this is a chore on top of all other things needed, but you got this! Stay safe and stay healthy! (P.S always remember to carry road-safety gear with you when you travel)