How to pay less for german health insurance
German health insurance is pretty expensive. Especially the PUBLIC health insurance with the increased costs of 2023. 😱 Everyone in Germany can lower their health insurance costs (in public & in private) by switching to a health insurance plan with a deductible.
- You can pay less for Germany health insurance through the following levers: Choosing a deductible or a cashback.
- A deductible describes the medical costs you have to pay before your health insurance will cover the payments.
- Cashback is a payment you can receive from your health insurance company at the end of an insurance year as a premium.
- Health insurance depends on the individual case. This means that different plans can be considered for each person.
Introduction: Cost of health insurance
Health insurance premiums in Germany are quite expensive. As a publicly insured person, you pay 14.6% plus an additional contribution of on average 1.6% of your monthly gross income. You can read the exact contributions here. In contrast, as a privately insured person, you pay an individual monthly contribution. Read more about private health insurance here.
Even though both health insurance systems are different, you can reduce your contributions by using partly the same utilities. The following two things are available for both:
- Adding a deductible to your health insurance
- Receiving a cashback from your health insurance
Although you can pay less for German health insurance contributions by the same means, both systems work differently. How exactly you can reduce your contributions to public or private health insurance, you will learn in this article.
How to Pay less for German public health insurance
Since public health insurance in Germany is very closely tied to the state, it is largely regulated. Hence, you have little flexibility to reduce your health insurance costs. Nevertheless, most public health insurance companies offer different plans. Thus, to reduce your costs, you need to switch to a health insurance plan that either includes a deductible or a cashback. But what does that mean exactly?
- Deductible for public health insurance: A deductible describes the medical costs you have to pay before your health insurance will cover the payments. So if you choose a deductible, it means that you have to pay part of your medical bills yourself. Accordingly, a deductible only makes sense if you have few, if any, annual medical bills. In other words, if you are healthy. Thus, if you have a deductible of 400€, you will have to pay this 400€ before your health insurance will pay. This type of premium reduction will directly affect your monthly premium. The second option won’t affect it directly.
- Cashback from public health insurance: Unlike the deductible, cashback does not directly affect health insurance premiums. In fact, cashback is a payment that you can receive from your health insurance company as a premium at the end of an insurance year. You will only receive this if you use your health insurance on a limited basis. This means concretely, only for treatments that are excluded from the cashback. You can read more about public health insurance cashback here.
Some insurance companies also offer combination plans. These include both a deductible and a cashback. With such a plan, you can reduce your monthly costs while receiving a cashback at the end of the insurance year. However, combination plans usually get an intermediate value, between the highest possible deductible and the highest possible cashback. The maximum cashback you can receive is 600€ while the maximum deductible you can choose is 1.000€.
It is important to note that these plans are not suitable for everyone. Thus, if you have to pay your entire deductible, it will not have any added value. The same applies to cashback if you have too many medical bills during the year. Additionally, it should be mentioned that these add-ons will not make a significant difference. This is only the case for privately insured people, but more on that below.
How to Pay less for German private health insurance
Private health insurance works a little differently than public health insurance. Here, the state is not involved, which leads to much more flexibility. In private health insurance, you can choose your own coverage, deductible, cashback, and sick leave money. This enables you to change your insurance premium and also reduce it. But beware, it is not recommended to lower your premium by decreasing your coverage or sick leave money. However, let’s first look at the points that you can change:
- Deductible for private health insurance: In private health insurance, you can also opt for a deductible. This can be up to 5.000€ in private health insurance. You can choose between two models. The deductible, where you pay the costs up to the selected amount, or a deductible, where you pay a part of all upcoming costs yourself. For example, if you need medication, you would have to pay 10€ of the bill. If you go to the doctor 20€ deductible each. This adds up to a maximum amount of the chosen deductible.
- Cashback from private health insurance: The cashback in the private health insurance can you also only get if you use your health insurance conditionally. However, in contrast to public health insurance, the cashback is much higher. In private health insurance, you can easily get several hundred euros, up to a few thousand euros back. How exactly this works and how much to get can you read here.
These two methods are very suitable if you want to pay less for your German health insurance. Especially with the cashback, you can get, you can easily get a third of the cost back. If you want to learn more about deductibles and cashback, you can schedule a free consultation here.
How much money can you save by switching from public health insurance to private health insurance? Let’s find out together.
Conclusion: How should you reduce your health insurance
For health insurance in Germany, these are the two essential parts to reduce your costs. While you can still change your coverage or daily sick leave money, you should not do so. This can have unpleasant consequences on your life if the worst happens and you suffer a serious health impairment.
As with any other insurance, health insurance depends on the individual case. This implies that different rates may be considered for each individual. For example, a high deductible makes more sense for the self-employed than for employees. This is because as a self-employed person, you pay the entire cost of health insurance, while employees only pay 50%. The deductible, in turn, must be paid in full by the insurance holder (you).
If you are not sure about the rate of public health insurance, contact them. They will then explain your various options. If you need help choosing a private health insurance rate and want to know what is best for your individual situation, then feel free to book a free consultation here.