Woolworths pet insurance is an online provider of reasonably priced vet treatment for cats and dogs. Like any insurance, it does not cover all health problems.
Woolworths has been providing an online pet insurance service for more than 10 years. Woolworths Pet Insurance is reasonably priced and it advertises that it will beat any comparable quote. While Woolworths is an Australian company, its insurance provider is not. Only cats and dogs are able to be insured by Woolworths and they have 5 different levels of cover, but the cost will also vary depending on the pet.
For older pets, insurance is much more expensive. There are a lot of exclusions and it is essential to start insurance when the pet is young since pre-existing conditions are not covered. Woolworths Pet Insurance seems to be comparable with other brands of pet insurance in Australia.
What does Woolworths Pet Insurance cover?
Woolworths Pet insurance covers certain accidental injuries and illnesses, but it does not include any pre-existing conditions. A pre-existing condition is any illness that the pet had before the insurance policy was purchased. Depending on the level of insurance cover, you may also have additional benefits such as emergency boarding and essential euthanasia. Routine care such as vaccinations, health checks and desexing are included up to $100 a year. With Indoor Cat cover, dental treatments for gingivitis and abscesses are also covered.
How does Woolworths Pet Insurance work?
You begin by contacting Woolworths Pet Insurance1 online to get a quote for insurance for your pet. When you take out pet insurance, you will make a monthly payment and after you take your pet to the vet, you will submit the itemised invoices and your receipts to make a claim.
Some claims can be submitted electronically and there are even some vets who can submit your claim directly. It may be possible to submit a GapOnly2 claim where the vet lodges your claim and it can be assessed immediately (around 10 minutes, actually). If your claim is approved you can just pay the gap. Not all vet treatments will be covered by your Pet Insurance.
Read this article on Choice to find out more about the pros and cons of pet insurance3.
How much is Woolworths Pet Insurance?
Like all insurance providers, there is very little transparency when it comes to cost. The cost of your insurance will depend on many factors. Some of the factors that affect the cost of your insurance will be age, animal type, breed, insurance type, and location.
Woolworths provides 5 types of cover:
- Indoor Cat
- Comprehensive Plus
Top 10 Pet Insurance4 made a comparison of 20 different pet insurance brands by asking for a quote. The Woolworths products compared in this article is Comprehensive Plus. Comprehensive Plus is the most expensive of Woolworths insurance products. According to the article, the cost is $69.08 a month with an annual benefit limit of $30,000. the quote was for a 6 month desexed female Cavalier King Charles Spaniel with a 60 year old owner located in NSW. They did not use any promotion codes or receive any discounts. They did not select any supplementary benefits and chose no excess.
Is there a waiting period with Woolworths pet insurance?
There is no waiting period for certain accidental injuries. The product disclosure statement (PDS) does not specify which accidental injuries do not have waiting periods. For conditions which are covered under the illness section of the policy there is a 30 day waiting period, and the waiting period for Cruciate Ligament Conditions is 6 months. It may be possible for this waiting period to be waived if the condition occurs as a result of an accident.
Where are they based?
While the Woolworths Group is an Australian company, its insurance is administered by PetSure which is owned by Hollard Insurance a company which is based in South Africa.
Who underwrites Woolworths pet insurance?
Advantages of Woolworths Pet Insurance
- Woolworths Pet Insurance is very reasonably priced and they claim that they will beat any lower comparable quote.
- Depending on your policy, you can get up to 80% back on eligible vet bills.
- Most claims are processed within 5 days, so you don’t have wait too long to receive your money. If your vet does electronic lodging of claims you may receive your money even sooner.
- It is possible to have same day claims processing at some vet clinics allowing pet owners to just pay the gap instead of paying the full bill and then making a claim.
- You can get lifetime cover, from 8 weeks old without any age limit.
- If you get a new pet policy, you will get access to VetAssist which is an online consultation service. You will be able to get advice from a qualified vet 24/7 with your Woolworths Pet Insurance.
- You can seek pre-approval for your pet before you get medical treatment
- Woolworths Comprehensive Plus cover has a higher annual limit than many of the other providers.
Disadvantages of Woolworths Pet Insurance
- If your pet is 9 years or over, you can only get Basic cover. The older your pet, the more vet treatment they are likely to need, but Woolworths provides less coverage and higher costs as your pet gets older.
- Woolworths can change the premium and amount of coverage according to the age of the pet and ‘other factors related to our cost of doing business’. This means that they are able to increase the premiums the next year if you make a claim in the year before.
- Pet Insurance is expensive. If you have a large vet bill, you may be happy that you have insurance, but if your pet is healthy you may find that insurance is not good value for money.
- According to some reviews, you will need to pay an excess on every item when you make a claim, so often you do not get much back if your pet requires complicated treatment.
- It is not easy to get insurance for an older animal since it becomes difficult to avoid pre-existing conditions which are not covered. This also means that it becomes more difficult to change companies as your pet ages since a pre-existing condition is defined as one that has occurred before insurance is bought.
Verdict – Is Woolworths Pet Insurance a good choice?
If your pet is very young, then it is worth considering Woolworths Pet Insurance policies. Compared with other pet insurance policies, Woolies Pet Insurance is very reasonably priced. The Comprehensive Plus cover has a high annual limit compared with other insurers. GapOnly insurance is definitely worth it, but if you have to pay the vet fees upfront, then you might consider making regular deposits to a high interest savings account rather than paying for insurance since you might not need treatment for your pet until it is much older.
While your pet is young, you may find that you don’t need to make any claims and you could be earning interest on your money instead of paying for insurance. If you are worried that you could not afford a large treatment bill for your pet and insurance is necessary, then Woolworths Pet Insurance is a good choice.
Make sure that you carefully read the Woolworths Pet Insurance Product Discosure Statement7 before you decide to take out insurance.
It is not clear that pet insurance is good value for everyone, but if you decide to get a Woolworths Pet Insurance policy, you may find it saves you a lot of money on vet treatments for your dog or cat. It is important to insure your pet at a young age since any illness may be considered as a pre-existing condition which will then not be covered by Woolworths Pet Insurance. Woolworths Pet Insurance is competitively priced and its Comprehensive Plus cover has a high annual limit. It would be a good idea to get a quote before you take out insurance with Woolworths as they claim that they will beat any comparable quote, so you may be able to save money by checking other companies.
1. Woolworths Pet Insurance. Accessed online at https://insurance.woolworths.com.au/pet-insurance.html on 12 Oct, 2022.
2. GapOnly Frequently Asked Questions. Accessed online at https://gaponly.com.au/faqs/ on 12 Oct, 2022.
3. ‘Pros and cons of pet insurance’. Pru Engel and Uta Mihm. Updated 27 Oct, 2021. Choice. Accessed online at https://www.choice.com.au/money/insurance/pet/articles/six-things-you-need-to-know-about-pet-insurance on 12 Oct, 2022.
4. ‘Compare Pet Insurance’ Updated 14 Oct, 2022, Top 10 Pet Insurance. Accessed online at https://top10petinsurance.com.au/compare-pet-insurance/ on 15 Oct, 2022.
5. ‘About Hollard’. Accessed online at https://www.hollard.com.au/ on 15 Oct, 2022.
6. PetSure. Accessed online at https://petsure.com.au/ on 15 Oct, 2022.
7. Woolworths Pet Insurance PDS. 15 Nov, 2021. Accessed online at https://insurance.woolworths.com.au/content/dam/Woolworths/Insurance/Pet/UsefulDocumentsPet/Woolworths_Pet_Insurance_PDS-Nov-21.pdf on 15 Oct, 2022.