Buying Health Insurance From Niva Bupa? | A Review
Niva Bupa Health Insurance Company (formerly known as Max Bupa Health Insurance Company) is a standalone health insurance company in India. They offer a variety of health insurance products like individual health plans, family floaters, top-up policies, etc. that cater to the needs of the customers.
According to their website, one of their main objectives is to be ‘customer first’ and make health insurance easy by offering customer-centric, digitally enabled health insurance products and services to the customers.
To find out how customer-first the entire journey of buying health insurance from Niva Bupa is, we went through a health insurance customer’s actual journey and audited Niva Bupa through a scientifically designed process audit.
What are our learnings? Find out in this Beshak Test Drive: Niva Bupa Health Insurance Review.
Ease of navigation 👍
Niva Bupa’s website is designed in a very user-friendly manner. The products are listed systematically and can be accessed easily. All details of the products - the add-ons, various benefits and features, etc. are readily available on the website.
Brochure & policy wordings 👍
The policy wordings and brochures of the various health insurance products available with Niva Bupa can be downloaded from their website itself. You won't be redirected to another webpage or have to search elsewhere.
OTP verification for quotes not mandatory 👍
Many insurance portals and aggregator websites have made OTP verification mandatory if you want to get a quote for any insurance product listed on their website. However, on Niva Bupa, we just had to enter our phone number to get the quote, OTP verification was not mandatory.
Payment process 👍
Our payment experience was smooth and fast. The advisor sent us a payment link and waited until we filled the proposal form and made the payment. He then checked all the information and told us that we would receive the confirmation for the same on our email. We received the payment receipt on email two minutes after we made the payment.
Also, two premium payment options are available with the insurance company - annual and EMI. And they allow you multiple options to make your payment - credit cards, debit cards, net banking, EMI options, digital wallets, UPI, etc.
E-insurance account 👍
The advisor gave us an in-depth explanation about EIA (e-insurance account), its importance, and the process involved in opening an account with the company. He informed us that a Demat account can be set up online and if a policy is purchased directly from Niva Bupa's website, the e-insurance account is automatically activated once the payment is completed.
Claims process explanation 👍
The advisor explained both cashless and reimbursement claims processes in detail. He even gave us a list of the documents that would be required at the time of applying for a claim. This list is available in the policy wordings as well. Further, the advisor told us that at Niva Bupa, no TPA (Third-Party Administrator) is involved, which means claims will be settled quickly and directly by the insurance company.
They’ve also mentioned on their website that 3 out of 4 cashless claims are settled within 30 minutes. And speaking of reimbursement claims, the advisor told us that it normally takes around 15 working days for them to process a claim on a reimbursement basis.
Cancellation & refund 👍
When we raised a request for cancellation, the advisor informed us that we wouldn’t be required to submit any documents, bank details, or a cancelled cheque. They told us they would refund the full amount if we cancelled the policy in the free look period. If not, charges would be deducted as per their cancellation grid.
They then asked us to mail their customer care if we wanted to go ahead with the cancellation. Right after we sent an email, we received an immediate reply that the policy would be cancelled within 10-12 working days. After a few more days, we received a mail confirming the policy was cancelled and that the refund would be processed in the next 3-4 working days. And we received our refund as per the promised turnaround time.
Toll-free customer care 👎
One of the major issues we faced while buying health insurance from Niva Bupa is with their toll-free customer care. Their toll-free number was either out of reach at most times or the agents picked up our call, promised to call back in ten minutes, and did not call back even once. We experienced this not once or twice - this was the issue each time we contacted their toll-free number.
Choosing the policy sum insured 👎
The policy with the lowest sum insured available on Niva Bupa is of INR 3 Lakhs, and we decided to opt for it. However, Niva Bupa's advisor told us we can't go ahead with an INR 3 Lakh policy because it is only available for corporate employees. Nothing about this was mentioned on the website. On asking the advisor why it wasn’t mentioned anywhere, he started explaining the types of insured sums available for various types of individuals.
When we opined that this information should be clearly mentioned on the website, he told us he would pass our feedback to the concerned authorities. And we had to choose a policy with a higher insured sum because we could not opt for the INR 3 Lakh policy.
Proposal form 👎
Niva Bupa's advisor gave us two options for filling the proposal form -
- They fill out the entire proposal form from their end before we make the payment.
- We fill in only basic details like name, age, date of birth, address, etc. before making the payment and then fill a separate, detailed form after the payment is completed.
We wanted to find out how simple or complex the proposal form was and what types of questions were asked. So, we chose option 2. The form before making the payment was short and easy to fill. However, the additional form that we were asked to fill out after the payment was lengthy and complex. We had to fill in the health-related, nominee, lifestyle, and other details in the form.
Policy purchase and issuance 👎
The agent who connected with us to explain the purchase process seemed to be in a hurry and wanted us to make the payment quickly - he even insisted that he would fill out the proposal form but we told him we would do that on our own.
Also, while auditing other insurance companies and aggregator platforms, the policy papers were sent to our mailbox right after we completed the payment. With Niva Bupa, however, we received the policy documents after a few hours of making the payment.
Spamming and chasing are commonplace amongst most insurance companies. With Niva Bupa too, we received back-to-back calls and messages on WhatsApp from their representatives. The calls didn't stop even after repeatedly disconnecting their calls and blocking their numbers.
Free look period 👎
During the free look period, you can review the policy you've purchased, and in case you're not satisfied, you can return it to the insurance company. Most insurers and aggregators provide you the details about the free look period on the same web page where they mention all the policy details.
However, we did not find details about the free look period on Niva Bupa's website at all. We had to go through the policy wordings to know about the free look period of the insurance plan we purchased.
Like other insurers, at Niva Bupa too, a financial endorsement (changing the policy term, adding riders, etc.) can only be done at the time of policy renewal and a non-financial endorsement (changing name, address, mobile number, etc.) can be done at any time during the policy term.
We got in touch with Niva Bupa's advisor and told them we needed to change our email address. However, we didn't get the OTP delivered on time, which is why they asked us to send them an email with the email address and Aadhar Card details.
The advisor, when asked, told us there was no option available online to change our email address. However, when we checked Niva Bupa's website, there was an option available to change the same. We then logged on to the website and made the changes - however, we were unsure if the email address got updated or not because we didn't receive any confirmation. Only after raising a service request and sending a mail to Niva Bupa, they sent us an endorsement copy of the same.
If you’re planning to buy health insurance from Niva Bupa, you must know that there are some things that will work in your favour -
- A lot of health insurance options to choose from, and
- Proper explanation about the products as well as various processes like opening a demat account, claims process, etc.
Certain things you should be mindful of are -
- The company’s unresponsive toll-free service
- Filling out a lengthy, more complex form after the payment - if you choose the fill the proposal form yourself
- Receiving unsolicited calls and messages from the company’s representatives.
These are the three major issues we faced while buying health insurance from Niva Bupa. In our opinion, if they take into consideration the above limitations and work on them, they can truly make the entire experience customer-first.
If you liked this Beshak Test Drive: Niva Bupa Health Insurance Review, do let us know in the comments below.
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Thanks a Lot for in depth review. I request you to write about ACKO 1 Crore Health Insurance Plan also.
Hello Sankar! We have already started analyzing the buying journey and product of Acko's 1 Crore Health Insurance plan. It will be out soon. Thanks!