Buying Health Insurance From Phonepe? | Phonepe Health Insurance Review
- Quick intro
- What does Phonepe promise?
- Phonepe Health Insurance Review: What was good?
- Phonepe Health Insurance Review: What could have been better?
- Summing up!
Built in 2016, PhonePe was purely a payments app until the year 2020. With evolving industries and the increasing adoption of digital technology, a lot of mobile apps, cab-based companies, and other platforms started selling insurance policies. Phonepe, too, started offering a variety of insurance products from 2020.
On the payment side, the digital wallet platform has been allowing users to make UPI-based payments, maintain their bank accounts digitally, easily link their credit cards and debit cards with the Phonepe wallet, and enable digital payments, etc. - making the lives of millions of people simpler.
But what about Phonepe health insurance? Just like the ease of making payments digitally, has Phonepe also made the lives of people easier when they buy insurance from their app? We set out to find out the same.
When we visit the Phonepe website, there are 4 things Phonepe promises to offer to its insurance customers -
- Options to compare and buy insurance from multiple insurers.
- Dedicated assistance in case of any queries related to the policy you purchased.
- Assured support while upgrading and making modifications to the policy.
- A hassle-free claim settlement process.
To find out if the Phonepe is true to its promises, we interacted with the company on the pretext of purchasing health insurance from the Phonepe app.
How was the experience? We learn - in this Beshak Test Drive: A Review of Phonepe Health Insurance.
Easy-to-find products 👍
There are only four health insurance products listed on the PhonePe app, and all are Arogya Sanjeevani plans. However, to their credit, all four products offered are arranged systematically and are easy to navigate.
Quick delivery of policy papers 👍
A 10 score is that the policy papers of the plan you buy will reach your mailbox right after the purchase. We received ours within 30 minutes of making the payment through the Phonepe app.
Many of the policies offered are group policies 👎
Without being explicitly informed, many of the plans offered on the application are under a group insurance scheme.
Group policies reduce friction, do not require underwriting, but one needs to note that group policies have many shortcomings, especially if you are buying these policies for the long term.
- The policies are one-year policies. The terms, the pricing can change every year, based on the claims received in the previous year.
- These policies, unlike retail (non-group) policies, may not be lifetime renewable policies. You run a risk of being without a cover in the long run.
- The coverage may be linked to your “membership” with the app and can end in case the relationship ends (delete the app?)
- You can read more about group policies offered by apps here: https://www.beshak.org/insurance/health-insurance/articles/should-you-buy-group-instant-insurance-offered-by-apps
No toll-free customer care 👎
Unlike what they promised, when we tried to get toll-free support at Phonepe, we found out they don’t have toll-free customer care support for insurance available currently. Every time we had a query, we had to raise a ticket and wait for several hours for the PhonePe team to get in touch with us. We could not connect with a human advisor immediately.
No option to download policy brochure 👎
We did not find any option to download the policy wordings and brochure of the Phonepe health insurance policies on the app. We had to visit the insurance company’s website, search for the product, and then download the brochure and policy wordings from their website.
Customizations not available 👎
Unlike most aggregator platforms that offer multiple policy customization options, we couldn’t find any option to customize or choose riders with our policy on the Phonepe app. When we asked the representative about this, they told us that they don’t provide any customization options or riders.
Payment experience not smooth 👎
This was least expected from a payment app. Our payment experience with Phonepe was not good. We had to go through the payment process twice. At first, when we made the payment, it failed - when we asked the representative, he told us it was because of server issues. We had to connect with the advisor the next day again to complete the payment.
Also, only two premium payment modes are available on the Phonepe app - debit or credit cards, and Phonepe wallet.
Inadequate assistance before or after policy purchase 👎
We did not have a good experience when we got in touch with the Phonepe representative to get our queries resolved - both before and after purchase.
Before purchase, the representatives did not explain the product details properly - they did not have in-depth knowledge about the insurance products available on the app. And after making the payment, when we asked them a query about the e-insurance account, they had no clue about what an e-insurance account is and asked us to connect with the insurer.
Every time we asked them a question, the only response we received was ‘you’ll have to contact the insurance company for this’. We understand the need to get in touch with the insurance company in case of major issues. However, the Phonepe representatives failed to resolve even the minor queries we had.
No free look period 👎
Generally, after you make the payment, you get a free look period of 15 days during which you can review the policy - go through the policy features, drawbacks, and other terms and conditions. In case you’re not satisfied and want to opt out, you can return it without penalties or cancellation charges.
Phonepe, however, doesn’t offer a free look period, most of their offerings being group insurance. The Phonepe representative told us they provide a cancellation period, where a certain percentage of our premium will be deducted as a cancellation fee based on when we cancel our policy.
Claims process not explained 👎
Most web aggregators explain the claims process in detail while they sell a policy. This, however, was not the case with Phonepe health insurance. The claims procedure was not explained to us at all. Since we didn’t really go through the claim settlement process, it wasn’t much of an issue, but it might be a hurdle for you.
Slow cancellation & refund process 👎
When we raised a ticket for cancellation, the Phonepe representative told us they are not allowed to cancel the policy from their end and we’ll have to get in touch with the insurance company for the same. We then sent a mail to the insurer and had to follow up multiple times to get the refund initiated.
The refund process was very slow, not as per the promised turnaround time. At the time of purchasing the policy, we were informed that we'll get the refund within 10-12 working days. However, it took a little longer for the refund to get processed.
Insurer comparison and dedicated assistance are two things we can talk about on the PhonePe app. Frankly speaking, we did not find too many options to compare health insurance products. And, the quality of advice and assistance was not good either.
The representatives did not have proper knowledge about the health insurance policies available on the Phonepe app or the various processes, such as cancellation, refund, or claims. Every time we connected with them for queries - be it before, during, or after purchasing the policy, the only assistance they provided was to say that we will have to contact the insurance company to get our queries resolved. They failed to resolve even minor queries that we had.
Our experience with Phonepe had more downs than ups. They need to work on a lot of things - starting from building a team of advisors who will provide the right advice to the customers and resolve their queries on time.
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