Health insurance remains crucial for both health and financial stability, regardless of age. While individuals in their 20s may not require as much healthcare as those in their 50s or 60s, having health insurance remains significant.
Young adults have the option to stay on their parents’ health insurance until they turn 26. The decision to continue with their parents’ plan or acquire their own depends on various factors such as available health insurance options and associated costs.
Kaiser Permanente – Best Overall and Cheapest
Blue Cross Blue Shield – Best for Provider Network
UnitedHealthcare – Best for Range of Coverage Types
Cheapest Health Insurance for Young Adults
One of the cheapest ways for young adults to get health insurance is to stay on a parent’s health insurance plan. The Affordable Care Act allows parents to keep children on their coverage until 26 and a few states allow parents to keep them on their plan even longer. Still, there are other options, too.
Here are some of the ways young adults can find the cheapest health insurance.
Stay on a parent’s health plan
Remaining on your parent’s health insurance may make the most sense if it’s an affordable option. You don’t have to be single and live at home to stay on your parents’ plan. You can live elsewhere, be married and even have a child and remain on your parents’ health plan.
Here’s why you may want to stay on your parent’s health insurance:
The health insurance costs don’t increase since you’re not adding coverage.
If you’ve already had health care services this year, that money has gone toward the annual deductible. Changing plans during the year can mean starting back at zero with a new plan.
Staying on the same plan means you’re assured that your providers take your parents’ health plan. Changing plans means you have to check to make sure your providers are on that plan’s network.
Low-cost or no-cost employer health plan
An employer-sponsored health plan may work best for you if your employer offers a group health insurance plan with no premiums or low premiums.
Here’s why you may want to go on an employer’s health plan:
A no-cost or low-cost health insurance plan from an employer may cost less than staying on your parents’ plan.
Having your own plan lets you maintain privacy about your health care needs if you prefer that your parents don’t know.
A Medicaid plan can offer you a no-cost or low-cost health insurance plan if you qualify. The low-income federal/state health plan bases coverage and costs on your income.
Here’s why a Medicaid plan may be a good choice for you:
Medicaid offers comprehensive coverage at low or no costs based on your income.
Medicaid may offer more coverage than other plans.
Comparison shop for a plan on the health insurance marketplace
Buying a health insurance plan from your state or federal marketplace is another way you can find affordable coverage as a young adult. You can find the cheapest health insurance plan with the benefits you want by comparing prices—you may even qualify for subsidized rates based on your income.