If you go scuba diving on vacation, do you have to tell your life insurance company? The answer to that question entirely depends on where you are in the shopping process.
Let’s get this out of the way immediately: if you’ve already purchased life insurance, you don’t have to call up your insurance company and tell them what you’re planning on doing on your next cruise. Life insurance rates are entirely dependent on the information available when you buy insurance.
If you do happen to die while scuba diving, your insurance company may launch an investigation — you know, to make sure you weren’t lying when you applied about how you never went scuba diving. However, if they can’t find proof that you were a diver before you bought life insurance, they’ll most likely* pay out.
Okay, if that’s all you wanted to know, you can go on vacation now. See ya!
For the rest of you who are still in the shopping phase, we have a bit more information for you.
Even if this will be your first time diving or you only do it once or twice per year, you have to disclose it to your life insurance agent. It’s a direct question that they ask everyone who applies, and you can’t lie to your insurance company. (Remember that investigation we mentioned?) The good news is that it probably won’t affect your life insurance rates at all. Most vacation diving is very infrequent — less than ten dives per year — and in relatively shallow water. Vacation divers typically get the same rates as people who don’t dive at all.
What does it take for life insurance for scuba divers to get expensive? It all depends on how often you dive and how deep you dive. If you dive more than ten times per year, you could end up spending anywhere between $4 extra and $60 extra, depending on how deep you go. Even if you only dive once or twice per year, if you dive below 75 meters, you’ll usually end up paying a bit extra every month.
Not every life insurance company looks at scuba diving the same way. Some, for example, are much more strict when it comes to vacation diving, while others are more laid back about it. To guarantee that you’re getting the best rates, use an independent agent. Independent life insurance agents can compare quotes from a variety of top rated life insurance companies in order to get you the best price.
For more information on how life insurance companies look at scuba diving when calculating your life insurance premiums, check out our guide to life insurance for scuba divers.
Always read your life insurance contract! Most life insurance companies stipulate that they can only investigate in the first two years of policy ownership, so after that, you’re off the hook.
Image: Nacho Bilbao