Airline Pilot Life Insurance! Will You Be Penalized for Flying?
If you’re looking for airline pilot life insurance, chances are you work in the aviation industry or fly planes for a hobby and are concerned about the cost of your life insurance.
Who could blame you?
We’ve all heard about tragic crashes on the news – and the devastating aftermath.
The good news is flying is very safe. In fact, so much so there is an app that shows you just how secure commercial aviation is. You can install it on your iPhone and it’s called “Going Down”.
Here’s an example – and if these numbers don’t make you feel secure I am not sure what will:
GULLIVER will soon fly from Heathrow to Milan on a British Airways Airbus A319. That flight has a one-in-4.8m chance of crashing. Shortly after he is jetting from Heathrow to JFK on a Virgin-operated A330. Chance of crashing? One in 5.4m. That means that he could apparently expect to fly on the route for 14,716 years before plummeting into the Atlantic. A Crash Course in Probability, The Economist
Airline Pilot Life Insurance: What Are Underwriters and Why Do They Matter?
Life insurance is an important purchase for anyone that has a family, and this includes airline pilots.
Who doesn’t want to go to bed secure in the knowledge their family is protected if they die in an accident?
For most of my clients, I recommend term life insurance because it’s affordable, flexible and provides the safety net they’re looking for.
If you want to go down the traditional coverage route, the next step is a medical exam to find out what rates you qualify for.
The information from your medical exam and the answers to your questionnaire are sent to an underwriter. They assess all the data and assign you a rating.
Your rating determines the amount of money you pay monthly for the coverage.
NOTE: There are a number of lifestyle questions your agent asks you. This information enables underwriters to decide whether or not you pose a higher risk because of your work or recreational choices.
One of the questions you are asked is whether or not you pilot a small plane. So yes, flying does impact how underwriters view your application.
Life Insurance for Airline Pilots: Private Planes
In Canada the accident rate for private (including corporate) planes was 28.4 per 100,000 flying hours in 2002. That rate is much higher than the rate for commuter planes and airliners but the rate has been dropping over the years.
According to a 2002 TSB report, “the generally accepted factors that contribute to these higher accident rates include less stringent aircraft certification standards, reduced pilot training requirements, lower pilot experience, higher instances of single-pilot operations, greater proportions of time spent in low-altitude VFR operations, and more frequent use of small airports and landing strips that are not equipped with navigation and landing aids.”
Check out the numbers above. You can see it’s clearly more dangerous to pilot a private plane.
Life insurance companies are in the business of making money. Their underwriters are tasked with the job of assessing the risk to insure you.
If you take part in “risky” activities your premiums are more expensive.
Bearing this in mind, it makes sense that flying small planes has an impact on your rates. Underwriters review each case on its own merits, so there are a lot of variables here.
Are you a well-seasoned pilot? Where do you fly? These are the type of considerations that are evaluated.
Companies like Ivari Insurance have an aviation questionnaire that nails down your personal circumstances. They want to know things like:
- What sort of licenses you have
- Why do you fly – Pleasure or work
- What type of aircraft: plane, helicopter, balloon, glider, etc.
- Do you fly over land and sea
- Have you had an accident
- Do you fly in and out of uncontrolled airports
- Do you have any medical issues
- When did you last fly…when do you plan to fly next
Airline Pilot Life Insurance: The No Medical Option
We can’t talk about life insurance for airline pilots without discussing no medical or simplified-issue life insurance.
You see, if you fly a small plane, it’s pretty much guaranteed: you’ll be rated by any traditional life insurance company.
It’s all statistics. Insurers view piloting small aircraft as a high risk activity. If you think that means your insurance is going to cost more, you’re right!
For example, on Ivari’s aviation questionnaire, one of the questions they ask is: “If the insurance applied for requires an extra premium or a restriction of protection because of aviation, which do you request?”
They’re basically saying, ‘pick your poison’: Do you want to pay more for your insurance or have it issued with a flying exclusion?
An exclusion simply means your life insurance won’t cover you should you happen to die while flying a small plane.
Also, death due to complications arising from any injuries sustained in a small aviation accident won’t be covered either.
No Exam Life Insurance For Pilots
Is there another option? Yes, welcome to Simplified Issue Term Life Insurance.
A no medical exam life insurance policy has a risk factor built into the cost and often it’s more affordable than a traditional policy that’s rated.
How does it work? You answer a series of health and lifestyle questions that determine what coverage you’re eligible for. There are absolutely NO medical tests.
Take Canada Protection Plan (CPP) for example, they’re one of Canada’s best known no medical carriers.
On their application, you’ll see a question that’s worded like this: Within the past 24 months, have you operated an aircraft as a pilot (scheduled commercial pilots excluded) or been involved in any hazardous sports, or do you plan to do so in the next year?
As a small aircraft pilot, you’ll answer “yes” to this question but guess what? You’ll still be eligible for CPP’s most affordable non-medical insurance and that coverage does NOT come with any exclusions. Depending on your age, you can purchase up to $500,000 of 10, 20 or 25 -year term coverage.
In other words, you are totally protected whether you fly a plane or drive to the mall.
That’s why it’s so very important to work with an independent life insurance agent. At Policy Architects we know all the angles to find the best solution for you.
Airline pilot life insurance isn’t’ a no brainer so it’s important to do your due diligence. Preparation is key.
Airline Pilot Life Insurance: Commercial Flights
So what about commercial pilots? As you can see from the numbers I used above – commercial flights are exceedingly safe.
Your chance of dying in a fiery wreck is infinitesimally small. This means some good news for pilots flying Air Canada routes or any other large carrier! It’s very unlikely your premiums will be impacted by your job.
That being said, there are some very SMALL exceptions. If you fly cargo or charter routes, you may be landing and taking off in unregulated airports. This can affect your premiums.
I’m comfortable saying that being a commercial pilot, for the most part, won’t elevate your premiums.
Air Travel Life Insurance
Air travel life insurance – are you protected when you fly?
Although commercial flights are VERY safe there are accidents so a lot of people want to know if there is air travel life insurance. It’s one of those things clients don’t want to think about, but accidents do happen.
In fact, there has been a recent spike in aviation-related incidents that spur concerns in the general population.
Unfortunately, when there is an issue mid flight things have a tendency to go VERY wrong. Typically no one gets out alive and we all know that.
If you’re a pilot or a passenger on a plan that crashes rest assured there is protection, even if you don’t maintain life insurance.
IMF Special Drawing Rights give families about $156,000 USD per seat. This doesn’t take into account unlimited monies that may be received if the airline is at fault for the crash. You can check out the Montreal Convention for more information.
That being said, this doesn’t eliminate your need for life insurance. In my humble opinion, it’s better to have full coverage than to rely on “air travel life insurance” offered by the IMF in times of crisis.
Chances are this figure will also leave you struggling. When all is said and done it’s not a lot of cash.
This is Why You Should Contact Policy Architects TODAY!
If you’re looking for airline pilot life insurance…
…or you’re considering air travel life insurance because you’re going on a trip – it means you’re thinking about the future.
That’s where an independent life insurance agent comes in. We make sure you get comprehensive and affordable coverage.
You’re one SMART cookie. Sure for the most part life is pretty uneventful, but when things happen they do so without notice.
No one plans to have an accident. So why not pound out all these details before there’s a crisis?
If you’re a pilot looking for affordable coverage, whether you fly commercial jets or small hobby planes, give Policy Architects a call today 1.888.501.9583.
We will do a quick needs analysis, review your medical history and lifestyle choices to find the best insurer for your particular circumstances.