KNOW YOUR OPTIONS
Unless the University makes it mandatory for you to buy the health cover it provides, you can waive it, especially if you are already as a dependent or want to purchase it privately. Many students club the premium with the tuition fee for convenience, but the university may not offer the best deal, and it is wise to compare. Despite the online channel, it is not easy to buy a plan from a foreign insurer. So start by surfing domestic plans.
The university cover is much more expensive than one from a domestic insurer if you are studying in western countries. Before you buy, compare the cover and benefits as well.
FACTORS TO CONSIDER
Consider features like cashless facility, network hospitals near your campus, claim settlement procedures and past record of insurer. Though a domestic plan costs less, the university policy is likely to score more on these parameters and also cover pre-existing conditions. Another important factor is the sub-limits and deductibles. However the university plan will cover only health while the domestic insurance is bundled travel insurance and covers loss of baggage and passport too.
CONTINUE WITH YOUR PLAN
If you already have a health plan or are covered by a family floater policy, do not stop paying the premium. The student plan will exists for a few years till the time you are studying, but a regular health plan in India offers long life renewability. When you return, you will be older and you will have to pay for buying a new policy. Besides, discontinuing the plan will mean you’ll lose the benefits accrued on it and will have to serve the four year waiting period clause on pre-existing disease coverage all over again. Since you are young, the regular health plan premium won’t be very high and losing these long term benefits for a few thousand rupees will be imprudent.