Costco Life Insurance Review

Costco Life Insurance Review

Written by Caitlin Wood
Last Updated May 4, 2021

When you think of Costco, you likely think of bulk shopping for just about every household product or gadget imaginable. But in addition to the hoards of goods that Costco offers, they also provide other services, including life insurance.

Having a life insurance policy in place can give you peace of mind knowing that your family will be financially taken care of after you pass away. And a term life insurance policy from Costco can provide you with plenty of cost savings for a life insurance policy as a member of the retail giant.

Let’s go into more detail about the type of life insurance that Costco offers, and whether this is the route you should take to seek coverage. 

Who is Costco?

Costco is a multi-billion dollar, worldwide, membership-based retail giant with warehouses currently operating in 8 different countries. The company first opened in 1976 as “The Price Club,” and by 1983, the first Costco warehouse opened in Seattle. Ten years later, Costco and Price Club merged, with Costco now serving millions of customers with the goal of offering significant savings on everyday goods and services. 

Today, Costco offers life insurance policies, among other insurance products like health and travel insurance. The policies are backed by Manulife, a Canadian multinational insurance company that has been around for over a century.

Types of Life Insurance Costco Offers

Costco offers term life insurance only and does not currently provide any whole or permanent life insurance policies. The policy accessed via Costco is called Member Advantage Life and comes with premiums and death benefits that remain fixed throughout the duration of the policy.

Term life insurance offers temporary coverage for a certain period of time. Policies usually range anywhere from 10 to 30 years, depending on how much coverage you need. This type of insurance is more affordable than whole life insurance because of its finite time period of coverage. It is designed for those who are looking to financially protect their dependents while a mortgage and other major bills still need to be paid.

With a term life insurance policy, the premiums and coverage will be fixed for the entire term. If you pass away during the term, your beneficiaries will receive the death benefit of the policy, as long as premiums are paid on time and the policy remains active. If the term expires before you pass away, you can allow it to expire or exercise the option to renew the policy — albeit at a higher premium. You might also choose to convert the policy to permanent life insurance if your policy permits it. 

With Costco, you have 2 choices when it comes to term length: 5 or 10 years. 

5-Year Term Life Insurance 

As the name suggests, this life insurance policy comes with a 5-year term, which means you will be covered for 5 years. When the 5 years are up, the policy will automatically renew at a higher premium unless you cancel. This policy is available to those between the ages of 18 to 65 years, and policy renewal is available until you reach the age of 75 years. The maximum coverage for a 5-year term is $750,000.

Coverage is available for a minimum amount of $50,000 to a maximum of $750,000 million per contract. No medical exam is required if you’re under the age of 50, even if any changes to your health have occurred over the term. The same applies if you are between the ages of 51 to 55 and are applying for coverage up to $250,000.

As a Costco member, you can save 10% on coverage of $200,000 or more. And if you’re an Executive Member, you can enjoy another 5% in savings.

The 5-year term policy comes with a cash advance benefit that allows you to tap into 50% of your coverage amount, up to $100,000, if you are ever diagnosed with a terminal illness. Your beneficiaries will then receive the remainder of the death benefit. The cash advance benefit is available after 2 years of non-stop coverage until you reach 73 years of age.

You can also get a full refund on any premiums paid if you cancel in the first 30 days. 

10-Year Term Life Insurance 

With the 10-year term policy, you will be covered for a period of 10 years, during which your dependents will be paid out a death benefit if you pass away during this term. This policy is available for those between the ages of 18 to 70 years, and policy renewal is available until you reach the age of 80 years.

With this policy, you can save 25% on a policy with $250,000 or more of coverage or 30% on $500,000 or more. Plus, Executive Members can get an additional 5% saving on rates.

Like the 5-year plan, you can use your policy for cash advances, and you can get a refund if you cancel within the first 30 days.

Coverage is available up to $1 million per contract. 

Additional Coverage Options 

You can customize your policy by adding any one of the following coverages: 

Accidental death benefit rider. You can add accidental death to your policy, which will increase the death benefit paid out to your beneficiaries if your death is a result of an accident. Additional coverage can be increased up to $250,000. This benefit is included in 10-year term policies.

Children’s term life insurance rider. This add-on covers the lives of your children, whether biological or adopted from the age of 15 days to 18 years. The rider also covers any future children you may have. The annual premium will remain fixed throughout the term, no matter how many kids you have under this rider. Coverage is offered from $1,000 up to $25,000. 

Income protection disability insurance. This rider can help provide your family with ongoing financial responsibilities if you cannot work due to a disability or illness. 

Job loss waiver of premium. If you ever become disabled, the waiver of premium benefit can waive your life insurance premiums to help reduce your financial woes. You must be between the ages of 18 to 55 years to be eligible for this add-on. There is an extra charge for this rider, and you will have to wait 6 months before it goes into effect. This benefit is included in 10-year term policies.

Conversion option. Even though coverage ends when you turn 75, you can convert to permanent coverage before you turn 75 if you so choose. And no medical exam will be required. 

Cost of Getting Life Insurance With Costco

Since there are so many factors that go into calculating policy premiums, the exact cost of a term life insurance policy with Costco will vary quite a bit from person to person. That said, you can save an average of 15% as a Costco member, regardless of which policy you choose.

Factors that affect your life insurance quote include the following:

Your age. It’s always advised to apply for a life insurance policy when you are younger, as your premiums will be lower compared to when you are a few years older. As you age, the risk of health issues rises, which therefore increases the risk for your insurance provider. 

Your gender. Men tend to have slightly lower life expectancy rates than women and are therefore charged premiums that are a bit higher, though many other factors will come into play to determine the exact premium calculation.

Your health. Healthy individuals pose much less of a risk for insurance companies and are rewarded with lower premiums as a result. If you are young and in good health, your premiums will likely be much lower than if you are suffering from a chronic medical condition. 

Your family history of health issues. Your family’s health history also plays a role in the premiums you are quoted. Many medical conditions are hereditary, which can put you at greater risk of eventually developing an ailment that runs in your family. In this case, your premiums may be a bit higher. 

Whether or not you smoke. If you smoke, your life insurance premiums can be as much as 2 to 4 times higher compared to premiums for non-smokers. That said, Costco insurance has preferred rates for those who don’t smoke very often. Smokers must undergo a medical exam before a policy is offered.

Coverage amount. The more coverage you ask for, the more you will pay for your policy.

Length of term. A longer-term will be more expensive to cover than a shorter term. 

To give you a rough idea of how much you can expect to pay for a policy with Costco life insurance, a young and healthy person can pay anywhere from $8 to $40 for a 10-year term life insurance policy, and from about $10 to $68 per month for a 20-year term, based on the factors mentioned above.

How to Get a Costco Life Insurance Quote

Getting a quote from Costco life insurance is quick and easy, and requires that you provide the following information:

  • Coverage amount
  • Term length
  • Costco membership type
  • Where you reside 
  • Date of birth
  • Height and weight
  • Whether or not you use tobacco
  • Level of health
  • Email address

Once you input these pieces of information, you’ll be given a quote for insurance premiums for the type of policy you’re interested in taking out. You can then personalize it with additional riders if you so choose. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Costco Insurance

Pros

  • Affordability. Your Costco membership can help save you up to 30% off the price of your life insurance premiums. 
  • Ability to renew your policy. If your term policy expires before you pass away, it will automatically renew up to a certain age. Otherwise, you’re free to let the term expire or cancel it at any time throughout the duration of the term.
  • Many add-ons to customize your coverage. There are plenty of optional add-ons that you can include in your policy for an extra charge to ensure more coverage and fully personalize your policy. 
  • Trusted insurance providers. Costco’s life insurance policies are guaranteed by Manulife, which has been in the insurance business since 1887, so they have a long and well-established track record. 
  • Full refund within the first 30 days. If you choose to cancel before the initial 30 days of your policy is up, you can get a full refund with no questions asked. 

Cons

  • Only term insurance offered. Costco only offers term insurance, and the term policies offered are also restricted to just 10- and 20-year policies. 
  • Only available to Costco members. If you don’t hold a Costco membership, you won’t be eligible for a life insurance policy with the retailer. 
  • Policies are only available from one insurance provider. Since Costco only offers one life insurance company — Manulife — you won’t know if you’re getting the lowest rate compared to other companies. 

How Will I Receive my Death Benefit?

If you pass away during the policy’s term, your beneficiaries will be paid the death benefit according to your policy. However, they must first submit a death certificate to the insurance provider as evidence of your death. Then, the specified death benefit will be paid out in one lump sum that’s free from taxation.

If you include a disability benefit in your policy, you will have to submit a claim along with proof of your disability or illness that renders you unable to work. Once approved, you will be paid out a specified sum of money to cover lost income. 

Costco Insurance Application Process

If you decide to go ahead with a policy application, you can apply entirely online. An insurance agent will then contact you to ask more detailed questions about your health history and lifestyle. If required, you may be asked to undergo a medical exam, which can be done at your doctor’s office, or your insurer will send a medical professional to your home to conduct it, which should take no more than a half-hour. 

Once your application has been finalized and submitted, it will be reviewed, after which you will have to wait for approval based on your telephone interview and medical exam. Otherwise, the insurer may contact your primary health care practitioner for information on your current health and your health history. 

You may also be asked for other pieces of information, such as your driver’s license number, social insurance number, and anything else that can verify your identity. 

Costco Insurance Overview 

Age Eligibility– 18 to 70 for 10-year term policies
– 18 to 65 for 5-year term policies
Age of Policy Termination– 80 years old for 10-year term policies
– 75 years old for 5-year term policies
Minimum Coverage$50,000
Maximum Coverage– $750,000 for a 5-year term policy
– $1 million for a 10-year term policy
Term Length5 or 10 years
Whole Life Insurance OfferedNo
AccessibilityOnline and over the phone
Living Benefit Amount50% of coverage up to $100,000
Special Perks– 25% off coverage of $250,000+
-30% off coverage of $500,000+
-10% off coverage of $200,000+
– Up to 5% extra savings for Executive Costco members

Should I Get Costco Insurance?

If you’re looking for a temporary term life insurance policy that will provide short-term financial protection to your loved ones during your working years, then Costco insurance may be something to consider. Plus, if you’re already a Costco member, you can realize significant savings on your policy, especially as an Executive member. While the options are not vast like some other life insurance company offerings, a 5- or 10-year term policy may be sufficient for you. 

However, if you’re looking for something more long-term or a permanent policy, you will have to look elsewhere. 

Final Thoughts

Costco’s online platform upon which to get a quote and apply for a life insurance policy makes the entire process easy and convenient. The discounts that Costco members are eligible for can also make a life insurance policy more affordable. And with backing by Manulife, you can rest assured in knowing that you’re being protected by a trusted name. If you’re looking for a cost-effective, short-term life insurance policy that will protect you during the more important working years of your life, consider a policy from Costco.

Caitlin is a graduate of Dawson College and Concordia University and has been working in the personal finance industry for over eight years. She believes that education and knowledge are the two most important factors in the creation of healthy financial habits. She also believes that openly discussing money and credit, and the responsibilities that come with them can lead to better decisions and a greater sense of financial security. One of the main ways she’s built good financial habits is by budgeting and tracking her spending through the YNAB budgeting app. She also automates her savings so she never forgets to put aside a portion of her income into her TFSA. She believes investing and passive income is key to earning financial freedom. She also uses her Aeroplan TD credit card to collect Aeroplan points so that she can save money when she travels.

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