Huge insurance savings and benefits for international students.
Students paying less for more is usually wishful thinking – not for Uni-Care Educational Travel Insurance. “We’ve never
been afraid of innovation to ensure the best protection and service at the best price for international students. I’m
delighted that we are now able to offer so many of them our top policy for considerably less” says Ian Cameron, Uni-Care
director, at the announcement of its new Premier Partnership package.
Uni-Care’s latest innovation is to offer its Premier policy, arguably the world’s most comprehensive medical and travel
insurance, for only $450 p.a. to selected education providers– a 27% reduction in premium. This policy contains many
features that Uni-Care introduced into the market, including unlimited medical and repatriation cover, mental illness
cover, cover for returning students to New Zealand following an emergency back home, continuing treatment after medical
repatriation, and a lot more.
Now, thanks to innovative work in issuing policies electronically and dealing with bulk claims electronically from
tertiary institutions’ medical centres, Uni-care is able to offer to students of those institutions a large reduction in
premium. “Early this year we stood back and watched as 1045 policies were issued in 45 minutes directly to the email
accounts of students at the University of Canterbury,” said Ian Cameron.
For the past six months the medical centres at Waikato and Canterbury Universities have been submitting claims in bulk
on behalf of students, saving time and energy for students, university staff, Uni-Care staff and the claims service.
True to its philosophy of giving back to the industry, Uni-Care has reduced the premiums and is offering this Premier
Partnership package to all tertiary institutions with on campus medical centres or comparable off campus facilities.
Even better for students and the industry, Uni-Care continues to return a considerable portion of its earnings to the
Export Education industry. Surprisingly, Cameron has found it “incredibly difficult at times to persuade people that we
are choosing to give money away with nothing expected in return” because people just can’t believe you can run a
business that way. It’s possible because, unlike many insurance businesses, Uni-Care runs a compact technology driven
business supported by excellent staff and relies on word of mouth marketing. “Our technology enables us to run our
service with the same number of staff we employed when the number of students we insured was a third of what it is now”,
Funding donated by Uni-care is intended to be used to assist students who suffer medical and welfare related events that
are not covered by insurance and that they cannot afford to fix themselves. It is “no strings attached” funding. The
major proportion of it is returned to the partner institutions for their administration and extra student support but
Uni-care funding also goes to professional and welfare support organisations engaged in promoting the well being of
students and the industry. These include: ISANA: International Education Association, International Student Ministries
(ISM), the New Zealand School Trustees Association (NZSTA), the Association of University Staff (for their Benevolent
Fund), New Zealand Education Institute (NZEI) and others.
The Code of Practice (COP) made travel and medical insurance compulsory for international students less than a year ago.
Uni-Care has been leading the educational travel insurance field for 21 years. Cameron says, “We want students to have
the best protection at the best price. And we do that year after year by extending the cover, improving our service,
relying on word of mouth marketing and by channelling hundreds of thousands of dollars back to institutions and those
who can provide additional services for the students.” This approach, thought maverick and crazy by some, seems to have
worked as Uni-Care has maintained its 21 year position of being the largest supplier of travel and medical insurance to
international students in the country.
Quality of service and product is key to Uni-care. Strength, safety and sustainability are their watchwords. Cameron
prefers others to tell that side of the story – these are the words of Principal Yvonne Browning following the illness
of a student necessitating urgent medical evacuation to Europe; “Southland Girl’s High School is very relieved that
Uni-Care provides quality cover for our international students. This has indeed been much comfort to our School and also
to the student’s parents over the last month…”
Terry McGrath of International Student Ministries (ISM) said the following; “ISM was involved in arranging for a student
to receive training while here so we had a lot to do with him. His illness last year was very debilitating and the
recovery slow. The provision of insurance and their going the extra mile when the family returned home has helped them
immensely. I can honestly say from knowing their personal circumstances and the trials they have been through that
without the Uni-Care assistance they would have been a family in fairly dire straits”
Uni-Care Educational Travel Insurance has contracted ie Limited to facilitate the introduction of this new Premier
Partnership package to educational providers.