Review: The Exeter health insurance

David Woodfield By David Woodfield

Key policy features

  • The Exeter has won awards for products and services
  • Offers three levels of cover and pricing
  • If you claim your premium will not increase, the cover is designed to be used
  • Offers fixed moratorium underwriting

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The Exeter is an award-winning healthcare insurer, which used to be known as Exeter Family Friendly.

It has three main policies with three levels of pricing.

The Exeter is a mutual, which means it is not privately owned and does not have any shareholders, and therefore reinvests profits into keeping down costs.

Its Health Cover For Me policy ranked well in our guide to the best health insurers.

You can compare Exeter Family Friendly's prices and policies in depth versus others on the market using, a health insurance comparison site.

Overview of health insurance cover provided by The Exeter

The Exeter Family Friendly offers three levels of cover, to appeal to different budgets and those seeking varying levels of protection.

Health Essentials for Me is its low-cost private medical insurance plan.

This plan includes unlimited cover for in-patient, day-patient and out-patient private treatments with the option for cancer treatment to be covered too. However, Health Essentials does not provide any cover for the diagnosis or investigation of medical issues, meaning that you need to rely on the NHS (or pay for your own private appointments) up to the point that you are diagnosed and a treatment is prescribed.

Its next level up cover is Health Choices for Me. This covers all the elements of Health Essentials plus it includes cover for diagnostic procedures such as MRI and PET scans as well as home nursing and parental accommodation (in the event of treatment needed by a child who is covered by the policy).

There are a number of optional extras, which increase premiums in return for greater cover. For example, treatment for diagnosed cancer conditions are only covered by the optional cancer cover module. You can also adjust the levels of out-patient and manipulative therapies cover.

The Exeter's final product is Health Cover for Me. This offers unlimited treatment for the categories of treatments its policy covers – that is in-patient and day-patient treatment, out-patient treatment, cancer, manipulative treatment, private ambulances and home nursing.

The company is rare in offering fixed moratorium underwriting, which could be useful for people with pre-existing medical conditions. It means that any conditions that are not included in the policy can be claimed for the two years after the policy begins but The Exeter will not pay for them. If you are free of the condition for two years The Exeter will then include it.

Read our article on health insurance for pre-existing medical conditions for more information.

You can compare The Exeter's prices and policies in depth versus others on the market using, a health insurance comparison site.

How much does The Exeter insurance cost?

There is no set cost for private medical insurance with The Exeter, because the price of your premium will depend on your individual circumstances. Your age, current health and pre-existing conditions can all affect the price you are quoted, as will lifestyle factors such as whether you smoke.

The Exeter is different to other insurers in that it takes your BMI (Body Mass Index) into account when pricing its policies.

Your premium will also depend on which cover option you choose; the greater the comprehensiveness of cover, the more you will pay for the policy.

However, this can be worth it in the long run, if you make a claim for a treatment that is not covered under its most basic healthcare cover.

There are ways to lower your premium, such as increasing your voluntary excess – bear in mind that you must set this at a level you can afford in the event of a claim.

You can compare The Exeter prices and policies using

What do The Exeter customers say?

Online community featured Exeter Family Friendly in a forum discussion on low cost insurance.

A policyholder commented: “Exeter Friendly offers a good fully comprehensive policy and are good for those with no current health insurance cover and pre existing conditions as they offer a fixed moratorium underwriting. After the first two years your medical history is effectively wiped clean and you can claim on old conditions just as you can on new ones.”

You can compare Exeter Family Friendly's prices and policies in depth versus others on the market using, a health insurance comparison site.

What do the experts say?

The Exeter has won a number of industry awards including two five-star awards from The Financial Adviser Service, and an older award from Which? as the top private medical insurance provider for customer satisfaction in 2011, with a 92% score.

Meanwhile, the Cover Excellence Awards crowned The Exeter winner of its Best Individual Private Medical Insurance accolade four successive times from 2011 to 2014.

Defaqto, an independent reviewer of financial products and providers, rates Private Health Insurance policies on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. They have rated Exeter Family Friendly’s policies as:

Health Cover for Me - 4 Star

Health Choices for Me – 3 Star

Health Essentials for Me – 3 Star

This article was independently written by Bought By Many. We were not paid to write it, but we may receive commission for sales that result from you clicking on a link to one of our partners.


You can compare Exeter Family Friendly's policy features and prices versus the market by using - a health insurance comparison site.

Alternatively you can read more about buying health insurance, including reviews of other providers, on our Best Health Insurance article, or by visiting the articles listed at the bottom of this page.

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