How Much Medicare Supplement Plans Cost

The cost of Medicare Supplement plans depends on your age, location, plan type, gender, and health status.

Taylor Milam-Samuel
Taylor Milam-Samuel
  • 8+ years writing for major outlets, including MarketWatch and Business Insider

  • Master’s in Education

Taylor Mlam-Samuel is a personal finance writer and credentialed educator. When she’s not helping readers better save and spend money, she can be found teaching.

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Katie Powers
Edited byKatie Powers
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Katie PowersAuto and Life Insurance Editor
  • Licensed auto and home insurance agent

  • 3+ years experience in insurance and personal finance editing

Katie uses her knowledge and expertise as a licensed property and casualty agent in Massachusetts to help readers understand the complexities of insurance shopping.

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Updated June 17, 2024

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Medicare Supplement Insurance, also known as Medigap, helps fill the financial “gaps” that exist for people with Original Medicare.[1] Plans usually have different deductible, co-insurance, and copayment amounts. You can choose different supplemental plans depending on the financial coverage you want.[2]

Medicare is for people 65 or older. You may also qualify for Medicare if you have a disability, end-stage renal disease, or ALS.[3] If you have Original Medicare — which includes Part A and Part B — you’re eligible for Medigap plans. But people with Medicare Advantage plans can’t add supplement insurance.

Whether Medigap is right for you depends on your age, health status, finances, and risk tolerance. Here’s what you need to know about Medicare Supplement plans, including how much they cost.

How Medicare Supplement plans work

The two types of Medicare coverage are Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage. Original Medicare includes Part A, which provides hospital insurance, and Part B, which provides medical insurance.[4] Participants are responsible for covering deductibles, co-insurance, and copayments.

If you want even more coverage, you can choose Medicare Advantage (Part C), which often also includes Part D prescription drug coverage. MA plans typically provide coverage for dental, vision, and hearing as well. Medicare Advantage is a Medicare-approved plan, but you’ll work with a private insurance company to establish coverage.

People with Original Medicare are eligible to buy supplemental insurance. Medicare patients can choose from different plans that help reduce their out-of-pocket medical expenses for treatments. But monthly premiums for supplemental plans can add up.

Good to Know

Private insurers partner with Medicare to offer supplemental plans. Each Medigap plan type includes the same coverage, regardless of which insurer you pick or where you live.[5] Prices vary depending on your health, age, city and ZIP code, the plan, and the insurance company.[6]

What is Medigap?

​​Medicare Supplement plans, also known as Medigap, help cover the financial “gaps” for people with Original Medicare. Patients with Medicare Advantage aren’t eligible for Medigap policies.

Most plans don’t offer additional medical coverage, though some will pay for emergency medical care outside the U.S. Instead, these optional plans reduce the cost of your out-of-pocket expenses for treatment.[2] For example, you won’t have to pay the 20% Original Medicare co-insurance payment with some plans.

Learn More: When Does Medicare Coverage Start?

Learn More: When Does Medicare Coverage Start?

How much do Medicare Supplement plans cost? 

Medicare Supplement policies have an additional monthly premium. Average costs vary depending on your age, gender, health insurance company, location, and health status. Plans without a high deductible usually start at around $100 per month.

You can find price estimates for all available plans on Medicare.gov. Medicare Supplement Plan F and Plan C are no longer available for new policyholders who turned 65 on or after Jan. 1, 2020, so the table below excludes details for those plans.

Learn more about each Medigap plan type and average cost below.[2] The following monthly premium ranges are for a 65-year-old non-smoking woman in Houston, Texas.

Medigap Plan TypeDescriptionMonthly Premium RangeDeductible
Plan AThe most basic Medigap plan. It includes coverage for Original Medicare Part A co-insurance, Original Medicare Part B copayment, blood benefit, and Part A hospice care co-insurance.$105–$783$1,632 for Part A and $240 for Part B
Plan BPlan B includes the same coverage as Plan A, plus coverage for the Part A deductible.$154–$381$0 for Part A and $240 Part B
Plan DPlan D includes the same coverage as Plan A and B, plus coverage for skilled nursing co-insurance and up to 80% for a foreign travel emergency.$128–$242 $0 for Part A and $240 Part B
Plan GPlan G offers the most comprehensive coverage. It includes the same coverage as Plan A, B, and D, plus the Part B excess charge and up to 80% for a foreign travel emergency.$117–$506 $0 for Part A and $240 Part B
Plan G with high deductible Plan G with a high deductible is only available in some states. It offers the same coverage as Plan G, but you must pay the annual deductible before coverage kicks in.$35–$95$2,800 for total plan
Plan KPlan K includes coverage for Part A co-insurance. It also includes 50% coverage for the Part B copayment, blood benefit, Part A hospice care co-insurance, Part A deductible, and skilled nursing co-insurance. The out-of-pocket maximum is $7,060.$62–$156$816 for Part A and $240 for Part B
Plan LPlan L includes coverage for Part A co-insurance. It also includes 75% coverage for the Part B copayment, blood benefit, Part A hospice care co-insurance, Part A Medicare deductible, and skilled nursing co-insurance. The out-of-pocket maximum is $3,530.$100–$248$408 for Part A and $240 for Part B
Plan MPlan M includes the same coverage as Plan A, plus the skilled nursing care co-insurance, 50% of the Part A deductible, and up to 80% for a foreign travel emergency.$83–$211$816 for Part A and $240 for Part B
Plan NPlan N has the same coverage as Plan D, but it doesn’t cover copayments for some office visits and emergency room visits.$92–$460 $0 for Part A and $240 for Part B

Factors that influence cost

Medigap plan costs vary depending on your gender, age, health status, the plan you select, and the insurer. Here’s how each factor affects the price you pay for supplemental coverage.[6]

  • Chosen plan: Each Medigap plan provides different levels of coverage. The more coverage you have, the higher monthly premiums you’ll pay.

  • Age: As you age, the cost of starting a supplemental Medicare plan increases. The good news is that if you have attained-age pricing and add coverage when you’re younger, the costs won’t increase as you age.

  • Gender: Men typically pay more for Medigap coverage because some companies offer discounts for women. For example, the Medigap premiums for a 65-year-old non-smoking male in Houston were higher than the premiums for a woman with the same profile, according to Insurify research.

  • Health status: When you request pricing for Medigap policies, the form asks whether you smoke. If you don’t smoke, you can typically get a discount.

  • Location: Your location can also affect the cost of coverage. If you live in an area with a high cost of living, you’ll typically pay more than someone who lives in a less expensive area.

How age affects premiums

Depending on the insurer’s payment structure, your age can affect your insurance payment significantly. The older you are, the more you typically have to pay for coverage.

But some insurance plans don’t use age as a factor. It depends on the payment structure of your plan, which can be community-rated, issue-age-rated, or attained-age-rated.[7]

When you search for a Medigap plan on the Medicare website, you can view the payment structure for each insurance plan. Depending on your age, one payment structure might be cheaper than the others. Here’s how it works.

Community-rated structure 

Community-rated payment structures provide the same pricing for people in a similar geographic area, regardless of age. This payment structure might be cheaper for older people.

But community-rated payment structures are usually more expensive for younger Medicare patients in their 60s or early 70s.

Issue-age-rated structure

Issue-age-rated payment structures offer lower premiums for younger Medicare buyers, and the price won’t change as age increases. You can usually save money with an issue-age-rated structure if you’re searching for a Medigap plan in your early 60s or 70s.

The main perk of this payment structure is that the premiums won’t increase as you age. It also offers an incentive for getting a Medigap policy while you’re younger so you can lock in a lower rate.

Attained-age-rated structure 

Attained-age-rated payment structures offer lower premiums for younger buyers, but the price increases with age. Because of that, plans with this payment structure can have the highest costs over time.

You might want to consider an attained-age structure plan if you’re young and only want supplemental coverage for a few years. Many of the cheapest plans for younger Medicare patients use an attained-age payment structure.

How to choose an affordable Medicare Supplement plan

You have a lot to consider when searching for a Medicare Supplement plan. To get the best deal, compare plans, utilize discounts, and ask questions.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/fa11c1fe75/comparison-website.svg

    Compare plans

    Medicare makes it easy to compare plans at Medicare.gov. Each plan type includes the same coverage. For example, if you’re looking at Plan G, each result for Plan G has identical coverage amounts. Make sure to read the fine print and understand how age affects the insurance plan you choose.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/150x150/3b97fae014/money-96x96-blue_033-magnifying-glass.svg

    Seek out discounts

    Most Medigap insurers offer various discounts, including reduced rates for women, non-smokers, and married people. You can also get a discount for paying annually or electronically. If you qualify, use the discounts to get a lower rate.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/150x150/25057fcc72/family-96x96-orange_003-man.svg

    Consider timing

    Medigap plans are typically cheaper when you’re younger. The sooner you add a plan, the less you can expect to pay.

  • illustration card https://a.storyblok.com/f/162273/x/7955361cf0/customer-support-1.svg

    Ask questions

    Medicare coverage, especially Medigap plans, can be confusing. If you have additional questions or need help, you can contact the insurance company for more information.

Medicare Supplement cost FAQs

When you select a Medicare Supplement plan, it’s essential to understand how the pricing works. Here are answers to common Medigap questions.

  • What is the average cost of a supplement for Medicare?

    The cost of a supplement for Medicare varies depending on your age, location, health status, gender, and the plan you choose. The lowest monthly premiums are typically around $100.

  • What is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan?

    Medicare Supplement Plan G is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan. It’s also the most comprehensive and covers everything except the Medicare Part B deductible. Plan G is a great option if you want maximum financial coverage.

  • What is the downside to Medicare Supplement plans?

    The downside to Medicare Supplement plans is that none of the plans will cover all your costs. You also have to pay a monthly premium for Medigap, regardless of whether you use the benefits. Because of that, a supplemental plan may not always make financial sense.

  • What is the average cost of AARP Medicare Supplement insurance?

    The average cost of an AARP Medicare Supplement insurance plan depends on age, location, health status, plan type, and gender. For example, the cost of Plan A coverage from AARP for a 65-year-old nonsmoking man in Houston ranges from $358–$884. Plan B coverage from AARP for the same person is $430.

  • Is Medicare Supplement insurance free?

    Medicare Supplement insurance isn’t free. Each Medigap plan has a monthly premium. Your age, location, insurer, gender, and pricing structure determine the cost.

Sources

  1. Medicare.gov. "What's Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap)?."
  2. Medicare.gov. "Compare Medigap Plan Benefits."
  3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. "Who’s eligible for Medicare?."
  4. Medicare.gov. "Parts of Medicare."
  5. Medicare.gov. "Get Medigap Basics."
  6. Medicare.gov. "Get Medigap Costs."
  7. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. "Choosing a Medigap Policy: A Guide to Health Insurance for People with Medicare."
Taylor Milam-Samuel
Taylor Milam-Samuel

Taylor Milam-Samuel is a writer and credentialed educator who is fascinated by how people earn, save, and spend their money. When she's not researching financial terms and conditions, she can be found in the classroom teaching.

Katie Powers
Edited byKatie PowersAuto and Life Insurance Editor
Photo of an Insurify author
Katie PowersAuto and Life Insurance Editor
  • Licensed auto and home insurance agent

  • 3+ years experience in insurance and personal finance editing

Katie uses her knowledge and expertise as a licensed property and casualty agent in Massachusetts to help readers understand the complexities of insurance shopping.

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