How to make sure you get the right life insurance for you

It’s the policy that none of us really want to think about but if you have any dependents, life insurance is one of the best ways of looking after their needs should the worst happen.

However, with so many different types of policies available it’s important to be able to choose the right one for you and your family so that everything you need to cover is covered, as well as ensuring that you are not paying for any features that you don’t need.

What are the different types of life assurance?

The basic criterion of a life assurance policy is that it pays out a lump sum on the policyholder’s death. Beyond that there are a bewildering number of permutations and combinations and a baffling array of jargon.

The two broad areas of life insurance are protection only and investment.

- Protection only:

Known as “term insurance”, protection-only policies pay a specified amount if you die within a defined period. If you survive it pays out nothing.

Within this category there are various different types of policy including decreasing term (more widely known as mortgage protection) where the sum decreases commensurate with your mortgage commitments; level term, which pays out an assured sum that remains unchanged throughout the term; and increasing term which is linked to inflation.

- Investment

One of the most popular forms of investment life assurance is the endowment policy. This is essentially a savings scheme with the added bonus of life insurance and pays out a sum of money if you die within a certain period OR pays a sum of money out at the end of that agreed period if you survive.
This sector also includes “Whole Of Life” insurance, which guarantees the payment of a lump sum when the policyholder dies whenever that is (as long as you keep up with your payments).

Again, there are various types of whole life policy including non-profit (where the cash sum is fixed) and with profit (which pays a fixed cash sum plus any profits made on the investment, varying terms are available).

Your choice of life assurance is going to be dictated by several factors. First of all, look at your family circumstances – do you have a mortgage? Would your partner be able to continue to make mortgage payments in the event of your death? If not, then mortgage protection is a must.

If your partner is looking after children and unable to replace your income in the event of your death, then you should consider a policy that replaces your income and perhaps considers extra expenses such as childcare or school fees.

Once you have addressed your needs you can then look at what else you can afford – for example, do you want to leave something for your children in the event of your death? Do you want to enter into a life assurance policy such as an endowment purely for investment purposes?

Whatever your requirements, once you understand what is available you can use online resources such as Motley Fool Life Insurance Comparison or an online personal finance site like ASDA Finance, to make your decision easier.

Travel Insurance advice (Part 2 of 2)

Read part One here

Loss /Theft of Property

Wherever you are travelling to, the possibility of both being a victim of theft, and losing valuable items is all too realistic. Most travel insurance will cover you in some respects, up to certain amount. Things worth checking for include whether there is an excess, what types of items are insured, how much each individual item is insured for, and the total amount you are covered for.

Cancelled or delayed Flights

What level of cover is given to cancelled flights is extremely important. Cancelled and delayed flights are commonplace, and can severely disrupt your plans. Some insurance policies will put you up in a hotel, and pay for meals, others will do very little. It is particularly worth paying attention to this, when travelling on budget airlines, as these offer little compensation when their flights are cancelled as opposed to standard airlines which offer varying levels of cover.

Cutting your holiday short

Known as ‘curtailment’, if due to unforeseen circumstances you are forced to cut your holiday short, there are often significant costs to be made in arranging alternative travel arrangements – some travel insurance may include this.

Legal Assistance

Should you be accused of a crime abroad, or are involved in any type of legal action (this could include damage to rented vehicles), someone will be responsible for the legal costs. To make sure you are covered, take out travel insurance and make sure this is included.

Adventurous Activities

There are a number of common holiday activities that are specified by travel insurance companies as risk activities. If you are planning on taking a flight to Australia or are planning some kind of activity which may be classified as dangerous such as swimming with sharks, base jumping, winter sports alongside many more, you will likely have to take out a specialist insurance. Check with your travel insurance provider, to see what is and isn’t covered.

Dangerous Countries

Certain countries are not generally insured on travel insurance policies. Should you choose to travel to area’s threatened by war or natural disaster or otherwise classified as high risk, you may have to take out specialist insurance. For example if you are planning a holiday in Dubai, just to the volatile neighbouring region you should double check that you are indeed covered.

Travel Insurance advice (Part 1 of 2)

Travel Insurance advice:

Travel insurance is a must when going on any holiday. Whether you are going on a weeks holiday to France, or a month snowboarding in the alps, there are a huge number of options to make sure are included when choosing your travel insurance. Most travel insurance policies include several things as standard, but remember to read the small print, as there are often conditions such as higher premiums, and lower payouts and cover on cheaper policies.

The first thing to decide on when looking at travel insurance policies is between single trip travel insurance and annual travel insurance Choosing between these two largely depends on how often you are going to travel in a year, so is pretty easy to work out. An annual policy will generally cover between 30 and 60 days in a year. Trips are counted as number of whole days spent abroad, or 2 consecutive days in the UK. As a guideline, if you go away more than twice in a year, it is probably worth paying for a yearly policy, if you are travelling any less, it probably isn’t. This applies to most countries in the world, but one exception is the USA. Because the US has expensive health insurance, and how the annual cover is worked out, it is often much better value to look at annual travel cover in the US.

Each travel insurance package will come with its own list of what is covered and how much it is covered for. The following is a checklist of specific things to make sure is included, and what to watch out for. For example , the AA travel Insurance varies from Go Travel Insurance.

Medical Expenses

Most travel insurance will offer basic travel insurance that will cover your medical expenses should you have any type of accident. It is important to check how much you are covered as costs in foreign hospitals can go up to the thousands very easily. If you have any type of medical conditions, make sure that you mention it to the insurer. Common examples include diabetes and asthma. Remember when travelling in Europe to apply for your EHIC (European Health Insurance Card). Previously known as the E111, this card provides limited discounts and sometimes free health insurance in Europe. Those included include all members of the EU as well as Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. For all others, extra travel insurance will need to be provided. It is also worth checking whether costs are paid for expenses. Should you be a victim of an accident in which you are stuck in a foreign hospital, as well as your own personal costs, further costs may be incurred through your family flying out. This is often covered, but may not be.

read part 2 here

Use Credit Cards to Earn Money

For sometime now, Credit Cards have been a brilliant way of clearing debt, rather than having to take out a loan which will charge you on the amount you have borrowed. However, there is another way where you can avoid these annoying charges; in fact it’s practically free and is known as Stoozing. There is fierce competition in the credit card industry that many lenders have introductory periods of between 3 and 18 months during which they charge 0% interest on the card balance (commonly known as 0% interest Balance Transfers). This is done as a way of attracting customers, for example 0% interest Credit Card from Natwest and 0% Credit Card from RBS, which both offer 0% interest for the first 9 months. Offers such as these allow us to borrow money for ‘free’ which we can use to pay off your debts or move into a high interest savings account.


You can take advantage of the 0% introductory period by withdrawing the money to pay off your debt, as long as you ensure that you pay of the minimum monthly charge that the lender will charge you. At the end of the introductory period, if you haven’t cleared your debt, you can then transfer the balance across onto another credit card, starting the process again. This can be repeated until your debt is cleared and the great thing is that it is virtually free, avoiding those pesky interest rate charges that you face with loans. Check out the Motley Fool’s guide to see the best 0% interest credit cards and high interest savings accounts.


Alternatively, you can move the money of your credit card into a high interest savings account. At the end of the 0% introductory period, the money is withdrawn from the savings account and used to pay off the full credit card balance. The interest gained from the savings account is your ‘profit’. As with any other savings account interest, taxpayers need to pay tax on the interest earned.


However, rather than paying off the credit card at the end of the period directly from the savings account, you can apply for another 0% credit card to pay off the first one. This gives us the opportunity to keep the borrowed money in the savings account for a considerably longer time.


Another way of making money from Credit Cards is to put the borrowed money into an offset mortgage instead of a savings account. This helps to reduce your mortgage payments, earning you money that is usually tax free. For a list of the best offset mortgages check out the Motley Fool.


Typical Stoozers normally earn between £400 and £2500 per annum from Stoozing.


If you are new to Stoozing it is important that you read the risks that are involved as this could affect your credit history. You need to keep up with the paperwork involved with stoozing.

4 Steps You Can Take If Your Online Credit Card Application Has Been Refused

Help! I’ve Been Turned Down
You received an envelope in the mail with a great offer for a low interest credit card. You read all the details, even the boring small print and decided that this card fit your needs to a tee. You filled out the required forms and anticipated the day that the card would arrive - you even got to pick which background you got. However, what came in the mail was not an acceptance and a brand new card but a denial. What is your first reaction? Perhaps anger. Perhaps sadness. Perhaps fear. Yet none of these will help you get a card!
So, what should you do?
1. The first thing to do is read the letter carefully. Two important pieces of information must be included in the letter you receive when you’re credit application is disapproved: The specific reasons you were denied credit, or information on how to obtain those reasons, and, if a credit report was used in making that decision, the name and address of the credit reporting agency. Here are some possible reasons for denial:
Haven’t lived at your current location long enough
Haven’t been employed at your current job long enough
Your income is not sufficient to meet this particular creditor’s minimum income requirement
Information supplied by the credit bureau
2. If the reason for your denial is unclear to you, then call the company for clarification. What were the exact reasons? What were the exact standards that you did not meet? This information is important to know and understand. If you apply for credit again and are turned down, then this reflects poorly on your credit report. The best advice for this situation is to wait at least 6 months if you have been denied by two different companies in quick succession.
3. If you’ve been denied credit because of information supplied by a credit bureau, federal law requires the creditor to give you the name, address, and telephone number of the bureau that supplied the information. You should contact this agency for a copy of your credit report. Federal law states that you are entitled to a free copy if you’ve been turned down. Once you receive your report, check it for accuracy. Up to 40% of reports have errors. If you find an error, then you need to report this to the bureau in writing. Be sure to send along whatever proof you may have. Getting the credit bureau to investigate an error will not cost you anything and will save you a lot of time and frustration when it is corrected.
4. If mistakes on your report led to the rejection of your application, ask the credit bureau to send a corrected copy to the lender. Then you can ask the lender to reconsider your application. If however, you were denied because of a poor rating, only better spending habits and time will help you get the credit you desire.
About The Author
Wesley Atkins is the owner of which aims to get you fitted with the best credit cards to suit your situation. With numerous credit card articles and easy online credit card applications you will never choose the wrong credit card again.

Disposable Contact Lenses – Simple But PowerfulThe eyes make the entire image seem real and very believable.

Throughout time there have been various means of correcting vision. There was the monocle, then the glasses that were on a chain or a stick, and then there were eyeglasses as we know them today but there were not as many styles as there are now. As technology improved the lenses of glasses were getting smaller. Since many people were always losing or breaking their eyeglasses they were hoping for a way to wear glasses and not have to worry about them being lost or breaking them.

Contact lenses came along and they were great but expensive. If you lost them or dropped them you would have to get new ones. I knew of someone who lost one of her contact lens and she had developed an infection in her eye. The doctor examined her only to find the contact lens had slipped and was not in the proper place. Traditional contact lenses were rigid and took some getting used to.

People were looking for softer and more flexible lenses and lenses they could easily put in. Softer lenses came out and then because they had to be removed every night and cleaned, people started to long for lenses they could wear all the time. As the prices came down and more people were able to purchase contacts, they were getting sick and tired of cleaning them all the time and of the expense of all the cleaning solutions needed.

It would be great, they thought, to be able to throw out the lenses each night and eliminate the need for the cleaning solution. 1987 saw the introduction of disposable contact lenses and they were design-ed to be worn for a specific amount of time before having to be re-placed. There are some terms and explanations that you need to be familiar to understand disposable contact lenses.

Disposable Contact Lenses - they are discarded and replaced after two weeks if not sooner.

Frequent replacement lenses - they are replaced every one to three months. Traditional/Reusable - these are replaced every six months if not before.

Extended wear lenses - you can sleep in them for up to two weeks.

Daily disposable lenses are removed and discarded every night eliminating the need for cleaning solutions. You and your doctor should determine the replacement schedule. The wearing schedule defines how often you remove, replace, or discard your lenses.

Day and night Contact Lenses - You wear these lenses day and night for up to 30 days. You then remove them and dispose of them. It is my personal opinion that if you can tolerate them the Day and Night Contact lenses would be the best idea. Imagine what you can do with all the time you save because you aren’t busy cleaning your lenses every night.

The more lenses are replaced the healthier your eyes will be. Over time there can be a build up of calcium, lipids, and proteins on them and make your eyes very uncomfortable and make you prone to infections. Some people wear disposable lenses for theatrical purposes and use color changer lenses. There are all kinds of contact lenses including those with logos and animal eyes.

What are some of the benefits of using disposable contact lenses?

There is lower risk of infections, lenses are sterile

There is not enough time for calcium and protein to build up on them.

They result in clearer vision.

They are not for use with cleaning solutions.

There is no worry about having cleaning solutions or storing them.

Daily disposables are ideal for people who suffer from allergies, especially during the high allergy season.

The are great for people who wear contacts only a few days a week. They are also cheaper if you wear them only a few days a week.

If you rip your lenses or lose them, you simply discard them and open a new package.

The benefits of disposable contact lenses are greater than eyeglasses. Some people keep a pair of glasses just in case something has to happen to their lenses.

The decision to use contact lenses including disposable contact lenses should be discussed with your eye care physician. A careful examination should be conducted as well. Do your research some manufacturers of contact lenses will offer you a free trial for at least a week.

You can get disposable contact lenses from eye care places or you can get them online. Either way you will need to have a prescription. Be aware that not everyone can wear contact lenses and only you and your doctor can decide that. You need to decide if you can afford them. Talk to the manufacturers and see if they have any special offers and/or trial periods. Do your research; see what kinds of lens are available for your prescription. Do what is best for you.

Reprint Rights feel free to publish this article on your website but you must agree to leave all active links contained within ‘About The Author’ intact and “as is” and NOT hidden behind a java or redirect script.

About The Author

Martin Smith is a successful freelance writer providing advice for consumers on purchasing a variety of products which includes Bifocal Contact Lenses and Contact Lenses, and more! His numerous articles provide a wonderfully researched resource of interesting and relevant information.

Invasion of the Privacy Snatchers

On-line Life Insurance Quotes can Coexist with Total Customer Privacy


Even the notion of it brings up a wistful longing, a “wouldn’t it be nice if…” ache. The concept of controlling your private information harkens back to simpler times.

Privacy is a casualty of modern life - treated as yet another price of progress. Each of us finds frequent, fresh reasons to mourn its loss - as more of our private space is chipped away. On some level we feel violated, while being powerless to slow it down.

One needn’t survive identity theft to be weary of routine assaults upon our individual sense of identity. It’s who we are - after all. Computer technologies driving our world relentlessly chop us into bits and byes of data, that can be stored and analyzed. Then it’s passed along to persons or organizations unknown - to use for “who knows what.”

People Jealously Guard their Bit of Remaining Privacy

Fill in this form… supply that personal fact… There’s no way to protect private information from insatiable, ever- expanding databases. Like the Star Trek slogan of the Borg, “Resistance is Futile.” All the while, down deep there’s a gnawing suspicion that whatever we reveal will be used against us.

Nowhere is that insecurity clearer than on the Internet, with infinite information passing across millions of websites. How willing are people to tell more than they must about themselves? Not very. Websites that demand more than minimal self-disclosure find a high percentage leave rather than comply.

Reliance on the Internet to Find Information Keeps Growing

Studies report the Web is trusted to provide information needed to make decisions and purchases - second only to spouses. A Harris Interactive consumer survey found that 73% of adults are now online - 156 million users.That’s up from 69% eight months before. Such massive changes in consumer behavior are altering every type of business.It’s a new ball game online.

Life insurance was once sold primarily by career life agents who represented a single insurance company. And a person’s agent knew them personally. Now policies are also sold by direct mail, telephone, and over the Internet - often by people who don’t know you at all.

Although there are numerous websites offering life insurance rate information, they ask visitors to disclosure their personal contact information first. And some are just collecting information to sell to agents. One assumes that requirement serves the sales process, rather than serving the wary customer (who just wants the information, thank you).

Anonymity is a Luxury

Imagine acquiring information you desire without having to surrender your privacy! There’s an extensive data base where life insurance rates for major companies are collected. And you can immediately find the best rates in the database, based on the factors you care about and fit you personally.

Here’s the best part. You can acquire that information without having to give up any facts about yourself. It’s a reality - we don’t ask for any personal information in order for you to get the data you want. You see the phrase, “We respect your privacy” all over the Web. But this could be the first time you’ve seen it in practice.

If you visit and enter several factors that you want to know… Bingo, up pop the best rates in the database. Your personal information was never requested. No salesman will call. Nobody is going to make you sorry you filled out a request. Aaaah…

Bet you thought it couldn’t happen. But we demonstrate that online life insurance quotes can co-exist with total customer privacy.

Here’s what one client said, which is representative of the positive feedback people give us about this service: “After attempting to work with several other online insurance services. With them, I was able to look at many different insurance options in the privacy of my own home. Then, when I was good and ready, I made the decision, and contacted them. I had all the rates before I got in touch with them. Being able to do this anonymously made this a very comfortable, non-pressured process.”

You’re Completely in Control

Once you review your list of competitive insurance choices, anonymously, the next move is entirely up to you. Search again with different criteria… File the information away for future reference… Call your brother-in-law who’s been after you to buy the policy he’s selling… Or click on the link for your choice of policy and take the next step (where at some point, you’ll need to identify yourself)… and only then contact us for more information… It’s 100% up to you.

About The Author

Richard Reich, VP Intramark Insurance Your online source for life insurance quotes. Where you can search for the best rates from major life insurance cos. online - on your own.

Life Insurance Without Life Value: Why Young People Are Snubbing Financial Advice

This article is written by a 27 year old female (borderline Generation X / Y) called Rachel. Rachel spent six years at university, has no outstanding debts with the exception of government student loans. Rachel also has no pension plan, no life insurance, savings or property investment. Despite reports of average starting salaries for graduates beginning at ?18,000, some even at ?25,000, Rachel started on ?14,000 three years ago, despite gaining a First Class Honours and offering extensive work experience.

This isn’t therapy through Microsoft Word, but it’s not uncommon to read reports of “apathetic youth” in the media. For driven young graduates who didn’t quite land where they expected - it is a little frustrating to be branded “ignorant”, when it is already difficult working off university debts and fighting your way onto the career ladder in a very competitive market.

What is the point of having independence in old age, if you cannot experience it in youth? That is not to say young people should be encouraged or supported in their debateable extravagance, only that we remain unconvinced by old age. We may have seen our parents lose money in shares or private pension funds, or get divorced and lose money through property. We may be worried about global warming and in an age of suicide bombers, we may not even be confident about how much control we have on our lives anyway. With so much choice on what we can do, but so few people empowering us with confidence, we may well rebel for years to come - chopping and changing until we find something that fits or until we get tired.

It’s too easy to brand young people as apathetic just because they haven’t got pensions or life insurance. Smug thirty-somethings who received full grants, graduated in a less competitive market and bought property when the house market was low are quite happy to “tut tut” at their twenty-something shadows in their lack of financially savvy experience, but today’s twenty somethings are being squeezed from all angles:

Student loans replace university grants
Commercialisation of university life, with banks and credit card companies actively courting student customers
High property prices
Very competitive job market

What we need are comprehensive financial research sites that provide information which directly relates to our circumstances. Websites such as moneynet with their product price comparisons and finance guides (especially the student finance guide) -do go most of the way, but we want something that also takes into account our aspirations, situations and will go the distance. We’re not adverse to pensions, life insurance and mortgages, but if we’re going to splash out lots of dough, it has to be a reasonably reliable investment and we remain unconvinced from we’ve seen so far in provocative, panic-stirring media.

It’s true that products such as life insurance would at least protect our families from our debts and that’s important, but with regard to pension, who’s to say that in our old age, we may not revert back to student lifestyles - living in communities and on budgets.


Google and the search command “define: generation X” or define: generation y” for age reference (The source of inspiration for this article!)

About The Author

As well as the information in the article, Rachel writes for the personal finance blog Cashzilla.  Please feel welcome to comment on any of the article, Cashzilla may bite, but Rachel doesn’t!

Should You Purchase Travel Insurance?

  The determination of whether you should purchase travel insurance is a determination of whether you want to assume nothing bad can happen during your travels, or whether should something bad happen you can adequately resolve these unforeseen events.

None of us think something bad will happen. We assume incorrectly that fire, flood, earthquake and terrorism will happen to others. We assume we won’t have a heart attack or stroke, we won’t be felled by illness. We assume wrong.

The question, “should you purchase travel insurance” is perhaps answered by asking yourself why you purchased homeowners insurance, or medical insurance or life insurance. You purchased them so that your consistent small payments would assure you of having someone else provide help in case of a catastrophic event for which you are unprepared. Purchasing travel insurance, just like purchasing any other insurance, is not just about receiving the funds to recover. It’s also about having the professional assistance of those who know what has to happen for you and your family to recover, and who do make that happen. It’s about cooler heads prevailing.

Should you purchase travel insurance? Well, let’s look at a few things that could, and do happen, to overseas and even domestic travelers. Then, you decide if you should purchase travel insurance.

You’re from Minnesota. You’ve never been to the ocean. You book a hotel room in Florida for a week but you are then ordered to evacuate due to an expected hurricane. But you have non-refundable airline tickets, and your hotel and rental car are already paid for. How do you replace the airline tickets and get reimbursed for your stay? If you had known this was going to happen, what would your answer have been to the question, “Should you purchase travel insurance?”

You’re on an island in the Caribbean, ready for your cruise back home. You find out that the cruise ship company has gone bankrupt and there will be no return cruise. What do you do? How do you get your money back? Most importantly, how do you get back home? If you had known this was going to happen, what would your answer have been to the question, “Should you purchase travel insurance?”

You’re ready to take your family on a much-needed vacation to Hawaii. Your daughter is felled by an attack of appendicitis and must have immediate surgery. But your airline tickets are non-refundable. How do you get your money back? If you had known this was going to happen, what would your answer have been to the question, “Should you purchase travel insurance?”

About The Author

Steve Cogger is an avid traveler offering a wealth of travel information.