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Rock Climbing and Life Insurance

Researcher & Writer
July 08, 2015

Rock climbing, mountaineering, and bungee jumping may seem like two different sports – and they are- but from the perspective of a thrill-seeker, they have two things in common: you have to love heights, and you have to love risk, and both of these things are a red flag for life insurance companies, which is why rock climbing, mountaineering, and bungee jumping all make our Life Insurance Companies’ Top Ten Most Hated Hobbies list.

Yet, whether you’re a rock climber, mountain climber or bungee jumper doesn’t mean life insurance companies will write you off right away; you’re still likely to be eligible for a high quality life insurance policy that offers you exactly what you need  In fact, you may even qualify for a no medical exam life insurance policy if you're really healthy!

It could also mean...

That if you are able to qualify for either a traditional term life insurance policy or a whole life insurance policy it could come at a slightly higher price than if you’re favorite weekend activity was sitting on a sofa, both feet on the ground, and bingeing on the latest Netflix series.

How Does a Life Insurance Company Determine the Premium?

There are many factors that go into determining the premium a climber or bungee jumper may have to pay. Essentially, a life insurance company will decide whether or not your hobby puts you at a greater risk of dying than other activities, and if so, how often you flirt with danger. When you apply for a life insurance policy, the company will ask you a series of questions to understand your lifestyle. When you answer “yes” to questions like “Do you mountain climb?” or “Do you bungee jump?” it opens the door for follow-up questions. These questions are actually for your benefit; an insurance company won’t tack on the same premium for a professional rock climber as it will for the occasional climber; these follow-up questions help the insurance company to create tiers so that those less at risk aren’t overcharged. The questions will help the insurance company to determine:

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  • The frequency in which you climb or jump
  • If you have any certifications or special training
  • Whether you are a professional or hobby climber/jumper
  • The type of safety precautions you use (ropes, harnesses, helmets etc)
  • Whether you rely solely on yourself or whether you go with someone (do you take a guide mountain climbing? Do you tandem jump?)
  • The conditions under which you typically practice your adventure sport (do you bungee jump in open spaces or in mountainous ravines? Do you rock climb on indoor walls or on the world’s most dangerous cliffs?)

Once a life insurance company has gathered all of this information, they will assess your risk factor. If you engage in climbing or jumping regularly and take extra risks just for the thrill of it, then you are probably going to have to pay a premium. If you are a cautious climber or jumper, and follow the books on your occasional day out, then you may not have to fork over any more money than the next guy to get quality life insurance coverage.

How much is the Premium for Rock Climbers, Mountain Climbers and Bungee Jumpers?

As we already stated, the premium will depend on many factors and not all insurance companies have the same fees. On average, a fairly regular climber or jumper can expect to pay around $3-5 per $1000 of coverage per year. If you take a $150,000 life insurance policy, that works out to be $450-750/ year. For many of us, that’s a sizeable amount of money (think of all those extra bungee jumps you could do in that kind of cash!), but many people consider it worth it to make sure their family is well taken care of in the event of a tragic event.

What is a “regular” rock climber/ bungee jumper?

Well, there are no hard and fast rules about what constitutes as a regular; it’s up to each life insurance company to create their own parameters for premiums. However, a good estimate to go by is if you engage in your adventure sport an average of one or more times a week, you’re probably a regular. Some insurance companies may reserve the highest premium for those who climb or jump more than 100 times a year. The safest way to know is to ask an insurance company about their conditions for your specific sport before you apply.

What if I can’t afford the Premium?

Just because you don’t want to pay the rock climber/bungee jumper premium doesn’t mean you should forego life insurance altogether. You can opt for a policy which does not have climbing or jumping coverage so you can avoid the premium. This means your policy is good so long as you don’t die while engaging in your sport. If you do, then your family and loved ones will not benefit from your life insurance plan. Of course this means you’re putting your life insurance policy at risk – you may wind up paying for your policy for years only to render it worthless when it’s finally supposed to be put to use. But then again, we – as does the insurance companies – already know you’re a risk taker!

How should I choose a life insurance company?

There are dozens of life insurance providers in the market. While your love for climbing and/or jumping is one factor to consider, there are many others that will contribute to determining the end price of your policy as well as the benefits you get out of it. TermLife2Go represents dozens of life insurance providers, and while we know and understand each of the various company’s policies, we work for you, the client, to determine the best policy for your needs.

We can help rock climbers, mountain climbers, bungee jumpers, and even people who hate adventure sports, to determine the best life insurance company for their needs, as well as the best policy. We do this by being in touch with the ins and outs of various life insurance companies' niches. For more on this visit our Checklist for Finding the Best Life Insurance Quotes and Rates.

We have no vested interest in pitching one company over another; we simply want you to get the life insurance coverage you deserve! If you would like to know more about the kind of policies that may benefit you and your passion for rock climbing, mountaineering, or bungee jumping, then get in touch with us today.

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We are a team of life insurance experts with the simple mission of helping you find the best coverage for your unique situation. We research, review, and rank life insurance companies to make that process easier.