Tesco Bank pet insurance review

28 min Read Published: 18 Jun 2021

Tesco Bank pet insurance review

In this independent review, we take a look at Tesco Bank pet insurance, including what it covers, how much it costs and how it compares to any alternative pet insurance providers. We recommend that you read the review in full, however, you can navigate to certain sections of the article with the following links.

What is Tesco Bank pet insurance?

Tesco Bank has been offering financial products and insurance policies to its customers since 1997. In addition to pet insurance, it also offers car and home insurance policies. Tesco Bank pet insurance is underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc and offers a range of pet insurance policies for your cat or dog. More Than pet insurance is also underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance plc and we compare Tesco and More Than's pet insurance policies later in this article.

Tesco Bank pet insurance features

  • 4 levels of pet insurance for your cat or dog from 8 weeks of age
  • 5 star defaqto rating
  • 24/7 vet phoneline access via Vetfone
  • Fixed excess amount
  • 20% introductory discount for the first year (with selected premiums)
  • Online claims process
  • Multi-pet discount
  • Discount for Clubcard members

What does Tesco Bank pet insurance cover?

Tesco Bank pet insurance offers 4 types of pet insurance with up to £10,000 of vet fee cover. We explain the different types of pet insurance it offers in more detail below:

Tesco 'Premier' pet insurance - Lifetime pet insurance policy

Lifetime pet insurance covers your pet for illnesses and injuries for the duration of its life. Lifetime pet insurance is best for covering lifelong and chronic conditions and it is best to open a lifetime policy when your pet is young to ensure it is covered for any conditions it may develop in later life. Once you make a claim on a pet insurance policy it is hard to get the condition covered by a new provider because it will be considered as a pre-existing condition. Tesco Bank offers four lifetime pet insurance policies with its 'Premier cover' with veterinary fee cover up to a total of £10,000 per year depending on the policy you choose. Tesco offers annual limit lifetime pet cover which means that you are insured up to a maximum of £10,000 a year for veterinary fees, depending on the Tesco lifetime policy you choose. With Tesco's lifetime pet cover you can claim for vet fees up to the annual limit in a policy year, anything above the limit will need to be self-funded until the limit renews the following policy year.

For more information on lifetime pet insurance, read our article "Lifetime pet insurance explained".

Tesco 'Extra' pet insurance - Maximum benefit pet insurance policy

Maximum benefit pet insurance covers your pet for illnesses and injuries up to a set condition limit. Tesco Bank offers two maximum benefit policies with its 'Extra' pet insurance, with veterinary fee cover ranging up to £7,500 per condition. This means that you can claim up until the set limit is reached for each condition as long as you hold a Tesco Bank pet insurance policy. If you reach the limit, any additional treatment for the condition will need to be self-funded.

For more information on maximum benefit pet insurance and how it works, read our article "Maximum Benefit pet insurance explained".

Tesco 'Standard' pet insurance - Time-limited pet insurance policy

Time-limited pet insurance covers your pet for illnesses and injuries for a set period of time (which is usually 12 months) or until the vet fee limit is reached, whichever comes first. Tesco Bank's time-limited pet insurance policy is its 'standard' policy. You can claim up to £3,000 in veterinary fees for each illness or accident for up to 12 months from the first date of treatment or until you have reached the £3,000 limit. After this point the condition is considered pre-existing and will need to be self-funded.

For more information on time-limited pet insurance and how it works, read our article "Time-limited pet insurance explained".

Tesco 'Accident and injury' pet insurance - Accident only pet insurance policy

Accident-only pet insurance covers your pet for any veterinary treatment sustained due to an accident. Tesco Bank's 'Accident and Injury' pet insurance policy does cover for illnesses if they are a direct result of an accident, if not, any illnesses your pet develops will not be covered with this policy. Tesco Bank has one accident-only pet insurance policy with up to £3,000 of cover for veterinary fees. You can claim for veterinary fees for up to 12 months after the first date of treatment or until the £3,000 limit is reached, whichever is first. After this, the condition is considered as pre-existing and any further treatment will need to be self-funded.

For more information on accident-only pet insurance and how it works, read our article "Accident-only pet insurance explained".

Tesco Bank pet insurance policy exclusions

Below, we detail some of the policy exclusions within a Tesco Bank pet insurance policy. This is not an exhaustive list and you should always check your policy documents carefully before taking out any pet insurance policy. Tesco Bank does not pay out pet insurance claims for the following:

  • The policy excess
  • Pets under the age of 8 weeks old
  • Routine treatment such as vaccinations and worming
  • Any pre-existing conditions
  • Any claim over the policy limits
  • Pregnancy or birth
  • Prescription costs
  • Any condition that your pet developed within the first 14 days of the policy
  • Any condition that later develops from an illness/injury that your pet sustained in the first 14 days of the policy
  • Any claim where your premium has not been paid or your policy is no longer active
  • Any condition that your pet has suffered from, due to negligence or malicious intent to harm your pet, caused by you or members of your family
  • If your pet is injured due to worrying livestock
  • If your pet is euthanased due to a court order
  • If your pet suffers from a notifiable disease which is named in the Animal Health Act 1981
  • Any dogs registered under the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991
  • Any dog used for guarding, security or fighting
  • Pets that are bred commercially or to make an income
  • Public liability claims where cover on another insurance policy hasn't already been used up (e.g a home insurance policy)

Tesco Bank pet insurance policies

Tesco Bank has a multitude of pet insurance policies to choose from. In the below comparison table we compare the Tesco pet insurance policies. If you wish to find out how much each pet insurance policy costs, jump to our costs section.

A comparison between Tesco Bank pet insurance policies

(Scroll to see the full table)

Premier Premier Premier Premier Extra Extra Standard
Accident & Injury
Policy type Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Maximum benefit policy Maximum benefit policy Time-limited policy Accident-only policy
Excess £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200 £60/£120/£200
Maximum vet fee cover £10,000 £7,500 £4,000 £2,000 £7,500 £4,000 £3,000 £3,000
Complementary cover £1,000 £1,000 £1,000 £1,000 £1,000 £1,000 £500 £500
Dental cover (accidents only)
Advertising due to loss or theft of your pet Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000
Loss of pet cover (and your pet doesn't return within 45 days)* Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500
24/7 access to Vet helpline
Euthanasia & Cremation cover Up to £200 Up to £200 Up to £200 Up to £200 Up to £200 Up to £200 Up to £200
Unexpected hospital stay cover Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000
Holiday cancellation cover Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000 Up to £5,000
Pet travel cover Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500
Death cover (up to the price you paid for your pet) * Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500 Up to £1,500
Third-party liability (dogs only) £2m £2m £2m £2m £2m £2m £2m £2m

*If your pet is lost or dies due to an illness or injury your policy will pay out up to the value that you paid or donated for your pet. This cost will need to be proven by a receipt. If you do not have a receipt you will be paid the amount it will cost you to get a new pet. This is based on an estimation of the age, type, breed and sex of your pet at the time you bought it.

 

A Tesco Bank pet insurance policy will not pay out for the death of your pet if it is over the age of 9 and dies due to illness. It will also not pay out for any pet that dies due to any pre-existing conditions.

How much does Tesco Bank pet insurance cost?

Below I have compared the cost of every type of Tesco Bank pet insurance policy. The quotes are based on a 1-year-old mixed breed dog and cat with no underlying health conditions, living in a South East postcode. The policy excess selected was £120 and more information on the policy excess can be found here.

The cost of your pet insurance will vary depending on the type, age and breed of the pet you wish to insure. Where you live will also impact the cost of your pet insurance and your premiums are likely to increase each year, particularly if you make a claim. This is because insurers predict that once you have made a claim it is likely that you will make another at some point in the future as your pet ages. Tesco Bank says that its claims data "shows that the cost of looking after your pet's health doubles every four to five years". The type of policy you choose will also affect how much you pay; lifetime cover is usually the most expensive as it is the most comprehensive cover for your pet. Accident-only pet insurance is usually cheaper because it does not cover your pet for any illness.

Tesco Bank pet insurance cost comparison

Premier Premier Premier Premier Extra Extra Standard
Accident & Injury
Policy type Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy Maximum benefit policy Maximum benefit policy Time-limited policy Accident-only policy
Excess £120 £120 £120 £120 £120 £120 £120 £120
Maximum vet fee cover £10,000 £7,500 £4,000 £2,000 £7,500 £4,000 £3,000 £3,000
1-year-old dog (monthly cost)  £31.59 £26.40 £23.92 £18.77 £20.36 £14.80 £12.06 £7.43
1-year-old cat (monthly cost)  £24.21 £21.90 £20.44 £15.99 £15.76 £11.24 £10.41 £4.49

(Quotes correct as of 18/06/21)

Tesco Bank pet insurance policy excess

Tesco Bank pet insurance offers a fixed policy excess which you can choose when opening your policy. An excess is a compulsory amount that you agree to pay towards the cost of veterinary fees when you make a claim. You can choose a policy excess of £60, £120 or £200 and the higher your policy excess the cheaper your monthly premiums. The excess on an Accident & Injury, Standard or Extra policy is paid once per condition. The excess on a Premier policy is paid once per illness or injury per policy year. If you need to make a third-party liability claim there is a compulsory excess of £250. If your pet needs to be treated by a referral vet (a vet that your veterinary practice refers you to if your vet cannot offer the level of care or expertise that your pet needs) then you will have to pay a fixed £200 excess if the referral vet you choose is not a part if Tesco Bank's preferred referral vet network. If your pet is referred to a vet and needs emergency treatment (which if not carried out is a threat to your pet's life) you will not have to pay the £200 compulsory excess.

How to make a claim with Tesco Bank pet insurance

Tesco Bank has a simple online claims process that allows you to track the progress of your current and previous claims. Tesco Bank pet insurance aims to respond to all claims within 7 days. To make a new claim for veterinary fees you need to download the online claims form and once completed this needs to be sent to your vet to complete. The vet should then email all correspondence, including your original email, to Tesco Bank who will then be in contact once the claim has been processed. Tesco Bank can pay your vet directly if your vet is happy for the claim to be dealt with in this way.

If you have an ongoing claim and wish to make an additional claim you can do so by filling out the required forms on the Tesco Bank website. If your claim does not include a claim for veterinary bills, such as a claim for boarding or lost and found cover, then you will need to email the claim information and evidence to tesco.petclaims@uk.rsagroup.com. Third-party liability claims must be made immediately to the following telephone number 0345 078 3860.

A claim with Tesco Bank pet insurance should be submitted within 90 days of the first treatment for the new illness or condition and all receipts and proof of payments should be provided.

If you wish to cancel your Tesco Bank pet insurance policy you can do so within the first 14 days of receiving your policy documents. You can also cancel your policy at any time during the policy term and there may be additional fees to pay or you may be entitled to a refund, depending on how you have paid for your policy.

Tesco Bank pet insurance customer reviews

Tesco Bank has a Trustpilot score of 1.7 out of 5 stars from over 900 reviews, however this does include reviews across Tesco Bank as a whole and most of the reviews are relating to other insurance or financial products. Those that have taken the time to leave reviews about Tesco Bank pet insurance (the most recent review was left in November 2020) have complained of problems with the claims progress and high pet insurance policy renewals. Those that rated the provider as 'Good' cited good customer service and successful claims.

Tesco Bank pet insurance pros and cons

Tesco Bank Pros

  • Multi-pet discount
  • 20% introductory discount for the first year (selected premiums)
  • Discount for Clubcard members
  • 24/7 vetfone helpline

Tesco Banks Cons

  • Does not pay out for death from illness for pets over the age of 9
  • 12-month time limit on accident-only pet insurance policy (some policies such as Animal Friends'* accident-only policy do not have time limits on claiming vet fees for an accident)
  • £200 excess is applicable if you choose a referral vet outside of the Tesco Bank network (unless your pet requires emergency treatment)

Alternatives to Tesco Bank pet insurance

In this section of the review, we compare Tesco Bank pet insurance to other pet insurance providers.

Tesco Bank pet insurance vs More Than pet insurance

Tesco Bank and More Than pet insurance policies are both underwritten by insurance company Royal & Sun Alliance plc. This means if you need to claim through either provider, you'll end up dealing with the same insurance company. Although the policies are not exactly the same, they are very similar, offering almost identical cover in some areas. Overall More Than offers £2,000 more veterinary fee cover than Tesco Bank but it does have limits on how much you can claim for each condition each year.

More Than offers seven pet insurance policies with up to a maximum of £12,000 vet fee cover. Some aspects within the cover are lower than with Tesco Bank, for example, a More Than Accident-only policy only offers £500,000 of third-party liability cover in comparison to £2million of cover with the Tesco Bank Accident-only policy. However, both pet insurance policies will not pay out for third-party liability cover if it is available within another policy that you hold such as home insurance.

Both More Than and Tesco Bank offer customers an introductory discount for the first year. More Than's introductory rate is slightly more appealing at 25% in comparison to Tesco's 20%. Although an introductory rate may be appealing, it is worth remembering that if you go on to make a claim, the condition becomes pre-existing and so it will limit your options when it comes to getting insurance with another provider at some point in the future. It is also worth noting that More Than pet insurance has limits on the amount of vet treatment per illness or injury in a year. For example, the £12,000 More Than Premier lifetime policy allows you to claim up to £12,000 in vet fees each year, but each illness or injury is limited to £4,000 a year.

A comparison between Tesco Bank and More Than pet insurance

The below comparison table compares the most comprehensive pet insurance policy for both Tesco Bank and More Than.

Tesco Premier More Than Premier
Policy type Annual limit lifetime policy Annual limit lifetime policy
Excess £60/£120/£200* £100
Maximum vet fee cover £10,000 per year £12,000 per year
Complementary cover £1,000 £1,500
Dental cover (accidents only)
Advertising due to loss or theft of pet Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000
Loss of pet cover (and your pet doesn't return within 45 days) Up to £1,500 Up to £2,000
24/7 access to Vet helpline
Euthanasia & Cremation cover Up to £200 Up to £200
Unexpected hospital stay cover Up to £1,000 Up to £1,000
Holiday cancellation cover Up to £5,000 Up to £2,000
Pet travel cover Up to £1,500 Policy specific
Death cover (up to the price you paid for your pet) Up to £1,500 Up to £2,000
Third-party liability £2m £3m
Online discount
Multi-pet discount
Monthly cost (1-year-old dog) £31.59 £23.10

(Quotes correct as of 18/06/21)

*£120 excess was chosen for the purpose of the quote

Tesco Bank vs Bought by Many vs Petplan

I have also compared Tesco Bank pet insurance to Bought by Many and Petplan. The following quotes are based on a 1-year-old dog, with no underlying health conditions and living in a South East postcode. For more information on Bought by Many* and Petplan pet insurance read our reviews:

The below table shows a comparison between the most comprehensive lifetime pet insurance policies for Tesco Bank, Bought by Many* and Petplan. Each of the policies are annual limit lifetime policies which means you can claim up until the maximum limit each year across all veterinary fee claims. Once the limit is reached any further treatment will need to be self-funded but it will renew the following policy year.

Tesco Bank Bought by Many Petplan
Lifetime pet insurance type Annual limit Annual limit
Annual limit
Excess £120 £99
£110 per illness/injury
Monthly Cost (1-year-old dog) £31.59 £33.45 £62.30
Maximum vet fee cover £10,000 per year £15,000 per year
£12,000 per year
Public liability £2million £3million £3million
Loss & theft £1,500 £6,000 £2,000
Death of pet cover (if pet dies through illness or injury) £1,500 £6,000 £2,000
Vet video calls

(Quotes correct as of 18/06/21)

Summary

Overall Tesco Bank pet insurance offers a good level of cover for a competitive price. It is not the cheapest pet insurance policy on the market but you do have the option of selecting a higher policy excess which will result in a cheaper pet insurance quote. The 20% introductory discount could result in a large increase when it comes to renewing your policy after the first year. If you like the look of Tesco Bank pet insurance, it may be worth considering More Than pet insurance. The same insurer underwrites both provider's policies and as shown in our table above, More Than comes in a bit cheaper than Tesco Bank and provides higher veterinary fee cover.

Some previous policy owners on independent review site Trustpilot complained about the increase in the pet insurance premium when the policy renewed, so it may be best to look for a cheaper level of vet fee cover to allow for future policy increases as your pet ages. Tesco Bank also allows you to register your Clubcard to receive additional discounts which may appeal to those who hold a Tesco Clubcard.

 

 

If a link has an * beside it this means that it is an affiliated link. If you go via the link, Money to the Masses may receive a small fee which helps keep Money to the Masses free to use. The following link can be used if you do not wish to help Money to the Masses or take advantage of any exclusive offers - Animal Friends, Bought by Many