It may come as a surprise the difference in Medicare options by zip code or state. Medicare programs vary depending on where you live.

Medicare is a federal program so benefits are country-wide. But, when it comes to planning options, some areas may offer a plethora of coverage options while other, usually more rural areas, will have fewer options.

Does My Zip Code Impact My Medicare Options?

Zip code does affect which plan options are available to you. For example, Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans will vary in pricing as well as features depending on your location. Additionally, you must live in the plans service area to be eligible for enrollment.

Medicare Advantage plans are impacted most by zip code changes. Did you know Medicare Advantage plans don’t cover you outside the service area? So, in many cases, when you leave the service area you no longer have coverage.

Also, Medicare Advantage plan premium costs are cheaper (generally) in metropolitan areas, and more expensive in rural areas. Some areas may offer policies with a larger network of doctors or more ancillary benefits.

Since Medicare Supplement plans are standardized, they have the same coverage in all states, except for Wisconsin, Massachusetts, and Minnesota. Pricing will vary greatly depending on your zip code.

If you want a policy that allows you to have coverage in another state, Medigap would be a good option for you.

Why Does My Zip Code Matter for Medicare?

Your zip code matters for Medicare because plan options change depending on your location. Also, Medicare Advantage plan networks are dependent on the private insurance company providing care to each client.

Zip code is important in terms of Medicare program eligibility.

Does Medicare Cost the Same in Every State?

The federal program that is Original Medicare costs the same no matter which state you reside in. But Medigap and Medicare Advantage plan options will change depending on your location.

Some states have a higher cost of Medigap than other states, some zip codes offer $0 Medicare Part C options. On the contrary, there are zip codes with fewer plan options or higher premium plans.

What are the Best Zip Codes for Medicare in 2022?

Don’t go moving just yet, Medicare Advantage plan options change every year. Moving for a policy isn’t a sensible decision since these plans won’t be the same next year.

In the Top 10 Zip Codes in America for Seniors, Arizona, and Kansas both have two zip codes with a high score of senior satisfaction.

But, if the lowest costing Medicare Advantage plans are the point of interest for you, San Diego or Los Angeles have seemed to offer quite a few $0 plans with extremely low out-of-pocket costs. The only downside, coverage is only available within the plan’s service area.

Medigap plans cover you anywhere Medicare covers you, and some plans even provide foreign travel emergency coverage. But Medicare Supplement plans vary in price depending on where you live.

Of course, even the cost of Medigap changes too much, the difference between the most expensive state for Medigap and the cheapest could still be less than $80 a month.

In most cases, the cost of Medicare insurance is aligned with the cost of living in that area. So, as we stated above, don’t rush to move just for a Medicare plan.

Can You Have Medicare in Two States?

No, you can’t have Medicare in two states. You’ll need to choose a primary state for your residence, usually, the state you file your taxes in is the state where your Medicare is active.

If you’re someone that travels between two or more states frequently, a Medigap plan could make sense for you. Medigap plans don’t force you into a plan service area unless you have a MedigapSelect policy.

Since Medicare is a federal program, you don’t need to worry about which state you reside in, coverage will be available. With Medigap, they cover their portion when Medicare approves the claim.

Will Moving Increase My Medicare Premiums?

It’s possible that moving could increase your Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage premiums. But Medicare is a federal program offered nationwide, the costs remain the same as well as the benefits.

In some cases, moving could lower your Medigap or Medicare Advantage premium. You’ll qualify for a Special Enrollment Period upon notifying Medicare and your plan of the move.

Once you know your new zip code you can start getting quotes so that you have coverage effective when you make the big move.

How to Find Supplemental Medicare Plans in My Zip Code

Whether you’re moving a county over or across the country, it’s important to know the new options available to you. In some instances, like moving across the street, you won’t need to change your plan. But it’s always nice to know if you can change plans.

Working with a licensed Medicare agent can save you time and money, our agents can help you compare all the plan options in your area.

Give us a call now at the number above to see the Medicare plans available in your zip code. Or fill out an online rate form to compare your options.

by Lindsay Malzone, Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare expert for Medigap.com. She's been contributing to many well-known publications as an industry expert since 2017. Her passion is educating Medicare beneficiaries on all their supplemental Medicare options so they can make an informed decision on their healthcare coverage.
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