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Gen Z Guide to Getting Affordable Health Insurance

So you’re about to turn 26 and guess what? Time to bid farewell to your parents’ insurance plan. But there’s no need to panic! We’ve got your back.

It’s important to plan early for an alternative, so you aren’t left without coverage. But navigating the world of health insurance as a young person can be daunting. How much coverage do I need? What are my options? How am I going to afford this?

Being a savvy health insurance shopper is the new cool. Grab your favorite energy drink, fire up your phone or PC and let’s tackle this adulting thing together.

First, here are a few points to understand:

  • If you are covered under your parent’s marketplace plan, you are covered through the end of the coverage year. BUT we recommend that you enroll in your own insurance before Dec. 31st to ensure there is no gap in coverage.
  • If you have a non-marketplace plan through your parents, you have 60 days before or after your birthday to enroll in your own plan.

Related Reading: How Obamacare and BeWell Help You Find Affordable Health Insurance Alternatives

The options

Parental health insurance: If you’re younger than 26, you may qualify for insurance through your parent or guardian’s coverage. But remember, when the clock strikes midnight on your 26th birthday, it’s time to spread your wings and find your own insurance.

Employer health insurance: Many Gen Z’ers snag health insurance through their jobs. If the insurance offered through your job is affordable and offers good coverage, jackpot! However, if you’re unhappy with the cost and coverage offered, you can absolutely look into other options.

Medicaid: This is a joint federal and state program in the U.S. that provides free or low-cost health coverage to eligible people and families with low incomes and limited resources. Eligibility varies by state and can change year to year. Eligibility varies by state, so check out Centennial Care, to see if you are eligible.

Marketplace plan through BeWell: BeWell is New Mexico’s health insurance marketplace. Our carrier partners offer a range of insurance options. With BeWell, you can explore different plans, compare prices and benefits and enroll in a plan that fits your health needs and budget. To qualify, you must be able to check a few boxes:

  • Be a New Mexico resident
  • Have no access to employer-sponsored coverage, Medicaid or Medicare.
  • Be lawful present, which means you have a valid Social Security number, F1 Visa or other immigration documentation.

Related Reading: How a Job Change Impacts Your Insurance Plan

What to consider when shopping for health insurance

Preventative care: Think you don’t need insurance because you’re young and healthy? Getting preventative care is key to staying well and active through your 30s and beyond. Preventative care can include routine screenings, vaccination and counseling—all of which are covered under plans through BeWell.

Emergency coverage: Many Gen Zers choose Bronze plans through the marketplace, which  have lower premiums and higher deductibles. This could be a good option if you don’t have any chronic illnesses and want lower monthly costs. It’s like having a safety net that doesn’t cramp your style or drain your bank account.

Money-saving perks: BeWell is the only New Mexico marketplace that offers subsidies and tax credits to help lower your health insurance costs. Our Certified Assisters can help you compare premiums, deductibles and out-of-pocket costs to find a plan that best fits your budget.

Mental health coverage: We get it. Life can be a roller coaster. According to the American Psychological Association, Gen Z report mental health concerns more than other generation. Plans through BeWell cover behavioral health counselling, addiction treatment and many other mental health services.

Ready to enroll? See how to get health insurance through BeWell.


Preparing for a healthy life in your 30s means finding quality health insurance now. Think of insurance kind of like a VIP pass to the world’s best wellness club.

Picture this: You, living your best life in your 30s, feeling healthy, happy, and unstoppable. That’s the power of investing in your health now—it’s the gift that keeps on giving.

So, take the time to explore your options, understand your coverage needs and select a plan that aligns with your lifestyle and budget. Your future self will thank you for making this investment in your health and happiness.

To get help shopping for insurance, schedule an appointment with a Certified Assister near you.

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Where Do I Start?

Browse and Compare
Insurance Plans

Before you apply for coverage, you can see the health and/or dental insurance plans available and the estimated cost you will pay plus any subsidies you may qualify for to reduce the cost.

Schedule an Appointment

with a Certified Assister
or Enrollment Counselor

Certified assisters and enrollment counselors can help you understand your options and enroll in a health insurance plan. Their help is free!

Your Application

When you’re ready to enroll, you can apply online in about an hour. You can also save your application and come back to it, so you can go at your own pace. Create your BeWell log in to get started.

Get Help Now

BeWell is here to answer your questions. Feel free to call, email or chat with us whenever your ready.