Many divers have told us that they become confused when they go online join DAN (Divers Alert Network) for the first time. Anxiety about which plan to choose, is the common issue. We recently received a call from diver that said. “I spent 30 years in the insurance business and I cannot figure out which DAN options to choose.”
To get some clarity, we contacted DAN and spoke with Marketing Services Manager, Christine McTaggart at length about this issue. Our conversation yielded a more comfortable analogy and some tips that may help divers reduce their ‘plan choice panic’ when reviewing the DAN options.
The first step, which is often a surprise to divers, is to understand that the DAN Membership does not include dive accident insurance. Divers often mistake the DAN wording in the member benefits section, “TravelAssist and up to $100,000 of evacuation assistance coverage” for a type of dive accident insurance. Despite our concurrence that when the word coverage is used along with a grand amount of money it sounds like insurance, McTaggart says it is not insurance. It is a benefit.
As she explained more, I realized it sounded at lot like the auto club (e.g. AAA). McTaggart agreed. With an auto club membership they will tow your car away if you have an accident. Additionally, the auto club has other benefits like maps and giving you advice about the health of your car. Also the auto club will offer its members member-only rates on auto insurance plans that are optional and not included with the auto club membership. A DAN membership includes a similar benefit of “towing you away” in case of an accident. That is, they will get you to a chamber or appropriate medical facility. Additionally, DAN will give advice about your own health as it relates to diving. Likewise DAN offers you the OPTION of purchasing additional accident insurance tailored to a diver’s needs.
Now that we understand how the DAN Membership plan is separate from the DAN insurance plan there can still be confusion about which insurance plans to pick. Not only is there three accident insurance plans, but also trip insurance, equipment insurance and of course life insurance. For this, there is help on the DAN website both on the FAQ page (https://www.diversalertnetwork.org/membership/memberfaqs.asp) and for understanding the accident insurance a very helpful comparison page at https://www.diversalertnetwork.org/insurance/compare.asp. However, McTaggart warned that, as with all insurance you need to read the fine print. She added that regulations strictly limit what DAN cannot say on the website about the plans, which does limit how simple they can make the choice.