We are now in the final stages of preparation for our 2016 cruise to Barcelona, Spain. We will explore Spain and Portugal for about 90 days then we will depart from Barcelona for a flight to possibly Romania or Bulgaria. We will travel in a clockwise fashion from Barcelona around Spain and Portugal. The curved line on the map is a flight and the straight lines are trains and bold lines are planned car rentals. Continue reading
As bad as the above cartoon is, I would be happy if it depicted our Obamacare situation. Our health insurance reality is worse. I’m offering this analysis as background which lead our decision to use the Obamacare exemption which requires us to be on foreign soil for a period of 330 days. Yes, we are Obamacare Escapees, Bon Voyage……..
What if, over a period of 4 years, the US Government raised fuel taxes causing gasoline to increase from $3.50 to $12.32 a gallon and called this the Affordable Petroleum Act? Percentage wise, this is exactly what has happened to my Affordable Care Act insurance premiums since I retired in 2011.
When I retired four years ago, my company-provided retirement health insurance premiums were $425 a month for a $10,000 deductible family plan, no vision, prescription or dental benefits included. After four years of The Affordable Care Act, (ACA) my monthly premium has escalated to $1,079.17 a month. This would be like the price of gasoline increasing from $2.50 to $6.35 and calling this government benefit the “Affordable Petroleum Act.”
This is a website dedicated first to my photography and then a blog to provide family, friends, workers stuck in cubicles and commuters everywhere some insight into our travels around the world and what it takes to travel extensively. Keep in mind we are still in the USA and have gone nowhere. However, it takes some long-range planning.
This is not a political site and I will refrain from stating opinions regarding both worthless groups we have in Washington. (oops) However, it is a huge irritation to me when Obama Care is referred to the Affordable Care Act when thus far, it seems to be anything but affordable. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into legislation March 2010 though not all aspects of the law immediately into effect. In November of 2010 I received the following from the BB&T Bank Benefits annual enrollment guide. Keep in mind, BB&T, the company I retired from, is headed by Kelly King, a democrat and a supporter of both Obama and the ACA. We know this from his numerous guest appearances on CNBC. My annual notice in part states: “While we appreciate some of the goals of the Health Care Reform, there is a general consensus that this legislation will be ineffective at controlling health care costs. It adds additional bureaucracy and mis-regulates the various players in health care.”
Upon retirement, we had a choice of two retirement healthcare plans. I appreciate this fact as many people do not get such opportunities. Since we are both relatively healthy, we chose what I call the $10,000 deductible plan as it is the cheaper option. So we basically have catastrophic coverage only. We are 100% responsible for the first $5,000. After that, we pay 80% until we spend another $5,000, then we pay less. These deductibles reset every year. This all changes if you go outside of the ‘network’. It is way tooooo confusing and I am only wanting you to see we do not have a Cadillac type plan.
Here are our monthly insurance premium costs and how they have increased under the Affordable Care Act.
2011 $426 a month
2012 $516 a month which is a 21% increase
2013 $645 a month which is a 25% increase over 2012.
2016 $18,000 a year for a $12,000 deductible policy!
How am I to budget what my costs will be in five years?? People over 65 need to buy some additional insurance as Medicare does not cover foreign visits as I understand it. So here is yet another difficulty in calculating travel plans, the cost of healthcare. I will continue to update these costs annually.