The True Cost of Smoking

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Smoking cigarettes can not only leave you with adverse effects to your health, but it can also leave a hole burning in your pocket in less obvious ways, found a recent study undertaken by Endsleigh Insurance.

The Office of National Statistics has released figures which show the average smoker in the UK puffs on 13 cigarettes a day, and the Tobacco Manufacturers Association claims the RRP for a pack of 20 cigarettes is £7.98. That equates to an annual cost of £1,893.26.

That could be the cost of a family holiday to Disneyland Paris, a deposit on a new car, or money saved for a rainy day. However, it isn’t just the upfront cost that people need to be aware of. The rise in price of other financial products where the likelihood of death or illness is a key factor in the awarding of a policy, can be a stumbling block for many people who smoke; for example, life insurance premiums for a smoker can be double that of a non-smoker.

One fact that most people aren’t aware of is that it can take between 12 and 18 months for you to be classed as a non-smoker on your life insurance policy. Steve Barnes, Financial Adviser at Endsleigh, said: “People should remember that any kind of smoking in a 12 month period classes you as a smoker in the eyes of an insurance company.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s an occasional secret cigarette in times of stress or a regular habit, in order to be classified as a non-smoker by life insurance companies you need to have abstained from smoking or from using nicotine replacement products for at least 12 to 18 months.”

With the survey revealing that 1 in 5 Brits are secret smokers, it shows just how many people could be costing themselves money from even the occasional cigarette. If you don’t tell your insurance company, it could invalidate your life insurance policy meaning that should the worst happen, your family would receive no financial compensation. If you quit smoking you should inform your provider, and then inform them again when you have been cigarette free for a year.

Steve Barnes finished by saying: “As a new year starts, many of us will begin to think of the healthier things we can do to improve our fitness and general wellbeing. We all know smoking is bad for our health and it can almost double the cost of life insurance premiums.”

More Information:

Office of National Statistics – Study on Smoking

Endsleigh – Life Insurance

NHS – Stop Smoking

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