This content was reviewed by our licensed insurance agent, Michelle Schenker.
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When it comes to pet insurance, Nationwide had almost seven times the gross written premiums (GWP) amount of Lemonade in the U.S. in 2022.1 But bigger doesn’t always mean better. Nationwide Pet Insurance (formerly known as VPI) was founded in 1984 and was the first pet insurer, selling its first policy to Lassie, the heroic TV Collie. Nationwide has had decades to build its reputation and grow its customer base. Although Lemonade is only a few years old (founded in 2020), it is disrupting the pet insurance marketplace and is quickly increasing in GWP.
Let’s compare Nationwide and Lemonade head-to-head and choose a clear winner. We explain our reasoning along with each company’s strengths and weaknesses to help you better understand what each has to offer.
Visit Pets Best’s Website | Visit Nationwide’s Website
|Policy Coverage||More Limited||More Limited|
|Customer Service & Reputation||Good||Uncertain, New|
|Claim Processing Average||4 Days||2 Days|
|Average Policy Price||Lower On Average||Average|
|Plan Customizations||Restricted Options||Many Options|
|Visit Website||Visit Website|
The table below shows what Nationwide and Lemonade cover.
Note: Both companies cover emergency care, surgery and hospitalization, specialized exams and specialty care, X-rays, blood tests, ultrasounds, cat scans, MRIs, rehabilitation, cancer, chronic conditions, euthanasia, hereditary conditions, congenital conditions, non-routine dental treatment, and prescription medications.
Neither covers pre-existing conditions, cremation and burial costs, pregnancy and breeding, or unnecessary cosmetic procedures.
|Illness Waiting Period*||14 Days||14 Days|
|Accident Waiting Period*||14 Days||2 Days|
|Hip Dysplasia Waiting Period*||14 Days||14 Days|
|CCL Surgery Waiting Period*||12 Months||6 Months|
|Behavioral Therapies||Extra Fee|
|Wellness Care For An Extra Fee|
|Exam Fees||Extra Fee|
|Underwriter||National Casualty Company|
Veterinary Pet Insurance Company (California only)
|Lemonade Insurance Agency LLC|
|A.M. Best Rating||A+|
*Waiting periods for Maine are as follows:
- Accidents - 0 days
- Illnesses - 14 days
- Cruciate Ligament Conditions - 30 days
- Routine Care - 0 days
One of the key things that Nationwide and Lemonade differ in is how their plans are set up. Nationwide uses a benefit schedule for some of its plans, which outlines the maximum coverage amount you can expect to be reimbursed for each condition. Meanwhile, Lemonade’s plans are set up like other pet insurers, where the claim reimbursement is based on your vet bill and the deductible, payout, and reimbursement percentage for your plan. Nationwide also offers these types of plans, but they come with limited deductible and reimbursement percentage options.
Another significant coverage factor is that Nationwide doesn’t enroll pets after their 10th birthday. On the other hand, Lemonade has breed and plan restrictions for specific ages. Additionally, Lemonade is only available in 37 states and Washington, D.C.
Lemonade has a shorter accident waiting period and is more in line with the competition. However, Nationwide offers alternative/holistic therapy coverage. Because they each have their shortcomings, we’ve declared this category a tie.
Policy Coverage Winner: Nationwide & Lemonade (Tie)
Customer Service & Reputation
Nationwide has various complaints regarding reimbursement concerns, unexpected renewal changes, drastic premium increases, and more. Finding negative reviews isn’t difficult for Nationwide across various departments.
However, Lemonade’s pet insurance plans have only been around since 2020, so it’s hard to say what you can expect from them over the long haul. Once Lemonade has been around for five or more years, we’ll be able to get a better idea of their customer service.
Customer Service & Reputation Winner: Nationwide
Nationwide averages four days for claim processing. This is shorter than many other companies in the industry, which often proves enough for it to win this category. However, Lemonade’s claim processing technology is hard to beat.
Lemonade averages a speedy two days for claim processing, a quick timeline compared to competitors. A big selling point for Lemonade is that it has an Artificial Intelligence (AI) -driven claim process. AI allows Lemonade to pay the most straightforward claims within seconds of submission. This has really disrupted the pet insurance space and caused competitors to look for ways to step it up.
Claim Processing Winner: Lemonade
Price Of Policy
Nationwide has no enrollment fees but charges a $2 monthly transaction fee unless you pay your annual premium upfront each year. Lemonade doesn’t have any one-time or recurring transaction fees.
Your premium price quote is based on your pet’s details (age, breed, location, etc.). We recommend obtaining quotes from each company for your specific pet. You can also visit our pet insurance comparison quotes to see a few sample prices we’ve gathered.
Comparing prices for Nationwide and Lemonade is difficult because they don’t offer the same plan types and options. If you opt for Nationwide’s benefit schedule style plan, you’ll most likely see a lower monthly premium than Lemonade. However, if you opt for a traditional-style pet insurance plan, prices for both companies may fall around the same price point. This is why we’ve declared this category a tie.
Price Of Policy Winner: Nationwide & Lemonade (Tie)
Nationwide Pet Insurance offers the following discounts:
- 5% off for 2-3 pets covered
- 10% off for 4 or more pets covered
No promo code is needed. Use this link to take advantage of the best possible price.
Lemonade Pet Insurance
Lemonade offers the following discounts:
- 10% off if you bundle with your Lemonade renters, homeowners, auto, condo, or co-op insurance
- 5% off for multiple pets
Use this link to take advantage of the best possible price. No promo code is needed.
Finding a company with the coverage you need that fits your budget is crucial. Look below to see what plan options each of these providers offer.
|Deductible Options||$250||$100, $250, $500|
|Payout Options||Limited Per Condition, Unlimited||$5,000, $10,000, $20,000, $50,000, $100,000|
|Reimbursement Options||50%, 70%, 90%||70%, 80%, 90%|
Lemonade has many customization options to help fit your coverage to your needs and budget. On the other hand, Nationwide uses a benefit schedule for some plans, which limits your customization options. And for its other plans, Nationwide still has minimal customizations. This is why Lemonade wins this category.
Plan Customization Winner: Lemonade
What’s The Verdict?
Overall, Lemonade wins our comparison due to its speedy claims processing with advanced technology and its plan customization options. However, we always recommend getting multiple quotes from pet insurance providers, so it’s good to consider Nationwide too. And if a company with a more established history is crucial to your decision, definitely keep Nationwide and some other key players in mind.
If you didn’t find what you were looking for, our experts dig even deeper into each company in our individual reviews of Nationwide and Lemonade.
Overall Winner: Lemonade
Our experts have spent thousands of hours researching to bring you our comprehensive and frequently updated pet insurance reviews, including our top picks and details on each of the most popular pet insurance companies. We give awards for the best value, multi-pet discounts, fastest claim processing, and best newcomer. You’ll even see winners for exotic pets and cats.
Sources:  NAPHIATagged With: Reviewed By Insurance Agent, Vs