The human race has a tendency to pigeonhole very quickly, and even those of us who would argue we are open-minded are often slaves to prejudice. In any circumstance, we like to make our minds up quickly and this often involves auto-completing from a point of view we already hold. Simply put, if two people come to us and tell us the exact same thing in the exact same way, it’s quite common to react to one as though they are giving us valuable information, and to the other as though they are gossiping.
Similarly, if a billionaire businessman holds fire on a big deal in order to earn or save himself a few million dollars, he’s wise, cagey and courageous. If a single-income family wait for food to reach its best before date so they can buy it for a discount in the supermarket, then they’re “trash”. Never mind that both are doing exactly the same thing – holding out for a better deal. We are almost conditioned to look at smaller savings as being the preserve of poor people.
This has led to the view that people who pay for dental insurance as being “wise with money” and those who buy dental discount plans as being “cheap”. It’s a strange way to think about things because, if we are honest, a dental discount plan can make more financial sense than an insurance policy. Is it sound financial sense to pay a monthly premium into a plan that you may not need to cash in, and if you do try to cash it in you may find that the insurance provider is reluctant to pay out?
This is not to say that all dental insurance plans are a waste of money and, particularly if you can get a good one as an employee benefit, it makes sense to have that coverage. What makes a lot less sense is demeaning the idea of a card for which you can pay a relatively small amount of money, and yet cash it in time and again so that you come out well ahead on the deal. You don’t need to be a low-income, single-income household to benefit from a dental discount plan. You just need to be a savvy saver.
Don’t let an instinctive distaste towards the idea of being thought of as poor stop you from getting the best deal. It’s nice to have the finer things in life – so why let profligate spending prevent you from having more of them?