6 health insurance options for college students

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Answer a few questions to see if you'd qualify for subsidized health insurance under the Affordable Care Act and what you'd pay.

Americans now have the opportunity to shop for health insurance on Obamacare's new health insurance exchanges, or online marketplaces.

Buying a policy through your state's exchange can make sense if your budget is tight, says Jen Mishory, deputy director of Young Invincibles, a nonprofit that specializes in economic issues facing young Americans.

She explains that people using the marketplaces can qualify for tax credits to reduce their monthly insurance premiums. You're eligible if your household income is up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level and you meet other criteria, such as not being able to get affordable coverage through an employer.

"Depending on your income, it could be an enormous discount," Mishory says.

Exchange shoppers -- including college students without other options -- can purchase comprehensive health insurance coverage that goes into effect as early as January.

Haubenreiser is concerned that students who shop on exchanges may not make the wisest decisions. "The young adult is going to go for price point over quality or the benefits provided," she says.


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