Over 50s life insurance plans commonly use a free welcome gift to entice customers to take out a policy.But in 2018 which insurers are offering the best free gift? Is the free gift worth it? Who is entitled to the offer?Below are our top 3 over 50 plans with free gift.

1) SUNLIFE - 90 M&S OR ARGUS GIFT CARD

The SunLife Guaranteed Over 50 Plan is probably the most recognisable policy. You probably remember Michael Parkinsons TV adverts?It currently offers a 90 M&S or Argus gift card to new policyholders, the most generous gift in monetary terms that we found. Despite the 90 gift topping the list, customers are limited to either M&S or Argus. Whereas some insurers offer Amazon gift cards, all be it for a lesser amount, which opens up much more choice.Unfortunately, you are not entitled to the gift until you are 4 months into the term. From our research this was very common, the insurer only parts with the gift after the customer has committed to the policy. Unlike most standard life insurance gifts, you are eligible whether you apply online or by phone. Strangely though, if you apply by post you are only entitled to a 75 gift card.

2) CHURCHILL - 75 AMAZON, ARGOS OR M&S GIFT CARD

Another very popular over 50 plan is from insurer Churchill. (You know, the one with the nodding dog).They are currently offering a 75 gift card for either Amazon, Argus or M&S.The Amazon offer means you have much more choice compared with SunLife, as there is very little you can not buy on their website these days.As with most of the offers we identified, you are not able to claim the gift until you have paid at least 3 months premiums (and obviously not cancelled the policy).

3) SHEPHERDS FRIENDLY - 50 LOVE2SHOP VOUCHER

At first, a 50 Love2Shop voucher may not seem not seem like a very exciting free gift. However, what I liked about this offer was that new customers do not have to pay a certain premium value in order to receive the 50 voucher.Unlike most insurers, whether you pay in 6 a month or 60 a month you are still entitled to the offer after 6 months of premiums.You may not have heard of Love2Shop? Their voucher actually provides a lot of customer choice. Well over 150 well-known brands accept this voucher, including HMV, Argos, GAP, Mothercare, Halfords and Thomas Cook.

IN SUMMARY - GET THE RIGHT POLICY, NOT THE BEST GIFT

So there you have it. Those are the top 3 over 50 plans with free gift offers as I see it in 2018.Ultimately, however, a welcome gift is just an incentive to get you to take out a policy. The most important thing is that you take out the right policy, from the right insurer, at the best price.In the long run, the key is to pay the most cost-effective monthly premium, as over the term of the policy this will dwarf the value of a free gift!