Looking for life insurance? You may find the cheapest deal at your local supermarket.

A Consumer NZ survey of life insurance premiums across 20 of New Zealand's main providers shows Countdown's package, launched last November, is the cheapest standard premium in the market. Insurers were asked for a quote for a 35-year-old couple wanting $500,000 and $700,000 in cover and a 45-year-old couple wanting the same amounts.

The only option that was cheaper than Countdown was the first year of cover under LifeOne, by Cigna, which offers a 10 per cent discount in the first year of a policy. Once that temporary discount no longer applies, Countdown is the cheapest.

Consumer NZ senior research writer Luke Harrison said the findings showed people should do their research. "Lots of insurers offer discounts based on what stage of life you are at and whether you have other insurance with them," he said. "There are options to reduce your premium if you shop around."

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He warned companies could raise premiums once a customer joined.

Countdown general manager of marketing Bridget Lamont said the supermarket chain was considering other financial services.

Cigna head of sales Mark Kenning said insurance products sold online were cheaper to distribute, bringing premiums down, but urged clients to buy what was most beneficial to them.