Regardless of whether you opt to buy a Medigap or Medicare Advantage plan, Baker advises not only exploring plan details, but also speaking with providers, neighbors, and others who have already purchased the plan you are considering.
You have six months after your 65th birthday to enroll in a Medigap plan, according to the federal rule. However, depending on where you live, you may be able to purchase a Medigap plan later, but keep in mind that you may have a limited number of plans to choose from at that point.
On the other hand, if you have a Medicare Advantage plan, you may opt to change your plan, but only during the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP). During 2013, the AEP runs from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7.
You can sign up for a Medigap or Medicare Advantage plan online or by calling 1-800-633-4227. You can explore Medicare Plan Finder (https://www.medicare.gov/find-a-plan/questions/home.aspx) to see available plan options in your area.