Press

  • September 25, 2014
    Dental Tourism: One of Medical Travel's Biggest Money-Savers
    Dental tourism is the result of patients traveling abroad to obtain the dental care they are unable or disinclined to get at home. Patients are motivated to cross borders for dental care either high costs of care in their home country, or limited access to quality dental care where they live.
  • July 23, 2014
    Apoyan a casa hogar
    Dental Departures, compañía dental de Estados Unidos, realizó el día de ayer una labor de beneficencia en Casa Hogar Betesda.
  • April 09, 2014
    Dental Tourism: Why So Many People Travel Abroad for Cheaper Dentistry
    American healthcare is changing. But for now, many people are traveling for lower healthcare costs. Medical tourism has become a phenomenon. Medical tourists include not only Americans whose healthcare costs are out of control, but Canadians, Brits, and other nationals dissatisfied with the pace of their socialized medicine. Dental Departures is a market leader in its field that has facilitated foreign dental care for tens of thousands of patients since its founding in 2010. Its stated mission is “affordable dental care for everyone on the planet”
  • March 06, 2014
    Club Med
    In the old days, the phrase "medical tourism" conjured up images of movie stars and business tycoons winging away to Switzerland for discreet beauty treatments or miracle cures. But times have changed. The medical tourist of today is more likely to be a baby boomer booking a cheap flight to Mexico or Costa Rica for a knee replacement — or a full-mouth restoration. Experts agree that dental travelers now make up a significant share of a global and growing multibillion-dollar medical tourism market. Although no one can gauge their numbers with complete certainty, research suggests that Americans by the hundreds of thousands may now be crossing the nation's borders for dental care.
  • February 07, 2014
    The Pleasures and Perils of Global Dental Care
    Utilizing a global dentist is as good, if not better than, visiting a dentist down the street in the U.S. When you step into a dentist office in Mexico, Costa Rica or Thailand you will be pleasantly surprised at what you will find: English speaking dental staff, modern equipment and high quality materials and service.
  • January 10, 2014
    Dental Departures, Carlos Vigil and my Mexicali dentist
    Mr. Vigil works with an American company called Dental Departures that specializes in dental tourism. Mr. Vigil is part of the sales team for the Baja California area that recruits dentists to participate in Dental Departures.com.
  • December 06, 2013
    From Self-Employed To Salaried: Success Stories
    Graeme Gibson, Strategist, Dental Departures - My best advice is to consider how you get along with and relate to the executive team and managers to whom you will be reporting. I believe one of the biggest mistakes you can make is getting involved with a company that does not share the same vision, ethics, and goals that hold true for you. However, if the future of the company looks promising and you enjoy your time with your co-workers, go for it. It certainly has worked out for me.”
  • November 22, 2013
    Farmer goes to Mexico to save $36,500 in dental work
    Dairy farmer and outspoken columnist Ian Cumming says he’s getting a lot of e-mails from other farmers without dental plans now that he is back from Mexico where he sat in a dentist’s chair for 10 hours over four days. While he figured the job would have cost him $42,000 at a home town dentist in Glengarry County, the final bill from the Sani Dental Group clinic was $4,740
  • November 07, 2013
    Flying at the Speed of the Internet
    Just a few years ago it was still possible and acceptable to be disconnected while traveling. However, the expectation in business today, especially in the start-up realm, is that you are available at all times. Travel time is no longer an excuse to take a break, even while in the air.
  • November 07, 2013
    The Desert Freedom Press
    Thousands of snowbirds every month are visiting Los Algodones, Mexico to take advantage of the high quality dental care. Located only one and a half hours drive south from Quartzsite– Los Algodones dentists provide expert dentistry up to 70% less compared to dentist prices in the US and Canada.

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May 07, 2012

A brief look at our dental tourism and the role Dental Departures takes in this new and growing trend

First Report: Have you ever been to the dentist in unrivaled pain, only to be taken to a new level of Hell when the dentist tells you the cost to repair? Major dental work in the US can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $30,000! The ‘same’ work can be done in other countries for a fraction of the cost, but who knows what service you’ll get? Dental Departures is trying to solve this problem by finding providers, verifying their quality, and bringing them to you.

Dental Departures, a Seattle startup founded by ex-Expedia vet Paul McTaggart and Aaron Stagl, is disrupting the US dental industry in a big way. Last month the bootstrapped company impressively did $500,000 in revenue, up from $300,000 in December.

The need came out of hearing about an acquaintance with a $30,000 dental bill, decided to go to Thailand with his wife for $8,000 and get his work done there. “Dentistry has been around since the Romans and now everyone can afford the type of work the 1% get. In the US dentists work 32 hours a week and make $200,000 a year. In Costa Rica they work the same and make $50k-$70k,” Paul recently told me.

But what about the quality of service? I can’t imagine a worse scenario than going overseas to save money on dental care and something going wrong. That’s the definition of screwed. I lived in Europe for six years between the ages of 7-15 and we never saw a dentist. We also came back to the states for dental and doctor check ups as part of our summer trips. Aaron is well aware of this concern. Dental Departures homepage

“We have clinics fill out questionnaries. If staff have committed any crimes then they’re out. We visit clinics in all the countries. Every single clinic in Mexico and Thailand has been personally visited by a company representative. Our litmus test is “would you send your grandmother or mother here?” We also have better photos and more reviews than our competitors.” Paul adds that “A lot of the products these dentists use are the same as the ones used in the US, only they acquire them at a fraction of the cost that US dentists pay for them.”

They have 360 degree pictures for a lot of their dentist’s offices so you can see exactly where people will be working on your precious teeth. I was impressed at how many of these places looked much nicer than the dentist I go to in Palo Alto.

It’s hard to argue with the cost savings. A $10,000 procedure in the US might be $2k-$3k in Costa Rica. A $30,000 procedure can be as little as $6k-$8k. They have 950 dentists in 25 countries including Hungary, Czech Republic, Costa Rica, and Singapore. A teeth cleaning in these cities can be as little at $20.

So are you ready to try this out? Doesn’t matter because a lot of people are. This bootstrapped startup has managed to build a $6MM run rate after being live for about 12 months. They had 400 appointments in March which was about 20% of the total appointments they have had to date. 40% of their Audience is from the US and another 40% from Australia. They recently raised $100k from friends and family and are trying to raise more. Check out their AngelList profile.

Paul told me, “This is just another evolution of globalization,” and the market agrees. If this small team continues to grow at this pace we could see some massive disruption in the space.


Originally published by Derek Andersen
at Startup Grind