In the UK, you are not legally required to have caravan insurance. But when around 4,000 caravans are stolen each year, getting a policy that suits you could save you money if the worst were to happen to your home away from home.
Caravan insurance is a type of cover that protects your caravan if anything were to happen to it. As with car insurance there are a number of policies to choose from to suit your personal circumstances. But, unlike car insurance, caravan insurance is not compulsory.
Caravan insurance jargon explained
Market value. Market value cover insures your caravan against its current market value. For example, if your £30,000 caravan was stolen or damaged beyond repair 10 years after you bought it, your insurer would only pay out around £15,000. this is usually the cheaper cover option. New for old cover. New for old cover means your insurer would pay out the original cost of your caravan regardless of how long you’ve had it. New for old cover can also extend to your caravan equipment and personal belongings. Older caravans might not be eligible for this cover.
How to compare caravan insurance
Your personal cover requirements will largely dictate what caravan policy works for you. Follow these five steps to ensure you get the best deal and most practical policy.
1. Consider the value of your caravan. Think about how much your caravan would cost to repair or replace following an accident. If your caravan is brand new, you’ll probably want a more comprehensive policy and one that offers new-for-old replacement. 2. Consider how you will be using your caravan. Is it an on-site van or a touring caravan? How far will you be travelling and through what sort of terrain? Are you planning one big trip or several smaller trips? 3. Think about what you want your policy to cover. In addition to fire, storm, theft and malicious damage, do you want cover for towing costs and temporary accommodation? Do you need extra contents cover for valuable items? 4. Do your research. Armed with an idea of your cover needs, start shopping around for appropriate policies. 5. Balance the policy features with the price. To make sure your policy is the best fit, try to find a balance between the cost of the cover and the features you need.
If it’s not a legal requirement, why should I get caravan insurance?
According to the AA around 4,000 caravans are stolen each year. Combined with the higher risk of damage from towing, reversing and high winds, investing in caravan insurance could set you back, on average, £150-£300. A big saving compared to the thousands it could cost to replace or repair your vehicle.
How much does caravan insurance cost?
The average cost of caravan insurance in the UK is roughly £150-£300, according to industry experts, but the actual cost of your insurance will depend on the following factors:
The type of caravan
The age and condition of the caravan
How the caravan is used
The level of cover
How to save on your caravan insurance
Increase security. Ground anchors, hitch posts and wheel clamps are all effective deterrents against thieves. You could also consider getting a tracking device to help locate your caravan if stolen.
Keep your caravan in a secure location. As with car insurance, where you keep your caravan will have an impact on your premium. Consider investing in an approved caravan storage site with the Caravan Storage Site Owners’ Association (CaSSOA).
Register your caravan. If your caravan is stolen, having it pre-registered with the Central Reservation and Identification scheme can help the police recover it.
Picking the best campervan or caravan insurance for you means ensuring that it does everything you want it to do. But equally, you want to pick an insurance that puts your safety, and that of your vehicle, first.”
What cover options are there?
There are a range of insurance policies to cover different types of caravan. These are:
Touring caravan insurance
A touring caravan is one that is towed by a car or other vehicle. While your existing car insurance may protect you when towing a caravan, this will generally only extend to third party, and will not cover any damage to your caravan.
Static caravans are generally larger than touring caravans and are often permanently installed at holiday parks. While you are not legally required to get caravan insurance, it can help protect against any damage caused to your property, especially if you’re not there to look after it all year round.
If you live in a static caravan permanently, you will need to get different insurance to someone who uses it as a temporary holiday home.
Trailer tent insurance
If you are pulling a trailer tent or folding camper behind your vehicle, you can also get caravan insurance to protect it from damage and theft.
A motorhome is a vehicle that can be driven as well as lived in. Unlike caravans, you are legally required to get motorhome insurance if you plan on driving it in the UK. There are three main levels of motorhome insurance:
Third party, fire and theft
You can also get additional cover to protect from accidental damage, personal possessions cover and public liability.
How to keep your caravan safe
Lock it up. It wouldn’t hurt to invest in security devices such as wheel clamps to reduce the risk of thieves hooking your caravan up to a car and driving off. You may also want to consider fitting some sort of a tracking device.
Security features. Fit security alarms and immobilisers to further deter thieves. A security camera may also be a good idea.
Hide your valuables. To ensure that your caravan isn’t an attractive target for thieves, hide your valuables so they can’t be seen from the outside or if you can avoid bringing them on your trip then even better!
Get photographic evidence. Take photos of the inside and exterior of your caravan so that you can provide proof to your insurer following theft or malicious damage.
Join a club. If you regularly travel with the other members of a caravan club or group, you can enjoy safety in numbers and may also be able to take advantage of insurance discounts.
New for old policy for 2019 touring caravan worth £17,000, with comprehensive security and caravan club membership
Annual payment = £129.29
Same policy, with no caravan membership and basic security (hitchlock)
Difference = £22.95
What isn’t covered with caravan insurance?
Different providers will have different cover options so it’s important to check in advance if a policy suits your specific needs. Typically, caravan insurance won’t cover the following:
Damage or theft when your caravan was not stored in a safe location
Damage or theft through lack of security, for example: doors left unlocked, no wheel clamps
Damage caused by mildew, insect or vermin infestations
No, it’s not compulsory to get caravan insurance, but it can cover you against any damage, theft or other incidents. Caravans can cost a lot of money, and are also expensive to repair, so caravan insurance is always worth considering.
If you have a touring caravan, you will also need at least third party car insurance when towing it behind your vehicle.
It is unlikely that your caravan would be covered under your general car or policy, apart from third party cover when you are towing your caravan.
Many insurance providers offer caravan insurance alongside regular car insurance. However, you will need to check directly with the provider to confirm.
This depends on a number of factors, including the type of caravan you have, the level of cover you need, as well as things like the way you use your caravan, its age, location and size.
Not necessarily, though you should check if this is the case with your provider. If your belongings are not covered, you may need to take out separate contents insurance or personal possessions cover.
As with car insurance, you can customise your caravan insurance with optional extras like breakdown cover, European cover, legal assistance and additional cover for friends and family.
This will depend on your policy. Some policies might insure you for basic cover abroad for a limited time, whereas if you wanted more comprehensive cover you would need to include that as an extra on your policy.
Yes. This will require a slightly more specialised type of insurance, though, so make sure you inform your provider of your circumstances before taking out a policy. To insure your caravan when it is your permanent residence, it must be parked in an appropriate location or official caravan site.
Depending on the type of cover you have your family and friends will be insured under your policy. Check with your individual provider if this is a feature you want to include.
Slightly different guidelines apply for touring and static caravans, so again check what your policy says to see if it covers friends and family.
Louise Bastock is Finder’s deputy editor and video presenter. She was previously an editor and video presenter at Lonely Planet researching travel trends and shooting in locations from Croatia to Abu Dhabi. Louise has written for various fintech and lifestyle brands including Flux, Culture Trip and David Lloyd. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature from King’s College London. Louise’s interests include travel, stand-up comedy and a quality cup of tea.
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