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Barge Insurance – Compare Cheap Quotes


With thousands of miles of navigable canals in the UK, barges are becoming an increasingly popular choice for recreational boating.

However, before you can take your barge out on a canal you will usually have to take out barge insurance. Most inland waterway authorities make this type of boat insurance a mandatory requirement before you can be issued with a waterways licence.

Of course, just because this type of insurance is required doesn’t mean you should pay an arm and a leg for it. By using our boat insurance comparison system to compare houseboat insurance quotes you stand a better chance of finding the right policy at the right price.

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How much does barge insurance cost?

It’s difficult to predict how much you’re likely to have to pay to insure your barge, because boat insurance providers take a wide range of risk factors into consideration when they are calculating the premium. For instance, the type of barge you own, its estimated market value, its make and model, the year it was built, the type of engine it has, where you store or moor it and where you normally sail it can all affect the cost of insuring a houseboat.

The best plan is to use our price comparison service to compare barge insurance quotes from a range of different insurance companies, and then go with the one that offers the best coverage at the best price.

What type of insurance do I need for my barge?

Third party boat insurance is usually the minimum requirement if you plan to take your barge out on the UK’s inland waterways, and in most places your third party boat insurance policy will need to provide at least £1 million of coverage.

Does my barge have to pass an MOT before I can take out barge boat insurance?

That will usually depend on the age of your barge. If it’s more than 20 years old then most boat insurance specialists will require you to get a Boat Safety Scheme (BSS) examination certificate before they will insure your barge.

Newer barges that were built less than 20 years ago can sometimes be insured without a BSS examination certificate, although some barge owners still have their boat examined and certified anyway in order to make sure the vessel doesn’t have any structural issues.

Does barge insurance cover the contents of my barge?

Boat contents insurance isn’t always included as standard when you take out barge insurance, but if your policy doesn’t include it it is usually possible to add this type of contents cover to a more basic boat insurance policy for a small fee.

Will I get cheaper barge insurance if I use a boat insurance broker?

Local boat insurance brokers may well know the canal networks in your local area better than a large, centralised insurer is likely to do, but unfortunately that local knowledge isn’t likely to result in a more tailored policy or a cheaper quote.

Insurance providers use a wide range of data points when calculating their premiums, including local crime rates, but they use official police data and insurance claims data when assessing those factors so local knowledge plays very little role.

The relationship your local boat insurance broker has with insurance companies is likely to have a more significant impact on your quotes than the broker’s local knowledge, because some brokers are able to negotiate preferential deals with some insurance providers.

However, since there’s no way to be sure ahead of time which boat insurance broker has the best relationship with particular insurance providers, the best approach is to compare barge insurance quotes from a wide range of different providers at the same time and then go with the firm that offers the best policy at the most competitive price.