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Compare courier insurance quotes for cars, vans, bikes and lorries with Quotezone.co.uk
What is courier insurance?
Courier insurance is a type of cover that protects you from potential damages or costs when you make deliveries for hire and reward. This essentially means anyone who makes multiple deliveries of goods and parcels for some form of payment or compensation.
Most courier insurance policies will cover you for public liability, goods in transit cover as well as insuring your delivery vehicle of course. The amount of cover for your delivery vehicle will be dependent on the level of coverage you decide to take out.
Choosing standard car insurance or van insurance can be tough at the best of times. But when you’re transporting goods for other people it’s even more important to make sure you’ve got the right kind of cover, because a regular insurance policy won’t meet your needs – you’ll need dedicated courier insurance instead.
Yet with so many options it can be tricky to work out exactly what type of courier insurance you need, so here’s what to think about.
Who needs courier insurance?
If you use your car, van, scooter or motorbike to make multiple deliveries of goods and parcels, then you’ll need some type of parcel delivery insurance. These policies take into account the extra miles you do because of your job, the fact that you’re more likely to be driving through heavily built-up areas, and the value of the items you’re carrying.
If you don’t have appropriate cover, your vehicle and the goods you’re transporting may not be insured. It means if you had an accident or someone broke into your courier vehicle, you may not be compensated for damage or stolen items.
Since the outbreak of Covid-19 and the subsequent lock downs that followed, the courier industry has experienced a boom. Quotezone.co.uk data reveals that there has been a 44% increase in bespoke courier insurance policies since the previous year, 81% of these polices being from car owners. Even with the easing of lockdown measures throughout the UK, the demand for deliveries has still remained at record highs. Unsurprisingly many drivers have sought to cash in on this booming demand. But you should be vigilant, some potential drivers believe they may be able to carry our deliveries as a side hustle using their personal insurance. Doing this could lead to your insurance being made invalid and you being left out of pocket in the event of an accident.
Courier insurance also isn’t quite the same as haulage insurance which is aimed at long distance lorry drivers making just one or two big deliveries, for example a single lorry load delivery from London to Edinburgh.
What our experts say:
“There could be thousands of delivery drivers working across the UK without realising their insurance is not valid. With the cost-of-living soaring, millions of people are taking a hard look at their finances and seeking additional ways to earn a little extra cash” – Greg Wilson, Founder of Quotezone.co.uk
What does courier insurance in the UK include?
Courier insurance is typically made up of several other types of insurance, allowing you to tailor your policy to fit the exact needs of your courier service.
At the most basic level, you’ll need to decide whether you want:
- Third party only cover – This covers the costs of damage done to other people and their property in case of accident. Crucially, it doesn’t cover you for any damage done to your vehicle or you.
- Third party, fire and theft – This includes third party only cover and will also compensate you if your van is stolen or damaged by fire. Parking your van in a secure location when not in use is always recommended.
- Comprehensive cover – This is the highest level of protection you can get for your van. It includes third party, fire and theft cover and will also pay to fix your van in the event of an accident (even if it’s your fault).
As well as choosing the level of cover, you’ll be able to add on other types of insurance, including:
- Carriage of goods for hire and reward – this is a type of goods in transit insurance and it’s vital if you’re a courier. It covers the items you’re delivering and will compensate you for loss, damage and theft. Bear in mind that policies will have different terms and conditions so check beforehand to avoid any surprises. For instance, you may not be covered if goods are damaged because they weren’t packed properly at source.
- Public liability insurance – Courier liability insurance can be included in your insurance package. This compensates other people if you injure them or damage their property through work activities. For example, if someone tripped over boxes you unloaded and broke their arm.
- Employers’ liability – if you own a fleet of courier vehicles and employ several drivers, then this covers the cost of compensation if they become ill or are injured because of work. You’ll need employers’ liability by law if you have any employees, even part-time and temporary workers.
What is goods in transit insurance?
Goods In Transit insurance is available as an add-on for other insurance types which are designed as cover for drivers delivering goods. Typical insurance policies that have goods in transit as an add-on include courier, haulage and tradesman insurance policy. Adding goods in transport to your courier insurance can greatly benefit your business, as it will protects property against losses and damage whilst you are transporting these goods from one place to another. You can take this insurance out for goods being distributed in your own vehicle or by a third-party carrier, and can be used in the UK or abroad.
A goods in transit insurance policy will offer you the following protection:
- Theft while in transit – If your van or delivery bike is robbed while you are on a delivery and you loose your cargo, this will cover the losses due to theft.
- Damage caused by accidents during transit – If you are involved in an accident whilst making your deliveries, having goods in transit cover will insure you for the cargo value which is damaged.
- Loss during transit – If your package goes missing during a delivery run and you can’t determine the cause, this will still give you cover for the value of the lost packages.
- Damage caused during transit – Accidents happen, and if you damage a package by mistake to the point the recipient won’t accept it, you can still be insured under this coverage.
What other features should I look for in couriers insurance?
While it’s crucial to protect your van and the contents you’re carrying, there are other features worth considering to ensure you protect your vehicle and your livelihood as best you can – for instance:
- Breakdown cover – This covers breakdown and recovery of your vehicle on the road. This cover can include replacements for lost keys.
- Courtesy vehicle – This provides you with a replacement vehicle if yours is being repaired.
- Personal possessions cover – This compensates you for personal items that are stolen or damaged but only up to a certain amount. For example, things like glasses, sunglasses, a phone or built-in stereo.
- Legal expenses – pays for legal advice if you need to claim for damages or if someone takes you to court.
Does couriers insurance cover the vehicle’s contents?
If you choose to add carriage of goods for hire and reward, then your policy should cover the items being delivered. If you don’t opt for this, then those items probably won’t be insured, and you run the risk of having to foot the bill for damage or theft yourself. If you wish to be reimbursed for the costs of lost merchandise in the event of an accident involving the courier vehicle, be sure to check your policy details and include this coverage.
If you’re carrying tools and materials that belong to you and that you use for work, then you’ll need a type of insurance called carriage of own goods. If you work solely as a courier you may not need this but if you have a second job, it might. For example, if your main job is as a builder and you keep tools or equipment in your van as well, it’s worth speaking to your insurer about cover for these items too.
How much is courier insurance?
As with other types of motor insurance, the amount you’ll pay on your courier insurance is dependent on your own unique requirements and circumstances.
Price will depend on your location, the type of vehicle you’re insuring, the type of policy you choose and whether or not you add on any extra features. Premiums will also take into account your own driving history and whether you’ve recently had any road accidents or claims made against you. Because of this, the cost of insurance for couriers can vary significantly.
When it comes to choosing a policy, it’s absolutely vital to ensure you’ve got the protection you need. Cheap courier insurance might seem a good deal but read any terms and conditions in place and have a good look at what’s included – there could be numerous exclusions. If you are including cover for your delivery goods then this can also influence your premiums, particularly if you usually delivery higher value goods.
It may not seem surprising to those who have dealt with insurance companies before but policies that initially appear expensive might actually have fewer limitations and exclusions, offering you better value for money. The best course of action for finding the cheapest, yet still comprehensive, courier insurance policies is to compare multiple quotes from different lenders and seeing who can give you the best value for your requirements.
Your insurance provider will take a number of factors relating to your vehicle into account when calculating your premium, including:
- The vehicles make and model
- Its security features (for example, a car alarm or an engine immobiliser)
- Its engine size (a high performance car will cost more to insure than a smart car, for example)
- Its insurance group
- Its age
- Its mileage
- Whether or not it has been modified
- Whether or not it is an import car
How can I save on my courier insurance?
There are some practical steps you can take to get those premiums down today:
- Opt for higher excess – This will directly reduce your premiums as insurers tend to view those who elect to pay more excess as more careful drivers.
- Take out a fleet insurance policy – If you have multiple vehicles you could save on a fleet insurance policy, many insurers will also offer discounts for each additional vehicle added to your cover. Not only does it help you save money but it also provides you with the convenience of having all your vehicles under one policy.
- Invest in security systems – Making sure your vehicles are well secured with up to date security systems is a great practical step to keeping your insurance policies down. Internal CCTV cameras as well as alarm systems are all likely to drive your premiums down as the more secure a vehicle, the less likely it is to be stolen or broken into.
- Train your drivers – Making a claim will drive up your premiums more than anything else, if your drivers are better trained and have a lot of experience behind the wheel, you can reduce the risk of a claim. Many businesses develop training programmes for their driver to ensure they meet the required standard of safe driving before independently making deliveries.
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