How Will Brexit Affect Boat Insurance for UK Boat owners?

Can I Get Insurance to Cover My Boat Sailing Overseas?

What Information Do You Need to Get a Quote for Boat Insurance?

What Value Should I Insure My Boat for?

What is Comprehensive Boat Insurance?

What is Third Party Only Insurance?

What Levels of Cover Are Available with Boat Insurance?

Should I Buy Boat Insurance if it’s Not a Legal Requirement?

Is Boat Insurance a Legal Requirement?

Do I Need Boat Insurance?

It is still possible to arrange boat insurance for UK owners with EU flagged vessels or ex pat UK nationals living in the EU with EU flagged vessel.

Boat insurance is available for most parts of the world whether your cruising local UK waters or considering a trans-Oceanic passage. Typically the following are regarded as standard areas of coverage include Baltic waters, Mediterranean Sea, Atlantic cruising including Canaries and Azores, East Coast USA and Caribbean Islands. Pacific cruising including Australia, New Zealand and southern Pacific islands.

Whether requesting a quote online or by phone, you will typically need the following information.

  • Type of vessel e.g. motorcruiser, speedboat, yacht
  • Age of the vessel. You may be asked for an additional survey for boats over 25 years of age to ensure that it is in good condition and well maintained
  • Length of the boat
  • Engine details including make and horse power
  • Value of the boat. This is typically around the price you paid for it plus any additions you have made to it. It is usually possible to get a valuation at a local boat yard or marina if you are unsure.
  • Type of use e.g. private and pleasure, residential use, racing use, charter or hire use, commercial use (used as an additional income source), mooring and storage.

All types of boats have a value, everything from a sailing dinghy to the most expensive yachts and motorboats.

In general the value of your boat is what you have paid for it. However, this doesn’t necessarily reflect the value of your boat if you’ve added a lot of equipment to it, had the boat a long time, carried out a significant restoration or refit or it was a distressed sale. In these cases there are a number of places that you can approach to carry out a valuation on your vessel. These could be boat brokers, boat yards, marina managers or boat surveyors.

Comprehensive boat insurance and insures against both your own losses and those you cause to others. Your losses normally include any unforeseen accidental damage to your boat along with vandalism, fire and theft.

If you’re looking for comprehensive boat insurance, make sure you adequately reflect the value of your boat. This should include any extra navigational equipment, tenders or outboard motors that you may have added.

This is an insurance policy that covers you as the owner of the vessel or anyone in charge of the Vessel with your consent for costs that you are legally liable to pay resulting from damage to any other Vessel or property or death or injury to others.

Third Party Only Insurance is sometimes referred to as Basic Boat Liability. It is important to know that Third Party Only Insurance or Basic Boat Liability do not cover damage to your own boat. If you want this covered you’ll need a quotation for comprehensive insurance.

It is worth considering in that worst case scenario that your boat sinks you should also consider that you’d be responsible for the removal and potentially the clean up costs as well.

Boat insurance in the UK only has two different options of cover: third party or comprehensive cover. Unlike motor insurance there is no option for third party fire and theft.

It is advised. As with any insurance, you should buy boat insurance to protect yourself against an unforeseen circumstance. The boat that you buy may represent a significant financial investment that you can’t afford to lose. You may have even secured finance on your boat purchase in which case insurance may be a condition of your finance agreement.

Sometimes given less consideration is that as owner you have a legal responsibility by owning a vessel. This could include friends and family on board that suffer injury or third parties property that you may damage with your vessel.

No. Boat insurance is not a legal requirement in the UK but can be in other countries. Even within the UK certain authorities may require you to hold at least Third Party Only insurance to access rivers, canals boatyards or marinas.

The Canal and River Trust, which issues licences to use the majority of Britain’s waterways, specifies that boaters will need third-party cover for at least £2m and the Environment Agency, which deals with licences for the Thames, asks for at least £1m of third party cover.

Most policies will include adequate third-party cover, but check the requirements of your boat licence issuer to make sure you choose a policy that includes enough protection.

It is recommended. Boat insurance is most likely needed for the majority of vessels, regardless of if they are used at sea or inland on lakes and revers. Depending on the use of the vessel, the type of the boat insurance may differ, for example if your boat is used as a home, for leisure, for racing or for charter use.