Vans are a common sight on the roads of the UK and are used for a variety of purposes – from transporting packages as part of a courier service, or allowing tradesmen to move themselves and their tools to their sites of work.
There are even those who collect older, more classic vans – including the iconic VW Westfalia campervan – restoring and showing them at special motor meets and trade shows.
Whether you use a van for work, own a fleet of vans as part of your business, or own a classic or vintage van for showing purposes, you’ll need to make sure your vehicle is covered with van insurance.
What Is Van Insurance?
Van insurance helps to cover your vehicle and yourself in the event of an accident or incident that damages your property. Van insurance is a legal requirement for anyone using vans for the purposes of business and personal interests – including showing vehicles.
If you have a fleet of vans as part of your business, it can be worth looking into taking out some fleet insurance and securing all your vehicles under one single policy. This could save you money by insuring them collectively rather than one-by-one. Not only could this save you money, but could also save on administration costs by reducing paperwork.
What Levels Of Cover Are Available?
Much like with a regular car insurance policy, there are multiple levels of cover available on a van insurance policy:
- Third-party only
The cheapest cover available, third-party only cover, helps to cover the costs incurred by a third-party – including passengers – as a result of an accident. While this level would cover the cost of the third party, you would be responsible for covering the cost of any repairs that are needed as a result of the accident.
- Third party, fire and theft (TPFT)
TPFT cover helps to cover your vehicle against damage by third parties, fire damage and in the event of your vehicle being stolen.
- Fully comprehensive
Fully comprehensive insurance covers everything that is on a TPFT policy, as well as additional extras such as medical cover, windscreen cover and personal effects cover
Some brokers may offer the chance to take out a policy which is ‘stripped down’, essentially removing some of the effects of a comprehensive policy, ask your broker if you’re unsure and if this flexibility will be available for your policy.
Age And Experience
Like with car insurance, age and experience can make a difference when it comes to insuring a vehicle. Younger drivers will have trouble finding a cheaper policy because of their driving experience, while older drivers who have many years experience can find a cheaper quote.
Whether you drive for a fleet or as a sole trader, building up some No Claims Bonus on your van by driving carefully to build up some NCB can save you money on your policy going forward.
Depending on the size of your van fleet, looking at getting some van fleet insurance can be worth looking into. Fleet insurance policies allow you to insure multiple vehicles using a single policy, rather than insure each vehicle individually, which could work out cheaper for you in the long term.
How Can I Reduce My Premium Price?
There are a number of ways you can help to reduce the price of your van insurance policy, some may take time but some can work in your favour immediately:
- Build up some No Claims Bonus – through careful driving over a period of time you can accumulate some NCB and help to reduce your premiums by proving to an insurer that you are a careful driver.
- Install additional security – invest in some additional security for your van, including wheel locks and alarms, in order to keep your van safe from thieves. Bear in mind where you leave the van at night, and try and use a secure location rather than in the open on the road if possible.
- Consider your mileage – try and work out an approximate mileage per year for your usage, although this can be tricky if your business is countrywide and unpredictable. If you use a van for show purposes only, consider taking out a ‘limited mileage allowance’ on your policy which sets a mileage limit per year that could save money on your policy.
- Cover your contents – look into putting an additional extra onto your policy that will help cover the cost of any tools and equipment that might be left in the van overnight, or consider taking your tools out of the van and into safe storage at night in order to make it less attractive to criminals.
- Membership of a trade – some brokers may offer discounts if you are a member of a trade organisation; such as the Federation of Master Craftsman or NICEIC, so be sure to disclose this information whatever your trade is.