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Fleet Insurance is something many people will have heard of, but how many of us know much about it? If you have been tasked with getting insurance for your business, this is the place to be. In this guide, we will answer all your questions on business vehicle insurance
We will cover frequently asked fleet insurance questions such as:
Once you have got all the answers to your commercial fleet insurance questions, head over to the quotation tool. Using our tool you can get multiple fleet insurance quotes for your vehicle fleet with ease!
In our experience, the first question people want to be answered is simple. What is a motor fleet policy? If you would like this insurance explained, read on. This section of our guide will give you information on fleet coverage so you understand how fleet insurance works.
Motor fleet cover– or simply fleet insurance – is a single insurance policy taken out by a business to cover multiple vehicles and drivers.
Businesses that might need this insurance include construction companies, courier companies, companies with a travelling sales team or taxi companies. This type of commercial insurance might also be taken out by companies who have company cars for their employees or keep pool cars that are used whenever there is a need.
Why do businesses choose to take out a commercial fleet policy on their vehicles rather than insuring them individually? There are lots of reasons.
One of the biggest reasons for choosing fleet insurance is because it makes life much easier. If you take out cover for each vehicle in your fleet, the administration quickly becomes very complicated. How much cover do you need? Is the vehicle only driven by one person or do several people drive it? Imagine trying to remember each renewal date!
When you choose your fleet policy, instead of having one business insurance policy for every vehicle in your fleet, you only need one to cover all of them. This type of business insurance is tailored to your business’s needs, so it will provide you with all the cover you need for the minimum of effort on your part.
Another big reason for needing fleet insurance to cover multiple vehicles is the economies of scale. Rather than taking out insurance for each vehicle, only having one policy is likely to cost you less money both in terms of the cost of the premium and the cost of the administration time to look after it.
As a final consideration as to whether your business needs fleet insurance, if you intend on selling fleets of vehicles to other businesses you may want to consider motor trade insurance to cover your fleet.
Most vehicle fleet insurers will cover most types of vehicle and you may find that a general fleet policy will give you all the cover you need. However, as with every other type of insurance, there are lots of different types of commercial vehicle insurance. We will look at some of them here.
If your vehicle fleet is made up of vans, minibuses, coaches or lorries, you might find that specialist van insurance is a good option for you.
If you run a taxi business, specialist taxi insurance may provide the cover you need to protect your assets.
If your vehicle fleet consists of vehicles that carry goods or vehicles that carry passengers who pay a fare, commercial vehicle insurance may be the best route for you to take.
If your vehicles are used to transport goods over long distances, haulage fleet insurance may provide the cover you need.
If you run a courier business, you can take out specialist courier insurance.
It is very easy to think you can only get fleet insurance when you have hundreds or thousands of vehicles in your fleet. That is not the case!
Different insurers define a fleet in different ways, but you will be able to find fleet policies that will cover you even if your business only has two vehicles.
When you get standard vehicle insurance, one of the questions you are asked is who will be driving the vehicle. So what happens when it comes to insuring a fleet when lots of people might be driving the same vehicle? The answer is simple
Most policies recognise that many different people may be driving your vehicles. If someone has got the permission of your business to drive one of your vehicles then they will be covered by your fleet policy.
However, you might find that you can reduce your premium by placing certain restrictions on who can and can’t drive your vehicles. The last section of our fleet insurance guide will give you more information on this.
Like all insurance, commercial vehicle insurance is calculated using many different factors. We will give you an insight into how fleet policies are calculated here. Having this information will be useful when it comes to choosing your policy because you will have more information about what’s available and will know which factors are most important to you. It will also help you understand what different levels of insurance cost and be able to compare levels of cover.
The first thing to consider when looking at a fleet policy is the level of cover you need. Like standard car insurance, there are three basics levels of fleet insurance: comprehensive insurance, third party, fire and theft insurance and third party only insurance. We’ll look at each of these now.
Comprehensive insurance gives you the maximum amount of cover. It is also likely to be the most expensive type of insurance. A comprehensive policy will cover you for:
Third party, fire and theft fleet insurance typically provides mid-level cover on your vehicles. It also tends to be the mid-level in terms of price too. This level of insurance covers you for:
Third party only insurance provides the minimum level of cover it is legal to have in the UK. It provides the lowest level of cover and is also likely to be the cheapest type of business insurance cover. Third party only insurance covers:
One of the big advantages of commercial vehicle fleet insurance is the way it can be tailored to your company’s requirements. Apart from choosing the right level of cover, here are some of the other things you should consider when looking at what you need from your insurance.
Are your vehicles driven by your employees in a private capacity? Do friends and family of your employees drive your vehicles? If so, you will need to have private use cover on your fleet policy.
Do your vehicles carry tools and equipment your employees need to carry out their work? If so, you should consider whether your fleet policy needs to have carriage of own goods coverage.
Do you want to protect your business from claims made by employees or members of the public involved in any accident or incident involving your vehicles? If you do, public liability and employee liability insurance cover can be a good idea as an addition to your fleet policy.
Do you want to cover your drivers’ goods and possessions when they are in your vehicles? Personal effects cover provides this as an optional extra under a fleet policy.
Do you want to have cover in case a third party makes a compensation claim against you? Legal expenses cover provides this. This is sometimes included as standard but some insurers will offer it to you as an optional extra.
Do your vehicles tow trailers or caravans? If they do, you should consider fleet insurance that includes towing policy cover.
Everyone likes to get good value for money. This is why one of the questions we are often asked is how you can get cheaper fleet insurance. This section of our guide will give you lots of advice on what to look out for when you are trying to reduce your insurance costs.
If you only have a few vehicles in your fleet, it may be cheaper for you have individual policies for each of them rather than a fleet insurance policy for all of them. One of the reasons for this is no claims discounts. Fleet policies don’t typically offer no claims discounts because when multiple vehicles are insured the chances of there being a claim is high. You may find that if you can get a no claims discount on one or more of your vehicles, it may be cheaper to have individual policies on them rather than a single fleet policy.
It may be easy to go for the maximum level of cover on your fleet insurance, but this is unlikely to be the cheapest form of cover. If the value of your fleet is relatively low, third party car insurance may be the best option because the value of the vehicles doesn’t warrant having comprehensive coverage. If you don’t allow employees’ family or friends to drive your vehicles, don’t pay for cover for them. Taking the time to tailor the insurance to your precise requirements could save you money in the long run.
While it makes sense to not pay for cover you don’t need, skimping on your cover could be a false economy. For example, if you have a large fleet where you change vehicles frequently or have a business where employees could be driving any of a number of vehicles, it may make good sense to have fleet insurance with ‘any vehicle’ and/or ‘any driver’ cover. While this may not be the cheapest in the short term, its flexibility could save you money in the long run as you’re unlikely to have accidentally invalidated your cover by having cover that’s too specific.
Having ‘any driver’ fleet cover may be the easy option but it is not always the cheapest option. Here are some things to consider when it comes to the people who drive your vehicles:
Just as with standard car insurance, the security of your vehicles is important when it comes to the cost of fleet cover. Consider where your vehicles are parked overnight and think about how you could make them more secure.
There are three popular options to consider when it comes to using technology to reduce your fleet premiums.
The first is dashboard cameras. If you can install dashboard cameras to your vehicles, many fleet insurers will look favourably on this and reduce the cost of your fleet cover.
The second is telematics devices. Telematics devices monitor drivers’ habits so you can check they aren’t driving too fast or for too long and take action if they do. Some also have accident sensors which can help when trying to find out if an accident was an employee’s fault or not.
Thirdly, if your vehicle fleet is high value or you carry high value goods in your vehicles, trackers can be a good idea. Trackers help to find a vehicle when it is stolen and is something that fleet insurance companies like to see.
One of the best ways to keep the costs of your fleet insurance down is to make sure your drivers are less likely to cause accidents. There are several things you can consider.
Well-maintained vehicles are less dangerous and less likely to cause accidents. Make sure your vehicles are regularly serviced and looked after. If you can, avoid any unnecessary modifications to your vehicle. Just as in standard car insurance, fleet insurance providers are likely to penalise you for making changes to your vehicles.
If it is practical to do this, agree a cap on the mileage your vehicles will do in a year with your insurance broker. The fewer miles your vehicles do, the less likely they are to be involved in an incident or accident so the less likely you are to make a claim and the cheaper your premiums are likely to be.
Your fleet insurance provider will keep a record of all your claims on your policy. You should make sure you have a copy too. It will help you spot trends in your claims – is one employee making a high number of claims? Do you claim for the same type of incident each time? When you can see the trends, you can take action to try to reduce them. Doing this should help to reduce your fleet premiums too.
Increasing the amount of excess you are willing to make on a claim is a standard way to reduce the cost of standard motor insurance. It is a standard way to reduce the costs of fleet premiums too. The more you are willing to pay towards any claim you make, the cheaper your premiums are likely to be.
As a general rule, you will find it is cheaper to pay for your insurance in one lump sum rather than in instalments. If you can afford to do this, you may find that your fleet insurance premium is lower.
Of course, one of the best ways to get cheaper fleet insurance is to shop around. Using the quotation tool helps you find a range of policies so you can choose the one which best suits your needs.
It’s now time to get the policy that’s right for you. Use our online comparison tool to compare fleet insurance and start saving today.
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