Touring caravan insurance buyer's guide

If you're a little bit confused about Touring Caravan Insurance, read our helpful guide on understanding what it's all about and how to get the best value from your insurance.

What's in this guide?

In this guide we’ll take you through the key points of our caravan cover, explain them in simple language and give you some pointers on how to get the best value out of your caravan insurance. Read on to find out more on:

What is Touring Caravan Insurance?

In essence, Touring Caravan Insurance protects your caravan against loss or damage as a result of unexpected events. Some third party liability cover is provided by your regular car insurance, but to protect your caravan as an investment you really need specific caravan insurance. Depending on what cover you choose, your caravan insurance can;

  • Provide a new caravan if yours gets written off (known as a total loss claim)
  • Cover third party liability costs
  • Contribute to the cost of repairs
  • Provide financial help to replace lost or stolen items including the caravan itself

What are the benefits of Caravan Insurance?

Though it’s not a legal requirement, caravan insurance is an essential regardless of whether you’re new to caravanning or you’re a seasoned pro.

At Towergate we offer a flexible product so you can choose the cover package that suits your needs, whether you’ve just started out in the world of caravanning or you’re a seasoned tourer who travels abroad and all circumstances in between. We spoke to thousands of our customers to find what they wanted from their caravan insurance, and that’s why we’ve included the basic cover our customers told us was important to them, as standard, so you can be confident the most common risks to your caravan will be covered. These include cover for accidental damage whilst towing, fire, theft, storm, malicious damage and third party liability.

The aim of this guide is to help you get the cover that’s right for you. Here are just a few of the great benefits and features offered by Towergate:

  • Simplicity – We’ve made it easier for you to buy, and you can just select what you want to be covered for.

  • Choice – Giving the choice back to you to decide what’s the best cover, with no pre-set policy options, it’s for you to choose what you would like to include.

  • Flexibility – You’re covered for the basics as standard, then if there’s anything you need, or you don’t need, it’s up to you.

  • Value – You can choose the cover products that suit your caravanning lifestyle, and you only pay for what you want based on how you use your caravan. If you’re not quite sure what cover you will need, our helpful advisors will be able to guide you according to how you use your caravan.

  • New for old cover – You can choose from new for old or market value cover; in the event of a total loss on new for old we will replace your caravan with a brand new equivalent model, available on caravans five years old or less. If you select market value you will be covered up to the value of the caravan at the time of the loss, if you were to replace with like for like, based on age, condition, make and model.

  • Accidental damage whilst towing as standard – Accidents do happen, that’s why we cover you and your family for mishaps whilst towing.

  • Go continental – If you travel abroad with your caravan you can choose to include European Towing cover in your policy.

Precautions when leaving your caravan unattended

On long journeys, it’s always a good idea to pull over and take a break from the road. As a matter of fact, unless you’re sharing the driving with someone else, you should take regular break for your own safety and the safety of your passengers and other road users.

What sort of precautions should you take when you stop at a service station and pop inside for a coffee and a bite to eat? How can you reduce the risk of your caravan being targeted by thieves on short stops?

Your policy documents explain that if your caravan is left unattended for any period of time you must apply your wheel lock and hitch lock in order for your policy to remain valid. With that in mind, even if you think you’re only going to leave your caravan for a short time, it’s best to apply that wheel and hitch lock to make sure you’re covered.

Failing that, if you leave someone with the vehicle and caravan your insurance will still be valid and you’ll deter all except the most brazen of thieves.

If in doubt as to whether you should apply your security measures, apply them anyway. It’s a two minute job and it’s worth it to make sure your caravan is 100% secure.

Caravan Insurance jargon buster

Sometimes insurance can be a bit like a foreign language. Here’s our run down of a few words and phrases which may be a little confusing.

  • Indemnity - Putting you back in the same position they were in before the loss.

    Public liability - Your ‘responsibility’ for the well-being of other members of the public and their property. In insurance, this refers to the cover given to compensate legal costs and compensation payments resulting from injuries or property damage to others, which was caused by you.

  • Loss of use cover - Cover for alternative accommodation if something has happened to the caravan that makes it uninhabitable.

  • Excess - A payment you make towards a claim on your policy.

  • New for old policies - Your caravan and contents will be covered for replacement as new. (If we cannot replace your caravan with the same model we will work with you to find the best equivalent).

  • Market value - The cost of replacing your caravan at its present value - taking into consideration; year of manufacture, type, wear and tear.

  • Policy schedule - Your insurance document outlining the period during which your policy is valid.

Exclusions explained

You’ll find the full list of policy exclusions in your policy documents. Here however, we want to point out a few exclusions that often escape our customer’s attention:

  • Mobile phones and laptops are NOT covered – Unfortunately we cannot cover electronic devices.

  • Devices like iPads and laptops should be covered under your household insurance
    We recommend that you check with your home insurance provider to see if these items are covered away from your home. TVs permanently stored in the caravan, kitchenware and other items can be insured at your request.

  • Our cover only applies to caravans used for leisure – if you hire out your caravan or use it for any business venture, this will not be covered on our standard policy. Similarly, if your caravan is your permanent residence our policy would not be suitable for your requirements.

  • General wear & tear – insurance is different from maintenance cover, and is here to cover you financially should something unexpected happen to damage your caravan, and to cover you for any liability. It is therefore important to ensure good maintenance, and ideally have your caravan serviced annually to prevent problems due to wear and tear, or mechanical breakdown which unfortunately we cannot cover under your caravan insurance; such as electrical faults or gas leaks, faults with fixtures and fittings, and damp due to cracks or leaks forming in the roof or walls.

  • Tyres are not covered – your policy will cover repairs to your caravan, but excludes damage to tyres by punctures, cuts, bursts or braking. Similar to any other road going vehicle, your tyres will become worn or perish over time, therefore it is always good to give your caravan tyres a spring health check before setting out.

  • Check your awning is covered – storm damage to awnings attributed 13% of all touring caravan claims in 2016, according to Towergate claims data. That’s why, if you have an awning, it’s important to make sure it’s covered, and check you have included Awning cover in your policy.

Myth Busting!

“I’ve heard the Caravan Club offer the best value insurance” That’s not necessarily true. Whilst members of the Caravan Club enjoy some great benefits, our policies actually include many of the “bonus” features as standard and at comparable or cheaper premiums.“My caravan is covered by my car insurance” Your car insurance will only cover you for some third party liability scenarios. It won’t cover you for damage or theft of the caravan. It pays to insure your caravan with a specialist like Towergate Insurance.

“All excesses are the same for all perils” On Towergate insurance policies this is true. Your adviser will agree your excess level with you when you take out your policy and that will then apply to the whole of your policy. Other providers however will set different excess amounts for different types of claim.

“My new for old is based on the market value of my caravan” In order for us to give you a correct new for old replacement, you should provide us with the brand new value of your caravan. If you give us the market value, this is likely to be a smaller amount and you’ll get an inferior replacement. We at Towergate only want to give you the best!

Tips to get the best value and cover from your insurance

We offer different levels of Touring Caravan Insurance to suit different caravanning needs. To help you make the right choice, here are some things to think about when buying your insurance.

Consider how you use your caravan – Do you use your caravan abroad?

If so, how many days per year do you go away for? Do you keep it on site or do you tow it all over the country? Similarly, where do you store it during the off-season? Ask yourself all these questions to establish which level of cover you need. From Lo-cost which suits infrequent travellers with lower value caravans to our select policy which offers the greatest level of protection for the globe-trotters who like to travel in style.

Consider what you need covered 

The sums insured part of your policy will include the items you would like covered aside from the caravan itself. This may include push bikes, kitchenware and other caravan contents besides laptops and mobile phones. The key here is not to leave anything out and if you end up taking more away with you, be sure to add those items to your policy before you travel to make sure they’re covered.

Know the value of your caravan

The value of your caravan will affect your new for old value or replacement value. You should know the market value of your caravan and the ‘buy-new’ value if possible. If you have bought a brand new caravan, finding out these values should be easy. However, if you have a second hand caravan or an older model, it’s best to take it to a registered dealership who will inform you on how much they think your caravan is worth.

Discounts are there for the taking! 

We offer discounts for all-important, risk-reducing security measures. If you go over and above our minimum security requirement (hitch lock and wheel lock), we’ll give you 10% off the cost of your premium (before tax and fees) for each of the following installed on your caravan; Fitted alarm (PIR/Tilt sensor), micro tagging, smart water and non-proactive trackers. We also offer a massive 25% off if you use a proactive tracker or store your caravan on ANY CaSSOA registered storage site.

Be rewarded 

Recommend a friend to us and if they take out a policy, you and your friend get £10 to spend in M&S. Be demanding – We’re here to help you get the best policy for you. So if you want a particular cover, ask us and we’ll set you up with the appropriate policy.

Be sure to tell us if you need to update your policy

If you need to take more items away from you or you modify your caravan in some way which affects its value, be sure to let us know so that your insurance cover remains valid.

Cara-hacks!

This comprehensive list of caravan hacks will make your life on the road a lot more enriching. Tips on how to cook better, wash your clothes easier and clean quicker. These hacks can help you have more time doing what you love on the road!

Why choose Towergate?

As specialists in caravan insurance for over 40 years, we’ve come to understand what caravanners want from their insurance. Combined with our flexible approach to insurance and a helpful customer service, we’re confident that our cover and service will be a huge comfort and allow you to travel in your caravan carefree.

Our claims service is all in house so you won’t get passed from pillar to post. Our award winning claims team will guide you through each step of your claim and advise you on how to gain swift resolution of your claim. Simply give us a call and we’ll take it from there.

Can we help you with anything else?

As the UK’s largest independent insurance broker, Towergate offer a huge range of specialist insurance products. In the leisure department alone we offer insurance for; touring caravans, leisure homes, park homes, beach huts, marine craft and leisure boats, travel and our insurance4carhire.com team offer great value hire car hire excess insurance.

If you’d like any more information on these products and more besides, please visit www.towergateinsurance.co.uk or www.insurance4carhire.com.

Plus, if you run your own business, you can get expert business insurance from our specialist SME team. From tradesmen to beauty therapists, see how our SME cover can help protect your business. Visit our business insurance pages for more information.

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