If your business provides a delivery service that supplies customers with their goods on a multi-drop basis, you will need courier insurance. There are no set courier insurance charges – every person and vehicle are different and as a result, so are the premium costs. There are many suppliers who can provide courier insurance, but our specialist brokers at Commercial Vehicle Direct will ensure you get cover that suits your needs. As a courier, you may be delivering goods such as newspapers, online orders, clothing or medical supplies, so it’s vital that you are protected with the correct cover and follow courier insurance requirements.
What insurance does a courier need?
First things first, if you are transporting multiple goods for multiple paying customers in one journey, you will need courier insurance. Regular car or van insurance won’t cover these circumstances because as a courier you’re using your vehicle to make a living and regularly delivering goods for multiple paying customers. Unfortunately, couriers can be perceived as being a higher risk on the roads simply because they‘re driving more frequently than most motorists and are therefore statistically more likely to be involved in an incident.
If you are dealing with single-drop items, then you’ll require a different type of insurance. The minimum cover you can get as a courier is third-party, which protects others that may get caught up in an incident. If you own a courier business, it is a legal requirement to have employers’ liability insurance too, available through our parent company Brightside. Employers’ liability insurance protects your business against any compensation that may need to be paid in the event of injury or a work-related illness. For example, if one of your couriers is involved in an injury whilst working, they may claim compensation. Having employers’ liability insurance ensures that any compensation paid out to the courier will be covered.
For those requiring hot food delivery insurance, a standard private vehicle policy will not cover any incidents during such deliveries as food delivery is counted as business use rather than social, domestic and/or pleasure. Therefore, a specific food delivery insurance policy will be required to cover any such incidents fully.
- All vehicles used in the business must be taxed, insured and have a valid MOT certificate
- All drivers need a valid licence for their vehicles, e.g. a vehicle weighing over 7.5 tonnes requires an LGV licence in order to be driven
- If goods vehicles are used, those in England, Scotland and Wales will need an appropriate goods vehicle operator licence
- An operator licence is also required for each Traffic Area you have a base in
- Driving hours of employees must be monitored – there are mandatory daily and weekly rest periods that must be adhered to. Tachographs are a legal requirement in vehicles that weigh over 3.5 tonnes
- Goods and services of the business must not be falsely advertised or misleading
- Your company must comply with health and safety, and fire safety legislation
- Employment legislation must be followed – this includes pay and pensions, sickness and sick pay, working hours, employment contracts, etc.
- Insurance – there are minimum insurance requirements for a courier business. Call one of our experts on 0333 230 4337 for a detailed break down on the cover they recommend
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Dos of courier business insurance:
- DO compare providers – it often pays off to do so! You may be tempted to go with your usual insurance provider but in many cases comparing providers means you’ll find a better deal. Make sure that the quotes you’re getting are like-for-like and that every package you get a quote for is delivering the same level of cover that you need. Our expert brokers can provide you with quotes from a wide range of courier insurers to ensure that you find the deal that’s best for your business’s requirements.
- DO include a replacement vehicle– We always recommend making sure your courier insurance policy includes a free replacement vehicle so you can keep on working if your car or van is taken off the road for whatever reason, such as being involved in an incident. As a courier, time is money and the more time off the road means loss of business, so we always recommend ensuring your insurer includes a free replacement vehicle option in your policy.
- DO add on breakdown cover – Similarly, adding breakdown cover to your policy (or purchasing separately) is often recommended. It provides peace of mind so if you do unfortunately break down, any costs in dealing with it should be covered hassle-free.
- DO pay annually rather than monthly, if possible – Although paying annually is a larger upfront cost, it is almost always cheaper overall than paying monthly. Though many insurers offer monthly payments when comparing the overall amount to annual, in some cases it can be hundreds of pounds more expensive. For example, a hypothetical policy for a Ford Transit Courier may see an annual quote of approximately ~£2,100 but a monthly option may equate to around ~£2,500. Paying annually also means greater peace of mind – once you’ve got your one-off annual payment made you can afford to forget about it until the following year.
- DO consider Goods in Transit cover – the goods that your courier vehicle carries are often not covered by a default courier insurance policy. As such, it is recommended to add a goods in transit insurance policy to your overall coverage to ensure that every aspect of your courier journeys are protected in the event of an incident. Our parent brokering company Brightside can help you to find the perfect goods in transit insurance policy for your needs.
- DO be aware of how vehicle size affects insurance – You may be insuring a range of vehicles within your courier business - the value, type and engine size are all factors that can make a difference to the cost of your courier insurance. Generally, the cheaper the vehicle and the smaller the engine, the lower the premiums generated. Having extra security fitted (like an alarm, immobiliser or tracker) to the vehicle can also help, as it makes the vehicle less desirable for thieves.
Don’ts of business courier insurance:
- DON’T assume the cheapest option is the best for you – In many cases, the cheapest option can be the most tempting but sometimes this option means you miss various things off your policy, and if you need to claim, you’ll ultimately end up paying more. As mentioned, ensure that each quote you receive covers everything that you require before pursuing any of them further. Our expert brokers can help you to find the quote that’s right for you and your courier business.
- DON’T be tempted to drive without the correct insurance – It’s not uncommon knowledge that courier insurance can be more expensive than regular insurance. However, never be tempted to drive with the wrong insurance, knowingly or otherwise – it is illegal. If an incident occurred and you needed to claim, your insurance would be invalid and you may be forced to pay thousands of pounds and even be at risk of criminal charges.
- DON’T get confused between courier and hire and reward – Finding the right insurance can be confusing, that’s why contacting one of our specialist brokers is a good idea. Hire and reward and courier can overlap, but the main difference is that courier insurance is more suitable to multi-drop deliveries.
- DON’T forget about the goods you’re carrying – Goods-in-transit insurance is an optional extra that covers damages to the goods you’re delivering if you’re involved in an incident, or they get stolen. It is worth protecting yourself for the cost of these, as you may have to cover the costs which could add up. CVD’s parent company, Brightside, has expert brokers who can provide bespoke goods-in-transit insurance.
Why it's best to speak to us about your courier insurance:
- New couriers welcomed - if you've just started your business we can help
- We have great rates for haulage and couriers with vehicles up to 44 tonnes
- We have cover for EU licences
- We work with leading courier insurance specialists to get you the best deals available.
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