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Commercial van insurance

Compare quotes and get the right cover for your business van

What’s commercial van insurance?

Commercial van insurance is also known as business van insurance. It covers your work vans and  your personal or professional possessions, like tools. 

It can cover travel to multiple places of work, as well as the transport of goods and materials.

You can pay extra to add more cover for things like courtesy van hire and breakdown assistance. They can help minimise the impact of any accident or theft on your business.

What types of business van insurance are available?

There are three levels of commercial van insurance, depending on what you use it for:

Carriage of own goods

This is if you use your van to transport business-related goods or tools, for example, if you’re a self-employed plumber or florist.

You’ll also need this cover if you just use your van for commuting.

Carriage of goods for hire or reward

If you transport goods for payment this is the option for you.

It’s usually for those who transport goods to multiple destinations, like fast food or catalogue couriers.

Haulage

Driving a long way to make a single delivery means you’ll need haulage cover for your van.

Different insurers have varying definitions for this cover and carriage of goods for hire and reward, so double check you’re getting the right cover for your job.

Do I need commercial van insurance?

You’ll need commercial van insurance even if you only occasionally commute or your van is for business use.

For light commercial vehicles (LCVs) weighing up to 3.5 tonnes, you need commercial van insurance. Anything heavier is classed as a heavy goods vehicle (HGV), so you’ll probably need truck insurance.

If you use your van purely for socialising and no commuting, then you’ll need a private ‘social only’ policy.

Not sure whether you should go for private or commercial van insurance? We can help you decide.

What does commercial van insurance cover?

Exactly what’s covered depends on your policy level and type, but commercial van insurance can covers:

  • the loss or damage of your van due to theft, fire and vandalism
  • accidental damage of your van and/or the vehicles and possessions of third parties in the case of a motoring accident
  • some or all of the legal fees if you make a claim or have a claim made against you
  • personal accidents, meaning a pay out from your insurer if you’re injured and you can’t recover the cost from a third party (if the accident were your fault, for example)
  • medical expenses for injuries to yourself, your passengers and/or third parties in the case of a motoring incident
  • Optional extras you choose, like legal protection, breakdown cover and courtesy vans

If you have the wrong van insurance and need to make a claim, your cover could be invalid and you’d have to pay for damages yourself

What level of business van insurance should I choose?

Commercial van cover has three levels of cover. Make sure you choose the right one for you and your business:

Third party only policies (TPO)

  • Third party only is the minimum level of cover required by law
  • It’ll cover you for damage your van causes to another vehicle, person or property
  • You won’t be covered if your own van needs to be repaired or replaced

Third party fire and theft insurance (TPFT)

  • Like TPO, this will cover damage caused by your van to other vehicles, people or property
  • You’ll also have cover for damage or loss as a result of fire, theft of the vehicle, or theft of any personal possessions left in the van
  • Commercial belongings aren't usually covered

Comprehensive

  • Comprehensive commercial van insurance covers all the things TPFT does
  • It also includes repair or replacement of your vehicle after an accident, whether you were at fault or not
  • It’s the most extensive cover you can get, but there still might be optional extras you can choose from

How much is commercial van insurance?

The average cost of business van insurance depends on your type of use, but it might actually be cheaper than a social only policy. We found that carriage of own goods policies were actually 2% cheaper on average than social use.*

It’s significantly more expensive to insure ferrying other people’s goods around. Carriage of goods for hire and reward was £1,080.31 on average and haulage cover was £1,244.99. 

Your own quotes will be higher or lower and will depend on your own personal circumstances, including the van you drive, your location and your driving history.

To reduce the cost of your commercial van insurance, you could improve your vehicle’s security, install internal racking to safely store equipment and use ‘how’s my driving?’ signs, to show you’re a responsible motorist.


*Based on average price paid for van insurance policies purchased through GoCompare in December 2020, split by type of use.

How to get commercial van insurance

You’ll need to tell us a few things so we can show you your commercial van insurance quotes:

  1. Details about your van

    Things like the make and model of your van, or the registration number, any modifications or signage, it’s estimated market value and usage

  2. Your information

    For example, your name and date of birth

  3. Your driving history

    Including your licence details and whether you want to add another driver to the policy

  4. About the insurance you want

    What level you need, when you want it to start and whether you’d like to pay annually or monthly

Frequently asked question

  • Does my business van insurance cover my tools and equipment?

    Yes, it can. Cover for goods and equipment might be included in your commercial van insurance, available as an optional extra or bought as a standalone tool insurance policy

  • How can I get cheaper business van insurance?

    Here are a few ways to get a good deal on your commercial van insurance:

    1. Consider telematics – the price of your insurance is based on how well you drive so you might get a better deal than with a standard policy, particularly if you’re a young or inexperienced driver 
    2. Join a trade federation for a discount – make sure the federation is recognised by your insurer first though
    3. Improve security – invest in a tracker and other security devices and park in your driveway or garage if you have one
    4. Drive carefully – the more years you have without an accident, the better your no-claims discount will be
    5. Dashcam – few insurers offer discounts if you have a dashcam, but it could help provide real-time evidence if you’re involved in an accident, which could help you keep your no claims discount 
    6. Higher voluntary excess – the more voluntary excess you can pay, the cheaper your premiums. Just make sure you could afford to pay that amount if you had to claim
    7. Don’t auto renew – compare your renewal price with like-for-like cover from other providers to make sure you’re getting the best deal
  • What should my business van insurance include?

    Depending on your needs, your van insurance might include these as standard, or offer them as optional extras:

    • Windscreen cover
    • Misfuelling cover
    • Breakdown cover
    • Courtesy van
    • Lost keys
    • Trailer cover
  • Is commercial van insurance more expensive than standard van insurance?

    That depends on the type of commercial policy you need. Standard ‘social only’ van insurance costs £374 on average. Business carriage of own goods policies average £367. In comparison, haulage cover is £1,244, and carriage of goods for hire and reward policies are £1,080 on average.[1]

Van insurance guides and tools

[1] Average price paid for comprehensive van insurance policies purchased through GoCompare in December 2020.

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