Your Boat Insurance Coverage Questions Answered

Image of a boat on water surrounded by symbols that represent questions, for the blog Your Boat Insurance Coverage Questions Answered

Image of a boat on water surrounded by symbols that represent questions, for the blog Your Boat Insurance Coverage Questions Answered

One of the advantages of having boat insurance is the peace of mind it provides to anyone venturing out onto the ocean. But simply taking out a policy doesn’t necessarily mean that all eventualities will be covered should an accident occur. Real equanimity comes from knowing precisely what you’re covered for, and ensuring you’ve clarified any grey areas before you agree on a policy. We’ve put together a list of some of the most commonly asked boat insurance coverage questions so you can arrange a deal and set sail with the utmost confidence. 

Contents 

● What Factors Affect My Boat Insurance Premium Rates? 

● What are the Main Types of Boat Insurance? 

● Can you Insure a Boat That is Not in Your Name? 

● Is a Boat Covered On-Land? 

● What Should I Do if I’m Involved in a Boat Accident? 

● Conclusion 

What Factors Affect My Boat Insurance Premium Rates? 

Several factors affect the amount of your boat insurance premium, not least, the type of vessel, your geographical location, and the insurance agent you choose. In addition to those points of difference, a boat insurer will likely consider some or all of the following: 

Model and Value 

An enormous luxury yacht will naturally cost more than a small vessel, and therefore, yacht insurance will cost more. 

Age 

Age and present condition are often considered by an insurance company or agency when deciding on a premium. A brand new boat may be worth more than an older one in the same model range, but an older one may be more prone to breakdowns and so come with a higher cost of boat insurance.

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Experience 

Similarly to car insurance, a brand new, inexperienced sailor is more likely to have an accident than a long-time voyager of the seas. Likewise, if you’ve been boating for some time but have several accidents on your record, you’ll likely be charged more than someone who has been sailing accident-free. 

Qualifications and Navigational Limits 

As an add-on to experience, a new sailor who has passed safety courses will likely be considered less prone to accidents, saving money on their insurance. An insurer may also take navigational limits into account. Sometimes referred to as a geographical limit, this is how far you can sail, within your proven ability. 

Purpose 

How often you use your boat, and what you’re going to use it for, may also affect premiums. Those who plan to head a short distance from shore and float about on the ocean for a few hours will likely be charged less than a person planning daring escapades on the water. Likewise, those using their boat for commercial tours or fishing trips will likely pay a higher premium given the extra risks involved. 

What are the Main Types of Boat Insurance? 

One of the most often-asked boat insurance coverage questions concerns the types of insurance available. Insurers will have their own rules and regulations, but it’s important that you consider all eventualities. A typical boat insurance policy should include the likes of collision damage, weather damage, theft, vandalism, and liability – which covers any costs relating to third party injuries, vessel, and property damage. 

To give an example, let’s take a summary of our own boat insurance options, for citizens living in Malta: Comprehensive Coverage 

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This insures you for loss or damage to your boat, alongside third party property damage and injury. Third Party Coverage 

This insures you for third party property damage and injury only, meaning any damage to your boat – or yourself – would not be insured. 

What Does Comprehensive Coverage Include?

GasanMamo’s comprehensive cover includes – but is not limited to – the likes of collision damage, theft and vandalism, environmental damage, fire and lightning, damage caused by loading/unloading in transit, stranding or sinking, and legal liability. 

Additional coverage can be taken to include the likes of personal accidental damage cover, legal costs, and salvage fees. You can find an in-depth list of our standard cover on our Boat Insurance FAQ page and lots more useful information with our article What Does Boat Insurance Cover? 

Can you Insure a Boat That is Not in Your Name? 

No individual can legally insure a boat that is not in their name. If you’ve acquired a sailing vessel that’s still registered in another person’s name, you’ll need to officially transfer ownership before you can take out a boat insurance policy. 

Is a Boat Covered On-Land? 

Many boat policies will cover your boat whilst it’s in storage and whilst it’s in transit, within Malta. It’s important to comply with usual best practice whilst your boat is off the water, ensuring both the vessel and the likes of garage doors are locked, and no personal items are on display. 

Furthermore, it’s a good idea to let your insurer know the amount of trips you’re likely to take on the water every year, and how long your boat will spend in storage, as these factors may affect your premium amount. 

What Should I Do if I’m Involved in a Boat Accident? 

If you’re involved in a boat accident, stop your vessel as close to the scene as possible. Remain calm, and evaluate the situation. If you are carrying passengers, check everyone is still on board, and whether there are any injuries. 

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If the accident has been caused by a collision with another vessel, check the condition of the driver, and any passengers they are carrying. Deal with the immediate situation by administering first aid if necessary.

For more serious accidents, contact the emergency services as soon as possible. In cases of collision, you may also need to exchange details with the other driver, notify the police, and then your insurance provider. They will be able to advise you of the precise steps to take from here. 

It’s a fact of life that accidents happen. Doing everything within your power to prevent them can dramatically cut down their possibility. Adhere to speed limits, and passenger limits. Keep a sensible head, avoiding alcohol in accordance with local regulations and  Malta’s Sailing Academy advice, and avoiding the water when tired can reduce the number of mishaps from occurring. 

In addition, being prepared for accidents can also reduce their impact. Taking boat safety training, ensuring you have a sufficient number of lifejackets, and knowing basic first aid can all be vital tools in the event of a boat accident. 

Conclusion 

We hope you’ve found these boat insurance coverage questions useful when it comes to plotting your own route forward. As with any policy, it pays to know the finer points to truly reap the benefits of your premium, so be sure to clarify any details directly, should any further questions come to mind when searching for a potential policy. 

Begin your own search for the right plan in Malta by looking through our clear and transparent benefits on our boat insurance page. 

GasanMamo Insurance is authorised under the Insurance Business Act and regulated by the MFSA.