Boat insurance is essential, whether your fishing is simply a weekend hobby, or longer fishing trips with family and friends are regular activities, it is essential that your boat and contents are fully protected. As leading specialists across the boat insurance landscape Pantaenius UK provides extensive coverage, carefully tailored policies and knowledgeable team guidance for boat owners who are also recreational anglers.
Even the most experienced boat owner may encounter testing situations when out on the water which can sometimes lead to damage and expensive repairs. In order to be well informed and up to date on cover for your boat, we’ve teamed up with the experts at Pantaenius UK to provide Sea Angler readers with insurance advice and some essential takeaways ahead of the coming season.
Peace of mind
To the majority of owners, their boat is their absolute pride and joy, no matter size, style, age or use. Knowing it is properly protected means that time spent on the water can be far more enjoyable and relaxed. The key to this feelgood factor is ensuring you take out quality insurance cover from a trusted provider that in turn meets your individual needs.
It is vital to think about what is required overall from your boat insurance, not just from the policy itself, but also the experience as a whole. Hopefully any policy will remain unused with no need to claim for loss or damage; however, should an emergency unfortunately arise, it is important to be confident your insurer will be available to help you. Establishing whether access to support is available and if it is provided in-house are key factors.
In addition, take time to discover how claims are handled and by whom, and do enquire whether the provider uses outsourced claims handlers or deals with all claims directly themselves. Ascertain their overall level of customer service: how easy is it to contact them?
Are fees charged to change policy details? Do instalment payments incur additional costs? Adding these results together can create a far more expensive quote than first appearances suggest.
The marine sector is incredibly diverse and therefore pinpointing insurance products that are personally relevant is a must. So many products are tailored to different types of boat owners. For example, motor yacht cover will often offer higher limits as standard; whilst motorboat cover generally comes in at a more conventional level.
When it comes to the regular recreational angler and boat owner, the Pantaenius motor boat cover and personal effects cover (which includes fishing gear) is often exactly what is required. Obviously, boats differ in size and style, whether a monohull or catamaran, RIB or other small craft, which means the related requirements for suitable boat insurance will vary from owner to owner.
Include your tackle
An insurance company should be conscious of just how important it is for anglers to protect their gear, and certainly nobody wants their expensive fishing tackle stolen or damaged. Therefore, when arranging boat insurance to incorporate recreational angling, it is recommended to investigate including any fishing equipment that belongs to the boat within the fixed insurance sum.
This guarantees that, in the event of a claim, the policy covers not only boat or engine damage but also rods, reels and other specific equipment in connection with the boat (exclusions will apply). Look for the widest possible cover offered. For example, at Pantaenius, the value of fishing equipment is added to the desired insurance value of the boat when clients request a quote. Seek out policies that offer cover for both personal effects and fishing gear on a ‘new for old’ basis.
Identify those with no single item limit and enquire if the limit of cover can be tailored to your needs. It is also a point worth noting that to insure fishing gear separately can work out to be an expensive procedure, so the whole picture is well worth careful consideration.
Be aware that no insurance policy will be completely open-ended and cover every possible occurrence. Pantaenius UK advise that with their policy, personal effects and fishing gear are covered under a hull policy whilst on board the boat for:
- All risks of loss or damage caused by an accident to the boat which then causes loss or damage to your fishing gear
- For deliberate loss or damage caused by anyone other than you, your crew, family or guests on-board
- For theft by violent and forcible removal from the boat
- For theft whilst they are secured in locked storage ashore or locked in a personal vehicle in transit between the boat and place of storage
Of course, as you would expect, it’s your responsibility to always look after and make sure your property is securely put away. If left unattended and unsecure, it will not be covered by insurance.
A general misconception is often that ‘all boat insurance policies are the same’, which is simply not the case. One of the most important things to assess when researching any insurance is exactly what you are covered for, which will be found in the policy wording.
Other considerations for the basis of cover include finding out if the policy covers ‘all risks’ or ‘insured perils’, whether an excess is payable and, if so, at what level and on what type of claims.
Enquire if there are any deductions for betterment or other contributions that would need to be made in the event of a claim (betterment is applied when insurers evaluate that the boat is better than it was prior to the repair). Ensure that the cover you are considering is wide enough to meet anticipated requirements and when two policies are compared with differing premiums, does the lesser premium mean that cover is compromised in some way and what risk that might present?
When applying for a boat insurance quote, do not necessarily be influenced by cheap products, there is almost always a reason they are so low! Rarely will you be provided with the best service for the lowest price, and cheap premiums can very often result in the detriment of cover offered or when settlement of claims is required. Unfortunately, the only way to really know how good your insurance is will be if a claim has to be made.
If the premium charged is too cheap this could lead to less than generous claims handling. This is the reason why identifying a boat insurance provider with an excellent claims reputation is so important.
Boat owners should be mindful of oversights that can often occur with insurance. Do not assume that if two or more quotes with the same sum insured are actually like for like. This is where taking time to compare the cover and exclusions will present the real facts.
As time goes on, another pitfall can be forgetting to keep on top of your boat’s insured value, so make a diary note. Inevitably most assets will experience depreciation unless large-scale refit work is undertaken and it is certain your day one value for insurance purposes will need altering. No owner wants to be over-insured and possibly paying a higher premium than necessary. Carefully check through the small print to verify your policy meets all your specific needs.
The main terms, conditions and exclusions relate to this. Make sure you read through any general summary of the benefits for further information that will expand on subjects such as restrictions, areas of cover plus rights and obligations.
The very best advice for recreational anglers who are boat owners, looking to renew or taking out a brand-new policy, is to shop around. With markets constantly fluctuating, it is worth doing your homework. Check your agreed fixed value is still suitable and always look at the policy as a whole, taking into account features such as claims handling and customer service: as mentioned, these all really add up. If you carefully outline your specific boat insurance requirements when talking with your insurance provider, the result will be the correct cover you know your boat and equipment deserve.
For all further information on boat insurance that covers recreational angling please go to: www.pantaenius.com/uk-en/insurance/fishing-boat-insurance