Motorhome insurance- 5 essential things to check before you buy

Wild Camping in France for Motorhomes and Campervans

Need Motorhome insurance? Looking for ways to save money or get the cover you need? Here’s everything you need to know or check before you buy.

Let’s be real. Motorhome insurance sucks.

Nobody wants to pay it or have to input their details 50000000 times into various search engines to get a decent quote, only to discover that the motorhome provider doesn’t cover Europe, or has no breakdown cover or only covers you if you drive 3 miles a year.

But… you need it.

So today I’m going to share some things to look for before you buy your motorhome insurance or choose your provider. I’ll also share some quick tips to help you save money (you’re welcome)

I will do my very best to make this as un-boring as possible… but it’s motorhome insurance. So go grab a strong coffee and let’s whiz through some important things you need to check before you buy.

*We work hard to make this the best motorhome travel blog and road trip website possible, full of helpful content for you. The website is supported by our readers, so if you buy through links on this site we may earn a commission- at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain our own.

If you find this post useful, you can also treat us to a coffee – we promise to enjoy it while creating more useful content like this- we might even indulge in a biscuit (or two!)

Motorhome Insurance- Important Questions

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about motorhome insurance:

Do I need Insurance?

Firstly, just like with a car, you MUST have motorhome or campervan insurance unless your vehicle is SORNed, which you can do through the DVLA.

So yes, you need it.

What types of motorhome insurance cover are available?

The three common levels of insurance for motorhomes are:

  1. Third party – the bare minimum level of cover you need. This only covers the costs of compensating other people for any injury or damage you cause to them or their vehicle. YOU or your vehicle are not covered in any way.
  2. Third party, fire & theft – this is similar to third party cover, but also includes insurance against your motorhome being stolen or damaged by fire.
  3. Fully comprehensive – this includes everything offered in third party, fire and theft, and also covers accidental damage or destruction to the motorhome. You often have some level of personal protection and contents cover in these policies too.

Many providers also offer foreign use cover for Europe trips, ranging from 30 days all the way up to 365.

Do I have to pay if I make a claim?

You’ll probably have to pay an excess when you make a claim. The amount of this depends on your policy and is usually customisable when you buy.

What types of motorhome/ camper can I insure?

You can cover pretty much anything- with the right policy. In the UK, you can insure motorhomes, campervans, converted vans, American RVs, old schoolbuses and pretty much anything else.

The only difference is what it costs- and some vehicles may need a specialist broker to find them a good quote. (We have a great one if you need a referral- feel free to send us an email and ask.)

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    Things to consider when insuring your motorhome

    Consider the following:

    • What level of cover do you want? How much is your motorhome/ camper worth and can you afford to replace it?
    • Do you want new for old cover? (This is often more expensive)
    • Do you need cover in the UK only, Europe for a short time or Europe for a longer time? Make sure you’re not paying for Europe cover if you have no intention of going there!
    • Is your vehicle modified? For example, have you changed from a manual to an automatic motorhome gearbox? That might affect your premiums.
    • Breakdown cover. Don’t be totally swayed by this- remember, you can buy a separate breakdown cover, both for the UK and for Europe breakdown. Whilst we’re on the subject, not ALL breakdown policies cover vehicles over 3.5 tonnes. Be very sure to check what you’re getting and what might happen in the event of a breakdown.
    • Security. Some of the cheapest policies on the market require you to have trackers or other motorhome security devices fitted. Some of these require a monthly payment to stay monitored. Make sure you take that into account when choosing your policy.
    • Along those lines, it can make your policy cheaper if you have additional motorhome door locks fitted.
    • Contents. Some contents might be covered on your home insurance policy. But some might not. Be sure to ask questions from both providers so that you know what’s covered inside the motorhome when travelling or on the drive.
    • Towing. This is one of my biggest bugbears. Motorhome towing insurance is a pain. We ended up in a fun situation where our motorbikes weren’t covered whilst they were on a trailer. The bike insurance said the motorhome insurance should cover it… and vice versa! We did eventually get it sorted (in writing!) but that’s an easy loophole to fall through, so be sure to read the small print.

    How to find the most competitive motorhome insurance provider

    If you don’t already have motorhome insurance, there are LOADS of providers on the market. And it can be overwhelming (and annoying!) to have to enter your vehicle details a million times.

    Sadly, there’s no real shortcut to this, but here are some tips to help make it easier to narrow down what you’re looking for:

    5 easy tips to make your Camper Insurance policy cheaper

    Here are some ways which might help you save money on your motorhome or camper insurance:

    1- Store your vehicle in a secure and approved parking. This can save as much as 10% of policy prices.

    2- Drive less! Say if you are only doing low mileage- this can save some money (but don’t lie- they will check!)

    3- Fit a reversing camera or parking sensor

    4- Fit additional approved security devices- but check with your insurance first to see if they will accept them- here are some we recommend!

    5- Don’t pay for Europe cover if you’re not going to tour Europe with your motorhome. Some policies will charge less for UK coverage only.

    6- Build up your no-claims discount. Many insurers offer discounts against car no-claims bonus, which is helpful to new motorhome owners.

    Specialist motorhome insurance with big savings!

    Caravan Guard offer expert, award winning motorhome insurance that puts you back in control with fantastic options like 270 days European cover and emergency accommodation expenses. What’s more, they also offer up to 69% no claims discount and several other discounts for security-conscious drivers. They’re also rated Excellent on by their customers!

    More common Motorhome insurance questions

    Is camper insurance cheaper than van insurance?

    On the whole, yes. A motorhome or campervan is classed as a leisure vehicle and therefore generally cheaper to insure than a panel van.

    Common exclusions in Motorhome Insurance

    Here are some things which are often not covered in camper insurance:

    • Full-time motorhome living: If your motorhome is your only residence and you live in it full-time, many providers will not insure you. Some do- try Comfort Insurance. Get more tips for full-time motorhome living here
    • Mould & Mildew: This is often seen as negligence by the motorhome owner, and therefore is not covered by most policies. Find out how to stop condensation in a motorhome here
    • Unforced Entry: If you leave your motorhome unlocked or a window ajar, and someone breaks in, you will likely not be covered. This applies even if you are in the motorhome at the time! So be careful on warm summer nights.
    • Vermin Infestations: Infestations from rats, mice and other pests are not usually covered- and neither is any damage they cause.
    • Trade Use: If you use your motorhome for business, it becomes a trade vehicle and needs a different type of insurance policy.
    • Wear and Tear: General wear and tear is not covered by motorhome insurance.

    Motorhome Breakdown Cover

    We always recommend that you have proper breakdown cover for your motorhome. Some motorhome insurance providers offer it in their package, but you can also buy a standalone policy.

    Buy UK Motorhome breakdown cover here

    Buy Breakdown cover for Europe travel here

    If it is included with your camper insurance, make sure it covers your requirements. There have been stories of people with motorhomes over 3.5 tonnes breaking down- and then discovering their breakdown was only for vehicles less than 3.5 tonnes!!

    There are also different levels of cover- whether you want home start (don’t bother if your vehicle is kept at a storage yard), roadside assistance and repatriation.

    I would suggest as a minimum you want to be taken to a nearby garage and want some form of hotel/ accommodation provided if you need to wait while the vehicle is fixed.

    Also, if you plan to travel in Europe, make sure you have a way of getting you and the vehicle back to the UK- we know several people who have had their motorhomes stuck in Europe and couldn’t get them back without a lot of fuss and expense.

    Lastly, if you are travelling to Europe, make sure you have a copy of your motorhome or camper insurance and breakdown cover printed – grab our FREE checklist of things you need for Europe

    How else can we help you today?

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    One Comment

    1. It’s not just weight but also length 5.5mt, width 2.3 and height restrictions on Breakdown cover. I use LV Britannia breakdown cover UK and Europe
      Cost is £80 and covers larger/ heavier MH

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