What is commercial van insurance?

If you use a van to make a living, it is vital you get the right protection so that you are covered if something goes wrong. Here is how commercial van insurance works.

Man looking at van with packages

How does it work?

It is an insurance policy that covers you when you use your van for business purposes.

You need commercial van cover if:

  • You use your van as a sole trader, e.g. builder

  • You run a business that uses vans, e.g. courier service

  • You use your van to commute to work, even if you do not use your van as part of your job

You can work out if you need private or commercial van insurance here.

What cover do you need?

Commercial van insurance can protect you financially against things like accidental damage, theft and fire. You can also get cover for:

  • Your tools: This protects the tools you use for work if they are lost or damaged by fire, theft or an accident.

  • Goods in transit: This covers any items you are carrying against loss, damage or theft while being transported in your van. Find out how goods in transit cover works here.

  • Multiple drivers: This means you can cover more than one person to drive your van. Some policies cover up to four drivers.

  • Trailers: This covers any trailer you attach to your van against damage, loss and theft.

You may need to pay extra to include these options, but some policies offer them as standard. Think about how you use your van to work out what cover options you need.

If you own your business you will also need cover for things like public and employers' liability. Here is how business insurance works, and what cover your business needs.

Compare van insurance here

What type of van do you have?

When you apply for a quote you will be asked to confirm what you use your van for, and what type of van you own. Think about whether you use your van for:

  • Carrying your own goods, e.g. tools

  • Carrying goods for hire or reward, e.g. haulage

Some insurers do not cover certain uses, for example delivering goods. Also make sure the weight of your van is covered because many insurers only cover vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes.

Do you need to insure a fleet of vans?

If you own or run a large business and need to insure several vans together, for example for a courier or delivery business, you can get a fleet van insurance policy.

This can cover all the vans your business runs under one policy, rather than taking out separate cover for each vehicle.

What is not covered?

This depends on the terms of your policy, but most commercial van policies do not cover:

  • Any damage which results from wear and tear

  • Mechanical, electrical or electronic failure

  • Theft if the keys have been left in your vehicle

  • Theft of personal items or tools if you leave your van unlocked

  • Goods or stock you are carrying, unless cover has been added for this

Always check the policy before you buy commercial van insurance so you know what you can and cannot claim for.

How much does it cost?

What you pay for your van cover depends on things like your:

  • Type of van

  • Personal information

  • Driving history

How you use your van will also influence the cost of your policy.

For example, it will cost more if you use your van to deliver goods because the value of the contents is likely to be high and you will drive relatively more miles on average.

You can find out what else affects the cost of van insurance here