If you are like most boat owners, you probably use your boat a few times a year and then it just sits in the dock or storage unit.
But before you do, there are some insurance things you need to take care of.
In this article, we will discuss insurance options available if you are planning to rent out your boat.
We will cover what boat insurance is, what insurance you need to rent out your boat, describe peer-to-peer boat insurance and commercial charter insurance, and how to choose your policy.
Let’s get started.
What is boat insurance?
Anything that runs faster than 25 mph per hour and isn’t a small vessel like a canoe or kayak will require boat insurance. It’s similar to insurance for your car.
The insurance might cover property damage, repairs, and medical expenses if you or someone else is injured while on your boat.
Most insurance policies will also have liability insurance, which is there to protect you in the event that someone sues you for damages or injuries they received while on your boat.
Boat insurance will typically cover the following:
- Damage from collision, fire, lightning, theft, and vandalism.
- Bodily injury liability if someone is injured on your boat.
- Property damage liability if your boat causes damage to someone’s property.
- Guest passenger liability if there are legal expenses for someone driving your boat.
- Medical payments if you or your passengers are injured.
This type of boat insurance is considered a recreational boat insurance policy which is what you would sign up for when you planned to use the boat for your own recreational purposes.
However, recreational boat insurance prohibits rentals and will not cover you if you plan on conducting business activity with your boat. This leaves you with two options if you’d like to properly insure your boat before renting it out:
- Peer to peer boat insurance
- Commercial charter insurance
Let’s take a look at each one in more detail.
What insurance do you need to rent out your boat?
Here are the two different types of insurance policies to consider before renting out your boat.
1. Peer to peer boat insurance
This insurance is designed for people who want to rent out their boat occasionally and makes it easy to get coverage with a few clicks.
All you need to do is sign up for an account with a peer to peer insurance provider and then list your boat on the rental platform.
For example, Boatsetter offers coverage through insurance partner GEICO Marine Insurance Company. Each Boatsetter rental covered under their policy comes with $300,000 liability coverage per person and $1,000,000 total liability per accident.
The insurance will cover you for the duration of each rental.
Peer to peer insurance is a great option if you only plan on renting out your boat a few times a year.
Get started with Boatsetter
2. Commercial charter insurance
Commercial charter insurance is a type of insurance designed for people who want to rent out their boat on a regular basis.
This insurance is more comprehensive than peer to peer insurance and will cover you if you want to offer additional services like fishing charters or dinner cruises.
Typically, it will offer the following:
- Bodily injury and property damage liability
- Product liability
- Guest medical payments
- Hull insurance
- Protection and indemnity insurance
- Workers’ compensation insurance
From commercial fishing vessels to tugboats and rental vessels, commercial boat insurance specializes in insurance for boats conducting business activity. Although it can be more expensive than peer-to-peer insurance it offers a lot more coverage.
Commercial charter insurance is a great option if you plan on renting out your boat frequently and offering additional services beyond just renting out the vessel.
How to choose your insurance policy
Now that you know the difference between peer to peer insurance and commercial charter insurance, how do you choose which one is right for you?
It really comes down to how often you want to rent out your boat and what type of activities you’ll be offering.
If you only plan on renting out your boat a few times a year, then peer to peer insurance is the way to go. I recommend signing up with a platform like Boatsetter and using the peer-to-peer boat insurance they provide. You will be sufficiently covered and it’s very affordable.
But, if you plan on renting out your boat frequently or offering additional services like fishing charters or dinner cruises, then commercial charter insurance is the way to go.
I recommend getting in touch with a commercial charter insurance company and asking for a quote. Make sure to let them know all the details of your business so they can give you an accurate quote.
Once you’ve decided on the right insurance policy for you, get out there and start renting out your boat. Just be sure to always put safety first and make sure you have the right amount of coverage.
Get started with Boatsetter
If you’re planning on renting out your boat, it’s important to get the right insurance. There are two main types of insurance for renting out your boat: peer-to-peer insurance and commercial charter insurance. Peer-to-peer insurance is a great option if you only plan on renting out your boat a few times a year. Commercial charter insurance is a great option if you plan on renting out your boat frequently or offering additional services like fishing charters or dinner cruises. Choosing the right insurance policy for you really comes down to how often you want to rent out your boat and what type of activities you’ll be offering.
There you have it, a complete guide to insurance for renting out your boat. By now you should know what insurance you need and how to choose the right policy for you.