If you’ve ever ridden in an RV, you know the luxury of having every possible amenity at your fingertips while you’re driving. These recreational vehicles are great, but they can be a real pain to deal with if the unforeseen happens, such as a collision or natural catastrophe.
So, if you’re going to be driving an RV, it is highly recommended that you get insurance for it.
What does RV insurance cover? Most RV insurance packages have some basic coverage, such as collision or liability. However, there are also many optional items you can invest in for roadside emergencies and the like. It depends on the type of coverage you include in your policy.
Many people find that RV insurance can be quite similar to traditional car insurance, but what you want and end up getting covered may differ.
In the remainder of this article, we will discuss how RV insurance works and provide tips on choosing the best policy for your specific vehicle and needs.
Why Get RV Insurance?
Right after you go out and buy yourself an RV, your next step should be to go and buy insurance. RV insurance is a necessary purchase for multiple reasons.
Not only does having the insurance protect you against others who might damage your vehicle and possessions, whether by accident or through stealing, it can also give you options when natural disasters strike.
It also protects you if you get in an accident and incur damages that you would otherwise be unable to pay for with your own income.
With insurance, you can protect yourself as well as others around you. It’s also an excellent idea to get it if you are financing or leasing your vehicle.
I recently wrote an article on this site explaining why Travel Trailer Insurance Important?
RV & MOTORHOME INSURANCE: Contents, Crashes and Coverages! >> Check out the video below
Types of RVs Covered by Insurance
An RV, or a recreational vehicle, can be classified as several different vehicles ranging from full-blown motor homes to an attached trailer. Knowing what kind of RV you have can influence the type of coverage you want to have for it.
While different insurance companies offer various types of coverage for different RVs, most companies will provide insurance for RVs that qualify under one of three categories.
Class A RVs
Class A RVs can be described as conventional motorhomes. These vehicles are the big, usually luxurious RVs that you sometimes see on the freeway.
Mobile homes also fall under this category, meaning that RVs of this class can basically be used as a home on wheels.
These vehicles have fully functional kitchens and bathrooms in the RV, as well as the added function of being motorized. These vehicles can be up to seventy-five feet long.
The importance of a Class A RV usually means you are going to want better coverage on it, which will always end up being a little more expensive.
Class B Vehicles
Where Class A RVs are big and can fit lots of people in them, class B vehicles are constructed for a smaller group to occupy them.
These vehicles still have the works, like a usable kitchen and bedrooms on board, but they will be shorter and perhaps not as fancy looking.
Their size makes them easier to buy and more efficient with gas usage. However, the small size prevents pop-outs, which is where you can make the room available in your RV bigger by having a wall “pop out” and make more room.
Coverage for these vehicles should be cheaper than class A vehicles.
Class C RVs
A Class C RV looks the most like a standard car. The front looks like a truck or van face, and then the back of the motorhome extends into a big enough area that you can have a kitchen and bedrooms.
A lot of these RVs will have a bed above the driving compartment, which will result in a protruding structure when you look at the face of the vehicle.
These motorhomes are probably smaller than the RVs in Class A but bigger than the vehicles in class B. They might feel easier to drive because of their classic car set up.
While it is common for insurance companies to offer insurance on the RV classes listed above, you can also get RV insurance for other recreational vehicles.
Technically speaking, travel trailers aren’t actually vehicles since they are not attached to a motor of any kind and must be pulled.
That being said, a lot of insurance companies will still offer insurance policies on them because they are attached to the vehicle as it is moving and can have the same set up as an actual motor home, just minus the motor engine part.
Travel trailers come in a variety of different styles. A fifth-wheel trailer is one with the forward section raised so it’ll fit over the top of a truck bed.
Travel trailers are the typical trailer you see on the road that is hitched onto the end of a car, usually a bigger car like a truck or suburban. A lot of these types of trailers can usually find coverage under Class C.
Campers are usually smaller versions of travel trailers. They are generally used to be camped in and typically don’t hold as much stuff.
These campers are commonly called pop up campers or truck campers—pop up because you can just pop up your tent right off the camper.
Because of their smaller size, these kinds of trailers tend to fit into the Class B category for insurance purposes.
Types of RV Insurance Coverage
Now that you have an idea of what kind of RV you have, next is figuring out what type of insurance you should have on it.
While there are many different types of insurance you can have on an RV, there a few basic coverages that the insurance agent will insist you get to operate the vehicle without worries.
Some of these basic coverages might vary from one insurance policy provider to the next.
Collision Damage Insurance
Collision insurance is standard for the operation of any motor vehicle. Collision damage is the insurance company essentially promising to pay for any damage caused by a head-on collision, basically a car crash.
The good part of collision coverage is that the policy usually also covers rollovers.
So, if your RV magically starts rolling itself down the hill, the damages would be covered by the insurance. This type of insurance is often required for people who are leasing the vehicle.
Getting comprehensive insurance on your vehicle is usually a good idea if your RV is expensive. Comprehensive insurance (a.k.a., full coverage) goes to cover any kind of damage that happens to your vehicle that isn’t caused by a collision.
This includes damage such as vandalism and natural disasters, as well as cases of theft. So, if you’re keeping something valuable in your motorhome, getting this insurance would be a good idea.
Liability coverage is required to operate an RV in most states and can typically be one category or be split into two different types of liabilities. If split into two, the liability insurance is then called bodily harm liability and property damage liability.
Liability insurance basically means that the insurance company will cover the cost of any damage you cause to the other person’s car or body.
If someone from the other party gets injured in the accident, liability insurance will pay for their medical bills and the like. Meanwhile, if you destroy the other person’s vehicle with your RV, the insurance company will step in and pay for the damages.
Uninsured Motorist Coverage
Most states require drivers by law to have some kind of insurance on their vehicles.
However, this is not always the case. Uninsured motorist policies exist so you can have coverage even if the person who crashed into you doesn’t have insurance or doesn’t have enough money to pay for all the damage done in the crash.
This can be seen in cases like having to pay for monthly medical bills because of a car accident. Such coverage is also suitable for situations such as a hit-and-run. Note that this insurance is subject to your coverage provisions and limitations.
Underinsured Motorist Insurance
This kind of insurance follows the same reasoning as coverage for an uninsured motorist. Since it is legally required to have insurance while operating a motor vehicle in most states, most of the population has insurance.
However, to save on premiums, some people take out insurances with low levels of compensation.
This means that when they get into an accident, their insurance might not cover the full cost or even half the cost of the damage you’ve suffered.
Underinsured motorist insurance helps offset this balance by coverage from your insurance policyholder. It’s important to note that these policies are typically subjective to your other coverage provisions and usually have smaller money limits.
Medical Payment Insurance
While definitely a handy coverage, medical payment is sometimes left off or covered in other provisions of your insurance policy.
While other arrangements might be able to cover your medical bills, med pay goes a step above and offers a little more medical coverage.
For instance, medical payment insurance will also provide for the medical bills of other passengers in your car.
This policy also extends regardless of whether the accident was caused by you or another party. However, this policy only extends to accidents.
Other RV Insurance Policy Options
All the policies mentioned above are what you are likely to find in a typical RV insurance package.
However, there are a lot of other coverages you can add to your policy. Some of these are must-have add-ons, while others depend on how you plan to use your motorhome for most of the year.
Roadside Assistance Insurance
This is an excellent form of coverage to add on to your policy. You never know when you might just be peacefully driving along, and a tire pops out of nowhere. It’s much harder to change a motorhome tire by yourself.
This is where 24/7 emergency roadside assistance insurance comes in handy.
The assistance is available for virtually all roadside mishaps, including tire replacement, battery jumps, and roadside repairs.
The aid can also be used for gas or oil delivery and getting a locksmith if you managed to lock yourself out of your RV. With roadside assistance, you can travel knowing that you’ll be taken care of if there’s an emergency.
Towing and Labor
While associated with roadside assistance, towing and labor are often covered in a separate policy provision. This policy means you won’t have to pay for towing or labor costs if your RV experiences a problem while you’re on the road.
However, if your motorhome is being towed away, it probably means you can’t live in it.
In these circumstances, this coverage will cover any expenses you accrue from the interruption of your trip. This means that the insurance company will pay for lodging, transportation, and food while you’re away from your RV.
The covered expenses often have a distance limit, meaning you need to be a certain distance away from your home before the coverage starts.
Glass and Window Replacement
Any vehicle that spends a lot of time on the road is bound to get rock chips and cracks in their windshield at some point. For this reason, most RV insurance providers will offer some type of window replacement or repair insurance.
This insurance usually allows you to replace your windshield for free. Some coverages will offer a repair for free and charge a small fee for window replacement.
Having this optional insurance is a good idea because RV windshields can be massive and expensive to replace.
Related reading: Why Have 2 Doors on A Travel Trailer? [What To Consider]
Insurance for Personal Effects Replacement
This insurance is going to be necessary for those who have made their RV their permanent living abode. This insurance will guarantee the replacement of any of your personal belongings lost for any reason within your coverage.
The monetary value of items that can be covered ranges from $100 with some insurance agencies to $2000 with others. If you want coverage for an amount higher than that, you will have to ask for a separate coverage agreement.
The additional agreement usually goes up to $100,000. People who use their RV for recreational purposes only might skip this insurance if they don’t keep anything expensive in their RV.
This is good to have if you take your RV for vacations a lot. With this coverage, the insurance company will provide a certain amount of coverage for any damage that occurs to your RV at the site you are parked at.
The standard amount for this coverage is $10,000, but it can vary by the insurance provider.
If your RV was for living purposes, there might also be extra coverage for a change in lodging arrangements while you are still on vacation.
The damage coverage sometimes is factored into monetary amounts for your collision or comprehensive coverage.
Have a furry friend that you want to bring on vacation but worry they might get hurt in the camper? Some insurance agencies have coverage policies that will provide a fairly limited amount of coverage for your pet in case of an accident.
The coverage also extends to if your pet is stolen from your RV. Some of these coverages go up to $1,000, but rarely more. The coverage amount is the same, regardless of how many pets you bring on vacation.
The money can be used for veterinarian bills as well as burial costs if such a need arises.
Related reading: Do RV Rentals Allow Pets? (Pet Friendly Companies)
If you’re planning to add on to your RV in any way, it could be a good idea to get customizer insurance. Some policies have this built into the basic coverages for RV insurance policies.
If you customize your RV in any way that changes its appearance or performance from the standard of when you bought it, then some insurance companies will give you up to $1,000 coverage on the customizations.
The changes must be permanent or worked into the vehicle to be considered for the insurance. If you want a higher amount of coverage for your customizations, you will need to pay an additional fee.
Factors Behind RV Insurance Costs
Now that you know what kind of coverage you can get with RV insurance, it’s essential to figure out how much insurance will cost.
The type of insurance you decide to get will obviously influence how much it can cost, but there are other factors that the insurance agencies use to help them calculate how much to charge.
The type of RV that you drive influences how expensive your insurance will be:
- Class A RVs tend to be the most expensive because they are bigger and longer than all the other types. They’re also more likely to cause a lot more damage in an accident to the other car than other RVs.
- Next is class C RVs. These vehicles have the cab-over section, which might contribute to their extra cost.
- Class B is the least expensive because they are smaller, with some of them being the same size as a standard van.
- Of the other RV types, such as trailers and campers, all of them are cheaper to insure because there is no motor element. They are also less expensive based on the size of the vehicle add-on.
If you look at RV insurance rates for basic RV insurance, you can expect to pay around $2,000 a year for your policy for a class A RV. A class B insurance policy is likely to fall somewhere between $1,000 and $2,000, with a class C policy being somewhere in between the two. An insurance policy for a trailer is likely to be less than that.
Because an RV is basically a car with your house attached, a lot of the same things that are considered when getting regular auto insurance are considered for getting RV insurance. This also includes your driving record.
If you have a history of speeding tickets or accidents, your RV insurance is bound to be more expensive.
They will also look at your past insurance claims to see how much of a liability you might be. A better driving record will result in cheaper RV insurance.
This might not be as big of a factor if you are looking for insurance for trailers.
>> Read this Next: Renting an RV With a Driver: What You Need to Know
Limits and Deductibles
As with auto insurance, how high your deductible is, and the limits of your policy will influence how much you pay in RV insurance.
If you are unfamiliar with auto insurance, a deductible represents the amount of money you will be willing to pay out of pocket instead of relying on the insurance company to pay.
A higher deductible means that your RV insurance will be cheaper, but you’ll have to pay more if you get into an accident with your RV. And then the coverage you decide to include in your policy, of course, influences how expensive the insurance will be.
The RV Purpose
Your purpose for buying the RV will affect how expensive your insurance is. This is because how you are using your RV effects the type of policy you are going to want.
If you are living in your RV full-time, then you are going to spend more money on insuring personal effects and other replacement coverage. Your insurance basically acts as a homeowner’s insurance.
If your RV is simply for vacations, you’ll spend less on personal effects insurance. You might pay a little more in vacation insurance, but overall, RVs owned for vacation purposes are going to cost less to insure.
The number of people that will ride in the RV regularly is also going to potentially affect your insurance cost.
If you are just a couple that is living out of an RV, then your insurance is going to look different from a family of five living out of the same RV.
This is because you’ll have to pay more for insurance to cover other passengers since you know you will consistently have extra passengers in the RV.
While one additional passenger might not make much of a difference to your insurance, four or five extra might.
How you are using your RV might increase your insurance by law. With almost all states having a requirement to purchase insurance to drive, states will also put in provisions to buy certain types of insurance.
While most states require at least liability insurance, other states also require you to buy extra coverage depending on how you are using your RV.
You can expect to have to purchase extra insurance if you are renting an RV, if you are living out of your RV full time, or if you finance the purchase of an RV.
Where You Live and Travel
Since different states have different basic insurance requirements, where you live is going to affect the cost of your insurance. Your insurance cost is also influenced by where you plan on taking your RV.
If you’re planning for a cross-country road trip once a year, then your insurance is going to be more expensive because you are moving around, and the insurance company might have to refer you to an out-of-state agency in emergencies.
However, if you plan on staying within the state, you don’t have the same challenges.
Where Can You Get RV Insurance?
There are multiple ways to go about getting your RV insurance.
- First, you can go to a major insurance agency’s website and request a quote for the type of insurance you want.
- Another popular way to get RV insurance is to use an independent agent to set up your policy. An independent agent can be a good pick because the agent will show you multiple quotes from different agencies so you can compare them. If you feel more comfortable sticking with a known agency, most insurance agencies that do auto insurance, like Geico, will also do RV insurance.
In the following table you will find the best rated RV insurance providers I have found on the market at the moment (customer services, ratings, coverage options, discounts, financial strength):
|RV Insurance Agency||Coverage Options|
|Good Sam (Top Choice!)||. 96% overall customer satisfaction rating|
. Customers report average savings of $321 per year
. Total-loss replacement for motorhomes and travel trailers
. Specialized coverage for full timers or first-time weekend RV’ers
. RV storage option allows you to save even more by turning off coverage when your RV is not in use!
|RVInsurance.com||. Customers report average savings of $321 per year|
. Covers everything from class A motorhomes to pop-up campers
. Quote and buy online
. Speak to a professional, licensed agent
. Fully licensed, multi-line agency can quote your auto, home, boat and other insurance products
|National General||. Top rated C=choice: A+ BBB rating|
. “Turn Off” for liability & collision during storage – Save 53%
. Cover your personal belongings or attachments
. Full-timer coverage options
. Mexico insurance options
. Total Loss RV replacement
. 24-hour claims support
|Progressive||. Progressive Insurance – Trusted by Over 18,000,000|
. Competitive rates, tons of discounts (safe driver, pay-in-full, multi-car, multi-policy, quoting online & more)
. Name your price Tool®
. Comprehensive List of RV Covered Items
. Roadside Assistance Included
. Recreational Vehicles, Trailers & Fifth Wheels
Getting insurance for your RV is necessary. Not only is it a legal requirement to drive your RV in most states, but it is also a good proactive investment for any accidents or mishaps that might occur while you are on the road.
With all the different types of RVs you can get, there are just as many kinds of insurance policies.
While each policy has a set of basic coverages and insurances, there is a slew of other coverages you can include in your plan. The types of coverages you’ll want to add will depend on several factors, ranging from your RV’s purpose to the RV’s contents.
The cost of the insurance policy is also dependent on multiple factors, including those considered in standard auto insurance policies.
When looking into where you buy your insurance policy, you should consider major insurance policy providers as well as individual agents if you want to get the best price.
If you follow these steps, you should be able to get the best insurance policy for your RV without breaking the bank.
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