What is fleet insurance?
A vehicle fleet is composed of multiple vehicles, which may include a mixture of cars, vans, trucks or even heavy goods vehicles.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has estimated that around 50% of all new vehicle registrations are for fleet vehicles.
Fleet insurance provides the necessary vehicle insurance you need under one, easy to manage, policy.
How many vehicles make up a fleet?
There is no strict definition of the number of vehicles it takes to make a fleet, but it might be as small as just two or three vans, that might be operated by a courier service, for example.
Whatever the size and whatever the vehicle mix of the different vehicles you operate, fleet insurance allows you to insure every vehicle under a single insurance policy, rather than insuring each one separately.
How do you manage the need to keep every vehicle insured?
There’s a lot to keep tabs on if you are operating any kind of vehicle fleet. Knowing just where each vehicle is and where it’s supposed to be, knowing who’s driving what, ensuring every vehicle is properly maintained, and staying the right side of the law by keeping every vehicle properly insured.
Simply because they are typically running a greater number of vehicles, courier fleet operators probably have a harder time of it than others.
What is the advantage of fleet insurance?
Arranging fleet insurance for all of your vehicles – effectively keeping them all under the same umbrella of a single insurance policy – has two main advantages:
- practically any insurer offers a discount when you buy more than a single policy – and this is reflected in fleet insurance, which invariably works out cheaper on a vehicle by vehicle basis than insuring each one separately; and
- if each of your vehicles is insured separately, that is likely to mean a host of different renewal dates spread out throughout the year and giving you the expensive and administratively time-consuming job of monitoring each one, to avoid the risk of cover lapsing and you breaking the law by circulating an uninsured vehicle.
Courier fleet insurance is therefore a more economical solution which also frees up valuable time for you to be doing the things you’d rather do – like running a successful courier service, rather than monitoring a whole list of different motor insurance policies.
What levels of insurance are available?
There is no change in the way you manage the particular requirements for vehicles in your fleet, since you may still choose whether you arrange third party only, third party, fire and theft, or comprehensive cover.
It is worth bearing in mind, though, that although fewer risks are covered, lower level insurance policies are not always the cheapest and comprehensive courier fleet insurance may prove more cost-effective in the longer-term.
Who can drive the vehicles covered by fleet insurance?
If you are running an especially busy and large courier fleet, there may be advantages in specifying cover for any driver – allowing any employee with the appropriate licence to drive any vehicle in the fleet.
If you have a smaller, regular team of dedicated drivers, however, you are likely to gain a discount on the premiums you pay by opting for a “named driver only” policy.