Save money on a van insurance policy today with Bobatoo

We work with a host of leading motor insurance providers to help you find the right van insurance policy for your needs.

Start saving money today with a quote from Bobatoo, or read our motor insurance buying guide for more information…

Save money on van insurance

Bob knows that getting the right van insurance deal isn’t just about the cost.

Your business depends on your van being on the road every day – so taking the time to find a policy that is not only affordable but also provides the right level of cover for your business is vital.

Here at we work with leading insurance brands to help find the right van insurance quote for your needs and the particular requirements of your business.

Buying guide FAQs Get a quote

bobBob’s tip:

“Commercial van drivers can often save money on their premiums by taking care of their van and investing in it – adding the company livery to the side, fitting shelves and/or racks in the back and, of course, having an alarm fitted.”

Read more of Bob’s motor insurance tips

Different van insurance policies

There are several different types of van insurance policies you can choose from, and it’s important to know more about each before making a decision:

Standard van insurance

A standard van insurance policy comes with various benefits and limitations dependent on the insurer, such as: contents cover, mileage limits and usage restrictions.

Goods in transit cover

If you use your van to transport dangerous, hazardous or highly valuable goods then it might be worth considering a goods in transit policy. This will offer cover for goods that may not be normally protected by standard van insurance policies.

Courier insurance

A courier insurance policy offers protection if you use your van to transport other people’s goods. Most policies provide cover for frequent and long distance travelling as well as high value goods.

Pickup truck insurance

Many insurance companies class pickup trucks as vans rather than cars, and offer various levels of cover dependent on how the truck is used, what cargo it typically transports and how frequently it is used.

What is Van Insurance?

Van insurance is a necessity if you own a van. A legal obligation in fact. And with increasing numbers of people here in the UK owning vans for a multitude of reasons (with recent stats flagged up by the Department for Transport suggesting in excess of 3.2 million light van users), then there’s a lot of van insurance to choose from, as offered by a huge cross-section of van insurance providers.

More commonly vans are used to transport materials and products from point A to point B, be those materials of an industrial, commercial, domestic or leisure nature, and then some. Everyone from your typical plumber and builder through to house clearance companies and rock bands regularly employ the four-wheeled services of a van, while the multi-faceted and tasking ‘van and man’ combo has witnessed phenomenal growth in recent times as individuals branch out their field of personal expertise, thanks to the existence of the humble commercial vehicle.

But returning to the explicit subject of van insurance, and the main thing any van owner/proposed driver needs to establish before they even think about hitting the road is precisely which type of van insurance they require.

In addition to the accepted third party only, third party fire and theft and comprehensive insurance policies, there are two predominant van insurance covers you see, split into business and private policies. The golden rule of thumb is, unless your van is specifically for personal use (and therein, no business means whatsoever), then you’ll need to arrange business van insurance cover.

By way of clarification, this means if you drive your van to even one place of designated work, then you’ll need commercially-orientated business insurance. And unlike traditional car insurance policies, van insurance doesn’t offer a social, domestic and pleasure classification. Bizarre as it might sound, even if you are employed in retail yet choose to drive a van to and from your habitual place of work, you’ll require van insurance of the business variety.

Conversely, a dedicated social use-only private van insurance is the appropriate cover should you solely be using a van for what’s deemed social, domestic and pleasure purposes.

Even though private van insurance doesn’t technically cover this exact insurance remit.

These typically include hobbies which necessitate the use of a van to transport people and equipment to various destinations, such as the paraphernalia relating to fishing, go-karting, surfing and rock climbing at the one, more extreme scale, down to a tip run with garden or house clearance refuge on the other.

Only with regards to the latter, purely for your own, personal purposes and not as a business proposition otherwise business van insurance is mandatory as above-mentioned.

Essentially, if you put your van to a use that results in you receiving payment or drawing an income from it, then you’ll need the business insurance option.

Away from the more obvious tradesman logistics, business van use could easily include the transportation of a musical band, a mobile DJ, a travelling circus performer or a dance troupe of some description.

Certain exclusions away from the norm include van use with reference to car boot sales, which might be looked upon as a grey area were it not for clear definitions and exceptions determined by a broad spectrum of van insurance providers.

If you attend car boot sales with a van on very rare occasions, then its use remains under the private van insurance category, with the owner rightly arguing that its frequency doesn’t constitute commercial use.

However, should the van owner regularly trade goods at a car boot sale then they would be obliged to inform their insurers and have a business van insurance policy drawn up instead. If in any doubt, always check with your insurance provider from the outset.

Do I Need Van Insurance?

Yes. Especially in light of research conducted by the Association of Chief Police Officers Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (AVCIS) which concluded that the most frequently stolen vehicle in the UK was the doyen of white van man, the iconic, generation-spanning (and wholly ubiquitous) Ford Transit.

Moreover, if you own and drive any form of light goods vehicle then you need to determine precisely what you use it for (as in business or private as outlined above) and then inform your van insurance provider and seek to arrange the necessary cover. Although we have already made strides to differentiate between the key factors which determine whether your van is frequented for business or private reasons, the breakdown of elements which comprise both business and private van insurance don’t stop there. At least not in terms of business use. So if you plan on using your van for recurrent business use it’s imperative that you gauge exactly which of the following categories best suits your requirements.

Split into three further filtered categories, namely Carriage of own goods/tools, Carriage of goods for hire/reward and Haulage, business-dedicated van insurance might seem like a complex issue on the surface. But rest assured, everything is self-explanatory in this respect, and it’s just a case of deciding which classification most accurately describes what you predominantly use your van for.

In a nut shell, Carriage of own goods/tools simply implies your personal possessions which you may or may not transport with you in your van at any one time. For instance anything and everything from the widely acknowledged tools of your trade (literally, the tools which are a requirement of your business/profession) through to the CD’s found in your glove box. This policy historically encapsulates the entry-level ‘commute to one place of work driver’ to professional tradesmen such as joiners and plasterers to name but two.

The second and third categories are more commonly relevant to those van driver who use their vehicles to carry out delivery jobs, and more especially multi-drop deliveries – who by the very definition of their role regularly complete multiple drops at an extensive range of destinations – by that very token.

In contrast, haulage refers to a van driving positions which benefit from fixed deliveries and routes which typical serve established clients. Also worth noting that while this triumvirate of business van insurance policies protect against accident or incident, the physical goods being transported might stipulate the implementation of extra-curricular goods in transit cover. Again, the best and only policy going forward is to talk to a van insurance provider to be privy to all the facts and figures from the get-go.

How Much Does Van Insurance Cost?

How long is a piece of string? Exactly. Van insurance costs vary greatly, depending on a number of factors and influences.

As many van drivers might concur, size is important for starters. Only not in the way you might first imagine. The smaller the van you’re looking to insure, the better the chances of minimising the costs, as van insurers always like to take into account smaller engines (the less powerful, the less attractive to potential thieves).

The same can be said about your no claims protection, in as much as the longer you’ve had it the greater the chance that your van insurance quote – and subsequent premium if up-taken – will put a smile on your face. That’s given that the insurer agrees to transfer your existing NCB’s built up from your driving history to date, per se. if your van insurer can, then expect reductions on average of 65% over premiums without, and if they can’t arrange this then we’d suggest you took your business elsewhere.

And don’t overlook the van’s value. Remain realistic, as the more over-inflated the price – the higher the premium paid, and on top of that – and providing a real double whammy – insurer’s will only stump up for the van’s current market retail value in the event of a claim, not what you originally paid for it (unwittingly thinking that it’s still worth).

Adding extra levels of security is always advantageous when exploring ways to reduce your van insurance premiums (explained in more detail below), however it’s not necessarily the be-all-and-end-all it’s perceived to be. As an initial investment, after-market immobilisers, alarms and trackers can be pretty pricey, and perhaps it’s worth bearing in mind that theft only actually accounts for a small percentage of van insurance company claims and consequent pay outs, with more paid out per head on personal injuries caused by accidents.

What Can I Do To Reduce The Cost of Van Insurance?

Van insurance needn’t break the bank, nor do you need to pull off the heist of the century to be able to afford proper cover and with it, peace of mind.

Not if you follow our general insurance advice and shop around. With a plethora of online price comparison sites there really is no need to settle for the first quote you get, when it only takes a few minutes to discover a selection of the very best van insurance policy prices out there.

Above and beyond that, we would tell anyone seeking van insurance – be it for business or private use – to minimise the cost of your premiums by looking to spend less on the van in the first place, where possible. Ostensibly smaller vans – possessing smaller, more economic engines – are cheaper to purchase and thus attract more competitive premiums. By comparison, a high powered van harnessing a larger engine will always end up being more expensive to insure, as it effectively poses a greater risk. If you approach van purchase realistically, and seek the size, weight and performance measurable with your business and/or private needs, generally these considerations will be reflected in cheaper van insurance costs.

Elsewhere, and we’d advise people to steer well clear of imported vans, as they always tend to come with higher insurance premiums, chiefly based on the cost of sourcing replacement parts. UK-spec vans – and unmodified ones at that – should be considered first and foremost. Much like any form of motor insurance, where your van is parked up at night also has a strong bearing on the premiums offered, with the driver’s garage or driveway habitually preferential to being left on the roadside.

Getting your company logo printed on the side of your van can also pay surprising dividends in terms of van insurance premiums, as insurers see such vinyl-applied actions as you dedicating yourself to your business for the long haul. This could see a further 5% trimmed off your annual premium, believe it or not.

Again, fitting shelves or racking systems in the back of your van will help cut predicted insurance costs, which implies that you’re serious about making your business a go in the eyes of an insurer, while the more fitted the van is the less appeal there is to van thieves targeting such vehicles.

Aside from that, and van security should be high up your agenda, not least to make those insurance premiums all the more affordable as well as to safeguard your asset. There are a raft of alarms, immobilisers and tracking devices on the market, any one of which when fitted will have a significantly beneficial effect on your van insurance costs, with trackers in particular being a strongly recommended deterrent to would-be thieves and therein looked favourably on by the country’s leading van insurance providers.

Some of the car insurance providers we work with

car insurance companies