When looking at insurance for your newly converted campervan in the UK, you might not know where to start, not least because it's now so difficult to reclassify your van conversion to a campervan on its V5C with the DVLA (for more info, read our blog post: should you try and reclassify your campervan?). As well as vehicle insurance, you will also need to make sure all of your valuables also have sufficient insurance, and you have any travel and health insurance required when you're travelling overseas.
Campervan vehicle insurance
When you first buy your van, it's really important to insure it as a vehicle being converted so that you're fully covered throughout your build should something happen. If you wait until your conversion is finished to purchase campervan insurance, then if an accident happened during the process of your conversion, all of the time and money you had put in up to that point would not be insured. There are lots of insurers which offer "camper in conversion" insurance to insure a vehicle which is in the process of being converted, such as Brentacare and Adrian Flux. Some companies will set a time limit for when the conversion has to be completed by, and will require regular progress updates, whereas other companies are much more relaxed and will not have the same requirements.
Once you have finished your conversion you will need to look for the best insurer to insure your newly converted campervan. A few years ago all you would write to the DVLA and have your van conversion reclassified on your V5C. You would then insure your campervan with any insurance company that offered campervan insurance.
These days unfortunately it's not so simple. The DVLA have massively cracked down on reclassifying vehicles, with it currently being almost impossible to be able to achieve a reclassification. That means that insurance companies have had to pivot their approach to cater to the current state of the market.
You can insure your van as a campervan even if it has not been reclassified by the DVLA. Even if your V5C classifies your van as a 'van' or a 'van with windows', insurance companies can insure it as a "camper in conversion" or a "modified van". Either way, you will need to be able to insure your van conversion for the estimated value of the completed build. Some insurers may require you to send photographs of your campervan, or fill in an 'agreed value request form’ for a small fee to confirm the estimated value of your campervan. Most if not all insurers will also require you to have a tracker fitted.
Here's a list of companies we've heard of that will insure campervans that haven't been reclassified on their V5C:
It's important to check with any insurer the details of insurance and that you will be covered before taking out a policy. If you're planning on taking a long trip abroad, it's also important to make sure you have adequate cover (most insurance policies as standard will cover you for up to 30 days outside the UK).
You can compare campervan insurance quotes using Quotezone:
Contents and valuables insurance
If you're planning on living in your campervan full time, it's important to have contents or valuables insurance, the same as you would if you were living in a house. It's up to you whether you opt to take out contents insurance for everything removable in your campervan (this would cover clothes, plates, cutlery, bedding etc) or just valuables insurance. You can use companies such as Protect Your Bubble to insure valuables such as your mobile phone and laptop, and a lot of bank accounts also offer valuables insurance so it's worth looking into this if you're thinking of opening a new account.
For more specialist equipment such as cameras and drones you might want to take out specialist insurance. As Charlie is a freelance photographer, she has specialist camera insurance for all of her photography equipment with Photoguard. It's really important when taking out valuables insurance to make sure both the total sum of your valuables are insured, and the individual item cover will cover all of your items. Specialist insurance can be a good idea for high ticket individual items to give you extra piece of mind that was anything to happen, you would be covered.
Travel and health insurance
If you're planning on travelling abroad in your campervan, you will need to consider taking out travel and/or health insurance. Travel insurance is typically used to cover you in case of any delays or cancellations to your trip, lost or stolen passports, as well as covering any expensive medical bills and in extreme companies, costs of repatriation.
If you're travelling in a campervan, cover for delays or cancellations will only be relevant at the very start/end of your trip when you might be using the Eurotunnel or a ferry, but the health insurance aspect is important, especially after 31st December when the UK leaves the EU. From this point onwards, EHIC cards will likely no longer be usable, and so as a British person travelling in the EU, you may be required to pay for any medical assistance. This means it's doubly important to take out travel or health insurance for your trip.
Some travel insurance will also insure loss of theft of property, although the value insured per individual item is likely to be quite low, which is why we really recommend taking out separate valuables insurance.
You can compare travel insurance quotes using Quotezone:
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