With a travel trailer, camping in the countryside or roaming national parks is as easy as hitching up and going vamoose. There are limitless conveniences offered by having this versatile home-on-the-go. But as specialized recreational vehicles, travel trailer insurance is somewhat more complex and expensive than your regular auto and home insurance. So, is it worth it?
The simple answer is yes. travel trailer insurance is worth having as a fail-safe for your peace of mind and saving you from gargantuan costs in case of accidents, theft, loss, and other unfortunate circumstances. Buying a trailer is an investment and it makes sense to insure that investment. On that note, the best policies should be affordable, comprehensive, and flexible.
We list everything you need to know about travel trailer insurance and the leading providers in the country that can offer you a combination of these criteria, according to your needs.
Travel trailers are half-transport, half-dwelling units that can be difficult to insure without a specialized insurance policy. Unlike motorized RVs, these towables often do not necessarily require highway permits as they’re not essentially independent units but portables considered as an extension of your vehicle.
That aside, travel trailers are also semi-permanent homes for recreational use. Unlike cars, they often contain expensive furniture, appliances, luxury amenities, valuables, and other property commonly found in a home. This semi-permanent nature is where the need for specialized travel trailer insurance arises.
Travel Trailer Insurance
While neither a car nor a house, travel trailer owners face multiple risk exposures associated with both. Travel trailers and RVs, in general, are vulnerable to property damage, fire, theft, and vandalism similar to a regular home with added exposure to liability for property damage and bodily injury in case of a collision. This is why extensive coverage specialized for travel trailers is specifically designed to address these risk exposures.
Is this the same as RV insurance?
Essentially, travel trailer insurance is a type of RV insurance. There are two general types of RV insurance: those for motorhome RV and towable RV.
Motorhome insurance for Class A, Class B, and Class C motorhomes are usually more expensive than for towable RV, which includes travel trailers, fifth-wheel trailers, toy haulers and many others. Know more about the types of RV here and RV Insurance here.
Most insurance carriers list motorized and towable RV insurance as one product. In this case, you’ll simply be asked to specify whether you are insuring a motorhome or towable when applying.
Why Get It
While it’s true that one does not need to be wealthy to own an RV or travel trailer, you at least have to be able to afford the cost of owning one, like buying fuel, paying for storage and maintenance, getting the proper insurance policy, and the like.
It’s a failsafe.
A travel trailer or camper that hooks up to a car or truck is covered by the liability coverage of your regular car insurance policy when it’s hooked up, as long as your insurer is aware of the existence of the travel trailer and it’s included on the policy declarations page.
This liability coverage, however, does not cover damage to the trailer itself but only for the injury or damage that it caused. Comprehensive or collision coverage and the like is not extended to a travel trailer. So any damage sustained by your RV in the event of a collision or any accident will be shouldered by you.
Since you are already investing in a travel trailer, it makes sense to invest in your insurance to cover damage or loss as well.
Depending on the mode of use.
Towable RVs like travel trailers don’t require insurance if a) you own the travel trailer outright and don’t have a loan on it, and b) it is not required by law in the state you live or are traveling in.
Having said that, even if you fit these criteria, it’s still a good idea to buy your own travel trailer insurance instead of depending on your car insurance, especially if traveling long-term or using your travel trailer very often.
When auto insurance won’t cut it.
In some states, regular car insurance policy is not enough where insurance is required by law. To sufficiently cover RVs like travel trailers, a combination of property and liability coverage.
There are multiple options for travel trailer insurance coverage available. At a bare minimum, you are required to have liability insurance (either through your regular auto insurance or through a separate policy) to be legal. As long as you have insurance to pay for property damage and damage and injury liability to the other party if you caused a crash.
These are the minimum you can expect from your carrier in a basic auto insurance policy. But most people opt for more comprehensive coverage. It would be wise to do the same.
Aside from Liability Coverage, here are other types of coverage you’ll want to have:
Campsite and vacation liability
If you acquire a bodily injury or property damage inside or around the trailer while on a holiday, you’ll be entitled to receive a certain amount through this coverage.
No matter who’s at fault in an accident, this coverage will pay for damage to the trailer, usually subject to meeting insurance deductibles.
Some damage can happen to a travel trailer even when it’s not being towed at the moment. The cost of repair or loss will be paid through comprehensive insurance. This is coverage for the travel trailer including parts, equipment and accessories replacement or repair in case of theft and damage from fire, hail, wind, flood, storms, animals, falling objects and even vandalism.
Emergency lodging assistance
In the event that the travel trailer becomes damaged and rendered unusable when you’re a certain distance from home, an emergency expense coverage will pay for lodging, and sometimes, transportation expenses.
This coverage is very similar to a homeowner’s policy. It is required if you live in the travel trailer full-time and use it as a permanent home.
This coverage will pay for your and any passenger’s medical expenses in an accident where you are at fault.
Any loss or damage to personal property and individual items like appliances, jewelry, and electronics inside the travel trailer will be covered to a certain amount.
Towing, tire change, locksmith cost, and fuel delivery will be covered in roadside emergencies.
Total loss replacement
You’ll get paid to buy a brand new replacement in the event of a total loss of the trailer.
Uninsured or underinsured
If the other party is at fault and does not have sufficient insurance coverage, the uninsured or underinsured coverage will kick in.
Note that damages from normal wear and tear, intentional sabotage, and manners violating the policy such as racing will not be covered.
Just like any insurance policy, travel trailer insurance requirements differ widely between states, insurance providers, and price points.
This type of insurance will generally cost you some hundred bucks per year, depending on your coverage limits and add-ons. As with regular auto insurance, travel trailer insurance costs can depend on a number of factors like your location, age, condition of the travel trailer, frequency of use, and many more. For example, insuring a pricier unit or a highly-customized one that’s used for full-time RV living will naturally mean higher premiums.
Recreational vehicles like travel trailers are usually larger than cars. This means higher risks for on-road damages. And because they are also mobile, unlike houses, RVs are at an increased risk for structural damage than a typical residence.
Saving on costs
You may qualify for attractive discounts depending on where you live, your record and circumstances. It’s wise to shop around for several travel trailer insurance quotes and try for optimum benefits and as many discounts as possible. Compare them before settling on a policy so you know you’re getting a good deal.
Most insurance providers offer discounts and travel trailer insurance companies are no different. Check if you qualify through organizations you belong to like your employer or university. If you can afford to pay your premium upfront, you get a paid in full discount. Bundling insurance with your car and home/condo insurance will also save you a few bucks.
Tip: Get your quote online and not on the phone. This way, you’ll get to see all the options available and can customize your coverage exactly as you need it.
Here’s a rundown of travel trailer insurance providers you can choose from:
Farmers has a wide range of coverage options and the company have specialized offers for both occasional travel trailer users and full-timers. They will also insure the tow vehicle.
Farmers coverages include:
Comprehensive · Campsite/Vacation Liability · Emergency Expense · Full-Timer Liability · Replacement Cost · Total Loss Replacement · Towing and Roadside Assistance · etc
In order to help protect owners and their belongings at an affordable rate, GEICO travel trailer insurance has enhanced policies to fit the uniqueness of life on the road.
GEICO coverages include:
Emergency Expense · Recreational Vehicle Medical Payments · Replacement Cost Personal Effects · Special Windshield Deductible (this means that you will not be charged for windshield repairs while windshield replacement will only cost $50) · Total Loss Replacement · Vacation Liability · etc
In addition to conventional trailers, GEICO also offers coverage for fifth-wheel travel trailers, travel trailers with expandable ends, folding camper trailers, truck campers, and toy haulers.
Available in most states
The company offers enhanced travel trailer insurance policy in most states, except in Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, and North Carolina.
Good Sam is an insurance company that specializes in RV insurance and their travel trailer insurance coverage is one of the most extensive in the country.
Good Sam coverages include:
Belongings & Personal Effects · Bodily Injury Liability · Collision · Comprehensive · Emergency · Expense Allowance · Full-Timer, Medical Payments · Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist · Permanent Attachments · Personal Injury · Property Damage Liability · Vacation Liability
Aside from these, the company also offers other RV/travel trailer specific coverages like Mexico insurance and Hitch coverage.
Aside from conventional travel trailers, Class A, Class B, Class C, Fifth Wheel Trailer, Pop-up Tent Trailer, Mounted Truck Camper, Toy Hauler & Horse Trailer, Cargo/Utility & Single Horse Trailer can also be insured.
See what we mean by extensive?
State Farm travel trailer insurance is not as comprehensive as other providers but they boast of competitive prices and good service.
State Farm coverages include:
Collision · Comprehensive · Emergency Roadside Assistance · Liability · Replacement Cost · Uninsured or Underinsured · etc
State Farm takes pride in its exceptional claims satisfaction ratings. This is the biggest draw of this company as many owners have claimed positive customer experience when filing claims.
As one of the largest vehicle insurance providers in the US, Progressive prides in offering specialized coverage at affordable rates.
These coverage include:
Belongings & Personal Effects · Bodily Injury Liability · Collision · Comprehensive · Emergency, Expense Allowance · Full-Timer, Medical Payments · Roadside Assistance · Total Loss Replacement · Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist · Vacation Liability
Progressive and Good Sam has a business partnership and as such, Progressive travel trailer insurance can be obtained through Good Sam. It’s no surprise that they offer similar coverage.
Aside from conventional travel trailers, Class A, Class B, Class C, Fifth Wheel Trailer, Pop-up Tent Trailer, Mounted Truck Camper, Toy Hauler & Horse Trailer, Cargo/Utility & Single Horse Trailer can also be insured through Progressive and Good Sam.
Pet injury coverage
Very few companies offer pet injury coverage with travel trailer insurance and Progressive is one of them. Your pet’s vet bills are covered in case of an accident.