How to Find the Best Boat Insurance in Australia


Australians have a love affair with boating. Most people either have a boat, are planning on getting a boat, or have a mate with a boat. It’s part of who we are.

Boating is meant to be relaxing and fun – and it can be with the right insurance cover in place. Otherwise damage, theft and other mishaps can quickly turn boat ownership into a headache. Choose boat insurance that protects your usage, and better understands how and when you use your boat.

Here’s what you need to know about finding the right boat insurance.

What Type of Boat Insurance Policy Do I Need?

Many factors will determine what type of boat insurance policy you need. Things like when and how you use your boat, the type of boat you have, its value, and your budget. If you’re planning on purchasing a boat, consider your insurance needs before you buy, since the condition of your boat and even your age will have an impact on the premium you pay.

The main factor that will determine your premium is the type of boat you have. After all, there’s a big difference between a sailboat and a luxury yacht (personal watercraft like jet skis are another category altogether).

Understanding the different types of boat insurance and what they cover is a good place to start.

What are the Different Types of Boat Insurance in Australia?

Not all Boat Insurance policies are created equal, so it pays to compare before deciding which one is right for you.  We offer the full suite of boat insurance policies, as detailed here:

Comprehensive Boat Insurance

Youi comprehensive insurance can cover damage caused to your watercraft, in addition to protecting you from having to foot the bill, should it cause damage to someone else’s property.

Comprehensive insurance covers your boat in the following scenarios:

  • Accidental damage
  • Intentional damage
  • Storm or flood
  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Earthquake
  • Emergency accommodation, transport and repairs
  • Legal liability: General liability
  • Legal liability: Watersports Liability
  • Towing, Salvage and Loss Prevention
  • Locks and Keys
  • Watercraft Contents
  • Immediate Replacement Watercraft
  • Personal Injury and Death
  • Watercraft Signwriting
  • Watercraft Mooring Fees
  • Fishing Record
  • Sea Rescue Donation
  • Counselling Services

Optional extras, such as social sailboat racing and watercraft contents upgrades, are available, should you need these features.

As a general rule, comprehensive insurance will guard against most common accidents. So if you’re a boat owner who’s put a good sum of money into your boat, this package is a solid choice.

Third Party Fire & Theft Boat Insurance

This policy can cover you for damage caused to your boat by fire, theft, earthquakes. It even covers you for any damage your watercraft causes to someone else's property. While it isn’t as all-encompassing in its cover as comprehensive policies, Third Party Fire & Theft does offer boat owners some peace of mind by covering the following scenarios:

  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Earthquake
  • Emergency accommodation, transport and repairs
  • Legal liability: General liability
  • Legal liability: Watersports Liability
  • Towing, Salvage and Loss Prevention
  • Locks and Keys
  • Watercraft Contents
  • Personal Injury and Death
  • Watercraft Signwriting
  • Watercraft Mooring Fees
  • Fishing Record
  • Sea Rescue Donation
  • Counselling Services

Third Party Property Only Boat Insurance

Finally, Third Party Property Only offers basic cover, which can protect you against payments you’d owe if your watercraft causes damage to someone else’s property. It doesn’t offer all the bells and whistles of the policies above, but it will be there for you if you need it.

Specifically, Third Party Property insurance covers:

  • Legal liability: General liability
  • Legal liability: Watersports Liability
  • Fishing Record
  • Counselling Services

Do I Need Insurance When I’m Not Using My Boat?

As a boat owner, you might go for long periods of time without actually using your boat. Even if you’re lucky enough to get out on the water every weekend, there will still be many hours in the day when your boat is not in use or seasons when it’s in dry storage.

It’s important to ask how your boat is covered when it’s not in use or not on the water. For example, not all policies will cover your boat for damage, vandalism, theft or other events in these situations, so always check the PDS and talk to your insurer for more details.

There are also a number of special policies available depending on your needs:

Do I Need Special Insurance Cover For Ski or Wakeboarding?

A standard boat insurance policy will, understandably, cover you for regular use of your boat. But unlike car insurance - which generally covers all general use outside a race track - there are a number of special insurance policies you may need, depending on how you use your boat.

  • If you water ski or wakeboard, for example, you’ll likely need a special insurance policy.
  • The same applies if you have a houseboat and intend to live on your boat.
  • If you have a sailboat and race, you may need special insurance.
  • If you race another type of boat, you may also need additional racing insurance.

Then, there’s the cover available for boat contents and lay-up. If you store a lot of gear on your boat, be aware that it’ll only be covered if your policy includes contents insurance (or if you’ve purchased it separately). The same applies to lay-up insurance, if you store your boat out of the water during the off season. Even if your boat is insured for use in the water, additional cover may be necessary if you’re storing it in a way that makes the hull visible.

Finally, keep in mind that most standard boat insurance covers your boat across a range of up to 200 nautical miles from its berth. For most sailors and fisherman, that’s plenty of mileage. But if you’re planning an around-the-world sailing or boating trip, double-check that your insurance will cover you.

Selecting Your Boat Insurance Provider

For a nation surrounded by water, it’s no surprise that 2016 research showed boat ownership rising, with over 2.6 million households owning a boat.

A good boat makes life better. But a good boat with a bad insurance policy can quickly turn into a nightmare. That’s why finding the right provider is vital.

If you’re looking for boat insurance that better understands who you are, start a quote with Youi today. You’ll get the cover you need, at a rate you can afford, so that all that’s left to do is get out on the water and enjoy our enviable lifestyle.

Product issued by Youi Pty Ltd, consult our Watercraft PDS
at www.youi.com.au when deciding if this product is appropriate for you.

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