Owning a recreational vehicle (RV), camper van or motorhome can be an exciting and cheap way to travel the country with family and friends. Rather than spending hundreds of dollars on flights and hotels, travelling via campervan can greatly cut vacation expenses down. In fact, according to one estimate, the average family of four can save about 27-62% per day by traveling in a camper van compared to other vacation options.
While purchasing a motorhome can save you and your family thousands of dollars a year in the long run, it’s definitely an upfront investment. And as with all major investments, it’s important to know the facts about additional expenses — including insurance.
The following information should help you choose the best option when it comes to insuring your campervan or RV.
What is RV Insurance?
Much like an everyday vehicle, motorhomes are required by law to have liability insurance coverage. If you’re financing your vehicle, you will likely be required to prove that you have full coverage insurance before being allowed to drive away.
RV insurance works similarly to your everyday auto insurance policy. RV insurance protects you if you’re at fault in an accident that causes property damage or bodily injury. RV insurance will also pay for damages in the case of an uninsured/underinsured motorist colliding with you.
While options in most states, some reasons why you may want to consider taking out a comprehensive RV insurance policy include:
- A lawsuit arising from accidents
- Liability premises injury claim from visitors (i.e. if you live in your RV full time and you have a visitor get injured in your vehicle)
- Storm damage
What are the Different Types of Travel Vehicles?
Before understanding what type of insurance may be required on your travel vehicle, it’s helpful to know what category it falls under. Recreational vehicles are arranged by class. Class A, class B, and class C vans all differ by size and utility. The type of motor vehicle insurance you will need, as well as the cost, depends on the type of travel vehicle you own or plan to buy.
These are the largest of the three categories. A class A motorhome can be up to 75 feet in length. This class includes motor coaches, luxury coaches, and converted busses. These RVs can weigh anywhere from 20,000 to 40,000 lbs. and usually have sleeping for 8 people.
These are going to be the smallest of the three, weighing anywhere from 6,000 to 8,000 lbs. A class B is generally a converted cargo van or conversion van, equipped with amenities such as cooking facilities, a refrigerator, shower, toilet and a water tank. Typically, class B’s are 17-19 feet in length with raised roofs and lowered floors to allow for a comfortable travel space. They generally sleep up to four people and are popular because they’re the easiest to drive.
This is the medium-sized RV category. A class C motorhome can be 20 to 31 feet in length and weigh about 10,000-12,000 lbs. These travel vehicles are built upon the chassis of trucks and offer similar amenities to the class B motorhomes (cooking facilities, refrigerators, shower, toilet, etc.), but sleep around 6 people.
|For more information on different types of RVs, visit our specialty van information page to see a
Side-by-Side Comparison of Class B Motorhomes, RVs and Trailers.
When is RV Insurance a Requirement?
An RV insurance policy is a requirement if:
- Your RV is a class A or class B motorhome (liability insurance at least)
- You’re financing your RV (generally full coverage is required)
- You’re planning on driving a rental RV
When is RV Insurance Optional?
Separate insurance coverage on your recreational vehicle may be optional if:
- Your RV is a class C (towable, not drivable)
- You’re not financing your RV (you have no loan) and you live in a state where RV insurance isn’t required by law (visit your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles website)
How Much Does RV Insurance Cost?
Class A motorhomes are the largest and most expensive vehicles to insure. The average insurance cost ranges from around $1,000 to $4,000 or more per year.
Class C motorhomes should be slightly cheaper than the class A’s, with an estimated cost of around $800 to $3,000 per year.
Class B motorhomes will likely be the least expensive to insure because they are smaller and more similar to a full-sized van. The estimated cost for insurance on a class B can range anywhere from $500 to $1,000 per year.
|Note: The insurance premium amounts listed above are just estimates. Many factors are accounted for when calculating any type of insurance rate. You’ll need to talk to your insurance company to get an exact quote.|
Additional factors that insurers take into account when calculating how much an RV insurance policy will cost include:
- Your driving history (accidents, DUIs, traffic citations, past insurance claims, etc.)
- Your credit score
- Age of the RV
- Whether you plan to use the RV for full-time living, part time, or short trips
- Added coverage for personal belongings and additional riders
- If you’re looking to bundle all of their policies (homeowner’s insurance, auto insurance, etc.) under an umbrella policy to save money
- If you’ve taken courses on RV driving
Top Rated RV Insurance Companies
When it comes to finding the best insurance rate, you’ll have to shop around and do your homework. Here’s a list of four top rated RV insurance companies that are recommended by fellow RVers:
We hope this guide helped provide you with the information you need to insure your current or future RV or motorhome. Owning an RV or motorhome is an exciting step towards adventure, relaxation, and fun!
Browse our inventory of new and used campervans for sale and don’t hesitate to contact Classic Vans for answers to any of your travel vehicle needs.