Insuring A Hire Van In Ireland
As of September 2016 we can still provide insurance to private housemovers, this may change in the near future as the industry in Ireland is essentially non functioning and we are forced to deal with the sole provider of rental insurance in Ireland. So apologies if our insurance appears restrictive and expensive its the best availible in our little country.
When you rent a van or truck you have two options in regard to insurance:
- You can either use your own insurance policy (provided you have one), or
- You can purchase a short term policy from us.
Private car insurance policies, which a majority of our customers have, can be restrictive when it comes to commercial hire vehicles. Even “open drive” insurance policy types do not apply to commercial vehicles. So if you wish to use your own policy, you must do what is known as a transfer.
How to organise an insurance transfer onto a rental vehicle:
Begin by contacting your broker or insurance company. Explain to them that you need to rent a van or truck and they will request some details. Common details needed for the insurance transfer to the rental vehicle are as follows:
- Make and model
- Engine size
There are two different types of transfer that you can avail of:
- Temporary Substitution. This transfers the cover from the car to the rental van. The car cannot be driven for the duration of the hire period.
- Temporary Addition. If you need to use your car, this covers the van in addition to your own car. It is easier and cheaper to arrange a substitution.
What vehicles can I normally transfer my car policy onto?
Again this depends on the insurance company, typically you should be able to transfer onto any vehicles that can be driver on a car licence, this covers all our rental vans and light hire trucks. Private policy insurers will not agree to a transfer onto a vehicle above the car licence limit.
Do you have any advice on getting an insurance company to agree to a transfer?
Have all the relevant vehicle details at hand. If it is a house move and your registered address is changing, make sure the insurance company are aware of the fact, they really cannot refuse then.
If you are moving goods, make sure the insurance company knows that they are “personal household goods”.
Another tip is being forthright. Do not ask if they will do a transfer for you, tell them that you need a transfer arranged for day X at time Y. Always ask what the charge is. One insurance company typically looks for 61 Euro for a 1 day transfer, which is madness. If the charge is up to 30 Euro for a one day transfer, we recommend taking it. If it is higher, you would be better off taking ours and saving the hassle of a transfer.
Insurance companies are all about risk. They are aware that their policyholder may be at higher risk in a rental vehicle than when driving their own car. This is down to many customers being unfamiliar with the dimensions of hire vans and trucks.
It is getting much more difficult to arrange transfers for rental vans and trucks.
Over the last 3 years there has been a sea change in relation to insurance company’s attitudes to rental vans and trucks. Most do not want to provide transfers. If an insurance company do not wish to provide the service they will either flat out refuse to do the transfer or they will look for a very high premium to do a transfer. For example Aviva typically look for 63 euro for a single day transfer which provides no value for money.
One company who still provide excellent transfers at no additional cost are FBD, if you are an FBD customer you are pretty much assured a transfer for free. Some schemes for Public servants are also good when it comes to transfers. This is particularly true of the Cornmarket Teachers scheme which is excellent for transfers.
The lower cost policies tend to be the most restrictive when it comes to transfers and usually will refuse.
Why do we offer van rental insurance to customers?
Because it is getting more difficult for customers to arrange transfers, we offer comprehensive insurance facilities for our customers. Quite often customers find it easier and cheaper to take cover from ourselves. We offer insurance on a per 24 hour basis on vans and trucks for a fee of 35 Euro. This is inclusive of tax and the government insurance levy.
Our insurance carries a relatively high excess like all vehicle hire companies. Our insurance cover also does not cover overhead damage caused to our vehicles from barriers, undergroud car parks and bridge strikes.
Does your rental insurance cover use outside of Ireland?
We can provide cover on our rental truck to cover usage in the UK. We no longer have the facility to provide cover for use in Europe.
Can you offer discounts on insurance for hire vehicles?
We can in certain cases, but typically only for periods in excess of 7 days and these are evaluated on a case by case basis.
By John Murphy