Vans that are used for business purposes are required by law to be covered by commercial van insurance. These purposes may include passenger transport, goods and tools haulage, commuting or any other use that is connected to a business.
Some businesses have multiple vans as part of their business operation and rely on a network of drivers to drive them. Every van and every driver must be covered by insurance. For a business with multiple vans and drivers, it can be complex, expensive and time-consuming to keep on top of the insurance for each van.
So, to help with this complexity, insurance providers offer businesses the option of insuring their company vehicles under one simple policy known as fleet van insurance. Fleet van insurance offers cover for multiple vehicles and drivers without the hassle of having to keep track of individual insurance policies and their renewal dates.
In this article, we are going to take a look at how many vans are needed to qualify for fleet van insurance, what types of vehicles are covered, and who can drive them.
How many vans do you need for fleet van insurance?
Most fleet van insurance policies will provide cover for a minimum of two vans, although some specialist providers may require more. The upper limit has more variability, with some providers only covering up to 10 vans and others offering cover for hundreds or even thousands of vans in a single fleet policy.
Most fleet van insurance providers will have both a minimum and a maximum number of vans that can be included in a single policy. It is important to check the details with your provider before taking out a policy to leave open the option of increasing or reducing your fleet size.
What is fleet van insurance?
Fleet van insurance – occasionally known as multi van insurance – provides cover for two or more vehicles that are used by a business for commercial purposes. It is both simpler and, usually, cheaper to insure the collection of vehicles – the fleet – than it is to take out individual policies on each.
Fleet van insurance covers all of the vans in the fleet under the same simple policy and can be tailored to best suit the demands of your business. Fleet policies allow for multiple drivers, although anyone who will drive the covered vehicles must be named and registered under the policy.
Fleet van insurance usually covers many different types of vans (see below) and some policies will also allow for other vehicles to be included, such as regular cars. The provider will need the details of every vehicle included under the policy, but it is wise to check the vehicles that are and aren’t included by the company. Again, this is in the event of a business choosing to add vehicles to the policy in the future.
Specialist vehicles such as lorries, tractors, or motorbikes will usually require a separate insurance policy.
What type of vehicles are covered by a fleet insurance policy?
There is a wide variety of vehicles that could be classed as vans. As such, different fleet van insurance providers will have their own rules on what is and isn’t classed as a van and, therefore, covered by their policy. Generally speaking, a van is defined as a goods vehicle with a laden weight (meaning when it is full) of no more than 3.5 tonnes.
Whilst you should always check with your provider as to what vehicles they cover, most will offer cover for:
- Single- or double-cabin vans. The number of cabins refers to the number of passengers that can be carried in the van. A double-cabin van has a second row of seats.
- Box vans. Sometimes known as “Luton Box Vans” or “Commercial Box Vans” these are vans that have a large, enclosed cargo area that is separate from the cabin.
- Light vans. These are small transit vehicles that have cargo space in the back, typically used by tradespeople to carry their tools.
- Pick-up trucks. These are trucks that have an enclosed cabin and an open cargo area.
- Dumper trucks. These are trucks that have a rear platform for cargo that can be tipped to dump the cargo.
Many fleet van insurance policies will include other vehicle types and some will also have an option of insuring “any vehicle”. The “any vehicle” option allows you to insure other types of vehicles, such as regular cars or motorbikes, under the same policy.
Who can drive a van covered by fleet insurance?
There are usually two ways of setting up who can drive a vehicle covered by a fleet insurance policy.
The first way is to have a “named driver” policy. This type of policy states that each vehicle can only be driven by a specific driver. Of course, this can mean that keeping up with what driver is licensed to drive what van can be a challenge. However, if there are only a few drivers or if every driver has one designated vehicle, then the “named driver” policy is likely the best option. It is also the cheaper of the two options.
The alternative option is an “any driver” policy. This means that any of a business’s drivers can drive any of the vehicles covered in the fleet. The drivers must still be named under the policy and have their details and driving history assessed by the insurance provider. Some providers may have restrictions to their “any driver” policy, such as a minimum age limit, which is normally either 21, 25 or 30 years of age.
“Any driver” policies are more expensive than “named driver” policies. However, they allow for more peace of mind for both the drivers and the business owners, especially in larger businesses where it may be more confusing to keep track of who is allowed to drive what.
The details you need to get a fleet van insurance quote
To get an insurance quote for your fleet of vans you will need the following information:
- The registration number of every vehicle you want to include in the policy.
- The size and capacity of each van and any security features it may have.
- The names and details of each driver to be included on the policy (this is for both “named driver” and “any driver” policies). Details include a drivers’ addresses, positions in the business, and their driving histories.
- What type of cover you are looking to get.
- The estimated mileage of the fleet collectively.
- Where the fleet vehicles are likely to be kept.
How can you save money on your fleet van insurance?
Although fleet van insurance is usually cheaper than taking out individual commercial policies, it can still be quite expensive. However, there are many ways to bring the costs of your fleet van insurance policy down:
- Improve your risk management strategy. This may include: regular training sessions for all of your drivers, annual checks on drivers’ personal licenses, and a quick incident report process.
- Add security features to every vehicle. These can include dashcams, extra alarms, steering locks, or anything that reduces the possibility of theft.
- Implement a minimum driver age. Older drivers, such as those over 25 or 30, will always be cheaper to insure than younger ones.
- Fit every vehicle with parking sensors. A significant number of driving accidents happen whilst parking. Parking sensors greatly reduce the chance of such accidents.
- Raise your voluntary excess. The excess is the amount that the business will pay for any vehicle claim. The higher the excess, the lower the premium. Some businesses will also ask the driver of the vehicle in question to pay some of the excess too.
A-Plan’s fleet van insurance
A-Plan is one of the biggest van insurance brokers in the UK. We understand that every business has its own requirements and so we offer multiple types of fleet insurance to accommodate many different needs. We also offer specialist fleet cover, such as taxi insurance, for businesses that have particular demands when it comes to their vehicles.
We can also offer optional extras to make sure your vehicles are covered to a level at which you feel comfortable. These can include benefits, like breakdown cover or tool insurance.
So, if your business relies on more than one van, contact A-Plan and get a quote for your van fleet today.