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Business van insurance

If you use your van for work, you’ll need business van insurance. Find out which type of commercial van insurance you should get and compare quotes to find the right deal for you.

What is business van insurance?

Business van insurance, also known as commercial van insurance, is specifically for vehicles used for work purposes.

Commercial van insurance offers the same cover as personal van insurance, but will also cover you for accidents while using the van as part of your business, when you’re delivering or transporting goods, or travelling between work sites.

Do I need commercial van insurance?

If you’re a business owner or self-employed and you use your van for work, you’ll need commercial van insurance. This includes commuting to or from more than one job site.

If you only use your van for social, domestic or pleasure reasons like hobbies, shopping or taking the dogs out, private van insurance will cover you.

By law, you must have van insurance to drive a van or pickup on UK roads. If you’re involved in an accident, you won’t be able to claim if your insurance provider discovers you haven’t been truthful about how you use your van. So any business use must be declared.

If you drive a petrol or diesel vehicle that weighs more than 3.5 tonnes, you’ll need HGV insurance and a special licence. But you can drive an alternatively-fuelled vehicle, like an electric one, of up to 4.25 tonnes with a normal license.

How does commercial van insurance work?

Commercial van insurance is designed to protect your livelihood, minimising financial losses if your vehicle is damaged or stolen.

It can cover you if your business includes delivering goods, haulage or using your van as part of your trade. So whether you’re a plumber transporting your tools between jobs or a florist using your van to deliver flowers to customers, business van insurance is essential.

If you’re a business owner who has multiple vans and drivers working for you, it might be more cost-effective to take out fleet van insurance so you can cover them under one policy.

What type of commercial van insurance should I get?

You can compare quotes with us for two types of commercial van insurance for vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes: 

  • Carriage of own goods offers cover if you use your van to carry business goods. This could be tools if you’re a builder, plumber or carpenter, or garden waste if you’re a landscape gardener. You’ll also be covered for commuting and private use.
  • Haulage (carriage of goods for hire and reward) offers cover if you use your van to carry someone else’s goods for payment. It’s typically used by delivery drivers and couriers. You’ll also be covered for private use.

Check your van insurance policy to see if it covers the contents of your van if they’re stolen or damaged in an accident. If it doesn’t, you may need additional goods-in-transit insurance. 

If you’re delivering for a company, check whether their insurance covers you before adding extra cover.

In most cases, neither carriage of own goods or haulage insurance will cover the carriage of passengers. For that, you’ll need taxi insurance.

What does business van insurance cover?

As with all types of motor insurance, there are three main levels of business van cover you can get:

  • Third-party only is the minimum legal requirement. It can cover any damage you cause to another vehicle and any injuries you cause to other people. It won’t cover your own van, though. Some providers no longer offer third-party only cover.
  • Third-party, fire and theft offers the same level of protection as above, but also covers you if your van is stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive cover includes all the benefits of third-party, fire and theft. It can also protect you as a driver and pay out for any damage to your van, whether or not the accident was your fault.

With the right business van insurance policy, you’ll be covered for using your van for work and for social and domestic reasons outside of work hours.

Frequently asked questions

Does my business van insurance cover my tools and equipment?

Some commercial van insurance policies will cover tools and equipment as standard up to a certain limit. Alternatively, you should be able to insure your equipment by paying for an add-on or taking out a separate policy.

Just be aware that some policies won’t cover your tools if you leave them in your van overnight.

What extras can I add to my business van insurance policy?

You might want to consider these optional extras (for an additional cost) when comparing business van insurance:

  • Windscreen cover – get your windscreen repaired if it’s cracked or chipped
  • Misfuelling cover – covers the cost of draining your tank if you put the wrong fuel in your van
  • Trailer cover – covers you for a stolen or damaged trailer
  • Breakdown cover – get back on the road as quickly as possible if you rely on your van for work and it breaks down
  • Courtesy van – use of a replacement vehicle if your van is out of action
  • Lost key cover – get your van keys replaced if they’re lost or stolen.

Some of these might be included with a standard policy, so always check you’re not doubling up on cover.

Can I insure other people to drive my van?

Your insurance provider will typically let you add one or more additional drivers to your policy – sometimes up to four – although this will affect the price you pay. Anyone added as a named driver to your commercial van policy will be covered to drive your vehicle under the same terms as you.

If you want to add more named drivers to your policy, for example if you have a large workforce who all need to use the van, you may need to look at any driver van insurance instead.

If you want to insure another driver on your van for a short period of time, you may be better off with temporary van insurance. But make sure you choose a policy that covers you for business use.

Can I insure more than one van for my business?

Yes, if you own more than one van that you use for commercial purposes, you can insure them with a multi-van insurance policy – also known as fleet van insurance.

Unfortunately, you can’t currently compare fleet van insurance with Compare the Market.

Am I covered for driving in Europe with business van insurance?

By law, all UK vehicle insurance must provide the minimum third party cover to drive in the EU and most other European countries, including Norway and Switzerland. Check your policy to see exactly what cover you have and for how long. You may also want to consider European breakdown cover if you don’t already have it.

Is business van insurance more expensive than regular van insurance?

Business van insurance can be more expensive if you’re using your van to deliver valuable goods or equipment. That’s because it makes your van more attractive to potential thieves, increasing the risk of you having to make a claim.

How old do I need to be to get commercial van insurance?

You’ll need to be over 21 and have held a driving licence for more than a year to get business van insurance. Van cover for younger drivers under the age of 25 tends to be expensive because of the higher accident risk, but we can help you compare policies from a range of providers.  

How much does business van insurance cost?

The cost of business van insurance depends on a range of factors, including:

  • The size of your van – a larger van will probably cost more to insure than a smaller one
  • The type of business you run – insurance providers consider some businesses riskier than others
  • Where you keep your van overnight – secure off-street parking can help lower your premiums.

Your annual mileage and the amount of voluntary excess you choose to pay towards a claim will also influence the cost of your premium. Other factors are age, profession, claims and driving history of any named drivers you add to your policy.

For tips on saving on your business van insurance read our guide to getting cheaper van insurance.

Start a quote

We compare prices from 34 trusted van insurance providers[2], including:

[2] Correct as of December 2023.

What do I need to get a business van insurance quote?

Getting a quote is quick and easy. You’ll need to give us the following details:

  • Information about your van, including the registration number
  • How you use your van
  • What type of cover you’re looking for: carriage of own goods or haulage
  • The level of cover you’re looking for
  • Your estimated annual mileage
  • Details about you and any named drivers you want to add to the policy.
Author image Julie Daniels

What our expert says...

“If you rely on your van for business use, it’s essential to make sure it’s covered properly. Make sure you get the right level of cover and all the add-ons you need.”

- Julie Daniels, Motor insurance expert