Rental Motor Home insurance coverage gap

I received a question through my LinkedIn profile which really shed some light on the dangers of renting a motor home, please read below.

Be careful when driving your rented motor home!

Be careful when driving your rented motor home!

Hi Allan,

I have a client that is hiring a Motor home in the NT, however they have just discovered that the Hire company insurance policy is not providing cover for single vehicle accidents or rollovers. Therefore no cover if hit by a kangaroo, tree branch, broken windscreen etc.  Do you know of any policy that is available to cover this gap in cover?

Many thanks and kind regards, Joan  [surname and email provided]

Hi Joan,

Not many things stump me but this one did.

I did initially think of Insuret (Insuret.com.au) who specialise in rental vehicles but they will only consider a fleet of 3 or more vehicles and not a one off situation as it appears you have here.

Another option that I considered was to take out a policy in the name of the hirer and the hire company but a standard policy will have an exclusion for use of the vehicle for hire or reward and so this would negate the whole intent of this insurance arrangement.

I’ve done a bit of research and it appears that all the companies linked to many of the major campervan rental companies have this exclusion, which seems to me to be grossly unfair and puts the hirer at an enormous risk.

I did track down one provider in the Northern Territory, Mighty Rentals and they do provide the ability to purchase a broader cover under their Mighty Inclusive Pack, which provides coverage for single vehicle accidents but even here there are still some restrictions, the first of which is where you exceed the speed limit. I’m assuming that they have a data analytics tracker on board so they can keep a close eye on this and rely on this exclusion should it apply. Again, I would suggest it is easy to exceed the speed limit in some parts of Australia as they vary so often and so close bearing in mind that you are driving a vehicle which you are not familiar with. I’m not condoning speeding in any way, shape or form but just being realistic that occasionally even the best driver can go over.

There is also another exclusion for driving into water, which is of course most topical with the flooding in eastern Australia and so many foolish people risking their life and damage to their vehicle by driving into flood waters.

It has certainly opened my eyes about the risks associated with renting a motor home and I think all the readers of this blog will benefit from the fact that you have brought this harsh exclusion to light and in fact may save some grey nomad retired and/or holidaying insurance brokers a terrible surprise.

If your client has the same risk appetite as me, then the risk of not having insurance is too great and I would be looking toward Mighty Rentals or one of their companies that provides a broader coverage rather than the one they are currently considering.

Regards

Allan

PS to Blog readers, so everyone is clear, I am not endorsing Mighty Rentals, I know nothing about the quality of their vehicles, their customer service or rental fee structure. I have never used their service/product and am not looking to do so. I just found their insurance arrangements appear fairer on the face of it compared to others I read as part of my research in answering this question.

 

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