Looking for Horsebox Insurance?
Motorised horseboxes require specialised insurance since they are not standard vehicles. There is a legal requirement to have a minimum of third-party cover if you are driving your horsebox on public roads.
This quick guide will help you understand what’s involved when insuring motorised horseboxes and what to look out for.
Things to consider when choosing horsebox insurance
If you’re insuring your horsebox, chances are you will need a specialist insurer or broker who understands the demands of transporting horses. Whether your taking out a new policy or renewing an existing cover, it’s a good idea to clarify a few points:
Some horsebox insurers can provide breakdown cover as an upgrade to your policy. Be sure to check the small print through – for example even with breakdown cover, you may not be covered for a puncture or may only be covered if the vehicle can be fixed at the roadside. Ideally you will need specialist cover that will also recover your horse if necessary.
If you are planning on travelling outside of the UK with your horsebox, then you will need to inform your insurer. You will also need to check that you have the necessary insurance and breakdown cover in place and that your vehicle is legally compliant in whichever country you are driving in, for example is there a requirement to have equipment such as a breathalyser onboard?
Licensing and horsebox insurance
Make sure you have the correct licence to drive the horsebox you are insuring, including any required driving qualifications. The licence you require will depend on the weight and load limitation of your horsebox.
“In order to legally drive a 3.5-tonne horsebox on public roads, you need a Category C1 licence. This licence specifically qualifies you to drive vehicles between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes. If your horsebox is heavier than 7.5 tonnes, you would need the Category C licence.” hgvtraining.co.uk
Depending on what you use your horsebox for, you may also require an operator’s licence. These are required if you are using your horsebox for ‘hire or reward’ i.e. you are making money from it as a business, over and above use for social, domestic and pleasure. If you are in doubt about this, there is a useful guide provided by the Driver and Vehicle Standard Agency.
Always read the small print with horsebox insurance
It’s very important to read the small print when taking out specialist vehicle cover such as horsebox insurance. Failure to take out the right cover for your circumstances, could result in rendering your policy null and void in the event of a claim.
Check that your insurers are aware of any factory fitted accessories, or conversions. Very often motorised horseboxes are converted from lorries or are specifically kitted out to include living quarters. This may not affect your premiums, but your insurers still need to know about it.
It is not uncommon for insurers to insist on specific security measures, such as wheel clamps or immobilisers, as well as regular safety checks and specifications on where the vehicle is kept. Failure to comply with these could invalidate your policy.
If you are a breeder, professional rider or are transporting horses for more than just the cost of fuel, you may require a hire and reward policy.
You may only be licenced to operate a horsebox or a specific weight. Remember this includes the weight of the horses. If once your horses are onboard this weight is exceeded, this could invalidate your policy.
Ways to reduce horsebox insurance
The main factor when it comes to the cost of horsebox insurance is the horsebox itself. The age, size and value of the vehicle all have a significant impact on the cost of cover. Obviously the bigger, the older and the more horses it can carry, the greater the cost to insure.
Other factors include your usage of the vehicle, the level of cover you require and your mileage.
It pays to be very clear on usage of your horsebox when talking to your insurer. If you only use your horsebox for transporting your own horse, for social and domestic use then make sure they know that.
If you don’t use your horsebox that often, then it may to worth thinking about a limited mileage policy. Similarly, it’s important not to underestimate the mileage you will be clocking up, since failure to keep within any mileage restrictions could invalidate your policy.
Consider whether you need fully comprehensive cover, or just third party, fire and theft. If you are trying to keep costs low, think about the excess you can sensibly afford as well.
Horsebox Insurance – Useful FAQs
Motorised horseboxes are usually converted vehicles that contain quarters to safely transport horses and often have sleeping quarters as well. Horse trailers are separate boxes just for horses that can be towed. Read more about horse trailer insurance.
It depends on the type of policy you have. If you have a business or a hire and reward policy, you are fine to transport horses other than your own and to charge for it. If you just have a standard policy for social and domestic use, then you are fine to transport your friend’s horse so long as you don’t make money from it.
This very much depends on the insurer. Some insurers don’t insure drivers under 21, whilst others restrict their policies to drivers over 25. Expect premiums to be higher for younger, inexperienced drivers.
Usually, providing you have a fully comprehensive policy.
You will need to insure tack separately either under your horse insurance policy, possessions cover or a stand-alone policy.
Horsebox insurance is not the same as horse insurance, it purely covers the vehicle and damage caused to third parties.You will need to take out separate horse insurance to cover your horses.