Better understand boat insurance

Have you ever wondered how insurers set insurance premiums? What makes you pay more or less than your neighbour or brother-in-law?


You find it’s not easy to navigate the complexities of the insurance world. However, in the end, it is quite simple. Insurers rely on concrete evidence such as past experience, data analysis reports and claims file reviews. There are also other factors they consider when setting the premium for your boat.


  1. The boat itself                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
    The type of boat and its power will influence the coverage you will need, and therefore the premium.                                                                                                                                                        
  2. The value of your boat and its equipment
    No surprise here: a high value boat will cost you more to insure than a standard boat. Whether it is a new or used boat, the price appearing on the purchase contract will determine the value of the boat. The price of a new boat varies considerably depending on the size and model; some boats can cost $1 million or more!
  3. The navigation area
    Most boat policies cover sailing anywhere in Canada and the northern United States. However, if you venture further south, you will need to add an extension of territory to your insurance policy, for an additional premium calculated according to the desired area and the type of boat. Note that not all boats can obtain the extension of territory, as some conditions apply. Be sure to let your broker know where you’re planning to go in order to be adequately protected.
  4. The type of insurance coverage
    Depending on the type of coverage you’ve selected : agreed value insurance, actual cash value insurance or liability insurance only, your insurance premium will be higher or lower. It goes without saying that full coverage such as an all-risk policy iwith agreed value will cost you more than a civil liability policy only.
  5. Coverages included
    Some insurance policies may be less expensive, but they may include fewer coverages and more exclusions. Your NautiMax boat insurance policy has been designed to be as comprehensive as possible, depending on the category of boat. It includes, among other things:
    - Accident benefits and medical coverage.
    - Emergency towing and loss of use.
    - Navigation equipment coverage.
    - Pollution and wreck removal.
    - Coverage for vermin damage.
    - Personal effects coverage including fishing and sporting equipment.
    - Marine assistance program – assistance and towing services if boat breaks down on the water… and a lot more.
  6. Discounts available
    There are also discounts offered, according to certain criteria. For example, your NautiMax boat insurance policy rewards you for:
    - Recognized sailing course of more than 18 hours
    - TAG or Domino tracking system, provided this is not required when the policy is purchased

    Discounts may vary from one insurer to another.
  7. Frequency and cost of claims
    Finally, insurers must also take into account the frequency and cost of claims, which are on the rise, when determining their premiums. Most insurers have had to increase their premiums for boat insurance because the level of premiums charged in recent years is no longer sufficient to cover the total cost of claims and their operating expenses.


Feel free to contact your MD Marine broker if you have any questions or would like to update your insurance coverage.


The content in this article is for information purposes only and is not intended to be relied upon as professional or expert advice. Aviva and the Aviva logo are trademarks of Aviva plc. and are used under licence by Aviva Canada Inc. and its subsidiary companies.