Are charter boats insured? Why should I still have to purchase a security deposit? Should I purchase extra insurance?
All charter boats are fully insured against liability and damage in the event of an accident. The insurance details are determined by the terms defined by the insurance company with which the yacht is insured.
Still, you will not be able to leave the port before leaving a security deposit for your chartered boat.
Why is that?
The security deposit amount is typically between 1000€ – 3000€. The bigger and newer the yacht, mostly the larger the security deposit will be.
The security deposit can be paid in cash or via credit card what most people do since it is more convenient and you do not have to carry all that cash around.
The security deposit covers the insurance excess on the yacht. The insurance company pays for the damage that is over the security deposit amount.
This means that in the case when damage is greater than the deposit amount of your security deposit, the owner will make a claim on the boat insurance policy and you won’t be expected to pay any more.
All the damages done during chartering will be charged out of your deposit and that also includes lost equipment.
For example, If you lose a fender or dinghy or damage something (a hull, Gelcoat on deck…) then the boat owner will deduct an amount to cover the replacement or repair. If the predicted costs are less than the deposit amount you will get the rest of the deposit back.
When you return the boat with no loss or damage you are refunded the total deposit amount back.
Note that even in cases you are chartering a boat with a professional crew, you will still have to purchase a security deposit. Of course, you will not be charged for any damage done due to skippers’ negligence.
An alternative to security deposit is Damage waiver (or deposit insurance).
What is a Damage Waiver?
With most charter companies today you will be offered an alternative to the refundable security deposit. This is a non-refundable damage waiver or deposit insurance. It works in a similar way to the damage waiver when renting a car.
Instead of paying a security deposit which is refunded at the end of your sailing, you pay a smaller amount, which covers loss or damage while you have the boat. Note that the damage waiver is non-refundable.
The damage waiver amount is usually 200€ – 500€ and it is non-refundable. Do not be surprised if with some deals you are asked to pay a refundable part + nonrefundable part. It all depends on the contract the boat owner has with the insurance company.
Note that damage waiver does not cover loss of anchor, anchor chain or dinghy.
Security deposit types
When deciding about the type of security deposit you wish to go with, check with the provider about the details.
Regardless of the fact that boats are already insured we still highly recommend purchasing additional coverage depending on what you think you need in order to be fully protected.
Choose between extended skipper liability insurance, charter deposit insurance, travel cancellation insurance and travel price insurance either individually or in package form.
The exact content of the insurance packages can be found in the description Insurances for Skipper & Crew
We wish you fair winds