Like auto insurance, RV insurance covers personal liability, property, injury and other types of claims for and against you and your camper. Once you meet any requirements you have from your state, lender, neighborhood or other legal entity, how you build your policy is typically up to you.
Standard RV Coverage
Most, if not all, RV insurance companies offer the same standard types of insurance policies. These are nearly identical to what you’d find for auto insurance.They include:
- Bodily injury liability: Covers medical expenses, lost wages and more for other parties resulting from an accident for which you are found at fault.
- Property damage liability: Covers physical damage to vehicles and other property caused by an accident for which you are found at fault.
- Collision coverage: Covers physical damage to your camper resulting from a covered loss, no matter who caused the accident.
- Comprehensive coverage: Covers damages to your RV from non-accident sources such as extreme weather, fire and vandalism.
- Uninsured motorist/underinsured motorist: Covers your property damage and injury expenses in the event that an at-fault driver doesn’t have sufficient coverage.
- Personal injury protection (PIP): Covers medical expenses and lost wages for members of your party, regardless of who is found at fault for an accident.
- Medical payments (MedPay): Covers medical expenses but not lost wages for you and your party following an accident, no matter who is found at fault.
Additional RV Coverage
Most RV insurers offer policy add-ons to help cover other aspects of RVing that standard coverages might not. Some of the more common examples of these additional coverage options include:
- Emergency expense coverage: Covers the cost of dining, lodging and other travel-related expenses if your camper breaks down far from your destination and can’t be used.
- Full-timer liability: Covers property and injury liability claims made against your camper if you use it as your primary residence, similar to how a homeowners insurance policy works.
- International coverage: Covers your camper when you travel outside U.S. borders.
- Personal property: Covers personal belongings beyond what is covered by a homeowners policy. It typically pays out in lieu of a homeowners insurance claim.
- Pet injury coverage: Covers medical bills for pets if they’re injured in a covered loss.
- Rental reimbursement: Covers the cost of a rental vehicle if your RV is totaled or in the shop for repairs.
- Roadside assistance: Covers the cost of emergency roadside services like tire repair, fluid and fuel delivery and more.
- Safety glass: Covers the cost of repairing or replacing your RV’s windshield, which is often excluded from standard coverage.
- Sound system: Covers the speakers and other audio equipment in your RV.
- Towing and labor: Covers the cost of on-site repairs or towing your RV if it breaks down on the road.
- Vacation liability: Covers liability claims made against you and your RV while it’s parked away from your home base.
Types of RVs
Your insurance premiums will also depend on the type of RV you own. Recreational vehicles come in all sorts of shapes and sizes — and with a huge range of functions, features and amenities. These vehicles break down into two main categories: towables and drivables.
Towable RVs don’t have their own engine. Instead, they require a towing vehicle to pull them from one location to another. These are the main types of towables:
- Teardrop trailers: Usually the smallest RVs, teardrops get their name from their unique aerodynamic shape.
- Pop-up campers: These campers are called pop-ups because, after packing down for easier towing, they pop up to reveal a full-size RV, complete with standing room.
- Toy haulers: These towable RVs feature bigger storage areas for large sporting equipment like surfboards, fishing gear and sometimes even a motorcycle or ATV.
- Travel trailers: The most popular type of camper, these trailers vary greatly in terms of features and amenities.
- Fifth-wheel trailers: “Fifth-wheelers” get their name from the unique tow hitch used to attach them to a towing vehicle. This hitch is necessary because these RVs are some of the biggest and heaviest on the road.
Also called motorhomes and self-propelled RVs, drivables have their own engines and can move around on their own. Most motorhomes fall into three categories:
- Class A motorhomes: The luxury yachts of the road, Class A RVs are among the largest and most fully featured in the industry. Some models may cost well over a million dollars.
- Class B motorhomes: Often called “camper vans” because they’re built onto a cargo van chassis, Class B RVs are rapidly increasing in popularity.
- Class C motorhomes: Despite their name, Class C RVs are actually bigger and tend to have more amenities than Class Bs, but they’re smaller and more maneuverable than Class A RVs.
In general, you’ll find the cheapest RV insurance on towables, since they don’t have their own motor and drivetrain to cover.
RV Insurance Exclusions
Although RV insurance can provide peace of mind for a wide range of situations, some sources of damage are excluded from most policies. These include:
- Wear and tear
Depending on where you live and your insurer, your policy may not cover damage from floods or earthquakes. Whether you live in your RV full-time or use it only for recreational purposes may also be a factor.
Does RV Insurance Cover Water Damage?
Comprehensive RV insurance will cover water damage in most cases. Water damage that comes as a result of any of the exclusions mentioned above, however, may not be covered.
RV Damage Settlement Options
If you have full coverage RV insurance and damages to your camper amount to a total loss, your insurance company will pay you for the loss. How much they pay, however, depends on the type of damage settlement policy you have.
Here are three typical types of valuation methods for your RV, and how they pay out:
- Actual cash value: Based on your RV’s value at the time of the loss, factoring in depreciation and market conditions
- Agreed value: Based on an amount you and your insurer agree to at the beginning of your policy
- Total loss replacement: Sometimes available as optional coverage, this pays out the replacement cost of your RV based on one of the same make, model and model year