What is boat insurance?

Boat insurance protects you financially from injuries or damage you cause to others while boating. Insurance can also cover your watercraft and trailer if it gets stolen or physically damaged. Boat insurance can cover many types of boats, including:

As with auto insurance, you can select and purchase additional coverages, such as uninsured/underinsured boater (UB) coverage, to give you more protection on the water.

How does boat insurance work?

Boat insurance works the same way as car insurance does. If you damage your boat or cause injuries or damages to someone else, you file a claim with your insurer asking them to pay for the damages. If the incident is covered, your insurer pays for the losses or injuries up to your coverage limits.

Important note: One of the biggest myths about boat insurance is that you don’t need it because you're adequately covered under your home insurance policy. While your home's policy may provide some protection for a smaller boat while it's on your property, it won't offer the coverage you need on the water — especially if you're operating a powerboat.

What does boat insurance cover?

Boat insurance can cover physical damages to your watercraft as well as any injuries or damages you cause to others while boating. Here are some common coverages available on a boat insurance policy:

  • Liability: Pays for any damages or injuries you cause to others while boating, up to the limits of your policy.
  • Physical damage coverage: Physical damage coverage includes both comprehensive and collision coverage, and includes coverage for damages from events outside of your control, such as weather, theft or fire. Coverage also extends to damages sustained in a collision with another watercraft or object, regardless of fault, including if your boat capsizes.
  • Uninsured/underinsured boater (UB): Pays for your injuries if you're hit by a boater with little or no insurance.

If physical damage coverage is included on your policy, the hull, furnishings, fittings, and other components — such as motors, anchors, fuel tanks, batteries, and onboard safety equipment — are typically covered if damage occurs due to a covered incident. A standard boat insurance policy will also commonly cover fuel spills and wreckage removal if your boat sinks.

Learn more about boat insurance coverages — including those you'll only find at Progressive.

What does boat insurance not cover?

Boat insurance generally won't cover maintenance or general wear and tear, including gradual weathering and deterioration, insect damage, mold, or damage from animals or marine life.

Do you need insurance for a boat trailer?

With Progressive, damage to your trailer is automatically covered when you add the trailer to your boat policy. In some cases, your homeowners insurance will cover repairs to your boat trailer if it's damaged while on your property. Learn more about how insurance works with boat trailers.

Do I need boat insurance when it’s in storage?

Keeping your boat insured is a good idea, especially with comprehensive coverage. Your boat insurance will still cover theft, hail damage, and other hazards while it’s stored. Plus, you won't have to worry about reactivating your policy once you're ready to get back out on the water. However, some insurers will allow you to drop some coverages if you’d prefer. For example, Progressive lets you adjust certain coverages while you're not using your boat.

How is boat insurance priced?

Pricing all comes down to risk. In other words, how likely are you to have a boat accident, and what will it cost? Learn more about the factors that influence the cost of boat insurance, including your claims history, the type of boat that you own, and your boat experience.

How to get boat insurance

Online

We'll ask easy questions about you and your boat, then you can choose your coverages.

Call a rep

You'll speak with a licensed representative who will guide you through everything.

Through an agent

If you want local advice, we'll connect you with a licensed independent agent near you.