Caravan and Camper Trailer Policy Clarification

Over the last couple of weeks we have had an increasing number of enquiries from customers who have their Camper Trailer, Slide-on Camper, Caravan or Fifth Wheeler insured with us. The questions raised are with reference to our policy not providing coverage where the item is the policyholders’ primary place of residence. A good example is where for those who are lucky enough, all worldly possessions get sold up and they hit the dusty trail for an indefinite period of time. Nowhere to be, or to come back too anytime soon – dreamy isn’t it?

What you have heard is true – and it always has been. We have always had the below question in our online quoting system and it is mirrored in our phone based quote process. We also have a general exclusion in our PDS on page 18 that specifically calls out use of these items as a primary place of residence as an exclusion.

On the phone, our team will ask a few more questions to qualify your situation. For example if you have a home to come back too – then you will be fine. Going on a  3 month trip where you will be living in your camper trailer then returning to your property? No problem.

Anyway, the purpose of this article is not to hide behind a PDS or a process – we’ve not done that until now and won’t do that going forward. The reality is that the vast majority of our policies start after a phone call with one of our dozen or so call centre operators, right here in Australia (Newcastle NSW to be exact!). While we have what I think are the best four wheel drive enthusiasts – who pose as call centre operators during the day, they are human and sometimes they make mistakes.

So I invite anyone who feels they didn’t know about this exclusion and who find themselves with inadequate coverage as a result, to contact us. Our team will make good where we have made a mistake and not informed you or asked you the appropriate question when quoting you over the phone.


Happy Touring


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Comments 18

  1. I know it was an example only but what about 6, 12 or longer travel times. My wife and I plan to travel for any of these times and come back home and then head out again. Home is with the kids that look after the home.

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  2. I have no problem with the policy, ALL insurance companies say read the PDS to make sure it meets your needs, I have no problem with that.

    My question is who is going to insure your place of residence if it is not “Bricks and Mortar”? I cannot see House and Contents insurance companies insuring a caravan, camper or canopy as a place of residence.

    Thank you for your time

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  3. I love that you guys do this sort of clarification, how many other insurers do this? You only find this out when you try and make a claim.

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      Thanks Tim – small enough to care about how we interact with our clients, but big enough to provide you with a high quality product.


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  4. I read the PDS. Third dot point from the bottom on page 18 had me in tears.
    Who in their right mind goes “looting and rebbelling” in a 16ft trailor?(put a visual in your mind).
    Sad but true in some cases i guess. Cover all aspects and making it black and white.
    Thanks for the notification guys keep it up 🙂

  5. Kalen,
    Can you be more specific and put in the PDS what is considered maximum acceptable length of continuous time away from a residence that it can still be considered a primary place of residence. At least it is then clear.

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      Craig – there are a number of factors that combine together that we call underwriting criteria – putting that level of detail in a PDS is not tenable.

      If you’re unsure, give us a call we will happily help you whenever you may need it.

  6. Trouble with place of residence insurance cover mostly state can not be unoccupied for 60 days continuously.
    So having a permanent residence raises another problem.
    Following that Dream has some cloudy moments.

  7. Hi
    looking at insurance for our 4×4 and brand new Air Opus camper. What has me worried is your offraod recovery is only to nearest centre or sealed road. If the tow vehicle or camper cannot be towed, how do I get it to the nearest mechanic/etc ? What is the really covered by breakdown recovery/towing?



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      Once you’re at a sealed road or nearest town your traditional roadside assistance provider can take you the rest of the way. The reason why our Off-road Recover Cover is important is because every roadside provider in the country has an off-road exclusion! Note that this coverage is ONLY on your 4X4 policy, but given it is a financial recompense benefit you can use up to the amount available on your policy to tow the tow vehicle and the trailer.

      Here is an article that may help you

  8. I like the fact that you have raised (and often do) an interesting issue so that we are educated, but, your article does not say “why” you wont ( or can’t, legally) insure a caravan if someone lives in it full time while travelling fulltime.

    1. Hi Andrew,
      The truth of the matter is that the reason we can’t currently insure people living and travelling full time in a van is because our underwriter did not want to offer insurance to that risk group at the time we negotiated and built our policy. We are constantly receiving feedback on this and looking at ways to better do things and this is an item on our radar. While we can’t change anything right now, that doesn’t mean that this won’t change in the future.


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