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Travel trailer insurance requirements: Do you legally have to insure a camper?

Being an RV owner is more than just vacations and the open road. There are also some not-so-fun (but necessary) aspects of ownership such as routine maintenance, repairs when there’s a breakdown, and choosing the right insurance policy.

If you own a travel trailer, you may have some questions about insurance requirements for your rig. In this article, we’ll break down what you need to know about insuring your camper trailer.

Travel trailer vs. motorhome insurance: What’s necessary?

When talking about RV insurance, it’s important to make a distinction between trailers and motorhomes, as they have a different set of requirements.

Since motorhomes have engines, they must abide by the same insurance requirements as other motor vehicles on the road. This is typically a certain level of liability insurance coverage.

Travel trailers, on the other hand, are not motorized, and therefore aren’t legally required to have their own policy. In fact, the liability coverage on your tow vehicle may extend to any trailer that you pull behind you. To check, contact your automobile insurer to see what exactly is covered on your policy.

The only time that insurance is actually required on your travel trailer is not actually based on the law but by your financing contract. If your RV is being financed, then the lender can (and almost certainly will) stipulate in the loan agreement that until you have paid back your full balance, you have to have comprehensive and collision coverage. This is because the trailer is the bank’s property until it is paid off, and they want to protect their asset and ensure that they get paid even if the vehicle is destroyed or stolen.


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Types of travel trailer insurance

Though there are few requirements for insuring your travel trailer, you might find it wise to look into other insurance options. Since an RV can be an expensive possession, insurance protects you and your investment in the event of an accident.

Let’s take a look at some of your coverage options for your travel trailer.

Liability protection

The most basic and least expensive insurance option for your travel trailer is liability coverage. A liability policy protects you in the event that you are at fault in any sort of accident. A claim will pay the victim for any damages caused to their property (be it their car, their home, their RV, or other possessions such as boats) or any medical expenses accrued due to injuries you caused them. This coverage is essential, but it should be covered by your car’s liability insurance.


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Comprehensive coverage

Comprehensive coverage insures your travel trailer against damages caused outside of collisions, such as hail, lightning, fallen trees, and flooding, or even theft and vandalism.

Collision coverage

This one goes hand in hand with comprehensive coverage, covering you from damages your RV takes in a collision with another vehicle or a stationary object, regardless of whether or not you are at fault for the collision. 

Comprehensive and collision coverage are often only sold as a package deal, and if your RV is still under financing, the lender who holds the lien may require you to carry both of these insurance policies until you have paid it off. 

Medical payments coverage

In the event of an accident, you can buy coverage for medical payments for you and your passengers. Since passengers won’t be in the travel trailer while it is moving, this applies when the trailer is parked on campsites or rented property.

Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage

If you are involved in a collision where the other driver is at fault, but they are either driving without liability insurance or their policy cannot pay for all the damages caused, then this policy will make sure that damages and medical bills are still paid for.


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Roadside assistance

If you find yourself stuck on the side of the road with a blown out tire, you’ll be glad you have roadside assistance! Some policies only provide roadside assistance for the trailer itself, while others will also cover the vehicle you use to tow the trailer with support such as jumping dead batteries or bringing you fuel if you run out. If your car doesn’t already have roadside assistance, then you might want to look for this feature in a policy on your trailer.

Contents coverage

This type of coverage pays to repair or replace goods that are damaged or destroyed in a collision, or stolen or vandalized. So, if you need to bring your 75-inch TV with you on the road, or any other valuable items, you should consider getting them protected. How much this coverage will cost you is going to depend on the value of the items you have in your RV that you want covered under your policy.

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Roamly Insurance Group, LLC ("Roamly") is a licensed general agent for affiliated and non-affiliated insurance companies. Roamly is licensed as an agency in all states in which products are offered. Availability and qualification for coverage, terms, rates, and discounts may vary by jurisdiction. We do not in any way imply that the materials on the site or products are available in jurisdictions in which we are not licensed to do business or that we are soliciting business in any such jurisdiction. Coverage under your insurance policy is subject to the terms and conditions of that policy and is ultimately the decision of the buyer.

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