Shopping for pilot car insurance can feel overwhelming.
Part of the appeal of starting and running a pilot car business is that it is simpler than hauling the oversized loads they escort. However, with most laws and regulations existing at the state level and with few details provided online, it can be tough to choose the right insurance coverage.
For those that are new to the industry, below is our comprehensive guide that covers what insurance coverage is required, how much it costs, and more.
If those just looking for a few recommendations, here are our top picks.
Pilot car insurance is a collection of commercial insurance policies, such as commercial auto and professional liability, that protects pilot car drivers and their businesses.
Even if a pilot car driver uses their personal vehicle for work, they will still need a separate commercial auto policy as most personal auto policies will not cover business use. States require commercial vehicles to carry primary liability by law but most drivers will want additional coverage, such as physical damage.
Some states, such as Colorado, also require proof that the commercial policy explicitly covers Pilot Escort Operations. Before purchasing a policy, drivers should check the laws of the states they operate within and confirm their policy will meet the requirements.
Penalties for driving a pilot car or escort vehicle without primary auto liability insurance vary from state to state but can include:
Getting caught driving without primary liability insurance can also increase premiums in the future and in the event of an accident, drivers will still be responsible for any damages.
Pilot car drivers that require an SR-22 may still get commercial auto insurance. However, premiums will likely be more expensive and options may be more limited.
Pilot car insurance can be broken out into two broad categories: commercial auto insurance and business insurance.
As the name implies, commercial auto coverage will cover incidents where a pilot car driver’s vehicle is involved. Common coverage options include:
Incidents that do not involve the vehicle will be covered under a broader business insurance policy. Common policies include:
Pilot car insurance will generally cost $400-$1,000 a month for both auto and business insurance policies.
Like all insurance policies, rates will vary based on a number of factors including:
Drivers should share that they have a CDL when applying for quotes as some insurance companies will offer better rates.
Drivers looking for the cheapest insurance should keep in mind that cheaper is not always better. However, individuals can usually lower their premiums by:
When looking for insurance, it’s always recommended to compare multiple quotes to find the best combination of rates and coverage.
It can be tempting to simply go with the cheapest option but policyholders may get what they pay for – worse customer service and more exclusions, which could limit claims getting paid out. In addition to popular review sites like Google, Yelp, and the BBB, The National Association of Insurance Commissioners also keeps an online database of complaints which can help businesses compare options.
When filling out a pilot car insurance application, individuals should be prepared to submit the following information: