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Maritime incidents are more common than one might think, ranging from the grounding of cargo ships, collisions at sea and in port, engine failure through to suspected piracy with the ships and cargo reported missing for months on end.

Marine transit insurance is an essential means to guard against serious financial loss, and in particular as a protection against supply chain exposure. The cover comes in a number of formats including the following:-

  • Goods in transit
  • Marine/airfreight insurance
  • Stock throughput insurance

The Alan Boswell Group Difference

Alan Boswell Group - personal

As a leading independent insurance broker and one of the eastern region’s largest financial planners, our business is perfectly placed to guarantee an independent, personal, bespoke service with the clout and connections of a big player.

We aim to ease the burden that arranging insurance or financial planning can bring. We pride ourselves on our personal approach, providing a dedicated contact to review your situation and provide continuous expert advice for your business or personal needs.

How our customers rate us

We have just renewed our insurance policies with Alan Boswell Group seamlessly. They produced quotations before the renewal date which enabled us to renew without any delays.

Val - Commercial Combined Insurance

Marine Transit Insurance in detail

Goods in transit are highly susceptible to damage by collision, fire, storm, theft, jettison or mishandling. Cargo insurance is an essential means to guard against serious financial loss, and in particular as a protection against supply chain exposure.

Insurance also provides cover when a voluntary sacrifice is made to safeguard a vessel, cargo or crew and to get to a place of safety to prevent the risks of crashing, sinking and even piracy and hijacking.

If the cargo is not insured, the surviving cargo will not be released until the owner pays for it.

Your business could be financially exposed to loss or damage to goods whilst in transit from your location to your customer’s premises. Equally important is the risk of loss or damage to inbound goods especially those purchased on an ex-works basis.

Goods in Transit Insurance

Where the exposure is limited to the movement of goods within the UK and where you are deemed to be responsible for any losses during the transit process. This can include sending to and from your business and exposure might depend upon your terms of trade – i.e. when is a payment made/received?

Marine/Airfreight Insurance

Normally accommodates the overseas movement of goods and includes transit by vehicle, aircraft and ship. Again, the extent of your exposure would be dictated by the terms of trade with your customers and suppliers; i.e:

  • which party is responsible for insurance?
  • is there any insurance at all?
  • at what point is payment for the goods made?
  • are you happy to rely upon insurance which may, or may not, be arranged by an overseas supplier of freight forwarder?

Stock Throughput Insurance

This can be a useful option to cover stock through the whole supply chain. It can provide protection from the point of purchase from a supplier to storage at your own premises, or at third-party locations, before eventual delivery to the end customer. This type of insurance provides a comprehensive one-stop solution for stock and can prevent possible gaps in the cover that might exist if the transit and storage risks are either not fully insured or are covered under more than one policy. It is particularly useful for companies whose products go through the hands of a number of subcontractors before final production and eventual sale.


Insurers normally assess premium by looking at the estimated stock movements to any given location on an annual basis. It is usual for insurers to provide quotes on a minimum and deposit basis with the potential for the premium to be adjusted at the end of the policy term. Some insurers will also offer cover without adjustment at the end of the policy period.

Many companies use third party carriers to move their goods, a situation which should be treated with some caution in relation to the limited insurance coverage that may be offered by these haulage company. Similar problems also exist with warehousing companies and this is where the benefit of arranging your own stock throughput insurance arises.

FAQs

  • To provide a quote we need the following information:

    • the annual value of goods you import, and where from
    • the value of goods you export, and where to
    • the value of goods you store, and location
    • the maximum value of goods in transit on any one vehicle/ship/plane
  • It covers physical damage to/loss of cargo, anywhere in the world, carried by any sub-contractor and can include temporary and permanent warehousing.

  • There are a variety of options but the standard basis of valuation would be:

    Imports/purchases – cost price plus an element to cover nominal and additional interruption costs; normally an extra 10% or 20%.

    Sales – your invoice price (which includes your profit element).

    Exports – again, this would normally be the sales price.

    Warehouse stock/exhibitions – cost price to replace.

  • Cover can be included for raw materials, exhibitions, demonstration/samples/tools in transit, postal sendings, project cargo and delay in start-up.

  • This depends on the insurer but, generally, these will revolve around areas of conflict or political considerations. We will discuss this with as part of the quotation process.

  • Of course, all insurance policies have a number of exclusions but perhaps one to be aware of is vehicles which are left loaded overnight. If not in a secure location/premises, insurers might well exclude cover. If you think this is to be a likely occurrence then we would discuss at the quotation stage.

  • It is not usual for a marine transit policy to cover this risk and, generally, a business will consider this aspect in arriving at the values to be insured. Some cover might be provided under your main commercial insurance. Some marine insurers can give this cover but it does tend to be rather expensive; however, we can explore this with you at the point of quotation.

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