Have you ever gone camping and had something unexpected happen?
Maybe your tent was damaged in a wind storm, or your camping stove malfunctioned, leaving you without a way to cook your meals.
These situations can be frustrating and even dangerous—especially if you’re in a remote location.
That’s why I started to wonder if Ross and I needed camping equipment insurance.
So I started researching it.
It can also provide coverage for theft, damage, and loss of your camping gear.
It’s pretty safe to say that having it can definitely provide peace of mind and financial protection in case something goes wrong during your camping trip.
While some people may think that camping equipment insurance is unnecessary, I believe that it can be a smart investment for anyone who enjoys spending time in the great outdoors.
After all, accidents can happen to anyone, and having insurance can help ensure that you’re prepared for the unexpected.
Let’s explore the pros and cons of camping equipment insurance, and help you decide whether it’s right for you.
What does camping equipment insurance cover?
When it comes to camping equipment insurance, different policies may cover different things.
Here are some common items that most policies cover:
Theft and damage. Most policies cover theft and damage to your camping gear.
This means that if your equipment is stolen or damaged, you can file a claim and get reimbursed for the replacement or repair costs.
Accidents. If you or someone else gets injured while using your camping equipment, your insurance policy may cover the medical expenses.
This includes accidents that happen while setting up or taking down your campsite, as well as accidents that occur during outdoor activities like hiking or fishing.
Natural disasters. If your camping gear and equipment is damaged or destroyed by an extreme weather event like a hurricane, tornado, or flood, your insurance policy may cover the replacement or repair costs.
Liability. If you accidentally cause damage to someone else’s property or injure someone while using your camping equipment, your insurance policy may cover the costs of any legal fees or damages that you are required to pay.
In addition to these common items, some policies may also cover other things like rental equipment, emergency evacuation, and trip cancellation.
It’s important to read the fine print of your policy to understand exactly what’s covered and what’s not.
How much does camping equipment insurance cost?
When it comes to insuring your camping gear and equipment, the cost can vary depending on a number of factors.
Some of the factors that can influence the cost include the value of your gear and equipment, the level of coverage you need, and the deductible you choose.
In general, insuring your gear and equipment can cost anywhere from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars per year.
You can probably expect to pay between 1% and 5% of the total value of your camping gear and equipment each year for insurance coverage.
For example, if your camping gear and equipment is worth $10,000, you could expect to pay between $100 and $500 per year for insurance coverage.
Keep in mind that these are just ballpark estimates and your actual cost could be higher or lower depending on your individual circumstances.
The cost will depend on the specific policy you choose and the level of coverage you need.
It’s always best to get a personalized quote from an insurance provider to get a more accurate idea of what you can expect to pay.
It’s also important to weigh the cost against the level of coverage you need to ensure you’re getting the best value for your money.
Why you might need camping insurance
Even the most experienced campers can find themselves in situations where they need help.
Here are a few reasons why it might be a good idea to seriously consider insuring your camping gear and equipment:
You’ve invested a lot of money in acquiring the right gear and equipment. Specialized gear and equipment can easily cost thousands of dollars.
If you’ve invested a lot of money in camping gear and equipment, having insurance can help protect your investment.
Risk of theft or damage. If you’re camping in a popular area where other people can access your campsite, or you embark on trips that really put the performance of your gear and equipment to the test, you might be worried about losing or breaking some of those items.
Having insurance can help cover the cost of replacing or repairing your camping gear and equipment if something is stolen or damaged while using it.
Risk of medical emergencies. If you or a member of your group injures themselves badly or falls very ill, it can be expensive.
Camping insurance can help cover these costs, including emergency transportation and medical treatment.
Risk of cancellation or interruption. Sometimes, unexpected events can force you to cancel or cut short your camping trip.
With insurance, you can be reimbursed for any non-refundable expenses, such as campground fees or equipment rentals.
Why You might not need camping insurance
While insuring your camping gear and equipment can provide peace of mind, it’s not necessary for everyone.
Here are some reasons why it might not be worth it:
You only go camping once a year. Camping infrequently means that you’re unlikely to be faced with unexpected costs.
Insurance is probably only worthwhile if you go camping frequently or for extended periods of time.
You have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance: Your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy may already cover your camping gear.
Be sure to check your policy to see what is covered and what is not.
You only camp in remote areas. The risk of theft or damage to your gear may be lower than if you camp established campgrounds.
The more people that can access your campsite, the greater the risk of theft or damage.
You have a limited budget. Purchasing insurance may not be a priority—especially if you’re trying to save money.
Instead, focus on investing in high-quality gear that is less likely to break or get damaged.
You’re willing to take the risk. Ultimately, the decision to purchase camping insurance comes down to your personal risk tolerance.
If you’re willing to take the risk of not having insurance and can afford to replace your gear if something happens, then insurance may not be necessary.
Where to get camping equipment insurance
When it comes to looking around for an insurance provider and policy, there are a few different options available.
Here are some of the most common ways to get coverage:
Through your homeowners or renters insurance
Many homeowners or renters insurance policies include coverage for personal property, which can include camping gear and equipment.
Check with your insurance provider to see if this coverage is included in your policy, and if not, ask about adding it as an endorsement.
Through a specialty insurance provider
There are also specialty insurance providers that offer coverage specifically for camping and outdoor equipment.
These policies may offer more comprehensive coverage than what’s included in a standard homeowners or renters insurance policy.
Some popular providers include:
Through your credit card company
Some credit card companies offer insurance coverage for purchases made with their card, including camping equipment.
Check with your credit card provider to see if this coverage is included, and if so, what the coverage limits are.
Through a gear/equipment rental company
If you’re renting camping gear and equipment, the rental company may offer insurance coverage as an optional add-on.
Be sure to read the terms and conditions of the coverage carefully to understand what’s included and what’s not covered.
Tips for choosing the right insurance provider and plan
It can be tricky to decide which provider and policy is right for you.
Here are some tips to help make the process easier:
Ask for coverage limits. Make sure the insurance provider offers coverage limits that are sufficient for your needs.
Consider the total value of your gear and equipment and choose a plan that covers at least that amount.
Check the deductible amount for the plan. A higher deductible may mean lower premiums, but it also means you’ll have to pay more out of pocket in the event of a claim.
Determine what’s excluded. Read the fine print and make sure you understand what’s covered and what’s not.
Some plans may exclude certain types of equipment or activities, so make sure you choose a plan that covers everything you need.
Look for an insurance provider with a good reputation. Check reviews and ratings from other customers to get an idea of their level of service.
Compare prices from different insurance providers to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Keep in mind that the cheapest plan may not always be the best option.
Consider the level of customer service offered by the insurance provider.
Will they be available to answer your questions and help you through the claims process?
It’s up to you to decide whether you need insurance
Camping gear/equipment insurance isn’t a necessity, but it can be a good idea for those of us who already have a lot of expensive stuff, camp often, and do so in risky conditions.
It’s important to do your research and find a reputable provider that offers a policy with the coverage limits and deductible amount that meets your needs.
Ultimately, it comes down to your personal risk tolerance and financial situation—only you can decide if insurance is right for you.
Keep in mind, though, that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Taking the time to properly secure and store your gear can go a long way toward protecting it from loss or damage.
And if you do decide to purchase insurance coverage, make sure you understand exactly what’s covered and what isn’t so that you’ll be prepared in the event of an emergency.
Good luck and happy camping!
Elise is an experienced backcountry canoe tripper and winter camper from Ontario, Canada. She loves cooking up a storm over the campfire, taking in all the backcountry views, and enjoying a piña colada or two while relaxing at camp. She’s also certified in Whitewater Rescue (WWR) I & II and Wilderness First Aid (WFA).