There is a brand-new way to insure your RV, and it’s coming from a very unusual source.
Outdoorsy, one of the world’s premier platforms for peer-to-peer RV rentals, has created a stand-alone insurance plan for RVs called Roamly that is set to compete with the big boys at GEICO and Progressive.
“We weren’t really looking at getting into the insurance business,” said Outdoorsy CEO Jeff Cavins. “But we think we’ve created an insurance product that will be a ‘kill shot’ to companies like GEICO.”
The best feature may be that Roamly is available to regular RVers, not just those in the peer-to-peer rental marketplace.
Roamly insurance is specifically for RVs
Cavins said as Outdoorsy gathered data from millions of RV rentals in recent years, it became apparent that the traditional insurance industry had “missed the boat” regarding regular RV insurance.
“The insurance industry has always lumped all recreational vehicles together in one risk category,” he said. “That means RVs were in the same category as ATVs, snowmobiles, dirt bikes, and ski boats where a lot of personal injury and liability claims come in.”
The insurance industry also routinely included a commercial exclusion clause in insurance contracts that barred renting the units. “It was called the ‘thou shall not rent’ clause,” Cavins said. “The policy wouldn’t cover you if you rented a recreational vehicle of any kind because of the inherent danger to all of those other types of vehicles.”
Cavins said Outdoorsy was able to show insurance companies data that proved there were almost no liability claims when it came to RVs. “The insurance industry was worried about the big accidents that might involve an RV and may hurt a lot of people. But in reality, those almost never happen.”
Cavins said he was able to show insurance industry officials that most people actually drive RVs very little, especially when they rent the unit. “They head to campgrounds right away and treat the rig more like a hotel room,” he said.
“We basically told the insurance industry that they have been making a clerical error regarding RV insurance for the past 30 years, and they agreed with us after looking at our data,” he said.
Big savings on premiums
Cavins said the typical RVer can expect to save about 20% on the cost of premiums through the Roamly product, compared to the cost of GEICO and Progressive policies.
Also, you don’t have to place your RV on the Outdoorsy rental platform in order to purchase Roamly insurance. But you can save even more on premiums if you do, he said. And if you decide you don’t want to rent your rig through Outdoorsy, you can still have Roamly insurance.
“But if you buy an RV and become an Outdoorsy user the more you rent your RV, the lower your premium,” Cavins said. “That’s because when you rent your rig when you aren’t using it, the risk gets transferred to Outdoorsy’s insurance. Any claims that happen during a rental will be paid by Outdoorsy, not your Roamly policy.”
“Launching Roamly was a huge project and it took five years, but we got it done,” Cavins said. “We know it’s going to be popular. We generated about $3.2 million in premiums when it was in the Beta stage in 2020 alone.”
RVers can get their own quote on Roamly insurance in about 60 seconds through the Roamly website.
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