Tractor trailer trucks are the lifeblood of the country. Without the men and women driving them, daily products would not make it from point A to point B and eventually into our homes and businesses. We entrust the drivers of these trucks with various cargos and the safety of other drivers sharing the road with them. With that trust comes tremendous responsibility.
The drivers behind the wheels of tractor trailer rigs take risks daily simply being on the road so much. Due to these risks and responsibilities, tractor trailer truck drivers need to ensure they have appropriate insurance covering them while they are on the road. Let’s take a look at the tractor trailer insurance available for truckers.
- The 6 best tractor trailer insurance companies
- What does tractor trailer truck insurance cover?
- How much tractor trailer insurance do I need?
- How much does tractor trailer insurance cost?
- What factors affect tractor trailer truck insurance cost?
- How to find cheap tractor trailer insurance
The 6 best tractor trailer insurance companies
After reviewing several tractor trailer truck insurance companies and policies, we narrowed our choices down to the companies we consider to be the 6 best for tractor trailer truck insurance.
- Progressive: Best Overall & the only carrier offering truck insurance quotes online
- Simply Business: Best for fast, inexpensive quotes
- OOIDA: Focused on the trucking industry
- Travelers: Most flexible
- The Hartford: Best for fleets
- Commercialinsurance.net: Best for small companies
Progressive: Best Overall & the only carrier offering truck insurance quotes online
Progressive has the largest market share among US commercial insurance companies. They provide coverage to more than 12% of the commercial insurance market. Progressive provides coverage to commercial vehicles in all 50 states.
The company covers a variety of different commercial trucks, including tractor trailers. They offer a range of coverage and features, helping to solidify their place at the top of the commercial insurance market. The company’s coverages include trucking general liability (bodily injury and personal property coverage), collision, comprehensive, uninsured/underinsured motorist, medical payments, and personal injury protection. Additional coverages they offer include motor truck cargo, trailer interchange, non-trucking liability, rental reimbursement, and fire and theft coverage options.
In addition to the variety of coverages, Progressive offers several discounts to their customers. You can obtain a quote online, but you have to consult with an agent to purchase the appropriate policy for your tractor trailer. Agents are available 24/7 to process your claims over the telephone.
Simply Business: Best for comparing fast, inexpensive quotes
Simply Business offers insurance for owner-operators, trucking company owners, new authorities, and new drivers. The company provides various policy choices for tractor trailer insurance coverage. Some of their coverage options include general liability, trucking liability, physical damage, bobtail, and motor truck cargo coverage.
If you prefer to receive your insurance quotes online and compare them easily in one place, Simply Business has you covered. Their quote process takes five to 10 minutes, depending on how much information you need to provide and how quickly you can do that. After that short processing time, you will see your quotes for coverages and prices so that you can compare easily in one place. Sometimes, you might be directed to speak to an agent via telephone to complete your quote because they need clarification of factors concerning your business.
Trucking business is rather complex with different nuances, so you might expect to speak to one of their agents to provide more nuanced details about your trucking business before they can provide you with several quotes to compare and choose the cheapest one.
Companies in insurance industry usually have a low customer satisfaction ratings. However, you’ll be delighted to know that Simply Business earns a stellar 4.1 customer satisfaction rating out of 5 on the reputable consumer rating platform, Trustpilot.
OOIDA: Focused on the trucking industry
OOIDA is an acronym for Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association. The company offers a wide range of coverages for the tractor trailer truck driver to consider. They specialize in trucking insurance, so they understand the unique needs of truckers.
They began providing insurance products for owner-operators in the mid-1970s. They offer a wide range of policies, and they try to make it affordable for truckers by offering monthly installments and no large upfront charges.
Travelers: Most flexible
Travelers is one of the largest auto insurance companies in the nation. They offer competitive rates and a flexible range of coverage options. The flexibility of options allows you to customize your policy to fit your needs.
Travelers has been providing insurance products for more than 150 years. Those who want a strong company with flexible coverage options should consider Travelers. However, don’t look at Travelers seeking discounts. They only offer discounts when you purchase one of their combination bundles.
The Hartford: Best for fleets
The Hartford is well known in the insurance industry. It’s been in business for well over 200 years. With centuries of experience, you can expect this company to be knowledgeable about insurance coverages. They offer a full selection of tractor trailer insurance options.
They realize that some truckers own their truck while others lease from a motor carrier, and they provide options to cover the truck and the business if you are the business owner. For example, they offer workers’ compensation insurance to protect owners and employees along with general liability and commercial auto offerings.
Commercialinsurance.net: Best for small trucking companies
Commercialinsurance.net is a national insurance broker. They specialize in serving small trucking businesses with less than $10 million in annual revenue. They compare more than one company’s coverages and rates and provide you with quotes. The company works with an extensive network of professionals within more than 50 trucking insurance companies.
They work with experienced, knowledgeable agents who have worked in the trucking industry for decades. Their agents clearly explain the available coverages and help you find the appropriate coverages and prices that fit your budget.
What does tractor trailer truck insurance cover?
Primary trucking liability coverages cover damage to someone else’s person or property, and it’s the minimum form of insurance required by law in every state. The next most popular coverage for truckers is physical damage insurance which covers your truck through collision and comprehensive plans. Other popular coverages are cargo, non-trucking liability, general liability, bobtail, and workers’ compensation insurance.
How much tractor trailer insurance do I need?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that commercial trucks carry at minimum liability coverage with limits based on cargo and the kind of vehicle being driven. The heavier the truck or more dangerous the cargo, the more coverage you need to have.
The absolute minimum amount of coverage is $300,000, and that is for a truck under 10,001 pounds carrying non-hazardous cargo. There is also a cargo coverage requirement for transporting household goods of $5,000 per vehicle or $10,000 per occurrence. These are simply the federal minimums. States are free to impose their own minimum insurance requirements, as are companies.
Whether you are owner operator trucker or small trucking companies or companies with several fleets, you will realize that federal min coverage isn’t enough. Most states require a minimum liability coverage of $750,000. Shippers and brokers can also require higher coverage limits.
How much does tractor trailer insurance cost?
Like any other auto insurance, tractor trailer insurance doesn’t have a set cost. Each policy is built on a variety of individualized factors. Every policy starts with a base of liability coverage based on state and federal regulations and is constructed from there. Coverages you add change the premium, as do your deductible and several other factors.
A basic estimate of the costs of tractor trailer insurance is anywhere from $3,000-$20,000 per truck per year. Those costs are determined by the coverages you have and how you operate your business—whether you operate under your own authority or lease with a motor carrier. It is a wide range, because tractor trailer cost varies significantly in different situations. Below are the average costs of these situations:
|Tractor trailer driver types||Average tractor trailer insurance costs|
|Lease on with a motor carrier||$4,500 per year|
|New drivers with your own authorities||$18,000 per year|
|Experienced drivers with your own authorities||$14,000 per year|
These are just the averages. Your quotes and rates will be different. Different insurance companies will also provide you with different quotes. Be sure to shop around with a few carriers or work with a top broker like Simply Business or Commercialinsurance.net to compare several quotes to find the cheapest one for you. Progressive is the only carrier offering truck insurance quotes online. Within 5-10 minutes, you should have a quote on Progressive website to start with.
How much is the average tractor trailer insurance cost per month?
Again, this varies significantly depending on the types of tractor trailer drivers. Below is the average monthly cost of tractor trailer insurance in different situations:
|Tractor trailer driver types||Average tractor trailer insurance costs|
|Lease on with a motor carrier||$375 per month|
|New drivers with your own authorities||$1,500 per month|
|Experienced drivers with your own authorities||$1,165 per month|
What factors affect tractor trailer insurance cost?
There are several factors affecting the cost of tractor trailer insurance cost. However, below are the 3 main factors that have significant impact on the cost.
Tractor trailer driver types
As you see above, if you are a new or experienced driver, and if you drive on your own authorities or lease on with a motor carriers has significant impact on the cost of tractor trailer insurance. New drivers will pay a lot more. Leasing on with a motor carrier saves your insurance cost significantly, this is because the motor carrier will provide the most expensive coverage, which is trucking primary liability insurance. You are only responsible for other necessary coverages.
Different states require different coverages. However, all states require trucking primary liability insurance. The more coverages you buy for your tractor trailer truck business, the more you’ll pay for the insurance cost. Other coverages that many tractor trailer drivers usually consider are physical damage insurance, bobtail insurance, non trucking liability insurance, trucking general liability coverage, worker comp insurance or occupational accident insurance.
The longer and further you drive, the more likely you will be involved in accidents. That would make your tractor trailer insurance more expensive.
Whether or you will cross state borderlines also has a significant impact on your insurance cost. Crossing state borderlines will increase your tractor trailer insurance significantly.
How to find cheap tractor trailer insurance
Schneider has some tips for lowering your insurance costs.
- Research. Compare rates from several companies. Ask about bundle programs, discounts, and any other potential cost savings.
- Pay premiums yearly. You can often pay premiums either monthly or yearly. Paying yearly saves you money in the long run because you avoid convenience fees or payment plan charges.
- Work to be safer. Invest in safety training. Implement document management systems and safety equipment protocols.
- Consider leasing with a motor carrier. Truckers who lease with a motor carrier often have lower insurance costs because the carrier covers the brunt of the cost of insurance.
Tractor trailer truck insurance is required to operate under your own authority or lease with a motor carrier. You are required by federal law to carry certain limits of liability coverage. States or specific companies can add their own minimums to the federal limits.