3 in 10 small businesses are affected by vehicle breakdowns each year

Business man inspecting his broken down car.

If you own a small business, you probably know how important it is to have a fully-functioning vehicle available to you.

A recent report from the RAC has suggested that over 30% of small businesses are affected by vehicle breakdowns every year – risking the loss of crucial time and potential clients as a consequence.

From motorway recovery to emergency breakdowns, a business can lose anywhere from a couple of hours to a couple of days if they suffer an unexpected breakdown without the relevant cover.

Breakdown cover cannot only prevent your vehicles from breaking down, but it can help to ensure that everything possible is done to get you back on the road in time for that next home delivery, appointment or business meeting.

When it comes to running a small business, time is money, but investing in breakdown cover on your business vehicles can save you both.

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Breakdown cover for business vehicles

Having commercial breakdown cover can provide you with roadside assistance should your business vehicle break down.

Whether you require fleet breakdown cover for multiple vehicles or cover for just one, there are a range of policies available to suit your needs.

Fleet Cover

Fleet breakdown cover is a type of policy which allows you to cover multiple commercial vehicles under one simple policy, no matter who is behind the wheel.

Whether you have a fleet of 2 motorbikes, 10 cars or 25 vans, fleet breakdown cover can offer you protection for all of your vehicles.

Most insurers also offer breakdown insurance on trucks, trailers and articulated vehicles.

Breakdown cover for one vehicle

If your small business only uses one vehicle, you may not need commercial breakdown cover specifically.

Unlike with car insurance, most breakdown providers will not ask you whether your single vehicle is being used for commercial purposes or not when looking for breakdown quotes, so standard breakdown cover should cover your business needs just as it would your personal needs.

If there are multiple people driving this vehicle, be sure to choose vehicle breakdown cover rather than personal breakdown cover, to make sure that it is covered against breakdowns no matter who is driving.

Do be cautious, though, and read the terms of your policy, as breakdown cover for commercial use is not always guaranteed by all recover services.

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What are the different types of breakdown cover?

Both breakdown insurance for a fleet of vehicles and a single vehicle come with various levels of cover that you can choose from.

These levels of cover – roadside assistance, vehicle recovery and onward travel – all cover you to varying extents.

Roadside assistance

Roadside assistance is included in all breakdown cover policies as bare minimum.

It covers you against breakdowns that occur further than a quarter-of-a-mile away from your vehicle’s registered address, at which point your provider will send a mechanic to take a look at any damage.

If they can fix your vehicle at the side of the road then they will, but if not, they will take you and your vehicle to the closest registered garage where you will be required to pay for any work done to get you back on the road.

Vehicle recovery

One step up from roadside assistance is vehicle recovery, with many recovery services promising to take you and your vehicle to a UK destination of your choice should you break down.

Whether you choose to be taken home, to a garage or to your important meeting, vehicle recovery is a good option that will keep your business on the road for the rest of the day.

Onward travel

Onward travel is the most comprehensive – and therefore most expensive – level of breakdown cover.

Onward travel for business vehicles can provide you with a replacement vehicle for a period of time if you break down, giving you time to get your own vehicle fixed without compromising on the performance of your business.

Only some providers can provide you with a replacement van, so think carefully about what you would need in the event of a breakdown before choosing your policy and provider.

Additional extras

There are various optional extras available to ensure that your breakdown insurance is tailored to your needs.

One of these is the option to cover your vehicles against any breakdowns that occur within a quarter-of-a-mile of your registered address with home-start breakdown cover.

Some providers also offer you cover against:

  • Lost car or house keys
  • Battery replacement
  • Tyre replacement

Breakdown cover for business vehicles in Europe

One of the additional extras to many breakdown cover policies is cover against breakdowns that occur in Europe.

For example, if you run a small travel company or have a fleet of coaches across southern Spain, having onward travel breakdown cover on your European policy should allow for your customers to continue enjoying their holiday with a replacement vehicle.

If you would like to learn more about breakdown cover, the range of breakdown cover policies available and how they can help you and your business, take a look at our Complete Guide to Breakdown Cover or take a look at our range of breakdown cover reviews.

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