A bus insurance policy is a type of commercial vehicle insurance. Under this policy, commercial buses are covered against a range of unforeseen circumstances that a bus is exposed to, such as third-party property damage, third-party injury or death, own vehicle damage, driver death or injury, theft, vandalism, and more. The extent of coverage depends on the type of plan selected. A third-party plan only covers third-party liabilities, whereas comprehensive insurance covers a lot more, including own damages. A commercial bus insurance plan covers all types of buses used for commercial purposes, including school buses, private office buses, and local transport buses. This type of insurance not only safeguards the bus and its owner financially but also protects its driver and riders.
Types of Buses Covered Under Bus Insurance
Here is a list of different types of buses covered under a bus insurance policy.
School Buses: Buses that are part of an educational institution, such as a school or a college and are used primarily for student transportation can be covered under this policy.
Public Buses: Buses owned and run by the government, used to transport passengers within the city or, from one city to another too, can be covered under this policy.
Private Buses: Buses owned by private organizations, such as tour buses or buses used by offices for their employees too, can be covered under this policy.
Other Passenger Carrying Buses: All other types of commercial buses and vans used for the purpose of transporting passengers from one place to another are covered under this policy.
Difference Between Bus Insurance and Private Car Insurance
|Parameters||Private car insurance||Commercial Insurance|
|Risk factors and premium||Lower due to lower kilometers run by the personal car. Lower premium compared to commercial car insurance.||Higher due to higher kilometers run by the buses. Higher insurance premium.|
|Coverage||Financial protection towards damages or losses due to theft, fire, natural calamities, riots, etc. Personal Accident cover for the owner-driver. Third-party Liabilities.||Provides financial protection towards any business losses due to damages to the insured commercial vehicle. Covers drivers and optional cover for passengers. Covers losses due to theft, fire, natural calamities, accidents, etc. Third-party Liabilities|
|Mandatory cover||Third-party Liability||Third-party Liability, Driver, and Passenger Cover|
|Documents for claim||Registration Certificate Driving Licence First Information Report (FIR), if required Copy of insurance policy original repair bill, cash receipts in case of reimbursement||Registration Certificate Fitness Certificate Load Challan Driving Licence Permit FIR, if required Trip Sheet Taxation Book Copy of insurance policy|
|Claim process||FIR is mandatory or on-spot survey/inspection by the insurance company and then the process will be initiated.||FIR is not mandatory unless required. Get the bus repaired at a network garage or get a reimbursement.|
Why Do You Need Bus Insurance?
No vehicle on the road is immune to the road risks that it is exposed to. Buses are often prone to accidents due to the reckless driving of the drivers and the road conditions of India. Therefore, buying a bus insurance policy to safeguard the bus, its driver, and the owner would always be advisable. The followings are a few mentions.
- Protection from Unforeseen Losses: Whether it is due to damages to a third party or the bus of the driver, bus insurance ensures the owner is covered for it all, thus preventing business losses and avoiding any troubles that may come in the way of him/her daily logistical operations.
- Comply with the Law: As per the Motor Vehicle Act, it is mandatory for all vehicles, especially those used for commercial purposes, to at least have a third-party commercial bus insurance policy to protect against any potential third-party damages and losses. Without one, the owner will be liable to pay a fine, when caught.
- Covers for Owner-Driver: Bus insurance covers losses and damages to the vehicle or third-party vehicle and any bodily injuries or the like for its owner-driver.
- To avoid hefty challans: The bus driver has to keep valid commercial vehicle insurance documents while driving on the road, if caught by the traffic police without insurance documents, the driver will be fined a hefty amount of challan as per the traffic rules of the concerned state.
- Passenger Protection: As part of every commercial vehicle insurance, the policy-seeker can opt for an additional endorsement to cover his/her passengers, too, in case of any unfortunate situation such as an accident, fire, or natural calamity.
- Financial protection: When the owner of the bus has a bus insurance policy, he/she will be compensated for the covered losses, which can be a hefty amount and pose a financial burden on his/her shoulder. Therefore, the policy offers financial protection and peace of mind as well.
Inclusions of Bus Insurance
A bus insurance policy has come up with a sack full of benefits and facilities. Some of the important mentions are as follows.
- Accidents: When the bus collides with another, all the damages caused to the bus will be taken care of.
- Theft: Vehicles get stolen every day and even buses are not safe. So, if a bus gets stolen and is not recovered by police or private investigators of the insurer, the owner will get the IDV (Insured Declared Value) of the bus. IDV is the value of the bus calculated after the rate of depreciation, which is the current market value of the vehicle.
- Towing Facility – This policy covers the loss or damage caused to the bus while it is being towed away to someplace.
- Fire or Any Malicious Act: Sometimes, buses can catch fire due to an accident or they can be set on fire by people if caught amid a riot. So, for any damage caused during a riot, strike, or any malicious activity, the owner of the bus would be reimbursed for the money spent on repairs.
- Natural Disasters: Natural disasters ranging from an earthquake, landslides, cyclones, and hailstorms to typhoons and hurricanes, can destroy the owner’s prized possession. But he/she does not have to worry now, as the insurance will pay for it.
- Personal Accident: The policy will cover injuries or death of the owner-driver of the bus up to Rs. 15 lakhs.
- Third-party Losses: The policy will also cover losses incurred by any third-party vehicle, property, or person due to a collision with the bus.
What are the exclusions of bus insurance?
Prior to buying a bus insurance plan, one needs to know what gets covered and what is not. Insurance plans always have certain exclusions to the coverage offered. Complete knowledge will help the insured person to have a better understanding of how the bus insurance plan works. To that effect, let us take a look at some common exclusions in the standard bus insurance plan.
- Absence of a valid driving license – If the incident occurs in the absence of a valid driving license or without a valid registration certificate of the bus, the claim will not be accepted.
- Under any influence – If the driver of the bus meets an accident while he/she is under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or any other intoxicating substance, the company will offer no compensation.
- Contributory Negligence – Any damages or losses caused to the bus due to contributory negligence will not be covered. For example, if there are floods in the city, one still drives the bus despite that.
- Consequential Damages – Any damages or losses that are not a direct result of an accident, natural calamity, or fire cannot be covered.
- Accidents outside geographical limits – No claims can be made for accidents that occur outside the geographical limits that have been outlined in the policy.
- Mechanical or electrical breakdown – Mechanical and electrical breakdown of the insured vehicle will not be covered in bus insurance unless it is taken as an add-on cover.
- Unlawful Reasons – If the vehicle was used for any illegal activities at the time of the accident, the claim would not be accepted.
- Wrong Information – If the insurance company suspects foul play, the claim request might get rejected. If the narration of the event does not match the damages to the bus, the insurer might do some investigation to find out the truth and if it turns out to be a fraudulent claim, the insured person might even lose his/her insurance plan altogether, and not only the claim amount.
- Without proper intimation – If the bus owner gets the insured bus upgraded without intimating the insurer, the claim may get rejected as the insurance policy covers only those bus parts that are specified in the plan.
- Wilful act – Any damage which is clearly caused by the negligence of the owner or the driver or as a result of a deliberate act, then the owner would have to pay for it from his/her pocket.
Claim Process of Bus Insurance
Bus insurance is bought to get compensation for the loss or damages. For getting compensation, filing a claim properly is very important. Therefore, the general claim process for bus insurance is mentioned below.
- As soon as the incident happens, one needs to inform the insurer immediately.
- It will be better to click images of the place to keep a record of it so that one can produce it as proof whenever needed.
- In order to file a claim, one has to fill in the claim form. One can download it from the website of the company of can collect it from the official branch.
- Then, submit the duly filled and signed claim form along with the required documents. It would be advisable to keep those documents in hand to make the claim process quicker.
- An inspector or surveyor will be sent on behalf of the company to inspect the condition of the vehicle to assess the loss and damage. Co-operate with the surveyor and do not produce any wrong information.
- Once the inspector is satisfied, the company will begin the claim process from their end.
- Once you get permission to take the vehicle to the network garage for repair, you can take it to the concerned garage if needed.
- The expenses for the damage and losses will be compensated by the insurer within the stipulated time period if the insurer is satisfied with your claim.
What is The Renewal Process of Bus Insurance?
Bus School insurance policy can be renewed both offline and online. If the insured person wants to go for offline renewal, visit the nearest branch of the concerned insurer or contact the insurance company’s agent.
If one is comfortable with the online policy renewal, just follow the below steps:
- Visit the official website of the insurance company
- Go to the policy renewal option
- Fill in the required details such as name, policy number, etc., and click on submit
- Make the payment
- After one has made the payment, the policy will be renewed and the document will be sent to the registered email ID and/or phone number.
- One can also download and print the document from the website for better convenience.
Factors that can affect the bus insurance premium
There are various factors that will ultimately affect a bus insurance premium rates, such as:
- Model, Engine & Make of the Vehicle: There are different types of buses in the market. Each one of them comes with its own set of features and level of risks. Therefore, the bus insurance rates will largely be affected by the make and model of the bus.
- Location: Every city and town comes with its own level of risk. Some are safer than others, while some are more expensive than others. Therefore, depending on the city the owner operates the bus, the bus insurance rates will differ accordingly.
- No-Claim Bonus: If the insured person already had bus insurance for his/her bus before and is currently looking to renew the policy or get a new insurer – then, in this case, the NCB (No Claim Bonus) will also be considered, and the bus insurance premium will come at a discounted rate. A No-Claim Bonus refers to the fact that the respective bus has not had a single claim in the previous policy term.
- Type of Insurance Plan: Whether a policy-seeker wants to go for a third-party liability insurance plan for his/her bus or comprehensive bus insurance; the bus insurance premium for the two will differ since the coverage benefits offered in each of these plans would be different.
- Other Factors: The important other factors are:
- The number of seats present in the insured vehicle
- The number of miles the insured vehicle has been driven for
- The experience and driving record of the driver of the vehicle
- Whether any safety measures or features have been installed in the vehicle.
- Whether the driver of the vehicle has undergone any safety training
- The profile of the bus’s passengers (whether the bus transports disabled passengers or children)
- The insured must safeguard the number of company assets or assets related to the vehicle if there is a lawsuit against them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, according to the Motor Vehicles Act of India, if you are a vehicle owner, be it a car, bus, or two-wheeler, it is mandatory to purchase a third party liabilities only insurance policy. However, a comprehensive or combined bus insurance policy is optional.
Zero documentation is required to buy a bus insurance policy online. You can get your bus insurance quote within seconds by entering your registration number in the form above. This makes things really simple. However, you will have to provide details like:
- Bus Registration number
- Engine number
- Chassis number
- Previous bus policy number (if you have any)
- Bus manufacturing date
- Date and city of the bus purchase
- Your contact details (address, phone no, and email id)
- You should also have a copy of your bus’s RC book.
If your bus insurance policy has expired, you can renew the policy by making a payment online. You need to upload photos of your bus and get your policy instantly. Your Inspection ID will be generated and after posting a satisfactory inspection and recommendation by a surveyor, your policy will be issued. Note this is applicable only for Private bus & Two Wheeler policy and not for Third Party Liability.
Yes, bus insurance is designed to protect buses like your fleet or school buses. They can all be covered under a customized bus insurance plan.
Yes, it is. If you have accumulated NCB at the time of renewing your existing 4-wheeler insurance policy, you can transfer the NCB within 90 days of your renewal due date. If you wish to change your insurance provider at the time of renewing your bus policy, you can enjoy your NCB discount by getting it transferred as well.
Once a request is logged in, the inspection process takes place within 24 hours. A successful inspection is followed by an online recommendation made to you by the surveyor. Within 48 hours following that recommendation, you will have to log in to the website and convert your auto insurance policy. Failing to convert your policy within that time frame means that you have to go through the entire process again.
You can opt for add-ons if you buy comprehensive bus insurance. Add-ons help you customize your plan to get the exact coverage you need. For instance, you can opt for an add-on that covers your bus’s passengers too in case of an unforeseen event.