In 1972, Kawasaki introduced the first commercially successful personal watercraft under the brand name Jet Ski. Since then, the term “Jet Ski” has become synonymous with many types of personal watercraft.
Jet Skis are easy to operate and maneuver, and this pastime is enjoyed by millions of Americans every year.
If you are among the many watercraft enthusiasts who own a Jet Ski, or if you are thinking about purchasing a PWC in the near future, you may have questions about insuring your investment.
Contact an independent agent in our network today. These agents have relationships with several different insurance companies and can provide you with Jet Ski insurance quotes at competitive rates.
Know This: Jet Ski Facts
As you think about your PWC and whether or not you need insurance for it, consider a few facts about Jet Ski usage, popularity, and potential risks. Insurance companies create metrics based on facts like these to create premiums and insurance packages to offer to consumers.
- There are more than one million PWCs currently in use today
- PWCs account for about 1/3 of all new boat sales in the United States
- Minimum age requirements for operating personal watercrafts vary by state; some states allow children as young as 10 years old to ride them
- While Jet Skis were originally designed for only one rider, some models available today can accommodate three or four passengers
These facts might raise some flags in your mind about how to best protect your family and your investment. If you have questions that need to be answered, contact an independent agent in the Trusted Choice network today.
Research Jet Ski Insurance Requirements
You may be surprised to learn that you are not obligated by law to carry insurance for personal watercraft, including Jet Skis, anywhere in the U.S.
The only time you may be required to have Jet Ski insurance is if you have financed your PWC purchase and your lender requires you to have comprehensive coverage for the life of the loan.
Jet Ski insurance, though not legally mandatory, is simply a good idea due to the risks of the sport. Most people ride their Jet Skis in rivers where the water can be murky enough that shallow areas and obstacles just below the surface of the water are hard to detect.
A collision with a rock or a fallen tree branch can put a nice rip in your hull. Your Jet Ski may also be damaged in the trailer if you are in a collision to or from home.
When considering Jet Ski insurance, be sure to think about your liability risk while operating your watercraft. Especially when you are riding in a highly trafficked waterway, it is possible to hit a swimmer, collide with another PWC or injure a passenger.
A Jet Ski policy can help to cover injuries and damages you or another rider on your policy cause.
Some homeowners insurance plans allow you to add your Jet Ski to your policy. Be sure to look at the coverage and determine if it can fully meet your needs.
Know What Your Jet Ski Insurance Covers
Jet Ski insurance is specifically designed to meet the coverage needs of personal watercraft owners. There are many different insurance providers and the coverage they offer can vary from one policy to the next.
PWC insurance policies typically provide liability coverage that goes into effect if you are responsible for property damage or bodily injury to someone while riding your Jet Ski. Your policy may also provide coverage for physical damage and theft.
Other coverage options you might find in various policies include the following:
- Insurance for when you are towing your PWC, including coverage for the trailer, roadside assistance and towing of your Jet Ski to a repair facility
- Coverage for clean-up following an accident, including wreckage removal and fuel spill clean up costs
- Reimbursement for damage to your PWC if it is hit by an uninsured boater
- Payment of your medical bills if you are injured by an uninsured boater
- Personal property replacement-cost coverage (rather than actual-cash-value coverage)
Normal wear-and-tear and upgrades to your PWC are typically not covered by Jet Ski insurance. If you travel abroad with your PWC, be aware that not all policies will provide coverage while riding in foreign waters. Be sure to get a policy that will provide full coverage wherever you may ride.
Find Out What Jet Ski Insurance Costs
The cost of insuring your PWC can vary greatly, so shopping around is a good idea. Your insurance costs depend on several factors, including the make, model, age and engine size of your Jet Ski, as well as other considerations such as where and how you store it when it is not in use.
You might find a comprehensive policy for as little as $1 a day.
Be Safe on the Water – Tips for PWC Owners
You can take a PWC safety course online for free, and many states require PWC operators to have safety certification prior to taking their craft into the water. While some states may require this certification of all operators, others only have this requirement for people in certain age brackets.
Regardless of whether or not your state requires a safety course, taking one is a good idea for everyone and can even lead to policy discounts on your Jet Ski insurance.
Jet Ski riding can be a fun family activity. It is important to follow safety guidelines to prevent injuries to yourself and others. Below are some important safety tips:
- Stay away from restricted areas and adhere to all posted rules and regulations.
- Dress appropriately. Snug-fitting clothing, such as a wet suit, prevents clothing from getting caught in machinery; flexible water-safe shoes protect your feet while in the water. A Coast Guard-approved lifejacket and protective eyewear are also critical.
- Make use of the engine shut-off feature by keeping the lanyard securely attached to your wrist or clothing. This will stop the craft from running if you fall off.
- Scan your surroundings constantly. Be aware of others in the water, including boaters, swimmers, and those being towed on skis and tubes.
- Refrain from riding over the posted limit and riding aggressively. Operator error and poor judgment are the leading causes of Jet Ski accidents.
- Do not ride at night or at times when visibility is limited.
- Know your PWCs capacity limits, and do not exceed the recommended passenger limit or weight limit.
- Never operate your Jet Ski under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Get the Right Coverage at a Great Price
Comparison shopping for Jet Ski insurance can be time consuming. Though one policy may offer a fantastic rate, it may also have very high deductibles, low coverage caps or few options.
Independent agents in our network have relationships with several different insurance providers and can help you compare rates and options.
There are more than 22,000 member agencies in our network nationwide, so it is easy to locate an office near you. Member agents may even be able to save you money by finding you better rates on your other insurance policies.
Discounts are often available when you work with the same insurance company for multiple policies. Find an agent today to learn more about Jet Ski insurance and compare quotes.