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What is Marine Insurance

Marine insurance provides coverage against any damage/loss caused not only to the ship but moreover to the cargo, which the ship is transporting. Marine insurance is necessary for all the owners of the ship/yacht who use it regardless of whether for a commercial or transportation purpose.

In the case of, the property is exposed to whether onshore/offshore, marine casualty, marine liability and hull vandalism are protected under marine insurance coverage. Cargo insurance is the sub-category of marine insurance. 

Benefits of Marine Insurance in India

Marine insurance has its distinctive significance wherein there are four modes of transportation being used across the globe, which includes road, rail, air and water. But in terms of water, it causes a lot of worries as there could be different unforeseen natural accidents which may harm the vessel or the cargo besides there are many other unforeseen attributes that would lead to a huge fiscal cost for the shipping industry as well as the transporter.

Therefore, it becomes imperative to have marine insurance and secure yourself from a huge amount of loss that you might have to bear. Some benefits of having marine insurance in India are:

  • Comprehensive Coverage: Having marine insurance policy essentially safeguards you against all potential marine-related perils and provides comprehensive coverage on the equivalent.
  • Flexibility: The plans under the marine insurance policy are flexible enough and have a variety of options catering to the requirements of the insured and considering their budget they are willing to spend.
  • Claim Survey and Settlement Assistance: Having marine insurance you need not take stress about the claim as the policy offers worldwide claims settlement assistance along with a claim survey.
  • Extension of Coverage: Under a marine insurance policy, one has the liberty to enhance the plan with additional coverage and shield against any unforeseen events such as a strike, riots, and so on.
  • Option to Customize: Marine insurance plans can be availed with customized coverage and be adjusted to meet certain needs of the customers.

Types of Marine Insurance in India

Depending upon the needs of the customers, the following are types of marine insurance plans available in India:

Cargo Insurance

This policy essentially is designed to cater to the cargo carried by the ships. In case of any loss/damage of the cargo, this plan will safeguard the cargo owner. This policy also covers the belongings of the ship voyager. Besides, this plan also offers third-party liability coverage and provides coverage to the port, ship or other transport forms under any damage from the perilous cargo carried by them.

Liability Insurance

Under this kind of plan, compensation is provided to any accountability-taking place in the circumstances like a ship is collided or crashed, or any other reason of persuaded attacks.

Hull Insurance

This marine insurance policy provides coverage to vessel including the furniture and articles of the ship against any unanticipated mishaps. It is imperative for the ship owners to buy this policy and not overlook.

Freight Insurance

This policy offers an extra layer of safety to the merchant vessel’s corporations under any damage/loss of cargo due to unforeseen mishap. This policy acts as a safety net for the companies that may face huge monetary loss because of any unprecedented situations.

Let us have a look at various other marine insurance plans available, some of which are:

  • Time Plan: When a plan is bought for a specific period is known as time policy. This policy is generally valid for a year or so.
  • Voyage Plan: This plan is can be bought by those who wish to ensure a specific sea voyage. The moment the journey ends, the plan will be expired.
  • Mixed Plan: When a policy provides the advantage of both a voyage plan and time plan, then such a plan is referred to as a mixed plan.
  • Port Risk Plan: When the ship is stationed at the port, to ensure the protection and reliability of the equivalent, a port risk plan appears.
  • Valued Plan: Within this plan, the value is determined either of the cargo or the consignment, which is mentioned in the document of the policy in advance. This helps in a case if cargo or consignment gets lost determining the insurance value.
  • Floating Plan: Under this plan, the amount of claim is specified beforehand. It is to be noted that the other details cannot be disclosed until the ship starts with the voyage. This plan is best suited who undertake regular cargo transportation trips.
  • Wager Plan: This plan does not have any predefined fixed repayment terms, nevertheless, if the safety net provider finds any shortfall or harm deserving of cases, at that point reimbursement is given. If the harms are not worth considering, at that point there will not be any remuneration. It must be noted here that a wagering plan is not a written insurance policy and subsequently it is not legitimate in the court.

Inclusions Under Marine Insurance Policy

In the below grid, are the inclusions covered under the marine insurance policy, which are:


Cover under dire situations like fire or explosion, sinking, stranding during a cargo journey.

Cover for expenses against collision, overturning or derailment of land conveyance.

Cover for expenses under a circumstance wherein the cargo is discharged from a port of distress/disturbance.

Cover for general average sacrifice salvages charges.

Cover against any natural calamities such as an earthquake or lightning.

Cover for expenses such as survey fees, forwarding expenses, costs of reconditioning and charges of sue.

Cover for situations like jettison and washing overboard.

Cover under the total loss of the package whether overboard or dropped amidst loading or unloading.

Exclusions Under Marine Insurance Policy

In the following grid, is a list of exclusions, which are not covered under a marine insurance plan:


When the loss/damage is intentional, you are not liable for any compensation.

When the packaging quality of the cargo is not appropriate.

No cover shall be provided if the damage occurs due to bankruptcy, liquidation, failure/collapse in the finances.

Wear and Tear of the goods insured.

No cover shall be provided if the loss occurs due to delay in the cargo.

No cover shall be provided under extreme unpredictable situations like war, strikes, riots and civil commotion.

Companies Offering Marie Insurance Policy in India

In India, various inusrance providers offer a marine insurance policy.

In the below grid, are some insurance providers along with the key features they provide:

Insurance Provider

Key Features

ICICI Lombard

- All modes of transportation that includes road, rail, air and water are covered under the plan.

- Provides comprehensive coverage against perils and can enhance the policy by opting additional coverage

- Goods in transit are also covered against collision, derailment, etc.

- The plan is flexible enough catering to the needs of the customers.

- Swift and efficient response in handling claims.

TATA AIG General Insurance Company

- Provides coverage keeping in mind the local regulatory concerns.

- Option to tailor the policy basis customer’s needs.

- Has a dedicated team of marine cargo underwriters.

- Pioneers of online issuance of marine certificates in India.

- Round-the-clock assistance services.

United India Insurance Co. Ltd.

- It provides coverage to damage of goods in transit by road, rail, water or air.

- It offers different types of policy such as open cover, open policy, specific voyage policy and annual policy.

- Provides comprehensive coverage against fire, lightning, jettison, collision, washing overboard, etc.

IFFCO Tokio General Insurance

- Provides coverage to goods in transit through road, rail, water, air and post parcels.

- Option to obtain cover of all despatches under an open policy.

- Provides coverage in situations like any natural calamity, fire and explosion, sinking, jettison, etc.

- Sum insured is based on cost, freight, insurance and other incidental expenses.

Finding the Best Marine Insurance Policy Online

In India, there are plethoras of insurance providers who provide a marine insurance policy. What becomes strenuous task is to select the most suitable plan o the premise of one’s’ prerequisites.

The best way to buy a marine insurance policy is to compare different marine insurance policies on the web and accordingly select the plan, which suits you the most.

The web aggregator might ask you some queries about the requirements, which will be of help in finding a suitable plan. This way by using web aggregator you may compare, analyze and find the best marine insurance policy online.

Claim Process for Marine Insurance Policy

The following are the basic steps, which need to be followed while claiming a marine insurance policy:

  • Inform the insurer as soon as possible regarding the claim. Either you visit the nearest branch of the insurance provider or you may speak to the representative of the insurance provider.
  • In any case, if the damage/loss has occurred to the goods of the ship while on the port or the ship, then under such a circumstance the insurer will have to arrange a surveyor who will examine the ship or the port.
  • All the policy documents/certificate must be submitted. Besides, the policyholder also needs to produce the original invoice and other related documents, which would authenticate the claim.
Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 21 January 2020

What does Marine Insurance cover?


Marine insurance covers you in below situations:

1. Fire or blast, sinking, stranding etc.

2. Collision, the overturning of land transport

3. The release of cargo at the port of disturbance

4. Average sacrifice recovery charges

5. Washing overboard

6. Earthquake or lightning

7. Total loss of package lost overboard


What are the things not covered by Marine Insurance?


The following are the exclusions of Marine Insurance:

1. Willful misconduct of the insured

2. Ordinary leakage, loss of weight or volume

3. Insufficient package

4. Loss or damage due to any financial default or insolvency of the ship-owner etc.

5. Loss caused due to the delay of cargo

6. War and strikes


Where do I get the list of insurance companies offering Marine Insurance in India?


In India, various financial institutions, including major banks offer Marine Insurance. If we talk about insurance companies, then you can go for:

1. Bharti AXA

2. New India Assurance Co. Ltd.

3. Tata AIG

4. HDFC Ergo

5. Royal Sundaram

6. United India Assurance Co. Ltd

7. Cholamandalam Insurance Company


How can I make a claim, in case of a cargo emergency?


The claim process of Marine Insurance is simple. Below are the steps to make a claim:

1. Inform the insurer immediately by approaching the claim representative or visiting the nearest branch

2. In case of damages caused to the goods that are on the ship, a port or joint ship must be arranged by you

3. Submit the policy document and other relevant documents, which may be required to testimony your claim


What are the various plans covered under Marine Insurance?


A plenty of plans are offered under Marine Insurance. A few of them are:

1. Voyage Plan

2. Mixed Plan

3. Time Plan

4. Port Risk Plan

5. Floating Plan

6. Wager plan

7. Valued Plan


What are the factors to be considered while buying marine insurance coverage?


There are factors to be considered in order to ensure the right marine insurance policy.

Firstly, the reputation of the insurer and its financial background. Following this one must ensure that the insurer has a robust marine claim department.

Secondly, the coverage should aptly be designed as per your insurance needs. Moreover, the premium should be affordable.

Third, prefer buying marine insurance online. Some insurers offer discounts on their plans when you buy online.

Fourth, analyse your needs first, then buy. The one suits the others may not be proved as useful to you. So, review your needs and buy accordingly.


I want to buy a one-year policy that covers all my shipment. Where to buy it from?


There are insurance providers in India who offers marine insurance. You can approach one of them. The best part is, you need not have to visit them physically, you can go to their websites,  compare the plans and buy according to your requirements.


How is the premium of marine insurance decided?


The premium is decided based on the following factors:

1. Type of ship

2. Age of the ship

3. Valuation or cost of the ship

4. Trading and tonnage limits of the ship

5. Management and ownership terms of the ship

6. Type of insurance cover required


Who can buy Marine Insurance?


Those who own a ship & cargo with an insurable interest in the boat or ship can buy marine insurance.


Who is deemed to have an insurable interest under a marine insurance policy?


The owner of the ship

1. The owner of the cargo

2. The master and crew of the ship

3. The creator who has advanced money on the security of the boat or ship

4. The mortgagor if the insurable subject is mortgaged

5. A trustee with a property in trust

6. The person advancing the freight


What are the types of sales contract under Marine insurance in India?


The types of contract under marine insurance are:

1. FOB Contract- Free on Board

2. FOR Contract- free on Rail

3. C&F Contract- Cost &Freight

4. CIF Contract- Cost, Insurance & Freight

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