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What is Hull Insurance?

Hull insurance

Hull insurance is a process of insuring your boat or ship, its equipment and machinery, against any sort of damage. A hull insurance will usually cover the ship’s hull, railing, life boats and so on.

In Marine Insurance, the insured items are mainly 2 types, one is for the cargo and the other is for the carrier, the vessel (ship). The insurance of ship is known as Hull Insurance (also known as Hull and Machinery Insurance).

Hull insurance is generally seen as synonymous to cargo insurance but these are essentially different. Cargo insurance policies provide coverage to the goods that are moved on to and off a ship. Just like any other insurance policy, one is supposed to pay a premium to get the coverage.


In most instances, a hull insurance policy will cover all the damage, unless something is specifically excluded from the insurance policy. In some cases, insurance providers offer policies that only cover the damage from specifically mentioned incidents. Most commonly excluded instances include damage from insects, from usual wear and tear, marine life and zebra mussels. Some of the policies may also exclude the damage caused to the machinery such as to the engines.

Just like any other insurance policy, the terms, conditions, deductibles and coverage vary from provider to provider. One should carefully read and compare the provider’s contract before buying this policy.

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Parul Mahajan is a Post Graduate in Gender Studies from Ambedkar University, Delhi and also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from Daulat Ram College, Delhi University. She is the author of ““Warring Over Religion and Feminism”, a Masters level Dissertation. Parul has also interned with Vimochana, a Bangalore based women’s organization working on various women’s issues.


  1. Interesting to see that it only covers zebra mussels – do you have to get a separate insurance policy for other types of mussels? Are there other types of mussels? What about oysters? I know there are several types of barnacles and such that can attach themselves to a boat hulls and cause destruction. Clarity on this would be appreciated.

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