May 30, 2024

In-transit insurance: is it worth it?

A McLaren F1 GTR valued at less than £2,000. Can you even imagine? Well, in 2024, this is in fact the case. Read on to find out how and why.

It has been reported by the World Shipping Council that an average of 1,382 containers are lost at sea each year. By default, seafreight is covered by standard BIFA terms and conditions – but what does that actually mean?

Well, if a shipment is lost or damaged, these terms mean that any payout would be at a rate of 2 x SDR per kilo of the gross weight, which, according to today’s exchange rate, is just under £2.10 per kilo.

To put this in layman’s terms, it isn’t very much. 

Photo credit: James Lipman // BBC Top Gear

As examples, let’s take a McLaren P1 and a McLaren F1 GTR. Two highly valuable and collectible cars, and which we have significant experience of handling. 

If you are shipping your McLaren P1 (weight: 1,395kg), or a much more valuable, but lighter, 1997-spec longtail McLaren F1 GTR (weight: 915kg), the payouts work out as only a tiny fraction of the true value. Under these basic BIFA terms and conditions, a total loss claim would see a payout of up to a maximum of £2,906 for the modern hybrid hypercar valued at approximately £1.5m, or – even more scarily – just £1,905 for the ex-GT1 icon, which are regularly valued in excess of £15m.

When you entrust your vehicle with Bespoke Handling, our team does everything we can to mitigate risk and damage while it is under our care. However, once in the hands of the shipping lines, the shipment is at the mercy of the high seas and the weather, and unless you specify proper insurance coverage, it could prove to be an extremely expensive loss.

So, what can be done to ensure you are suitably covered? As part of our extensive closed-loop service package to our customers, we offer comprehensive and highly-competitive insurance coverage for your vehicle, parts and kit are fully protected. 

Don’t run the risk of being left all at sea. Speak to our seafreight team to ensure the shipment is covered from door to door. 

Contact or call +44 (0) 1444 831869 to speak to a member of our seafrieght team.

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