Are You Delivering At Your Own Risk?
Food delivery services have raced onto the scene in recent years. Many delivery drivers use their personal vehicles in all types of weather conditions to deliver meals to private homes and businesses. On top of this, using your personal vehicle can even impact your car insurance premiums as a delivery driver.
A high volume of consumers order out for delivery on a weekly basis. Delivery and fast food are growing in popularity among millennial professionals. The convenience of meals delivered to working families can’t be denied.
Millennials are spending more on food delivery and their numbers are increasing. Pizza delivery makes up the largest percentage of food ordered for delivery. With this increase in demand comes increased risks and potential expenses for delivery drivers. Here are a few risks that can impact your car insurance rates as a delivery driver.
Why all this fuss about insurance coverage?
Insurance companies assess your premiums based on the risk of you getting in an accident. The less risk you possess, the less premium you pay. The more risk you possess, the more premium you pay.
It is considered a risk to use your personal vehicle for business because you are more likely to be involved in an accident. If you have an accident while on the job, your personal policy may not cover you. And of course, if there are injuries, you could be liable for those as well.
Your Mileage May Vary, But It Always Matters
When using your personal vehicle for your job as a delivery driver, the number of miles you put on your vehicle while at work may impact your insurance premiums. Since many people know that eating pizza at home is less expensive than going out, you may be delivering more pizza than anything else. More miles on the odometer means more risk for the insurance company, since you’ll obviously be on the road more. You may also need to have an auto insurance policy that covers business use on your vehicle.
Many policies will cover business use as long as you are driving under a certain number of miles each year for business use. However, if your personal vehicle is used primarily for business, your private auto insurance policy may not cover you. You will have to pay for business coverage or a hired and not-owned policy.
Fender-Benders and Accidents while You’re on the Job
There are many risks and unknown variables for delivery drivers. One of the more obvious risks is motor vehicle accidents. Accidents while on the job can impact the driver’s insurance and could be a liability for the company that they deliver for. Often times, delivery drivers are working against the clock to get the food delivered on time and fresh out the kitchen. So the rush is real, and that’s when accidents happen.
Any employee that delivers for a company, food or other products, should consult with an insurance professional to discuss the risk and need for insurance covering a personal vehicle used for business. Drivers should also consult with the employer to learn about coverage provided or required for employment.
Adverse weather conditions also play a role in the number of accidents reported by delivery drivers each year. When the weather is bad, delivery orders may increase. We all know what it’s like when the weather’s bad and sometimes there are days when wood-fired enthusiasts don't want to make their own pizzas at home. People who don’t want to take the risk of driving in bad weather often decide to transfer that risk on restaurants that deliver. Regardless of the weather, drivers are still expected to deliver fresh meals in the quickest possible time.
Personal Injury And Liability Issues while You’re on the Job
When accidents happen on the job, you run the risk of being held liable for personal injuries suffered as a result of the accident. Companies may also be sued for injuries. Having an add-on policy or coverage is a good idea. To find what options are available, consult your insurance professional.
Reducing Your Risk while You’re Delivering
To minimize your risk, consider contracting with a delivery service. A restaurant delivery service will reduce your need for insurance coverage, employee compensation, and other administrative duties. If a restaurant makes a significant portion of income by delivery services, then this may be a beneficial option.
We’ve all heard of DoorDash and GrubHub, for example. They contract their drivers, maintain employee compensation, and schedule deliveries with their employees. The creators of these companies knew what they were doing (just like the guy who invented pizza) and have ensured the best for their delivery drivers. Delivering with one of these legitimate companies can make your life easier. Of course, it’s also important to remember that risky driving isn’t worth it. Do your best to get deliveries done on time while they’re fresh, but always prioritize your safety and the safety of everyone else on the road.
Special Delivery: You’re Never Out of Options!
If you work in the food delivery service industry, hired and non-owned insurance coverage may be the appropriate policy to consider. This will cover business use on your personal vehicle. In addition, these policies may cover car rentals for business purposes.
Whatever you do, make sure you’re covered. Few things in life are worse than getting in an accident and realizing you’re not covered, except maybe spilling hot wings all over your freshly detailed carpets.
Guest Author Bio: Robyn Flint writes for AutoInsurance.org and has an MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Her experience in the field of mental health includes counseling children and families through outpatient counseling, program management, clinical supervision, and therapeutic foster care. Robyn is also a freelance writer and published author.