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rlopes

Insurance for Camera while Traveling?

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We are headed to Galapagos in November.  My housing, strobes, ports, and arms I am planning on putting in my Pelican Storm Case.  Camera and lenses I will carry on the airplane. 

We purchased airline insurance for the flight and I have DAN diving insurance.  I have not yet purchased trip insurance but will (likely DAN...but open to suggestions).  

What gaps will I have missed in my coverage if my camera gear gets damaged, lost or stolen while in transit?

Thanks,

Lopes

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3 hours ago, rlopes said:

What gaps will I have missed in my coverage if my camera gear gets damaged, lost or stolen while in transit?

Is any of it covered by any existing home contents insurance you might have?

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You really need to read the fine print of whatever insurance you choose.  Some policies may for example exclude coverage for items that are checked when the airline says you should carry them on  for example.  Another classic exclusion is flood coverage for UW use - water damage is a common exclusion to photo gear cover.  It's tedious but necessary unfortunately as the insurance companies will use the exclusion clauses to the letter. 

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DAN camera equipment insurance is through Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty Marine Insurance Company. Should you have a loss, due to a flood, or theft the company requires the following documentation for claims processing:

1.  Copy of original purchase invoices/receipts, if available.

2.  Copy of the repair estimate or statement of non-repair

3.  Copy of the police report if stolen/Airline Claim letter

4.  Copy of replacement estimates/quotes on dealer letterhead or from an internet website only if the equipment is deemed non-repairable.

5.  Any other documentation pertaining to the claim.

6.  Confirmation from shop that camera is non-repairable.

7.  Possible photos of damage.

It's a good company and I've good experiences with the folks who work the claims department.

Keep in mind that the deductible for flooding is $250.00 per insured item. Of course, this means if you lose a camera and lens due to a flooded housing, your total deductible  is $500.00. The $250.00 deductible also applies to any flood damage to the electronics inside your insured housing.

-Tinman

 

 

 

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Thanks All, 

I have in the past had personal articles policy through State Farm.  I listed all of my camera gear at the time as well as my wife's wedding ring and I think a couple of other valuables.   I am planning on calling them tomorrow and check on renewing that policy.  It was like $100 to $150 per year for the premium...but that was a while ago. 

I am also planning a call to DAN to help with coverage for trip insurance and now I will also ask them about their camera coverage insurance. 

Lopes

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I rate DAN highly but it did strike me that a $250 deductible for each insured item was kinda steep. $250 per claim, sure - but per item?

God forbid, but flood a housing: $250 for the housing, $250 for the camera, $250 for the lens, $250 for the trigger.... ouch.

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Yes, the $250.00 deductible per item is pretty steep. I had a housing flood last fall that killed my camera, lens and housing electronics. Housing repairs set me back $600.00. The deductible on DAN insurance is $250.00 for losses due to housing floods and $100.00 for other types of loss. Of course, these per item deductibles are clearly stated in the policy.

Based upon my experience, I recommend that anyone who's going to insure equipment keep copies of original invoices and receipts, and list those values on the policy. The cost of insuring will be higher because the insurance company's formula is based upon charging a flat amount for every $100.00 of value.

I had factored in depreciation for the value of my Nikon D7200 camera since it is an older camera and isn't really available new any more. Purchased new, it cost me around $1,200.00, but a low shutter count used one is around $700.00. The incident left me wishing that I had kept my purchase receipts and had insured for the original value.

Keep in mind that the insurance company settled without any hassles. But, I realized that I needed to do better with keeping documentation of my equipment expenditures and insure at the 'when it was new' value of the equipment.

I had carried an insurance policy on my housing and equipment for over ten years and complained many times about the cost of insuring my camera and lenses. The experience left me wishing I had insured for the 'when it was new' value rather than factoring-in depreciation.

I also recommend that people check to see if their home owners insurance will cover a flooded housing scenario. My home owners insurance agent laughed at me when I asked him about it. Still, I know underwater photographers whose home owners policies do cover equipment loss due to housing floods.

In the bigger picture of avoiding loss due to flooding, make sure you have a vacuum valve system and a moisture detection alarm that are working properly. Overall, these are pretty cheap insurance to avoid the expense of replacing flood-damaged equipment.

-Tinman

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I have a personal articles policy with State Farm  and they do not cover water damage. After covering everything under the sun with the DAN recommended H2OInsurance and then missed one lens that in fact did get damage but wasn’t covered anywhere. My bad. But I realized that the cost of repair was not so bad on things in my likely scenario that would get wet but not submerged in water. So now State Farm gets everything but the camera bodies themselves that I do cover with H2Oinsurance. I have a Nauticam housing and talked with the folks in West Palm and discussed the likely cost of repair for a housing slightly wet and it wasn’t so bad that I would feel the need to water insure. IT can be all about ones comfort with risk and if you have the means to quasi self insure.

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I looked at the various options for insurance  and insured dive camera gear through State Farm.  The coverage I have is "all peril" and does include water damage.  You might want to talk to your insurance agent.

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On 8/31/2022 at 10:38 AM, Whipauee said:

I have a personal articles policy with State Farm  and they do not cover water damage. After covering everything under the sun with the DAN recommended H2OInsurance and then missed one lens that in fact did get damage but wasn’t covered anywhere. My bad. But I realized that the cost of repair was not so bad on things in my likely scenario that would get wet but not submerged in water. So now State Farm gets everything but the camera bodies themselves that I do cover with H2Oinsurance. I have a Nauticam housing and talked with the folks in West Palm and discussed the likely cost of repair for a housing slightly wet and it wasn’t so bad that I would feel the need to water insure. IT can be all about ones comfort with risk and if you have the means to quasi self insure.

One thing to be aware of is that for cameras and lenses if they have been in Saltwater most repair facilities won't repair them - quite often they repair what they find then corrosion from the salt continues and something else fails - it's generally a total loss for anything electronic in salt water.  Housing are not so bad as you only need to replace the vacuum electronics so the cost is not too high.

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All my photography equipment is insured through my Homeowners policy and it has worked great.  The insurance company paid for the entire repair cost when it was accidentally dropped. The policy is a personal effects and  insures for travel loss.  

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On 9/17/2022 at 1:36 PM, Flatirons diver said:

All my photography equipment is insured through my Homeowners policy and it has worked great.  The insurance company paid for the entire repair cost when it was accidentally dropped. The policy is a personal effects and  insures for travel loss.  

did it impact your subsequent rates, however?

I had an, ahem, minor mugging incident that resulted in a few thousand dollars in loss.   With the deductible, limitations, and future consequences for filing a claim, my agent advised that doing so was a losing proposition.   It seems more suitable for major events than mid 4 figure damage.   Now that my housing and camera were each 3800 (R5), plus a lens, we're close to a 10k loss, but that is still pretty minor.  A full loss including the strobes and ports pushes it a big closer to 15.  

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On 3/27/2022 at 1:36 PM, TimG said:

I rate DAN highly but it did strike me that a $250 deductible for each insured item was kinda steep. $250 per claim, sure - but per item?

God forbid, but flood a housing: $250 for the housing, $250 for the camera, $250 for the lens, $250 for the trigger.... ouch.

Deductible are intended to discourage folks from making minor claims. A flooded housing can be easily repaired since there isn't much inside that's electronic. And many, if not most, floods are not "catastrophic". They're often a few drops of water that get in to critical places, but in many cases, the items are salvageable, especially if noticed early.

I have a friend who's an insurance broker and I remember once saying that she found it sad that clients actually think the reason insurance companies exist is to pay out claims. They don't... they exist to make money for the shareholders of the company, and the best way to do this is to do everything possible to AVOID paying out claims. Higher deductibles are the best way to do this. With the speed that cameras are evolving these days, the urge to "flood" a system to afford an upgrade is likely pretty big in some people.

As an aside, I used to have my gear on a "floater/rider" so it was well insured (except against flooding). I sent my broker a copy of a calendar I produce and sell which led to a call from him. He thanked me then asked if I was a "professional" photographer. I laughed and said of course not, but I make a few thousand bucks a year from it. He told me that if I make even a dollar from it, the insurance company will deny any coverage. He was unable to insure me as a pro photographer.  My stuff is still covered (at depreciated values) under my home policy, but I have come to accept that I am self insuring for floods etc.

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After a near miss where my entire D850 nauticam rig was lost (but later found) in Fiji a few months ago, i reviewed and updated my insurance.

 

I added a $25,000 Camera rider to my homeowners policy with Safeco. It cost $134 year and has a $500 deductible per claim. Items do not have to be individually listed. This is a far better deal than H2O or DAN as far as i can tell.

Does anyone have experience with this policy?

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