Insuring your drone: the basics

Over the last few years, drones have taken off in popularity becoming one of the most sought-after tech toys on the market. With the high price tag that comes with this hobby, it’s certainly something we think is worth protecting. So, we’ve put together some tips and advice on the best ways to protect your drone under your contents insurance, which can help save you money and time.

Why do I need cover for my drone?

Insurance is designed to give you peace of mind should something unforeseen happen. It’s relatively well known that accidents can and do happen when operating a drone, even with the most skilled drone operators. Without insurance, you may need to pay for repairs or replacement out of your own pocket, because no matter how careful you are, you can’t control the outcome of an accident, burglary or fire.

Is my drone covered under my contents policy?

In most cases, yes. Although it’s worth knowing that many policies will only cover drones up to a certain limit and in certain circumstances.

If you’re an AA Insurance customer, your drone (including any parts and accessories) is covered under our Contents Insurance Policy up to a maximum of $5,000 and under our Limited Contents Insurance Policy, it is covered up to $1,000.

If you accidentally cause damage to someone else’s property while using your drone, you may be held legally liable for the costs. To protect yourself from this, AA Insurance provides $2 million of legal liability cover while using your drone, provided you are not breaching Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand rules.

If your drone is used for business purposes, it’s important you check whether your policy covers this type of use. If you’re an AA Insurance customer and hold a Contents Insurance Policy, it is automatically covered up to $3,000, but you may choose to increase your policy limit for business tools and professional equipment. If you hold a Limited Contents Insurance Policy with us, the cover would remain at a maximum of $1,000 when used for business use – it’s important to choose the policy which most suits your needs.

It pays to check the details of your cover with your insurer, including any exclusions that apply, to make sure you are adequately insured.

How can I save on my insurance?

There are several ways you can reduce your premiums without skimping on cover, such as increasing your excess, excluding any optional benefits you don’t need, or making sure you’re receiving all the discounts you’re entitled to.

Some insurers offer a discount if you have more than one eligible policy with them (like our Multi Policy Discount). In addition, at AA Insurance, if you have all your policies with us it means that at claim time, you will only need to pay one excess if all the damage happened in the same event.

It’s worth checking for any other discounts that may be on offer. For example, if you’re an AA Member, you can get exclusive discounts on insurance policies through AA Insurance by simply providing your personal AA Membership number when taking out or renewing eligible policies.

Our top tips for keeping safe when operating your drone

  • Before flying over any private property, ensure sure you have the owner’s permission.

  • In public areas, you’ll need your local council consent to fly your drone overhead. Air Shane has compiled a list outlining local New Zealand council regulations that will help you understand what’s permissible when flying your drone in public areas in your neighbourhood

  • The rules of Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand (CAA) state you must not fly your drone higher than 120 meters (400 feet) above ground level

  • Always make sure you have visual contact of your drone (with your own eyes, don’t rely on using binoculars or other visual aids, it’s best to use your naked eye)

  • Make sure you read the full CAA operating rules.

Any questions?

Now’s a great time to review your insurance. We recommend checking your details are up to date and ensuring the policy and cover you’ve chosen is right for you and your insurance needs.

If you have any questions about your insurance, need to update your AA Insurance policies or would like a quote, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re open from 8am to 8pm weekdays and from 8am to 6pm weekends and public holidays.

This blog provides general information only and is not intended to be a recommendation or personalised financial advice. Excesses, terms, conditions, limits and exclusions apply to AA Insurance Limited’s policies. Please check the policy wording for details of cover. The provision of cover is subject to the underwriting criteria that apply at the time.

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