Goods in transit insurance – why you need all-risks cover

IFL tail lift pallet delivery - goods in transit insurance

As a professional freight forwarder we, of course, make every effort to ensure that your goods are transported from door to door without loss or damage.

When handling, transporting or storing your goods, we are also subject to certain conditions of carriage:

  • UK domestic transport – Road Haulage Association (RHA) Conditions of Carriage (2020 Edition)
  • International transport – British International Freight Association (2021 Edition)
  • Warehousing – United Kingdom Warehousing Association (2019 Edition)

Liability rates

However, while we take every care with every job we carry out, the nature of the modern supply chain means that cargo is not always under our direct control and sometimes incidents can occur which result in an insurance claim.

Liability rates are based on the gross weight of the goods lost or damaged. Our liability as carrier for loss/damage under the conditions of carriage is:

  • RHA – £1.30 per kg (£1,300 per tonne)
  • BIFA – £2.20 per kg (£2,200 per tonne), except international traffic to/from Europe where the rate is £9 per kg (£9,000 per tonne)
  • UKWA – £100 per tonne

What goods in transit insurance cover do you need?

It’s good practice for cargo owners to have goods in transit insurance in place to help claim for costs which can’t be recovered from the carrier.

All-risks goods in transit insurance cover isn’t expensive and has very few exclusions. Some companies will already have this cover either as a separate policy or as part of their commercial combined policies.

We can also quote competitive rates for this type of insurance. An attractive alternative that IFL offers is cover on the basis of an individual declaration per shipment, which means that the cargo owner can pick and choose the shipments for which cover is needed.

Who arranges insurance cover?

We are frequently asked who is responsible for arranging the insurance cover so here are the main Incoterms in current use, which answer this question:

  • EXW (Ex Works) – the buyer
  • FCA (Free Carrier) – the buyer
  • FOB (Free On Board) – the buyer
  • CIP (Carriage and Insurance Paid) – the seller
  • CPT (Carriage Paid To) – the seller up to the named destination; the buyer thereafter
  • DAP (Delivered At Place) – the seller
  • DDP (Delivered Duty Paid) – the seller

How to claim

Finally, here are some general points to bear in mind relating to insurance claim procedures.

Clean PODs – under RHA and BIFA conditions, a clean proof of delivery document signifies the end of the legal contract of carriage between the customer and the forwarder or carrier – and insurers will not normally pay any claim if there is a clean POD.

Retain damaged goods for inspection – insurers may wish to establish if any salvage value can reduce their liability.

Photographs – this type of evidence is now a key factor in the speedy settlement of claims for damage.

VAT – insurers do not settle any UK value added tax relating to insurance claims; these amounts must be reclaimed through normal accounting procedures.

Cost-price basis – insurers settle claims on a cost-price basis and will require documentary evidence to verify this.

Goods in transit insurance advice and quotes

For general advice and guidance relating to goods in transit insurance claims, or to get a quote, please call +44 (0)1675 434690 or email us at


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Please note: we do not ship personal effects.