Marine vs Aviation Insurance: Difference and Comparison

Marine Insurance and Aviation insurance are two types of insurance policies that provide financial protection from various unforeseen circumstances like disasters, specified loss, damage and the like.

Key Takeaways

  1. Marine insurance covers losses or damages to ships, cargo, and other marine assets during maritime transport, including protection against perils at sea.
  2. Aviation insurance covers losses or damages related to aircraft, passengers, crew, and third parties, offering protection against aviation-specific risks and liabilities.
  3. Both types of insurance address the unique risks associated with their respective modes of transportation, with marine insurance focusing on maritime assets and aviation insurance covering aviation-related assets and liabilities.

Marine Insurance vs Aviation Insurance

The difference between Marine Insurance and Aviation Insurance is that the former covers losses or damages related to ships, terminals, cargo, and other risks in marine services. While the latter covers damages or losses related to aircraft operations and other related risks in the Aviation industry.

Marine insurance vs Aviation insurance

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Marine Insurance provides coverage for any damage or loss caused to ships, cargo, terminals and any other water transport with the help of which goods and assets are transferred, received and held between various points of origin and the final terminus.

Aviation Insurance provides coverage for damages and losses related to the ownership, maintenance and operation of aircraft or other flying machines, including hangars, airports, injury to people and cargo loss or damage.


Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonMarine InsuranceAviation Insurance
DefinitionIt is a form of indemnity that covers the losses incurred due to damages caused to ships and other ocean crafts, cargos and terminals and other vessels that may be used to transfer goods from the point of origin to the final terminus.It is a type of insurance that covers losses incurred due to damage caused to aircraft, hangars and other related risks in the ownership and operation of an aircraft.
Industries served by themMarine IndustryAviation Industry
First introduced in4th Century BCEarly 20th Century AD
SignificanceProtects from unforeseen disasters like turbulent weather, piracy, shipwrecks, etc.Provides coverage for unanticipated circumstances like weather hazards, terrorist hijacks, technical failures etc.
What is not covered?The loss incurred due to purposeful misconduct and negligence, cargo damage due to improper packing and delays.Losses incurred due to mechanical breakdown of engines or other pieces of equipment, wearing out of tires and breaks, fading out of paint and electrical or mechanical breakdown.


What is Marine Insurance?

It is a type of insurance that covers any damage or loss caused to ships, cargo, terminals and other water transports used for transferring, acquiring or holding goods between a point of origin and the final terminus.

Circumstances like turbulences in weather, piracy and transboundary conflicts are recurrent in water transportation. One cannot defer such unforeseen circumstances despite taking precautions and following laws and safety rules and regulations.

Unfortunately, the cost of the damage related to such circumstances as loss or damage of cargo, environmental damage due to oil leaks and danger to the lives of seafarers and so on are so high that one cannot meet them without incurring huge losses.

In this situation, Marine Insurance can play the role of a life saviour. It provides the ship owners and transporters with the financial support to meet the possible losses caused by such unforeseen disasters.

 Marine Insurance are mainly of the following types:

  1. Hull Insurance: It is availed for physical damages caused to the vessel, especially the hull and the torso. Owners of ships and other commercial ocean crafts are the primary purchasers of this kind of insurance as it protects from losses caused by physical damages to the ships.
  2. Machinery Insurance: It covers all the essential pieces of machinery, and claims can be made in case of operational damages, which are compensated after a surveyor examines those damages and gives approval.
  3. Protection & Indemnity (P&I) Insurance: It is extended by the P&I Club, which serves as the mutual insurance of the ship owners. It covers the losses to the third party and risks otherwise not covered under any standard H&M insurance policy.
  4. Indemnity: Risks connected to the hiring of the vessel, e.g. claims related to Cargo.
  5. Protection: Risks concerning ownership of ships and other ocean crafts, e.g. problems related to the crew
  6. Freight, Demurrage &Defence Insurance (FD&D): It covers legal and other related costs required for resolving disputes that are otherwise not included in standard P&I and H&M insurance policies.
  7. Liability Insurance: It is availed on account of attacks on ships or collisions between ships, or crashing of ships.
  8. Freight Insurance protects ship corporations against liabilities caused by freight loss due to ship accidents.
  9. Marine Cargo Insurance: It pertains explicitly to the cargo carried by vessel and covers the loss incurred to the cargo owner due to unforeseen delays in voyages or ship accidents.

Owners and transporters of vessels, ships and other ocean crafts can avail marine insurance coverage according to their needs, such as the size of the vessel or ship or the routes taken.

Marine Insurance

What is Aviation Insurance?

It is a form of insurance that covers the losses incurred from property damage, cargo loss or any injury to the people.

Air travel has become an unavoidable part of life in today’s fast-paced world. But unfortunately, air travel is not without risks.

Turbulences in weather hijacks and failure in technical operations of aircraft are some of the life-threatening dangers of aviation.

Therefore, it is essential to avail of an all-encompassing Aviation Insurance Policy to deal with such unforeseen circumstances.

Some of the most favoured Aviation insurance policies are as mentioned below:

  1. In-flight Insurance: This is the most expensive insurance policy as it covers the damages caused to the aircraft when it is in the middle of a journey, which is very recurrent.
  2. Ground Risk Hull Insurance in motion: It covers the damages caused to the aircraft when it is in motion. But such motions do not include takeoff or landing.
  3. Ground Risk Hull Insurance not in motion: It covers the damages caused to the aircraft when not in motion, like damages caused by natural hazards, fire, collisions, etc.
  4. Passenger Liability Insurance: The government has made this insurance policy mandatory for commercial flights as it covers passengers who face injury or death on a flight.
  5. Public Liability Insurance: Also known as third-party liability, it covers the damages caused to the property and assets of third parties like cars, houses and other aircraft and so on by an aircraft accident.
  6. Combined Single Limit (CSL): A flexible insurance policy provides passenger and public liability insurance within a single coverage.
  7. Aviation Personnel Accident: It is provided to the crew members to protect them from all kinds of mishaps like injuries, death etc, that may happen in a flight.

An Aviation Insurance can be availed not only by Aviation companies but also by flying clubs and those with rented aircraft.

aviation insurance

Main Differences Between Marine Insurance and Aviation Insurance

  1. The main difference between Marine and Aviation Insurance is that the former protects the owners of ships and vessels from unanticipated losses related to marine operations. While the latter protects Aviation Corporations, flying clubs and even those who have rented an aircraft from the unforeseen losses that may be incurred due to the risks involved in Aviation.
  2. As evident from their names, they serve two different transport industry sectors. While Marine Insurance covers the risks related to the operations of water transports, Aviation Insurance covers the risks concerning the operations of air transports.
  3. Marine Insurance is necessary to deal with the damages caused to ships, vessels, cargo and terminals by unexpected disasters like turbulent weather, shipwrecks, attack from pirates and the like.
  4. Conversely, Aviation Insurance is essential for dealing with unforeseen circumstances like a technical failure in an aircraft, weather hazards, hijacks and danger to the lives of passengers and crew members and so on.
  5. Marine Insurance is much older than Aviation insurance as a well-developed financial coverage. The former dates back to the Greek city-states and the Roman Empire when sea or marine loans, bills of exchanges and commend contracts were extended to the merchants travelling in the Mediterranean Sea. In contrast, Aviation insurance was introduced only in the early twentieth century.
  6. Marine Insurance does not cover losses incurred due to deliberate misconduct and negligence, delays and cargo damage due to improper packing. While losses incurred due to electrical or mechanical breakdown, wearing out of tires and breaks, fading out of paint and mechanical breakdown of engines or other types of equipment are not covered by Aviation Insurance.
Difference Between Marine Insurance and Aviation Insurance


Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

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25 thoughts on “Marine vs Aviation Insurance: Difference and Comparison”

  1. I found the comparison table particularly helpful, it really highlights the main differences between marine and aviation insurance

  2. This article is very informative and well written. It is comprehensive and provides a clear view of the differences between marine and aviation insurance

    1. I concur. It would have been useful to include some examples of when to use these types of insurance

  3. The article is a little verbose and could have been more concise while still maintaining the integrity of the information presented

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