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If you use a trailer for your street food business, you likely know how important it is for you to have liability insurance. Your business is unique in a number of ways. This uniqueness can make your life easier, but it can also make business a little tougher, too. In the case of street food vending, one of the more difficult parts of your business life has to be finding insurance for your trailer.

Recently one of our customers brought to our attention that The Smoke Ring Forum had a conversation thread about trailer insurance where it specifically named us and a few of our competitors. We wanted to maintain the integrity of the forum while also giving unbiased advice about some of the topics mentioned in the thread Ultimately, we want you to have the coverage you need regardless of which company you go with. Here are some questions and comments we would like to address.

Do I even need insurance for my food trailer?

Absolutely. You should treat getting food trailer insurance the same way you would treat getting auto insurance, even if it is not required in your state. One accident, even a seemingly minor one, could seriously damage your business and personal finances.

Will my auto policy cover my food trailer?

It is not safe to assume that your food trailer will be covered with the auto liability of the vehicle towing it. You will want to talk with your auto policy carrier to verify coverage, if any.

Why would an insurance company say I have to insure my trailer and my auto together?

Because auto liability for a trailer generally follows the vehicle towing it. Many companies will only insure your food trailer and liability when they also provide the auto liability for the vehicle towing it.

Why do some insurance companies insure my food trailer when it is parked and unhooked from my truck but not when I am towing it on the road?

A commercial general liability policy specifically excludes any claims arising from a vehicle, such as a trailer. A few insurance companies realized there is a gap in coverage for those who use a trailer in vending. These insurance carriers may provide the option of purchasing a trailer endorsement.

What is a trailer endorsement and do I need it?

Most general liability policies exclude incidents that occur in, on, or around your food trailer. A Trailer Endorsement removes those exclusions so you do not have to leave part of your work station uninsured. It is important to note that in most cases the Trailer Endorsement only covers liability incidents in, on, or around the trailer when the trailer is detached from your towing vehicle and parked on a rented premise. If you use your trailer for vending, a trailer endorsement is definitely something you should consider.

We hope these answers have been helpful. Please comment below if you have any questions or have something to add.


Austin Dykstra writes about marketing, business, and insurance for small business owners and entrepreneurs.

Austin Dykstra has written about everything from Instagram marketing to online reputation management. He is now firmly entrenched in the thrilling world of insurance. You can find Austin on LinkedInInstagram, or Twitter, where he’s meekly re-entering the fray after quitting during the 2016 election cycle.


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