When you own a ski or snowboard shop, getting the right insurance in place is an important task. Whether you’re in the middle of peak season or you’re in the middle of planning and preparation during off-season, there’s no wrong time to make sure you have the right coverage.
Before you settle on just any basic commercial liability or business owner’s policy, however, you want to make sure you’re choosing the right coverage for your shop. After all, your business is completely different than the coffee shop next door. So why should your insurance coverage be the same?
Here are five questions to ask to ensure you’re getting the right kind of coverage for your ski shop.
Does it Cover Liability Losses from Rental Equipment?
Does your shop provide rental skis, snowboards, or other equipment? There are numerous ways your shop could be responsible for third-party property damage or injuries caused by your equipment.
Someone wearing your rental skis could crash into a rack of snowboards outside of the lodge. Or into a line of people waiting to catch the next gondola to the top of the mountain. Or those rented skis could fly off a customer’s vehicle ski rack and strike anything (or anyone) who happens to be nearby.
There are so many potential scenarios where your equipment could be the catalyst for a costly claim you could spend the entire peak season trying to calculate them all.
Liability insurance coverage is crucial for any kind of business. But when you own a ski shop, it’s important to know that you’re specifically covered for liability claims resulting from your rental, repair, or demo equipment. The best ski shop insurance is carefully crafted to make sure you’re not left without coverage if your equipment has a rough and wild day.
Does it Cover Customer Injuries from Lessons or Classes?
Most business owners face the risk of a third-party injury occurring on their business property. But when you own a ski shop or other kind of adventure sports business, your risk of third-party injuries is even greater.
Do you offer ski lessons, snowboard classes, guided tours, or skills camps?
If someone gets hurt in one of your classes or while using equipment that you’ve provided, you could be liable for their injuries.
To make sure you’re fully protected from customer injury liability, be sure you have a ski shop insurance policy that provides liability coverage for guided tours, lessons, and instructions. Not to mention some top notch release forms, as well!
Does it Cover Cybercrime and Data Breaches?
When you consider how many software programs and technological tools you use to run your ski shop, you can see how quickly the risks of a data breach can add up.
Point-of-sale programs, employee time clocking, inventory management, the list of software programs you use goes on and on. And your physical equipment like your POS systems, store tablets, and even your business laptop provide another layer of risk for data breaches to occur.
It can be hard to imagine that your shop is at risk for cyber theft, data hacks, or other malicious activity, particularly when you are a small business or spend most of your day outdoors. But small businesses are actually at more risk of a hack or cyber crime than large corporations.
One lost tablet, stolen laptop, or breached software program could put all of your sensitive information, including confidential customer information, in serious danger.
If you want to provide your shop with protection against lost or stolen data, then you need to be sure your ski shop insurance coverage includes cyber liability and credit card fraud protection.
Does it Protect Customer Property?
Does your shop provide repair services? How about lockers for day use during lessons or camps? When your customers leave their personal property at your business, it becomes your responsibility to look after and care for it. If a repair goes wrong and a snowboard is damaged in the process, you could be liable for the damages.
A standard commercial property policy protects your business-owned property while on your premise. But the best kind to insurance for your shop is an outdoor sports insurance policy that’s custom-tailored to protect your customer’s property on your premise, as well.
Does it Cover Inventory Theft?
You’d be hard pressed to find a shop owner who hadn’t experienced theft, whether it’s inventory, equipment or other assets. But ski shop and other outdoor industry shops have even more risk for hard-earned assets to be stolen.
When your shop offers rental equipment, it goes out of the protection of your shop to the mountain (or trail or water) where anything could happen.
When you take inventory off-site during slow season for demos and exhibitions, it’s at risk yet again.
When your inventory and equipment spends as much time out of the store as in it, theft and damage are very real threats to your bottom line. That’s why the right insurance coverage for your shop includes coverage for inventory theft… even if your inventory has left the building.
Is Outdoor Sports Insurance Right for Your Business?
Does your business need outdoor sports insurance coverage, or can you get by with a cookie-cutter commercial policy? Read this and you can decide.
Is it Backed by Industry Attorneys?
In the unfortunate event you face a claim that requires defense support, you want a team of attorneys who specialize in ski defense cases, like our hand-picked selection of ASDA (Association of Ski Defense Attorneys) members.
Our ski shop insurance also provides a notebook of sample release forms created with the help of these same ski and sports defense attorneys, so you have sample release form wording for all of your lessons, rentals, and special event needs.
Just one more benefit of specialized ski shop insurance!
If you’re not sure what risks you may face as the owner of a ski or snowboard shop, or how you can get the most coverage for your budget, talk to an insurance professional who has experience with your unique industry.
If you’re just starting out in the business, an experienced insurance advisor can help you understand the claims scenarios and risks you’re most likely to face, and can help you custom tailor a solution that will best fit your ski shop.
The coverage you choose for your shop matters, so be sure you’re picking the best ski shop insurance available. It’s never too late to ask these questions or too early in the season to be thinking of getting the right coverage for your shop.