Life Insurance for Glider Pilots

Ah, life insurance. A truly exciting subject and possibly the third most well known type of insurance after car and home insurance although strangely in this day and age many people spend more on gadget insurance!

Still, the need for life insurance exists and the main purpose for having some is to provide financial support in the event of death for the benefit of surviving family.

Nobody likes the idea that loved ones could be left with a huge emotional loss as well as financial hardship.

Life insurance can clear a mortgage with a lump sum payment, it can provide a monthly income for a fixed number of years and it can be linked to inflation so the amount of cover goes up over time (a good idea for family protection).

Insurance companies are businesses and businesses exist to make money. They make money buy receiving payments (premiums) and not paying claims unless they have to. If there is an increased risk of them paying a claim then cover may be priced accordingly, for instance smokers pay a higher rate than non-smokers.

Flying may statistically be the safest way to travel but private aviation can carry greater risk than commercial passenger flight. The likelihood is however, that it would still be safer to fly home from work everyday than it is to get tangled up in traffic.

Some insurance companies embrace the fact that flying is pretty safe but others like to shy away from any kind of risk where possible and will either put the price up or exclude recreational flying from the cover.

There is a strong possibility that if a glider pilot has had life insurance premiums increased due to flying or if any aviation exclusions have been applied then they may have either:

  • Rushed into things or,
  • Been badly advised

If the price of an insurance policy is increased, so is the commission the broker is paid so not every broker will do the necessary research to find a lower price.

There may be instances where a price increase is unavoidable but this is usually the result of a combination of factors and not just glider flying.

Some insurers will ask if the aviator participates in any competitions or stunt flying and some will want to know how many hours are flown per year. With a number of insurers these factors could lead to a price rise.

If there are no stunts or competitions and the number of hours per year is below 50 then quite a few insurers should be able to offer cover at their ‘standard’ rates but be warned, not every insurance underwriter knows what a glider is!

Some get confused between hang-gliding or para-gliding which is why it can help to use an adviser who is able to speak to the underwriter and explain the difference.

Some even think there are no similarities between powered and unpowered gliders!

At least one mainstream insurer has confirmed they will not increase the price or apply any exclusions for both powered and unpowered gliding and they do not need to know how many hours are flown per year.

This is great news for glider pilots however an adviser had to speak directly to an underwriter who had to refer the question to someone more senior before this was public might not yield the same result.

Using an adviser also has other benefits such as access to a wider range of insurers and a point of contact if there are any problems or complaints.

This article does not constitute financial advice. If you have questions or would like to get in touch with a regulated adviser to discuss your options you can find out more and submit an enquiry via the following link:

Life Insurance for Pilots - Recreational, Commercial, Student & Private Pilots (inc. Helicopter)

Life Insurance for Glider Pilots


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