Dublin pubs face soaring insurance costs with average premiums approaching €30k – LVA 

Seven out of 10 pubs reporting increased premiums in latest renewals

The cost of insurance premiums for late night bars and nightclubs are averaging at €92,117.10 (Photo by Rachel Claire via Pexels)

The average insurance premiums for Dublin pubs rose to €29,811.62 in their most recent renewals, marking an increase of €1,714.53 from the premiums for the previous year, according to the Licensed Vintners Association (LVA). The LVA surveyed their members on this matter last week, following recent suggestions that insurance premiums for pubs were starting to reduce.

Of the 92 pubs who provided detailed insurance details, more than seven out of 10 (72%) had experienced an increase in their most recent renewal. Half of all the respondents (50%) in the survey had renewed their insurance since the beginning of July 2023, while almost nine out of 10 (88%) had not had an insurance claim in the previous 12 months. 

 The cost of insurance premiums for late night venues also stood out, with the average premium for late night bars and nightclubs coming to €92,117.10.

City centre venues (which represented approximately one third of the total respondents) also had considerably more expensive premiums than their suburban counterparts. For those in the city the average premium came to €41,572.97, while the suburban premiums came to €24,970.23 – a difference of €16,602.74. 

 The survey also showed the difficulty pubs have in securing multiple quotes from the insurance providers with 45% of publicans saying they were unable to source more than one quote. 

Donall O’Keeffe, chief executive, LVA, said: “As the data in this survey highlights, pubs continue to face substantial and growing insurance premiums. The average cost of insurance for pubs in Dublin comes to almost €30,000 per year, which represents an increase of more than €1,700 on average from premiums for the previous year.

“For those who offer late night hospitality the costs are eye watering. The average came in at €92,000 while several premises had premium costs that reached six figures.

“We are conscious that the Government has implemented several important initiatives on insurance reform, particularly the judicial guidelines on awards and the recent changes to duty of care legislation – which are aimed at reducing the cost of insurance for businesses. Unfortunately though, the numbers in this survey show  the benefits are yet to be seen.

“There are no signs of premiums starting to come down, despite the policy changes. The trend is still significantly in the opposition direction and given the sums involved these are major additional costs. Sums of this magnitude are very damaging to competitiveness, are adding to the inflationary pressures facing pubs and are ultimately making hospitality more expensive for consumers.

“The lack of competition between insurers also remains a serious problem. There is no additional insurance capacity for the licensed trade.

“We have written to Minister Jennifer Carroll MacNeill on this matter, and we are encouraging the Government to bring further pressure to bear on the insurance providers. The acid test of insurance reform is to deliver lower cost premia for business and looking at the survey data, that outcome still seems some way off” O’Keeffe concluded. 

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