Insuring a Guest Ranch

August 16, 2021

While the fantasy of the wild west is a wonderful one to the passing traveler, there are many insurance factors that the permanent dwellers of the property need to consider.


Guest Ranches, otherwise known as Dude Ranches, are growing in popularity throughout the west. The vision of the wild west, the mystic idea that anyone could be a cowboy for a day, wrangling the old classic tale of the west from the back of your trusty stallion lives in the soul of many, and guest ranches allow for anyone to live out that feeling at least once in their life. While the fantasy of the wild west is a wonderful one to the passing traveler, there are many insurance factors that the permanent dwellers of the property need to consider. Consider some of the following insurance coverages if you own a guest ranch or are considering starting one of your own soon.

  • The first thing to consider is how many elements of the wild west are you wanting to provide? Do you want a working ranch experience, a buffalo bill wild west experience, or a modern relaxation getaway with horses grazing nearby? Regardless of what aesthetic you want for your property, there are elements that have to be decided. Will you have horseback riding? Hiking? A pool? Do you offer dining and housing? Are there any other activities offered at your property such as fishing or sports focused areas of acreage? All of these elements could spring a new area of insurance that someone may not think of without knowing about their available options.
  • Many guest ranches, arguably most, offer horseback riding in one form or another. Whether it’s a petting zoo, trail rides, wagon rides, or assisted cattle wresting, insurance is highly suggested. Many legal firms would argue that it is necessary. Outside of legal waives, another way to keep your company safe from financial downfall in the state of a horse related accident would be general liability insurance, errors, and omissions insurance. Both of these options allow coverage to the clients that are injured while riding along on your animals. This could also help insure you if you were to have an accident. Another set of people to care for are your employees. Worker’s compensation could help cover the injury of your employees, while still helping your business stay afloat afterwards.
  • Whether you offer dining, cabins, camping or a true hotel setup for your housing insurance remains similar. Consider getting business and personal property coverage to help keep your wallet safe from rebuilding all of those properties if the occasion came up. This is a very important insurance policy to maintain and start as many guest ranches are farther from towns and therefore if an unfortunate occurrence came across, such as a damaging hailstorm, a tornado, or a wildfire, help may be too late to save those properties. Another insurance option that some companies offer that could be helpful in areas similar to the examples prior is business income and extra expense. This policy offers coverage in the case of a financial loss in the business due to an unplanned, out of your control disaster.
  • If your ranch has vehicles specific for your business consider getting commercial or business auto insurance to help cover those vehicles in relation to your business, allowing you to keep your personal family car and your work car separate. If you have tractors or off-road vehicles consider equipment breakdown insurance, to help cover those random breakdowns that will inevitably happen when they are least convenient.
  • A final overview safe choice of insurance coverages at your guest ranch would be umbrella insurance. Umbrella insurance offers a coverage that provide additional liability limits above what commercial general liability and business auto policies can offer. Umbrella coverages can be seen as a safety blanket for the areas of your ranch needing insurance that don’t always fit a grouped policy.
  • Whether you are a small guest ranch that offers some horseback riding and some camping, or a large-scale corporation with many elements working off of each other, all of these insurance packages should help keep your mind, your clients and your company safe from downfall, allowing you to feel in control no matter what is out of control.

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