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How much does Public Liability Insurance cost For Restaurants and Cafes?

A public liability claim is every restaurant or café owner’s worst nightmare. The high risk of injury and illnesses occurring makes Public Liability insurance an essential form of cover for any business operating within the hospitality industry. But just how much does it cost?

It all comes down to a number of key factors, including:

  • The type and nature of the business, for example, is it licenced, does it provide take-away food, is food cooked using a deep fryer or wok?
  • Business turnover and size
  • The amount of insurance cover required

We’ve conducted some research into the cost of Public Liability insurance for restaurants and cafés by analysing data from BizCover policies sold during the 2016/17 financial year.

What is the average premium for Public Liability insurance?

On average, restaurant and cafe owners can expect to pay around $75 per month for Public Liability insurance
Below is the full breakdown:


*Data based on NSW BizCover customers

How does revenue affect the premium?

One method insurers use to determine the size of your business is the amount of revenue you turnover. A higher turnover provides an indication that you are operating a busy restaurant or café, potentially serving hundreds of customers hot food and beverages each day which presents a higher risk of liability issues occurring.

A café turning over up to $100,000 can expect to pay around $70 or less per month for Public Liability insurance, however, increase turnover to $500,000 and the premium increases to >$100 per month.

Below is the full breakdown:


*Data based on NSW BizCover customers

Does the size of my business affect the premium?

When asking how much Public Liability insurance costs for a restaurant or café, you’ll need to factor in the number of people employed, as again this is an indication of busier a café, hence higher risk involved.

Looking at BizCover customers, a sole trader could expect to pay around $68 per month, however, up that number to five employees and the premium increases to $96 per month on average.

The below graph shows the full breakdown:


*Data based on NSW BizCover customers

Does the level of cover affect the premium?

Fortunately, the cost of Public Liability insurance does not rise too significantly with an increase in the amount of coverage. For example, taking out $20 million worth of cover, which is the most popular level of cover for restaurants and cafés, will cost around $79 per month. However, reducing the level of cover by half, to $10 million, only reduces the premium by about $7 on average.

The amount of cover that businesses in the hospitality industry select is often influenced by a number of things, such as the type of risks your business is exposed to, as well as requirements set by the lease agreement for the premises.

Average monthly cost of Public Liability Insurance by level of cover

Coverage level Average monthly premium
$5 Million $61.73
$10 Million $72.10
$20 Million $78.92

*Data based on NSW BizCover customers