updated 6/21/2011 4:15:29 PM ET 2011-06-21T20:15:29

RICHFIELD, Ohio, June 21, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- National Interstate Insurance Company, a leader in alternative risk transfer (ART) insurance for the transportation industry, reports 10 consecutive years of growth in its Calypso program, an ART insurance solution designed for passenger transportation operations. Since 2001, Calypso has grown from six founding members to its current 58 members.

Calypso was specifically designed for best-in-class passenger transportation companies including charter and tour, transit, student transportation, and limousine. The Calypso group rental captive program primarily serves companies paying in excess of $150,000 in annualized insurance premiums.

In addition to Calypso, National Interstate has established other passenger transportation-related programs for insureds with varying premium levels. The Destination program was introduced in 2006 to deliver the benefits of an ART program to mid-sized passenger transportation companies with premiums above $75,000. For the largest passenger transportation companies, ART programs, including custom national account programs, are also available.

"It has been exciting to see the progression of our passenger ART programs over the past decade," said Jim Parks, Vice President of Passenger Transportation. "Calypso's success sparked the launch of Destination in 2006, allowing us to expand our ART offerings to a broader range of companies. We are proud to be able to create an insurance solution that gives operators the potential to lower their expenses and receive unused premiums and investment income returns, in part by running a safety-focused operation. Our historical 98% retention rate is clear evidence that members realize significant benefits from these programs and typically do not leave once they join."

"The foundation of our ART programs is the partnership philosophy that bands these companies together," said Dave Michelson, President and CEO of National Interstate Corporation. "Our semi-annual program meetings provide an excellent forum for interaction and sharing best practices. Most importantly, participating companies have a say in important decisions including those that impact underwriting, loss control and investments. Calypso members also share our enthusiasm about its growth over the years. It seems that at nearly every meeting someone reflects on how the six original members sat around a small conference table in Naples, FL, and now we are filling up large conference rooms with members."

To learn more about National Interstate's passenger ART insurance programs, contact Michael Heramb, at 800-929-1500 x1215, or email michael.heramb@natl.com.

About National Interstate

National Interstate Insurance Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of National Interstate Corporation (Nasdaq: NATL), is a specialty property and casualty insurance company with a niche orientation and focus on the transportation industry. We differentiate ourselves by offering insurance products and services designed to meet the unique needs of targeted insurance buyers. Products include insurance for passenger, moving and storage, and truck transportation companies, alternative risk transfer, or captive insurance programs for commercial risks, specialty personal lines consisting of insurance products focused primarily on recreational vehicle owners and small commercial vehicle accounts, and transportation and general commercial insurance in Hawaii and Alaska. National Interstate and its insurance subsidiaries, which include Vanliner Insurance Company and Triumphe Casualty Company, are rated "A" (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company. Founded in 1989, we are headquartered in Richfield, Ohio with operations in Honolulu, Hawaii, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, St. Thomas, Virgin Islands and Fenton, Missouri.

CONTACT: Tanya Inama
         National Interstate Corporation
         877-837-0339
         investorrelations@natl.com
         http://invest.natl.com

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