Having your bike stolen can be really annoying, whether your bike is a daily commuter or your weekend sports machine. Getting bicycle insurance is a great way to ensure a stress-free cycling lifestyle and ensure you can afford to replace your bike.
In this guide, we will explain all you have to know about bicycle insurance, what it includes and excludes, and how much you might need to pay.
Let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
What is bicycle cover?
Bicycles are one of the most commonly stolen items in the UK- in 2019, nearly 300,000 bikes were stolen! Sadly, accidents and vandalism are also common – and even if you’re okay in the event of an accident, your bike may need to spend some time at the repairer’s. So taking out bike insurance is a really good idea. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Your sit-up-and-beg or basic commuter may be covered by your home insurance (though it might only be covered when it’s safely parked at home). But if you’ve got a serious road bike like the titanium framed Reilly Gradient (a snip at £3,249), you’re going to want a specific bicycle policy – your home insurance is extremely unlikely to pay out.
What does bicycle cover can help you with?
Basic home insurance policies will cover the theft of your bicycle at your home, if your bicycle is stolen while it’s in your private garage or in a secure place. Usually it won’t work if you left your bike in the garden.
If you have an ‘all risks’ home insurance policy that covers personal possessions outside your home, your bike will be covered if you lock it outside the shops or pub, too. And it will be covered for damage while you’re riding it, whether you hit a pothole or someone else hits you.
Usually insurance companies cover any damage caused to your bike by an unsuccessful attempt to steal it.
But you probably won’t be covered for public liability, if you hit someone or damage anything while you’re out cycling. You won’t be covered for personal accident (eg medical expenses). And you won’t get breakdown cover. If you want all those things you’ll need a specialist policy.
Home insurance usually has an upper limit for the value of any individual item. That can be as low as £300 and probably won’t be much above £1,500. So if you have an expensive specialist bike, it may be worthwhile taking out specialist cover.
Does home insurance cover bicycle?
Bicycle insurance can be covered by Home insurance. Sometimes, you may need to add your bike specifically to your home content policy. Check with your insurer to find out.
If you want to be covered outside your home, you will have to add your bike as a "personal possession" to an all-risks cover. Some insurers will include that in your home insurance, while others make it an add-on for which you’ll pay extra.
If you want to have complete protection, you should go to a specialist insurer – but check your home insurance first!
How does bicycle insurance work?
Usually you are covered for theft and damages done to your bicycle. Your home insurance for your bicycle works like any other insurance, so you’ll have to pay an excess if you are claiming on your home insurance. Remember to make allowance for the excess if you’re looking at how well your bike is insured – if your bike is worth £350 and your excess if £500, you won’t get a payout!
Do I need bicycle cover?
Bikes can be valuable – a top of the range commuter bike can cost £1,000 – but they’re easy to steal. That makes taking out bicycle insurance really useful. Of course, it depends where you live – in a big city, you will have more risk than living in the countryside.
What are the best insurers to cover bicycle?
You will find in this table the best bicycle cover, we also indicated cover limits.
Available in personal possession
Bike cover limit
|Royal Bank of Scotland||Yes||£10,000|
What are the worst insurers to cover bicycle?
You will find in this table the worst bicycle cover, we also indicated cover limits.
Available in personal possession
Bike cover limit
|First Direct||Yes||Between £300 to £2,500|
|Age co||Yes||Limits depends on the underwriter|
What should I pay attention to while purchasing bicycle cover?
When taking out bicycle insurance, you need to ask:
- What exclusions apply in your case?
- If you make a claim, will your excess be higher than your bike value?
- What limits are proposed by your insurer? Is the bike covered by personal possessions cover as standard, or is it an add-on?
And remember, if you lend your bike to someone, it won’t be covered – unless they are named on your insurance.
How much does bicycle cover usually cost?
Contents home insurance usually cover your Bicycle. The average cost of combined buildings and contents insurance in 2018 was £163, with contents insurance usually counting for a third of the premium (around £60) and building insurance for the rest (around £110).
Adding "personal possessions cover"will cost you around £50 per year and will allow you to be covered if your bike is stolen outside your home. Lot of home insurance companies include personal possessions cover in their content policies as standard.
What are the bicycle policy exclusions?
Bike insurance will cover most things, but there are some exclusions:
- You won’t be covered if you didn’t take reasonable care of your bicycle – for instance if you left it unlocked.
- Damage to bike accessories isn’t normally covered. If you want to be covered for GPS or similar features, you should take out a specialist insurance policy.
- Any accident that happened while you were under the influence of drink or drugs, or as a result of your breaking the law (eg running a red light).
- Business use (for instance if you use your bike to do deliveries) or use in professional competitions (though special policies can cover racing bikes used for sport).