When it comes to spending our money, our purchase decisions fall into one of two categories – Nice to have’s and Have to have’s. It seems even the cheapest bicycle insurance for the vast majority of the UK’s 3million+ cyclists falls into the first category. Nice to have but we’d rather save our pennies. And yet when you consider how vulnerable cyclists are and the high value of our bikes and kit, the question shouldn’t be How much is bike insurance going to cost me? but rather What will it cost me if I’m NOT insured.
The Importance of Cycle Insurance
Getting back in the saddle
Whilst the government has announced a review of the Highway Code to tackle close passing and dooring, there’s still a long way to go to ensure cyclists’ safety. If you travel to work or your studies by bike, chances are you’ve had a ‘life flashed before your eyes’ moment – the clip of a wing mirror, the hidden pothole in a dark lane, the lorry that turned left. Whilst you can load up on safety gear – gloves, reflective clothing, clipless pedals – you can’t defend yourself against the unexpected, the erratic or the drunken. So what if you’re involved in such an incident? Are you covered for personal injury? Can you afford to have your bike repaired? Likewise, what if your bike is stolen? Can you afford to splash out on a replacement? A comprehensive cycle insurance policy will cover you for all of these factors and more, making sure you’re not left stranded. It will even cover the taxi fare home after an accident as well as full crash damages. It’ll get you back on your bike that bit faster.
The Blame Game
Unlike car insurance, bike insurance isn’t a legal requirement but what happens if you’re involved in an accident and it looks like it was your fault? Consider that gut-churning moment when a pedestrian steps out in front of you, headphones on, eyes on their mobile, leaving you no chance to brake or swerve? Claims can run into tens of thousands of pounds, potentially escalating into six figures depending on the severity of the claimant’s injury. Even if you successfully defend yourself, you still have to bear the burden of your legal representative’s fees. This is when a third party cycle insurance policy steps in as your fairy godmother, by offering personal liability cover (also known as public or third-party liability). Similar to third-party only car insurance, it covers the costs if you injure someone or damage their property whilst cycling.
For the thrill-seekers amongst you who chase the sportives or that time trial adrenalin-rush, you may already be insured for public liability if you’re a member of British Cycling (silver or higher) or British Triathlon. However, there is a major limitation – their policy will not cover you for member-to-member liability in an event. When you consider that during any kind of race, an accident between fellow competitors is far more likely than injuring a member of the public, it’s vital you’re covered for this type of incident, regardless of the insurance provider of the other party.
So, what are your cycle insurance options?
House insurance for bikes
Over 297,000 bicycles are reported stolen in the UK every year, that’s approximately 33 bikes an hour. Whilst standard buildings and contents insurance cover bicycles in most instances, be aware of common limitations such as:
- The value of your bike. Often, providers will have strict limits well below the value of your bike.
- Having to list all of your bicycles thereby hiking up the premium.
- No cover for your bike if it is damaged abroad or during the plane journey.
- A limit on theft of bicycles from outbuildings or garages.
- Undervalued cycling kit and accessories (What about your Garmin? Your carbon-soled shoes?)
Bike only insurance
As your standard home insurance is unlikely to provide sufficient cover, what are your options? Buying a separate bike policy on top of your existing home insurance? Whilst specialist bicycle insurance might start inching into your Have to have’s category, it can be both expensive and limited as this market comparison shows. Don’t underestimate the headache-factor when managing separate insurances, let alone the moment you have to make a double claim if your garage is broken into!
A unique solution – PedalCover’s combined home and bike insurance
PedalCover was created by cyclists for cyclists. We recognise and support your cycling life which is why we created our home and bike insurance – the only one available in the UK. Find out how we’ve got you, your bikes and accessories as well as your home covered – whilst saving you money.
How much does bike insurance cost?
As we have seen, the benefits and value of having bicycle insurance far outweigh the risk and potential cost of not having it, but the all-important question is how much is a policy going to cost you? If you opt for the standard home insurance option then, as mentioned above, the premium can quickly ratchet up once you start specifying the bikes you own and their value. Likewise, a specialist bike-only policy will tend to base the premium price on a percentage (often around 9%) of the value of your bike, which can also start to prove to be expensive. On the other hand, by combining the two policies and having both home and bike insurance in one policy, can offer considerable savings over buying them separately.
Find out how much a home and bike policy could cost you, and more importantly, how much you could save, by getting a quote today.