Cycling is enjoying a surge of popularity at the moment, with more and more people leaving the car at home and jumping on the bike for commuting, exercise or simply a bit of leisure. Unsurprisingly, this has led to a clear spike in the number of people taking out cycle insurance, as cyclists look to protect their (often pricey) investment.
The figures, compiled from Aviva's customer data, show a 75% increase in the take-up of cycle insurance policies between 2009 and 2014, highlighting how rapidly the market is growing. Interestingly, the biggest increases have been in the Tyne area and Yorkshire – the starting point of last year's Tour de France – which have seen take-up of bike insurance soar by 158% and 113% respectively over the same five-year period. Meanwhile, the highest number of policies is in the South and South East, with more than 9,000 policies being taken out last year.
The increase in cycle insurance not only highlights the growing popularity of cycling – arguably fuelled by the Tour de France and other high-profile cycling events – but also the continued increase in the amount spent on bikes. You only need to head to your local bike shop to see how expensive these pieces of kit can be, and in fact, since 2012, the average amount people spend on a single bike has risen from £206 to £233.
Unfortunately, but perhaps not unexpectedly given the rising popularity and expense of bikes, there's also been a steady year-on-year rise in levels of theft, with more than 376,000 bikes now being stolen every year. This just shows how important investing in the right insurance can be, because without it, you could be left with a big cycle-shaped hole in your wallet.
"The success of cycling in the UK has been both at an elite level – from athletes such as Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Bradley Wiggins and Victoria Pendleton CBE – but also at a grassroots level as people have been inspired to get out on their bikes," said Heather Smith, marketing director at Aviva. "This is great to see, [and] we hope even more people will be inspired to take part – and if they are, to invest in the right equipment and the appropriate insurance to protect it.
"Just as you take the time to choose the correct clothes and kit, it is important to ensure your bikes and accessories are covered against theft, accidental damage or causing injury or damage to another person. This will then mean you can relax and enjoy your hobby with the confidence that your pride and joy is protected."
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
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