Whether you’re a commuter, an off-roader, a racer or an electric bike convert, you may have considered bicycle insurance to protect your two-wheeler. This specialist kind of insurance is designed to cover the cost of your bicycle should it be lost, stolen or damaged beyond repair, and may include cycling accessories, too. It can also offer liability cover, which can be invaluable if you’re involved in an accident that results in damage to a third party’s property, and you were found to be negligent or reckless.
Unlike with car insurance, it isn’t a legal requirement to have bicycle insurance before you get on the road, but given how expensive bikes can be, it makes sense to protect your investment. High-spec racing bikes can easily cost thousands of pounds to replace, but even a casual cyclist with a bike on the cheaper end of the scale may benefit from this kind of cover, particularly those who couldn’t afford to buy a new bike outright if they needed to.
Typically, a standard bicycle insurance policy will cover the bike against theft, accidental and malicious damage. From there, you can find more comprehensive policies or may be able to add additional levels of cover as optional extras, such as:
Increase your cover to include these optional benefits of cycle insurance from cycleGuard*:
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The list of bicycle insurance providers on this page is a selection of services available and gives you an idea of the kind of options available. You can find out more about the individual products by visiting any of the providers listed. All information is subject to change without notice. Please check all terms before making any decisions. This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts.co.uk will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts.co.uk recommends you obtain independent financial advice.
Before you invest in a separate bicycle insurance policy, it’s worth seeing if your bike is already covered as part of your home contents insurance. However, standard contents insurance will only cover possessions that are damaged or stolen at/from home, and you’ll likely need more comprehensive “all risks” cover for your bike to be protected away from home as well (though you may be able to buy an add-on to your policy that can include it).
However, either way, the bicycle cover typically afforded by home insurance likely won’t be as comprehensive as if you opted for a specialist policy, with personal accident and liability cover rarely included, and likewise you’re unlikely to be protected if an accident or damage occurred during a race. Home insurance policies typically have individual item limits, too, and in many cases bikes can exceed it.
It’s also important to bear in mind the excess involved in home insurance, which could make it entirely inappropriate for your bike. And, even if you were able to successfully make a claim, it could seriously ramp up your future home insurance costs – as such, it may prove more cost-effective to take out a separate policy for your bike, particularly when you consider how common bicycle theft can be.
Although cyclists aren’t legally required to have insurance, issues could arise if they caused an accident or third-party damage that they’re then liable for. Costs could quickly escalate in this scenario and if the cyclist didn’t have adequate insurance they could be required to cover the cost themselves, so for this reason alone, anyone who’s regularly out on the road may want to consider a separate bicycle insurance policy.
If you’re a serious cyclist and are a paying member of Cycling UK, British Cycling or a similar organisation, you may find that your membership includes some form of bicycle insurance. Third-party liability cover is typically included, with some offering legal support and personal accident too, so it’s worth checking the details of your membership.
You’ll be expected to take all reasonable precautions to keep your bike safe – fail to do so and the insurer may reject your claim. At the very least you’ll want to make sure you’ve got a suitable lock (you may need it to be an approved lock that’s got a Sold Secure rating, and you should keep the receipt as proof, in case the bike and lock are stolen). Some insurers stipulate that if the bike is kept in a communal area, it must be locked against a secure and immovable structure, and you may even be expected to keep it locked up if it’s in your own garage or shed.
Specialist insurance policies will often require that your bike must not be visible to the outside world – which means it should ideally be behind a locked gate or fence, and shouldn’t be visible through a window if stored indoors or in a garage. If it’s left somewhere in public you may only have cover against theft or damage for 12 or 24 hours; if it’s there for longer, even if it’s locked up at work or attached to a lamppost, the insurance may not pay out if it’s stolen.
Other situations in which insurance won’t pay out include any loss where you can’t prove that you owned the bike (so always keep receipts), if you use the bike for monetary gain (such as if you’re a cycle courier), or if you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the accident or damage occurred.
Yes, though as electric bikes tend to be a lot more expensive than their pedal-powered counterparts, regular bicycle insurance normally won’t be sufficient – and they’ll rarely be included in a home insurance policy – and you’ll need to find even more specialist cover.
This will always depend on the type of cover you’re looking for and the cost of your bike, together with where you go to find the insurance. A relatively cheap bike may cost less than £50 to insure for a year, while for a custom-built model that cost thousands of pounds, you’re likely looking at an insurance policy that’s £200+. Though this will depend on things like the excess, what you use the bike for, the cost of any accessories and whether you want a comprehensive policy or something on the more basic end of the scale; make sure to know what you’re looking for from a policy and spend the time comparing the options, and you’ll be able to find the deal to suit.
While you can always increase the excess or opt for a lower level of cover, this may negate the value of having bicycle insurance in the first place. Instead, the best way to get cheap bicycle insurance is to shop around and compare quotes. Our overview of the best bicycle insurance providers can be a great place to start.
This depends on your own unique situation and your attitude to risk. It’s likely that your home insurance will afford at least some protection, but it probably won’t be enough for all scenarios and all bikes. For example, for a casual cyclist with a relatively cheap bike for whom paying the excess would result in little gain, a separate policy may not be worth it. But for a serious cyclist with a custom bike and regular competition schedule, it could be invaluable. A lot of it will ultimately come down to price – both the price of the bike, and of the insurance policy – so make sure to compare bicycle insurance to see if it’s worthwhile.
Disclaimer: This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.