Find out if your bike is covered with your home insurance or if you should consider a specialist policy

Is my bike covered under my home insurance policy?

Bikes are not always automatically covered on your home contents policy and the ones that do offer varying degrees of protection.

If your bike is secured in your home when it is stolen, it is likely to be covered under your contents insurance policy, however insurers set limits on how much they will pay out.

If your bike is stolen or damaged while away from your property, you’re highly unlikely to be covered by a standard home insurance policy.

Admiral offers this feature as standard, but its cover only applies to cycles valued up to £350.

Adding bicycle cover to home insurance

Most home insurance providers offer ‘pedal cycle’ cover as an add-on to its standard policies for a few extra pounds a month.

Buying extra cover will offer you protection if your bike is stolen or damaged away from your home, and may be cheaper than specialist bike insurance.

Check any limits on the value of bike that will be covered by your policy.

Also, check how much excess you’ll need to pay if you were to claim. If your home insurance policy has an excess of £200, and your bike is worth £500, you could be better off with a specialist policy that has a low (or no) excess.

 

Should I take out specialist bike insurance?

If you own an expensive bike (or several bikes), you might be better off taking out specialist bicycle insurance.

This is also the case if you ride your bicycle competitively, as most general insurers won’t cover damage incurred in races.

If you have a very cheap bike, paying for cover may not be worthwhile as the cost of your insurance excess in the event of a claim may be more than the bicycle is worth.

Specialist bicycle insurance policies usually cover theft or damage while the bike is stationary, damage or injury while riding and cover for accessories as standard.

How much does bike insurance cost?

How much you’ll pay for a bike insurance policy depends on a series of factors, including the value and age of the bike, what you use it for, and the level of cover you require.

We ran a series of quotes from major specialist insurers (Yellow Jersey, Cycle Plan, Assetsure, Bikmo, Cycle Guard, Protect My Bike, Eversure and The Insurance Emporium) to get an idea of how much a policy might cost.

All of the quotes below are based on insuring one bicycle from a London address for leisure and racing use, and include £1m public liability insurance, personal accident insurance and theft cover.

 

How can I save money on bike insurance?

As with all types of insurance, don’t settle for the first quote you’re offered – an increasing number of comparison sites now include bicycle insurance.

Paying annually is likely to be cheaper than paying monthly, for which some insurers charge interest. Also consider paying by cashback credit card.

Opting for a high excess will reduce your premium, but make sure it’s still worth you claiming.

What does bike insurance cover?

Most policies will cover:

  • Theft
  • Accidental damage
  • Malicious damage – this could be caused by vandalism

Most also offer extras including:

  • Personal accident – in the event of serious injury or death sustained from riding your bike
  • Commuting cover – if you use your bike everyday for your commute some policies will cover this as you wait for repair/replacement
  • Third party liability – this will cover you if you injure another person or damage their bike or car
  • Accessories
  • Cycling abroad
  • Competition use  – you may be able to get refunds if you can’t attend competitions
  • Legal expenses

What does bike insurance not cover?

If you take out bike insurance make sure you know the policy exclusions to prevent a rejected claim. These could include:

  • If you use the bike for monetary gain such as being a courier
  • When you can’t prove you own the bike
  • Cosmetic damage including scratches
  • If you’ve left the bike unattended for more than 24 hours
  • Theft of your bike when you have not secured it properly
  • Damage caused if you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol

Tips to keep your bike safe

There were 79,160 recorded offences of bike thefts in England and Wales between July 2020 and June 2021, according to the National Office of Statistics. This is an average of around 216 every day.

Failing to protect your bike adequately can result in your contents insurance protection or specialist bike insurance protection being invalidated.

 

Register your bike

BikeRegister is a national cycling database that can help you trace your bike if it’s stolen. It’s free to register and you can purchase police-approved bike markings.

Buy good quality locks

Your insurer is likely to insist on a lock that meets certain standards, most commonly Sold Secure or Thatcham Approved.

There are three levels of Sold Secure locks: Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond. Look for the Sold Secure badge on the packaging or check the product on Sold Secure’s website.

Keep your bike in a secure location

If your bike can’t be stored in a secure private area, like a locked garage, then it’s important to attach it to something that can’t be moved or lifted easily.

For example, it’s best to avoid attaching it to wire fences, as your bike could easily be removed with wire cutters.

Some insurers may require you to lock your bike even if it’s in your own shed or garage.

Use two locks

It might be worth claiming on your insurance if your bike is stolen – but what about the front wheel?

Pairing a D-lock with a chain lock, for instance, can help avoid your wheels being stolen and makes the bike less inviting for thieves, who may have the tools to break one lock, but not the other.