Whether it's a quick trip to the shops, avoiding the queues in the commute to work or hitting the trails in some serious mountain biking at the weekend, cycling is once again popular.

If you fancy escaping the crippling cost of petrol and getting fit at the same time, this guide to insuring mountain bikes should be of interest to you.

What to expect from mountain biking insurance cover

The BMX was the cycle to be seen on during the 80s but after these fell out of fashion, the mountain bike took over and has been popular ever since.

Mountain bikes (also known as MTB) are used for a variety of reasons, and are as commonly used for getting around the town as competing or downhill racing.

They're an expensive bit of kit so you need to make sure yours is protected whether you keep it to the streets or head off-road.

The cover for mountain bikes insurance policies offer varies quite considerably but there are a couple of components which you can reasonably expect whatever provider you go with.

Theft: One of the most fundamental aspects of MTB insurance is protection against theft, as unfortunately this type of bike is one of the most desirable for thieves to get their hands on. Mountain bike theft insurance could save you a huge amount of money if your precious two-wheeled transport is targeted.

Accidental damage: Whether you are gently coasting around the park or speeding downhill mountain bike insurance will cover you for any damage that occurs. Some providers might require you to extend their standard insurance if you are taking part in a competitive race.

Additional cover for your mountain bike

In addition to the above, there are other types of cover which may be offered either for free or as voluntary add-ons when you insure a MTB.

These extra types of MTB bike insurance might be of particular interest.

Personal accident: This will insure you in case you fall off your bike whilst you are out and about. This is particularly useful as part of a mountain biking insurance abroad package.

MTB liability insurance: Whilst you may never need it, liability insurance is a good idea just in case you accidentally injure someone whilst on your saddle. This protects you from any claims which could be made against you.

Mountain bike travel insurance: Many people opt to take their mountain bike overseas in order to get the maximum use out of it and after all, what could be simpler than just popping it on the roof of the car? For mountain biking insurance Europe cover may need to be added separately or might be automatically included, depending on the provider. However, if you plan on going overseas, make sure that MTB insurance away from home is included on your policy and that you get separate travel insurance for your trip.

Your bike doesn't need to be brand new in order to be worth protecting. Many of the considerations and features listed above are equally as relevant for older bikes as well as those which are brand new. Insurance for an old mountain bike will apply if your bike is more than three years old; expect depreciation to be deducted from the value of your MTB.

An important point to check is the maximum value of bike the insurer will cover, especially if yours was a particularly costly piece of kit.

Finally, when you are ready to compare mountain bike insurance, don't forget to consider all aspects and not just the price. Some providers may provide additional discounts if you insure more than once cycle whilst others may extend their cover for family members who borrow your bike (if you let them!).