Do you need bicycle insurance?

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Bicycle insurance gives you financial protection if your bike is lost, stolen or damaged or you get into an accident, but is it worth the cost? Here is how to work out if you need bicycle insurance.

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Young woman walking bicycle down countryside road in the sun

If you own a bike, it won’t necessarily be covered under your home contents insurance. This means you could be left out of pocket if your bicycle were stolen or damaged. 

Worse, it won’t cover you if you get into an accident - whether you’re stranded somewhere, hurt or hit someone else.

For this reason, it can pay to take out a more comprehensive standalone bicycle insurance policy. Here’s how it works. 

What does bicycle insurance  cover?

Bike insurance can cover things like:

  • Theft, vandalism or accidental damage

  • Personal accident

  • Third party liability

  • Taking part in competitions

  • Your accessories, including GPS computers, lights or clothing

  • Bicycle breakdown

  • Taking your bike abroad

Some bike insurance policies give you the option to cover:

  • Just your bike

  • Just yourself

  • Both in a combined policy

Not all bike insurers offer separate policies, so use our comparison to find those that do.

Here is an in depth look at everything a bicycle insurance policy can cover

When you might need bicycle insurance

A bike insurance policy might be worth buying if:

  • You have an expensive bike: top of the range road bikes can cost more than £10,000, so it is worth having a policy that can cover the cost if your bike is damaged or stolen

  • You use your bike every day: if you are injured in a road accident, or damage someone else's property while riding, bike insurance can cover the costs

  • You use your bike to race: some bike insurance policies can cover you when taking part in events like triathlons, time trials and road races

Compare bicycle insurance policies here

When you might not need bicycle insurance

You might not need a bike insurance policy if:

  • Your bike is old or cheap: if your bike is inexpensive it may not be worth buying cover, especially as many policies charge an excess of £100 per claim.

  • You do not use your bike often: if you rarely take your bike out of your home a policy may not be worth getting.

  • Your bike is already covered: if your home insurance can cover your bike at home and on the road, you might not need a standalone bike policy as well.

Is your bike covered by your home insurance?

This will depend on your policy, so check your home insurance documents carefully. 

If your policy does cover your bike, you’ll usually need to inform your provider how much it is worth. If you’ve just bought a bike and you’re adding cover to an existing home insurance policy, you could be charged an admin fee and your premium will likely rise too.

Be aware that most home insurance policies will also only cover your bike when it is kept in your home or locked away in a garage.

Not all policies will cover your bike when it is away from your home, so you may not be covered if you crash and damage your bike while out and about. You may be able to add this additional cover, but it could cost you extra.

Is home insurance cover enough?

This will depend on the type of bike you own and how you use it. If you keep your bike at home most of the time and only ride it occasionally, home insurance probably gives you enough cover.

However, some insurers set a separate claim limit when your bike is taken outside your home, for example, £500.

If your bike is worth more than this, you should consider getting a specific bike insurance policy, or paying extra to increase the cover limit.

Check your policy documents or speak to your insurer to find out exactly what your policy covers.

Here is how home contents insurance works

How can I keep my bike safe? 

You can keep your bike safe by:

  • Investing in a decent heavy-duty lock

  • Locking your bike securely and leaving it in well-lit areas, ideally with CCTV coverage, when out and about

  • Locking your bike in a secure shed or garage when it’s at home

  • Registering your bike with schemes like Bike Register, and marking it with a unique reference number so that it could be identified if it was stolen

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