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What is mobile phone insurance?

Mobile phones have become an important part of our lives, and we rely on them for virtually everything these days. That's why if you lose or damage your phone, you can feel helpless without it. One way you can protect yourself is by taking out mobile phone insurance.

Research by Mintel showed that almost a quarter (24%) of smartphone owners in the UK have broken their screen at least once. That's why having phone insurance can give you peace of mind. If something happens to your phone, it's protected by your mobile phone insurance. You can relax knowing it won't cost you hundreds of pounds to repair or replace it.

What does phone insurance cover?

Most mobile insurance will cover three situations as standard:

Updated 9 June 2021
Loss of phoneIf you lose your phone, your cover could replace it with a similar model
Accidental damageThis means you don't pay to repair or replace a cracked phone screen, even if it's been dropped
TheftIf your phone is stolen, your cover should allow you to replace it quickly

You can also find plans which offer cover for:

  • Damage abroad
  • Malicious damage
  • Mechanical breakdown
  • Broken buttons
  • Water damage
  • Accessories
  • Damaged headphone sockets

It is important to remember that specialist mobile phone policies will likely come with cover that is not included in standard contents insurance policies. This cover could be for the cost of replacing downloaded music or games, as well as if your phone needs to be replaced.

It is also likely that you will get access to a faster claims service with a specialist mobile phone policy. Some policies will even send a replacement phone out in days.

What's not covered by mobile phone insurance?

Even the best phone insurance companies don't cover you for certain things. Your mobile insurance policy document will list the 'exclusions'. You aren't likely to be covered for:

  • Theft due to negligence (e.g. leaving your phone on view in the car)
  • Intentional damage
  • Manufacturer's defects
  • Dents and scratches (everyday wear and tear)
  • Lost SIM cards
  • Older phones (more than six months)

Why you might want to insure your mobile phone

  • You are prone to damaging or losing your phone: If you have broken or lost phones in the past, or are just generally accident prone, you might want to consider finding the cover to protect you from having to pay for a replacement.

  • You are on a long contract: Some pay monthly mobile phone deals will tie you in for months or years, so you will still have to make the payments if your phone is lost or damaged.

  • You need a fast replacement service: If you are someone who relies on your phone and would need it replaced very quickly, insurance might be essential. It could save you from having to buy a new replacement at short notice.

  • You cannot afford the cost of replacing your current phone: If you have an expensive smartphone it could cost hundreds of pounds to replace. If you cannot afford a replacement, mobile phone insurance might turn out to be a wise purchase.

How much does mobile phone insurance cost?

Mobile phones can cost a lot of money. These days, to buy the latest iPhone, you could be looking at around £1,000. But that doesn't mean your iPhone insurance should cost a lot, too. The same goes for whatever kind of smartphone insurance you need.

It's important to make sure you find an insurance policy that provides the cover you need, rather than just looking for the cheapest deal. You should always compare phone insurance deals. But there are other ways to reduce the cost of your phone insurance cover and find a cheap mobile phone insurance that meets your needs.

Get a multi-gadget discount: Some insurers offer a discount for getting gadget insurance to cover several gadgets at once. You could think about insuring all the phones in your family under one policy as a good way of getting cheap mobile insurance.

Make an annual payment: Lots of insurance companies charge less if you pay for your policy in full, instead of paying monthly instalments. If you can afford to do this, it's a helpful way to get cheap mobile phone insurance.

Choose a higher excess: Agreeing to pay a higher excess if you need to claim can be a way of getting cheap phone insurance. But remember that the excess will be taken off any claim you make. So you need to make sure you can afford it.

Compare mobile phone insurance using our phone insurance comparison table. This will help you find the best phone insurance policy for you and one that that gives you what you need.

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Last updated: 18 October, 2021