Bike Insurance - Your experience, is it worth it?

Has anyone purchased bike insurance from a company like Velosurance or Spokes? Did you feel that it was worth it? What was your experience with it?

So, the reason why I am even bringing this up. I purchased a $4000 carbon-frame bike this year. My homeowner’s policy does cover bikes but has a $1000 deductible. I do have good medical insurance, so that part I am not looking to supplement either. I am looking for coverage in the event that my bike gets stolen or damaged while shipping it to a tour location.

Thanks!

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Good topic. I always wonder what the insurance requirements are for locking your bike. If you are only insured when you have to carry 25kg of locks and chains…

Are you in the US? When I went through my silly $10,000 bicycle phase I just had a rider added onto my homeowners policy which had a reduced deductible for the specific item. Never had a claim but a club member with the same set up broke a frame in a crit and the insurance agent dropped off a check at the bike shop for the new frame+labor.

Get a rider or shop around for home owners insurance. Carefully read through the policy. Mine stipulates I can’t park the bike overnight in the city and that it must be locked. Some policies require a lock of a minimum price.

When my bike was stolen, Allianz paid for the bike and they even covered the €70 lock ha!

Good idea. I will look into getting a rider. I am in the US. I am trying to keep the same homeowner company since I do get a nice home-car discount.

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This is a pet subject. Long read warning…

First, I’m UK based. Second, as this was ultimately settled via out of court offer, I can’t name the company.

The company stipulated that bikes worth >£3000 were subject to additional security requirements, so as well as being inside a locked garage, the 2 bikes were chained to wall brackets within the garage. I believed that satisfied their requirements.

In summer 2020 the garage was broken into and the 2 bikes (a Giant TCR and a Condor Italia) were stolen. The loss adjuster visited, seemed happy enough, and indicated that the claim would be settled shortly.

After 3 weeks I received a letter stating that they would not be paying out. Their reason: the arrangements inside the garage constituted storage not security. **

I argued, vociferously, and got an offer of a 20% payout ‘as a gesture of goodwill’. I took legal advice, wrote again, and got the offer up to 40%. My lawyer then wrote to them to initiate court action, which was ignored, and a date was set. 2 weeks before the court date, I was offered 70% plus legal fees, which (at my lawyer’s recommendation) I reluctantly accepted.

One condition was confidentiality (including review sites!) and another was the agreement not to seek insurance from them again (not a problem!)

So, my advice: really, really check the small print, and - should the worst happen - be prepared to argue, a lot.

**they also suggested that the attack was targeted, which (apparently) indicated evidence of behaviour likely to induce theft, ‘including potentially conspicuous display of high-value assets in a limited security environment’!! Talk about victim blaming…

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In my view insurance companies have evolved so far that they only want to ensure shareholder dividents, and insure certainties.

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Rotten experience. Did they tell you what constitutes “security vs storage” according to them?

The assessor apparently noted that the wall brackets were screwed into the wall, rather than bolted, and so could have been prised away relatively easily. As such, the company’s contention was that the bikes were not secured to an immovable object, which was the security requirement. A major part of my claim was that this was irrelevant, as the chains attaching the bikes to the brackets were cut, and the brackets themselves weren’t touched.

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I have renters insurance, we made sure it covered replacement value rather than depreciated value of the bike. It took some fine print reading for sure, but was worth it when my wife’s bike was stolen. She had left it out front when unloading the groceries and it was swiped. The NYPD detective who help us file the police report was helpful making sure we used the correct language about how and where it was taken from. We got full replacement value minus $200 deductible. Long story shot I think insurance is a must, but you have to cross every t and dot every i.

That’ is beyond the pale. Sorry to hear about this terrible insurance company experience.

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I am in the US and have riders on my home insurance for my watch collection and my bikes. They will likely require an invoice from the purchases of the bike(s) you wish to insure, or an appraisal from a bike shop. I have mine insured for full appraised value, no deductible. Replacement value of custom bikes goes up in cost every year, so I can send them new appraisals to increase the insured amount. I do not race but I do travel with my bikes. The policy covers theft, inside or outside the home, loss during travels, floods, fire, etc…

I would consider specialist bike insurance if I were racing. This is way more expensive than a home insurance rider, but offers services that home insurers cannot. This would include damage due a crash while racing, liability on behalf of the rider (if you crash into someone and they sue you for damages), rapid replacement - to get you back racing!

Remember, with homeowner’s insurance policies/riders you are the customer and you decide what the policy covers. For a little higher premium cost, have them remove stupid fine print like “bike must be locked to immovable object while also locked inside your basement”

Good luck!

This has been an eye opening experience for me. I have learned quite a bit from this discussion. Bottom line: as tedious as it is, read the fine print. I contacted my homeowner’s insurance company. They will only over my bike against “named perils”. So, if my bike gets destroyed in a fire, then it’s covered. If it gets damaged in transit to a tour location, then no dice. If I crash it while riding it, no dice.

I’ve started looking at the policies from bike insurance companies. The whole theft issue is a big sticking point. For example, Velosurance states that for a theft away from home to be covered, the bike needs to have been locked to an immovable object. They defined immovable object as “any solid object fixed in or onto concrete or stone, which is not capable of being undone, removed or liftedunder/over the insured bicycle.” So, if your bike was locked on a massive bike rack that was not bolted down on concrete or stone, you are out of luck. There’s just so many loopholes here. Think about the bike racks on the boardwalk at the beach.

Dedicated bike insurance is pretty pricey especially if you compare what you are getting for that price against your homeowner’s policy. It’s a bit mind boggling that to cover my bike alone (i.e. no medical/liability), the cost is about 50% of what it costs me to cover the entire contents of my house (I live in a condo, so my policy does not include structure). Things to ponder about…

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Australian experience had been with Bikesure Insurance:

They cover my Contents and Bikes as part of that. Coverage for the bikes is for damage while riding (non-events), transport and theft from home. My responsibility to keep an eye on it/them while at the café!

I have paid a bolt-on premium for racing and event coverage, standard excess applies. (Still need to be mindful around the café though!)

I had an accident- insurance paid out 100 per cent minus the few hunt dollars excess after report from LBS said race bike - Trek Emonda was a write-off, last year, plus race wheels, without argument.

Process for was surprisingly easy. Got a premium bump this year; to be expected, but happy to pay.

They’re underwritten by the SRG Group. Happily recommend. :ok_hand:

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Australian experience, all my family’s bikes are covered under our home contents insurance. You need to ensure you cover your contents away from home, so it covers any crashes with your choice of excess. There is an add-on for racing coverage. As the bike values are included within the total contents amount, it was a cost effective option.

I insured my bike with Velosure about 6 month ago. Then recently crashed into my garage roof. It was a little drawn out process through my bike shop to have them asses the damage but the end result was a full cash settlement. Very happy with the outcome. Velosure we’re great to deal with, the key to a fast and satisfactory settlement is the bike shop assessment and making sure you have all your receipts in order for the purchase of the bike.

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