The specialist cycling insurer Bikmo has today lifted the bonnet on it’s claims data for 2020, offering an unrivalled level of transparency to the public. Looking at thousands of insurance claims from riders in 2020, Bikmo has identified a number of underlying themes over the last four years and predicted what the key insurance trends for 2021 will be.
Bikmo believes that existing and potential customers have the right to see insurance companies aggregate claims records. In an effort to set a new standard for transparency, the official insurance partner to British Cycling has released information on everything from the most popular causes of claim, where incidents took place, the average cost of replacement and even what percentage of claims were successfully paid out on. The numbers for 2020 are available to the public via Bikmo’s website here.
This year’s stats show that with more people storing and riding their bikes at their properties than ever before, the percentage of incidents taking place at home has almost doubled from 2019. In 2020 theft accounted for just under 49% of Bikmo’s total claims, up a staggering 23% from just two years ago.
Whilst the primary fear of most bike insurance buyers (and a growing cause of claims) is theft, it may surprise some to see that accidental damage was actually responsible for just as many claims (49%) by Bikmo customers in 2020. When looking at which items customers claimed for, the majority (31%) claimed for both a bike and accessories – showing that riders who don’t have accessory cover for items like bike computers, helmets and clothing included within their agreement (like most home insurance policies) will often lose out when they need to claim.
Despite the average cost of bikes and equipment rising in recent years, the average amount claimed for fell from £1,675 in 2017 to £1,293 in 2020. Whereas bikes worth under £500 had made up only 18% of Bikmo’s policies in 2017, this rose to 29% in 2020; marking a noticeable shift in the average value of bikes and equipment being insured with Bikmo as a number of new & returning riders entered the specialist insurance market.
When looking at what riding disciplines incidents took place within, road cyclists appeared to make the most claims in 2020 with 56% of the total. This was then followed by commuters (25%) and then trail shredding MTB riders (11%).
E-BIKES NOT TARGETED QUITE SO MUCH
eBikes across all disciplines accounted for just 7% of claims, a figure which supports Bikmo’s belief that eBikes riders represent less risk to insurers and that eBike policy prices should reflect this. When looking at what periods of the year had the most claims for Bikmo, some may also be surprised that despite widespread reporting of bike thefts in the Spring, April saw the least number of claims for Bikmo, with the most occurring in October.
Finally, whilst many insurers will keep the percentage of successful claims close to their chest, Bikmo is proud to report that a whopping 98% of claims were approved in 2020 – backing up the team’s no-nonsense approach and deep rooted commitment to getting riders back on their bikes.
Commenting on Bikmo’s Open Project data for 2021, CEO David George said: “2020 has been a year like no other. Whilst presenting significant challenges and personal tragedy for millions across the country, it has also seen a positive shift in the way we travel. Believing strongly in the values of openness and transparency, we have today released insights from our claims data in 2020, so that we can share some of the trends we’re seeing as well as better predict what lies ahead.“
As the cycle insurance market continues to grow quickly, David George has pulled together his 5 top predictions for the key industry trends in 2021 as we start to look to a future post the Pandemic.
With theft claims in 2020 nearly double what they were in 2017, sadly we expect this trend to continue with an estimated 45% growth in our bike theft claims in 2021. Although thieves are continually becoming more sophisticated, it’s worth noting that we expect the overall number of thefts to rise as we see a spike in riders, rather than the rate of theft per capita increasing.
Anyone who assumes their bike is covered by their home insurance should check the small print very carefully, as many will not cover incidents away from the home or accidental damage, and may have a single item/bicycle limit as low as £500. As a result, we expect over 50% of UK cyclists to have no or little cover.
The European Cycling Federation (ECF) estimates that European eBike sales will increase to 17million per year by 2030. With insurers now starting to understand the different riding behaviours of eBike riders, we believe insurance for eBikes will grow in line with eBike sales. Our recent study found that 38% fewer insurance claims arose from Bikmo riders on eBikes compared with traditional bikes.
We’re hopeful that mass participation events will restart in 2021. We believe that when this happens, interest from riders will be extremely high and entrants will be looking for insurance policies that offer extensive event cover as standard.
As more and more people start to realise the many benefits of cycling and active travel, we expect to see a boom in the number of personal leasing/hire schemes especially through employer-led schemes. As a result, we expect to see increased demand for insurance and service products within this space.
For more information on Bikmo and its range of insurance cover for cyclists visit https://bikmo.com/