Cambridge is revealed as the UK’s top hotspot for bike thefts, recording more than double the amount of its rival city on the list, according to latest figures.
MoneySuperMarket analysed bike theft data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and found that the rate of reported thefts per 1,000 people was highest in Cambridge in 2020 at 18.4. Oxford and Reading take second and third place, reporting 8.0 and 5.2 stolen bikes per 1,000 people respectively.
At the other end of the scale, Tunbridge Wells (0.2), Caerphilly (0.2) and Dudley (0.3) have the lowest rates of bicycle theft, making them the safest places to own a bike. Overall, the data shows that 72,640 bikes were reported stolen in 2020, which amounts to 199 bicycle thefts per day on average. This figure is down 15% compared to 2019, where 85,285 bikes were reported as stolen. Residents of Cambridge – where bike theft was most prevalent – were the third most likely to include a bike on their policy (17% of enquiries), behind only Bristol and South West London (18%).
However, in Oxford and Reading – the areas with the second and third highest reports of bike theft – only 15% and 13% of enquiries included a bike, respectively. According to MoneySuperMarket’s home insurance data, the median cost of a combined building and contents policy which does not include a bike is £134.86. When a bike is added to the policy, Brits can expect to pay £183.95, or £49.09 (36%) more on average.
However, considering the average cost of a bike is significantly higher at £365, bike owners may have to fork out £316 more than the difference in policy costs with and without a bicycle, to replace it if it were to be stolen.
Kate Devine, home insurance expert at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Cycling has become popular over the past year and with the country easing out of lockdown and people set to travel once again, it’s even more important to make sure bikes are covered for theft and damage.