Bikmo, the specialist cycling insurer, is today releasing figures from their annual Open Project. Now in its fourth year, the project aims to offer a unique level of transparency, with data based on thousands of claims in 2021. They are also well positioned to look ahead to 2022, and outline expectations for what the claims can tell us about the cycling landscape more widely.
With cycling continuing to grow, the insurer has seen claims rise by 8% – as they protect more of the world’s riders and help to get them back on two wheels. The data for 2021 shows that 57% of claim payouts were for bikes and gear worth under £500.
This has seen a huge change from the previous year, in which the average payout band with the highest % of claims was £1001-£2500 with 32.76%. As levels of cycling increased, this shows that more new riders are taking to the roads, with entry level or lower value bikes. This is also represented by the fact that commuter bikes (including e-bikes) were up significantly from 2020’s data – as people returned to work and sought a more sustainable and convenient way to do so.
Bikmo have also identified a rise in the number of claims being made for bikes at home. These made up for just 10% in 2019, 18% in 2020 and now sit at a quarter of claims for 2021.
Whilst claims for theft have continued to increase, up from 48.5% in 2020 to just under 53% in 2021 – accidental damage remains a significant reason for claims, highlighting the importance of having comprehensive insurance. The data also shows that 40% of claims in 2021 were for components, clothing and accessories rather than a full bike – highlighting that they can often add up in value and be as worthwhile to insure as the bike itself.
Interestingly, 2021 saw claims by month follow a fairly standard pattern of increasing in May through to November. This was markedly different during 2020, likely as a result of the pandemic and lower claims in the first half of the year. August saw the most claims in 2021, with 11% in just one month.
Whilst the number of claims on e-bikes has risen from from 70 in 2020, to 130 in 2021 – the overall figure remains low. Bikmo’s research on this subject has shown that eBikes riders represent less risk to insurers and that eBike policy prices should reflect this.
The wider continued rise in popularity of e-bikes will likely see the gap between claims for them and standard bikes grow closer each year. With the world beginning to open up again, Bikmo also expects more incidents leading to claims to happen away from the home.
David George, CEO of Bikmo said:
‘’2021 was another huge year for cycling, as more people got out and experienced the convenience and joy of travelling by bike. Whether it’s for commuting or leisure, our aim is to protect riders and get them back on track when the worst happens.’’
“As cycling continues to soar in popularity we will inevitably see thefts continue to rise as the dominant reason for cycle claims. However, with the increase in both long-life tracking technology such as the AirTag and electric bikes that can both power and store tracking devices, we hope the UK will follow the experience of the Netherlands where up to 80% of tracked bikes that are stolen are recovered. This will not only deter thieves but also reduce premiums for insured riders, enabling Bikmo to achieve our mission of protecting the world’s riders.”