What insurance will I pay if my bicycle is stolen? Does this also apply to e-bikes? And in which cases does special bicycle insurance make sense? Below is a look at the most important questions about bicycle insurance in Germany.
First things first: Bicycles and e-bikes can be insured through household contents insurance or an independent bicycle insurance. Both types of insurance cover different risks. These include damage caused by accidents, vandalism or bicycle theft. Depending on the bike, either normal household contents insurance or bicycle insurance is suitable.
- How does home contents insurance protect my bicycle?
- Why is it important to include bicycle theft insurance?
- What risks are covered by bicycle insurance?
- What is the night time clause?
- How does bicycle insurance protect my bicycle?
- Insurance for e-bikes or pedelecs
- How do I deal with bicycle theft?
- What you should consider before signing a contract
- Who are the 5 best providers of bicycle insurance in Germany?
- Frequently Asked Questions about bicycle insurance in Germany
How does home contents insurance protect my bicycle?
Normal household contents insurance includes all household effects, such as furniture, clothing and electrical appliances. These are protected in the event of burglary, damage from tap water, storms and fire.
Many home insurance policies have expanded their services in recent years and also include insurance for bicycles at the place of insurance. If the insurance contract is extended accordingly, normal bicycles are also insured through the household contents insurance.
Why is it important to include bicycle theft insurance?
Of the more than 26 million contracts in household insurance, around 47 percent included the bicycle clause in 2020. This clause ensures that the insurance for bicycle theft pays if the bicycle has been secured with a customary lock. The household contents insurance then pays the new value, i.e. the amount of the price for today’s procurement.
Household contents insurance reimburses the repair costs for damaged inventory and pays the corresponding reduction in value for items that are damaged but can still be used without restriction.
The maximum compensation for bicycles is usually set at a certain percentage of the sum insured for the entire household contents. It should be noted here that the insurance cover generally applies to all of the policyholder’s bikes, but only as long as the bike has been damaged in locked rooms such as the basement or garage.
What risks are covered by bicycle insurance?
- Theft (Attention: Only if the bike was secured to a fixed object with the lock specified in the insurance policy)
- Partial theft (for parts firmly attached to the bike)
- Robbery (Caution: only with the use or threat of force)
- Accidents and theft abroad (depending on the insurance in Europe or worldwide)
What is the night time clause?
Most bicycles are stolen in public places. In such cases, consumers can protect their bikes with an additional clause in the household contents policy. However, the additional protection may only exist at certain times of the day, which are regulated in a so-called night-time clause. If the bike is stolen between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., the insurance protection could no longer apply in this case.
Students can also benefit from the protection of home contents insurance. Just as rooms in shared apartments are still covered by parental home contents insurance, students’ bicycles are also covered by it. The only condition for this: the parental home contents insurance must include the bicycle clause.
In 2020, the insurers paid an average compensation of 730 euros per stolen bicycle. A total of around 145,000 insured bikes were stolen in 2020.
How does bicycle insurance protect my bicycle?
For owners of high-quality bicycles or e-bikes, it is advisable to take out bicycle insurance. It is considered an independent insurance policy and is particularly useful for expensive, high-quality bicycles.
The reason: bicycle insurances usually include higher insurance sums. The amount of compensation is not based on the sum insured, as is the case with household insurance, but on the value of the insured bike.
Another advantage of bicycle insurance: It offers comprehensive protection not only in the event of loss through bicycle theft, but also in the event of damage or theft of individual parts, mix-ups, vandalism, explosions or accidents of all kinds – a type of fully comprehensive bicycle insurance. However, bicycle insurance only applies to the bike in question. If you want to insure additional bikes, you have to take out separate contracts.
5 advantages of a good bicycle insurance
- comprehensive protection, also for very valuable bicycles
- 24/7 protection
- Numerous damage performance, including some wear and tear damage
- Insurance abroad, too
- Bicycle does not have to be stored in a closed room to be insured
Insurance for e-bikes or pedelecs
Whether e-bikes are also insured in household items depends on the performance of the bike. Pedelecs or e-bikes with a maximum speed of up to 25 kilometers per hour can be included in the household contents insurance. In this case, the insurance cover also applies in the event of moisture and electronic damage.
S-Pedelecs have a higher engine output and can reach speeds of up to 45 kilometers per hour. As for mopeds and mopeds, motor vehicle liability insurance is required by law. With comprehensive insurance, you are also protected in the event of theft. Damage to the Pedelec caused by fire, explosion or hail, for example, can also be insured.
How do I deal with bicycle theft?
You should first report the theft to the police and, if you are protected, contact your household or bicycle insurance immediately. Photos help to prove the theft and are useful in the damage log for the insurer. It is important to keep the invoice for the bike and to give the frame number to the police in order to be able to find the bike again.
If the bike actually shows up again, you should inform the insurer immediately. If you have already received compensation for the stolen bike, you can decide within two weeks whether you want to keep the money or have your bike back.
Good locks are a deterrent
The police complain that bicycle owners often make it too easy for thieves because of cheap locks. To protect the bike from theft, consumers should invest in a good bike lock. The rule of thumb is to invest five to ten percent of the bike price in the lock. The reason: the more stable the lock, the longer it takes bicycle thieves to crack it. Since bicycle thieves often work under time pressure, the likelihood that the bike will be stolen decreases.
What does the insurance company pay?
In the event of theft or robbery: The insurer will reimburse the actual costs incurred for a replacement bike at the replacement value, up to a maximum of the agreed coverage amount . If only parts of the bike have been stolen, the insurer will reimburse these parts including the wages required to install the parts.
In the event of vandalism or damage: In this case, the insurer will reimburse the necessary repair costs and costs for spare parts as well as the wages for installation. To do this, however, you must provide the insurance company with evidence of the costs incurred by means of an invoice or a sales receipt. For repair costs that are likely to be more than 150 euros, you must also submit a cost estimate to the insurance company in advance .
What is not insured by a bicycle insurance?
- Losing the bike or leaving it standing / lying down if not secured with the bike lock
- Theft without a police report
- Damage that does not affect the function of the bike (e.g. scratches, damage to the paintwork)
- Damage from rust or oxidation
- Damage for which a third party is contractually liable (e.g. seller, manufacturer, repair service)
- Consequential damage caused by improper repairs or manipulation
- Damage caused by cycling events or the like
- Intentional damage
- Damage as a result of the use of alcohol or intoxicants
- Damage to carbon frames or other parts made of carbon
What you should consider before signing a contract
Before taking out bicycle insurance, you should clarify the following questions (which are based on guidelines from the consumer advice center) with the respective insurance company. This also includes which lock is required for the insurance cover to take effect.
- Is the bike only insured up to a certain purchase price? Often the upper limit is 6,000 euros.
- Is there a deductible or is the damage completely covered?
- Do accessories and luggage have to be insured separately?
- Do you need a specific lock that the insurance allows?
- Can I also insure a bike that has been bought second-hand?
- Are there any damages that are explicitly excluded from insurance cover?
- Is a pick-up service or a cover letter also insured in the event of a breakdown?
- How soon after a claim is the repair carried out or a replacement bike provided?
Who are the 5 best providers of bicycle insurance in Germany?
Frequently Asked Questions about bicycle insurance in Germany
How much should I insure my bike?
A bicycle insurance only makes sense if it covers the full replacement value in the event of theft or total loss. In terms of theft, however, insurers set guidelines for the lock. If you use a cheap lock, you are not entitled to a refund if the bike is stolen.
Pay close attention to the requirements of the insurer regarding the lock. As a sum insured, many insurers not only ask about the purchase price of the bike, but also ask “purchase price including lock”. With this, you will also have the lock replaced in the event of theft. Some insurers make the requirements for the lock dependent on the purchase price of the bike.