Santa needs a bit more cover than a big red coat and hat, Groupama has claimed.

The insurer recently surveyed its own policyholders and almost half said they would expect to upgrade their insurance cover if they bought or received gifts worth more than £750.

Almost a quarter were looking to increase cover when gifts were worth £250.

Groupama offers an automatic ten per cent increase in cover for Christmas gifts.

"We wish to encourage our brokers to remind their clients of the increased amounts at risk at this time of the year, especially as policyholders may have splashed out on special, high-value presents to mark the new millennium," said Paul Fakley, marketing services manager for Groupama Personal Insurance.