Over half of payouts were for bikes or kit worth under £500

Specialist cycling insurer Bikmo has recorded an 8% increase in claims from its customers in 2021, according to its annual Open Project report, published today (9 March 2022).

This research additionally found that the proportion of claims made for theft have increased from last year, moving from 48.5% in 2020 to just under 53% in 2021.

David George, chief executive of Bikmo, said: “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 Apple 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.”

The data also showed that 57% of Bikmo’s claims payouts in 2021 fell into the sub £500 range, while 20% of claims  were in the £501 to £1,000 range. Just 1% of claims in 2021 reached figures over £5,000.

This represents a change from the insurer’s 2020 report, which saw the highest proportion of claims (32.76%) made in the £1,001 to £2,500 range.

Bikmo explained that this shift was caused by an influx of “entry level or lower value bikes” purchased by people seeking more sustainable and convenient ways to travel or commute.

Low e-bike risk

The number of claims made for bikes situated at home also reached its highest level this year, representing 24% of all claims. This figure was 10% in 2019 and 18% in 2020.

Furthermore, while the number of claims for e-bikes had risen from 70 in 2020 to 130 in last year’s data, the “overall figure remains low”.

The report noted: “Bikmo’s research on this subject has shown that e-bike riders represent less risk to insurers and that e-bike policy prices should reflect this.”

George continued: “2021 was another huge year for cycling, as more people got out and experienced the convenience and joy of travelling by bike.”