After that post-work beer in the corner pub, you step out into the cool evening air. Everything seems just perfect. After a few drinks, you’re ready for bed and a relaxed start to the weekend. You want to pop on your helmet and hop on your beloved Bianchi bike. But…where is it?
You look to the right, you look to the left. Nothing. And then the horrible realization sets in: Sneaky thieves stole your wheels. You find the shattered bits of your broken bike lock on the sidewalk.
Hey, shit happens. But this situation is especially crushing, because your bike is more than just a way of getting from point A to point B. And besides, that extra-light carbon road bike was not cheap.
But what does bicycle theft mean for your finances? Do you get reimbursed if you have existing insurance? Would you have needed to invest in a special bicycle insurance policy beforehand?
Let’s take a deep dive into bike insurance.
A quick topic overview:
- Which insurance covers my bike—is it covered under my contents policy?
- What the heck is a bicycle clause?
- Special bicycle insurance… a good idea, or a waste?
- Are e-bikes covered by insurance?
- The Lemonade Anti-Theft Package offers broad protection.
Which insurance covers my bike – is it covered by my contents policy?
If you already have German contents insurance, then your bike is covered as part of your belongings.
Quick refresher: Home contents insurance protects your belongings against damage caused by fire, smoke, explosion, storm, hail, tap water (from burst pipes & leaking appliances), robbery, and vandalism.
So if your bike is damaged by a fire in your home, insurance will step in and cover you. Plus, you’re additionally protected against burglary. If someone breaks into your locked bike cellar (with visible signs of burglary!) and takes your wheels, you’ll be compensated.
Listen up, though…there’s a few things to consider when dealing with simple contents insurance:
- Amount refunded: Usually what you get back in case of damage/loss is the replacement value that it would cost to buy a new bike that’s equivalent to the one that was stolen or damaged.
- Limited theft protection: If your bike is not in your apartment, basement, garden shed, etc., but is instead chained in front of your favorite café or at your university…household insurance won’t cover you if it gets stolen. Luckily there are other ways to protect your two-wheeled treasure. Learn more below.
What the heck is a bicycle clause?
Generally, a bicycle clause means that some content insurances automatically include basic bicycle theft protection as part of their policy. That’s great news if you live in Münster, Magdeburg, Lübeck, or Bremen—all on the list of the top 10 cities with the highest risk of theft, according to the Rheinische Post. But remember: Bikes get stolen everywhere, from Berlin to Bielefeld.
If a bicycle clause appears to be part of whatever contents policy you have, you should still play it safe and inspect your policy more closely to figure out the specifics.
Some things to keep in mind are: What lock does the policy require? Are there certain hours of the night when theft isn’t covered (known as a ‘nighttime clause’?) What if a thief only steals your bike seat or one wheel? And how much will you actually be compensated if you make a claim?
At Lemonade, we offer an add-on called the Anti-Theft Package, which is basically a really generous bicycle clause.
Here’s an easy rundown of that package’s add-ons benefits and perks.
The Lemonade Anti-Theft Package
|Price||Add-on for around 2 euros/month|
|Lock specifications||Standard bike lock will do, no need for a fancy or heavy-duty model|
|Nighttime clause?||Nope! While some insurers might not cover thefts that happen in certain evening periods, with Lemonade you’re always covered|
|Theft of bicycle parts, like wheels or seat||You’re covered if the thief gets away with just a piece of your bike|
|Amount of reimbursement||Replacement value of your bike up to 5,000 euros|
But enough about theft…what happens if you’re riding your bike too fast in the rain and wipe out? You’re okay (whew!), but who pays for the scratches to your bike frame and the cost of the bent handlebars?
Special bicycle insurance- do you need it?
Well, if you want to be on the extra safe side, or you don’t have a German contents insurance policy at all, you can take out extra bike insurance. This not only covers you in the event of theft including theft of fixed bicycle parts such as your saddle, but usually has your back during the following scenarios:
- Accidents, and subsequent repairs
- Vandalism outside your home, e.g. if someone slits your tires
- Material, production and design defects: However, if less than two years have passed since your bike purchase, these damages fall under the bike’s warranty.
- Wear and tear of bicycle parts
- Accidental damage you cause yourself (e.g. if you did not insert the battery of your e-bike correctly, and it falls and breaks)
Of course, you have to check beforehand what your own insurance company offers exactly. Fees may vary accordingly.
We’ll be honest: Lemonade’s Anti-Theft Package only covers theft, not the wide array of damages listed above. If you want additional coverage for those scenarios, you might want to consider alternative options. But keep in mind that this sort of ultra-comprehensive bike insurance really only makes sense if you have a very expensive bike.
What about my e-bike? Is an electric bike subject to insurance?
You didn’t fancy being out of breath while cycling up a hill, so you bought yourself an e-bike to get you up to speed? Of course, this fine piece of equipment is also covered by household insurance, just like all of your belongings, and is therefore protected against the sort of scenarios we’ve already discussed such as burglary, damage caused by fire, water etc. It can be insured against theft under household insurance with the Anti-Theft Package added on to your Lemonade’s contents insurance.
But as you probably know, e-bikes are not cheap, with prices starting at around 1,500 euros and running up to 5,000 euros. If your insurance only covers costs up to a certain amount, like 2,000 euros, you may only be reimbursed a fraction of the original price of your e-bike. Fun fact: Lemonade covers the replacement value of your bike up to 5,000 euros.
In any case, your electric bike is a complex gadget and comes with its own set of problems that you may want to insure against, such as scenarios where the battery dies.
In this case, a separate electric bicycle insurance policy might be a good idea. However, this only applies if your e-bike falls into the category of so-called pedelecs and not S-pedelecs. What the heck is that, you ask? The difference lies in their maximum power: Pedelecs support the cyclist up to 25 km/h, while S-pedelecs, with a support of up to 45 km/h, are more like mopeds. Consequently, different insurance guidelines apply to them.
The Lemonade Anti-Theft Package offers broad protection
Lemonade is insurance for the 21st century. You can easily buy your digital contents and personal liability insurance without any hassle or paperwork.
Our charming AI bot Maya will ask you a few questions, and within a few minutes you’ll receive a personalized quote. You’re able to customize all coverages to your needs. For a few euros a month, you can activate our Superpower coverage and add the Anti-Theft Package to your contents insurance. With this, most of your belongings (not just your bike!) are protected against theft wherever you are, whether you’re at the university library or taking a vacation to the coast.
Fun fact: Compared to some competing contents insurance with a bicycle clause, we waive the unpopular nighttime clause and also insure against theft of bicycle parts. This means that fixed parts of the bike, as well as the saddle, handlebars, or tires are included in the Anti-Theft Package. In addition, we do not insist on a super luxury lock – a standard bicycle lock will do.
Okay, so you got your bike covered, and then your bike got stolen. It’s a bummer, but not a disaster. Filing claims is easy and hassle-free using Lemonade’s app, with the help of our claims wizard, AI Jim. You answer a few quick questions and record a video explaining exactly what happened.
And voilà, your claim is processed as quickly as possible, generally without any forms to fill out or phone calls to make.
But don’t just take our word for it.
”Filing a claim with Lemonade was really easy,” says policy holder Christoph from Düsseldorf. “I really liked the fact that you don’t have to laboriously write anything down, but can describe the entire process with your smartphone via video message. I was able to file my claim within minutes. And it was simply outstanding that the money arrived so quickly.”