In the UK an electric bike benefits from the same exclusions as a traditional bicycle.
This means that you are able to ride your electric on public roads and bridleways without the need for tax, insurance, MOT certificate or a driving licence.
This offers users a substantial saving when compared to a car or motorcycle. And the feeling of having beaten the system causes extreme smugness. But, as electric bikes can be valuable assets, users may choose to insure them against, theft, damage or in the event they should cause an accident whilst using them, and there are a few different options for doing this.
The main concern I hear from customers when purchasing an electric bike is that it will be stolen. This is a rare event, but there are a few basic steps you can take to help stop this happening.
Firstly, using a good quality lock that can be used to attach the frame of your bike to an immovable object is a must if you intend to leave it in a public place unatended for any period of time. Opportunist theives, are only going to take something that is easy to remove. There are now several locks on the market with alarms built in which activate when the lock is moved. This could be enough to put off a thief or draw unwanted attention to their activity by passers by. When storing you bike at home in a garage or shed consider installing a ground anchor. This is simple device preferable fixed into the concrete floor which you can use to lock you bike to.
Secondly, consider listing your bike on your house insurance. Most house insurance covers you for more valuable assets like jewelery, laptops, phones or bikes when they are used away from the house, but they require you to list them individually and provide a valuation. In the case of a bike, they may also ask for a frame number and proof of purchase and require you to lock the bike with a type of lock they specify. It is worth checking with your own insurer what they require, but this can be a cost effective way of insuring against theft, even if there is an additional premium to pay.
If you wish to insure your bike against more than just theft, there are a number of providers on the market like BIKMO, Cycleplan or Cyclesure, who can provide you with tailored insurance packages. These are great as they can cover both you and your bike in the case of an accident or or theft, but they do come at a premium.
Lastly, if you should be unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident with another road user, don’t forget to follow the same process as you would when driving a car. Be sure to take the drivers details, registration of the vehicle and their insurance details. If the police weren’t in attendence, contact them to report the accident and get an incident number. If you belive the accident was not your fault, you can get in contact with CAMS who will be able to assess and process your claim. You don’t need to be a member, or have purchased any prior insurance policy from from them to benefit from their services.
It is worth bearing in mind that most people will not suffer a loss or accident when riding a bike, and the vast majority of time riding a bike is a great freedom and safe activity that should be enjoyed by all.