The Great British bike off: Pandemic drives 97% spike in bike policies

  • The UK ‘gets on its bike’ as LV= General Insurance (LV= GI) data reveals a 97% increase1 in people adding bikes to home insurance policies since this time last year.
  • Regionally, customers in the South East added the highest number of bikes to policies last year across the UK, with Northern Ireland the least.
  • As the weather warms up, LV= GI predicts that cyclists could hit a second summer peak, as data shows July 2020 was most popular for insuring bikes.


The pandemic has fuelled the nation’s interest in cycling, according to new data from LV= General Insurance (LV= GI). As ‘Bike Week’ kicks off in the UK, LV= GI has revealed a 97% increase in people adding bikes to their policies since April 2020, with the South East region adding the highest number across the UK. This also represents a 168% increase since April 2019.


As restrictions continue to ease this month and the weather begins to improve, LV= GI expects that families and newly flexible commuters will beat estimates again this summer, following a previous peak in adding bikes to home insurance policies in July 2020.


Sports England estimate almost nine millionpeople cycled each week during the initial lockdown. Meanwhile, the Bicycle Association recently announced that retailers had experienced a 60% increase in bike sales since March 20203 and prices have spiked due to increased demand.


Sarah Smith, Head of Home Underwriting at LV= General Insurance said; “Since the first lockdown, the UK has embraced cycling as a way to gain a sense of freedom and get out and about locally. Since then, bikes have become really popular and we certainly predict a second summer peak this year with the rise in staycations and as the weather starts to improve.


“It’s really important consumers understand their home insurance policy when it comes to bike cover, as this can differ. With the increase in the price of bikes this is particularly important, as you may want to consider additional insurance for higher value bikes. Do also make sure bikes are locked away securely, as we’re likely to see a rise in thefts from gardens as restrictions ease.”


LV= GI insures securely locked bikes in the home, which are covered up to overall contents sum insured. Customers can choose to opt for unspecified bike and specified4 bike cover for away from the home depending on the value of the bikes.


Top safety tips for the new generation of cyclists: 


  1. Start small: If you are new to cycling, especially in an urban area, or haven’t been on a bike in years, pedal around quiet, local streets or in nearby parks first.


  2. Choose a bike that’s right for you: Before you set off, make sure your bike is the right size for you, and meets your needs. Bike shops can help with this.


  3. Take lessons: It might be worth requesting a free cycling lesson from your local council, or perhaps asking a friend or family member to show you the ropes.


  4. Invest in the right gear: There is no law enforcing helmet use, and it’s your choice, but it’s worth investing in one as they ensure your safety. Also consider buying a secure lock, bike lights and a puncture repair kit, to keep your bike safe wherever you go. 


  5. Know your route: Cycling to work might seem simple, but planning is essential to avoid the busier roads. 

For further information:

Simon Ansell
Media Relations Manager, General Insurance
07826 953024


1    LV= General Insurance Home insurance claims data from April 2019 - April 2021

2    Sport England: COVID 19 Briefing (slide 74/84)

  Bicycle Association: MDS 2020 COVID IMPACT REPORT

4    Types of out and about cover for bikes:

  • Specified – For bikes worth more than £1,000 and specifically insured.
  • Unspecified – Automatically covers each bike up to £1,000. A block of cover is purchased for the total value of all eligible bikes to be insured.