Velosurance is a relatively new company, having gone live in January 2013, but it’s been a project for founder Dave Williams since 2009.
The idea is to provide the type of coverage that cyclists, particularly those that race, really need but probably aren’t getting through their homeowner’s policy. Assuming they even have a homeowners policy.
Policies start at $100 per year, and that’ll buy you theft/damage coverage on a bike in the $1,200 to $1,500 range. You can put more than one bike on a policy, which provides a per-bike price break. With a few options and a $12,000 race bike, a premium can run about $600. If you’re regularly jumping into a domestic crit
wreck race (their coverage mainly applies to claims from incidents in the US and Canada, but worldwide incident coverage is available), it could very well be worth it. It’ll even cover your entry fee and the Spandex that’s now smeared across the asphalt.
Click through to check out some of the options and see why it took so long to get this thing off the ground…
One of the challenges to getting it off the ground was convincing the states that their premiums were fair and reasonable for the risk they were insuring. Some states were fine with the concept, but others took a little convincing. Williams said some states had a hard time wrapping their heads around the fact that bikes actually can cost up to $15,000 or more, but once they did their own research, they came around. Now, they’re authorized to sell insurance in all 50 states.
The biggest question Williams gets asked is “isn’t my bike covered by my homeowners insurance?”. His answer is “possibly, but depending on your policy, sometimes you don’t always know exactly what’s covered until you file and claim. And, in states where it’s difficult to get a HO policy, you may not want to test it with a claim that could end up jacking your rates or cause a policy cancellation.”
As long as you’re using your bike within the parameters of the bicycle manufacturer’s intended uses for the bike, it’s covered. The only exception is if it’s being used for commercial purposes. And the exception to that is if you’re paid to race…that’s still a commercial purpose, but it’s allowable.
And if something does happen, they’ve partnered with shops throughout the US to handle repairs and process claims for you…and you can choose which of the shops you want to use.
“The medical payments option is a good way to cover the gap between what your health insurance covers and what your out of pocket might be for the year. Say your total annual out of pocket deductible is $2,500, a policy to put that back into your pocket is less than $50 per year. We also options for up to $10,000 of medical expenses reimbursement, which would cover something like a broken arm or collarbone if you don’t have any other insurance.”
They even partnered with a well known automotive roadside assistance program that’ll pick you up and drive you up to 35 miles (hopefully home), and that roadside policy adds only $10 per year. Or, if your tire, um, accidentally had a flat after a few too many at a pub, that roadside assistance could pay for itself in no time.