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Insurance on the go: Are you covered?

1st June 2015 Print

People are carrying as much as £1,567 with them while they are out and about, potentially leaving them unprotected in the process, warns Saga Home Insurance. Smartphones and tablets, along with designer sunglasses and watches, are all items that may not be covered as standard by home insurance, when taken out of the home.

According to new research from Saga Home Insurance, one in ten people over the age of 50 has lost or broken a smartphone, 26% have lost a purse or wallet, 14% have lost a wrist watch and 19% have lost a wedding ring or another piece of jewellery. The number of over 50s using smartphones and tablets is on the rise with 88% now owning at least one digital gadget. As those in this age group become more likely to carry expensive items on their person, they are being advised to review their policy to ensure they have adequate cover.

While loss and damage are the most common risks to be aware of, the possibility of theft is likely to increase as the price of personal items rises. In 2013/4, 49,000 people were victims of incidents involving the theft of a mobile phone; a concerning figure that led Home Secretary Theresa May to publish the Mobile Phone Theft Ratio as part of wider research into the subject.

Many gadget-laden people mistakenly believe that their portable devices and other valuables are protected by their contents insurance policy. However, this is not always the case which is why Saga Home Insurance is urging people to check whether their policy covers the items in their pockets as well as their home.

Rather than having multiple policies that cover individual items such as phones or tablets, consumers are advised to review their home insurance policy and build in a higher level of cover as needed. Saga’s Premier home insurance policy includes personal belongings cover as standard for items away from home, with worldwide protection for possessions up to £5,000 per incident – whether the items have been lost, broken or stolen.

Sue Green, Head of Home Insurance, Saga says: “Smartphones and tablets have become so common in recent years that sometimes we don't stop to appreciate the true value of what's in our bags or pockets, and what the costs would be if they were to get stolen or broken.

“The cost of replacing a top of the range smart phone can cost around a third of the average monthly salary. This is why it's so important for people to review their policy, and to increase cover accordingly. This is as true for the over 50s as it is for younger generations as they also now rarely leave home without a smartphone in their pocket. This is a wide-spread issue and care needs to be taken across all age groups to ensure people are sufficiently protected when out and about.”