Insuring against summer sporting disasters
By Richard Green
Sporting fever has beset the country. With the dates of the World Cup, Wimbledon, the Formula One Grand Prix season, and the Cricket Open coinciding, it seems that this summer has become a boom time for sports fans.
The mass of high profile sporting events occurring all at the same time has meant that this summer more Brits appear to be taking to the streets and gardens to try out their skills. It is estimated that this year there will be £4.65 billion spent by Brits this year on sports and fitness. According to figures from Barclays Insurance, the average person is liable to spend about £206 this year.
While this is good news for gyms and sporting good suppliers, insurance companies are warning that many may end up suffering from unwanted repercussions, with record numbers of sporting injuries and broken windows expected.
Vicky Emmott of Halifax Home Insurance said, "It's great that young and old alike are inspired by their sporting heroes but it might be safer to take ball games to the local park. Homeowners should definitely make sure they are covered for such events."
Mark Till, Marketing Director for Barclays Life Insurance, warns, "Many of us spend most of our sporting life sat on the couch watching sport on the TV, but at this time of the year we dip in our pockets to buy new equipment, join clubs and then expect to see a brilliant return for our investment. However, broken equipment and pulled muscles are more often the outcome."
It has long been recognized that sports participation traditionally surges every year during the summer months as sporting participants are inspired by the major televised sports events. There are however also unfortunate corresponding increases in the number of injuries which occur as a result of sporting activities. While most life or health insurance policies will payout as a result of a sports injury, and household insurance policies usually provide some level of cover for theft or accidental damage to sports equipment, it is worthwhile checking to ensure such activities are included, as frequently, potentially hazardous sports are excluded, and even seemingly safe pastimes like golf can often be excluded from many travel insurance packages.
Whether existing insurance policy holders are looking to take part in sports this summer, or simply watch others on television, it could still be worthwhile checking to see if there is now a better policy out there. With many changes being made within the insurance industry in recent years, as some of the major players started competing on price which has lead to premiums reductions in many insurance products, and with the growth of life insurance comparison services like Moneynet, it has never been it easier for consumers to quickly check the entire market and find these cheaper deals.
Mark Till said, "It might not stop a tennis racket getting broken in a McEnroe moment or a Rooneyesque broken metatarsal, but it will cover you for the outcome."
Vicky Emmott stated that Halifax expected, "World Cup fever combined with die-hard Wimbledon and cricket fans could lead to our highest level of claims ever for the summer months."
All information contained in this article, is for general information purposes only and should not be construed as advice under the Financial Services Act 1986.
You are strongly advised to take appropriate professional and legal advice before entering into any binding contracts.
About the Author
Richard lives in Edinburgh, occasionally writing for the personal finance blog Cashzilla, and listens to music no one else likes.
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