Moto Insurance Rip-Off

Stephen Edwards 25.3.2014


This is my fourth attempt at writing this column, as it is a difficult topic to cover without getting carried away. It’s insurance that I am talking about and if I was to condense all of my previous thoughts and words into a single sentence then it is this: “We are being ripped off by the Czech insurance companies”

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Here are my reasons for not just thinking but knowing this and in the finest modern way I shall present them as bullet points.

1. Full motorcycle coverage is incredibly expensive.

2. If you renew an existing policy there is every chance the policy price is based on the bikes original purchase price, not its actual value.

3. No reward is given for not making a claim on your policy.

4. You pay for a year cover but actually they decide in which months you can ride with accident cover. Between October and April it is third party only.

5. Insurance is a calculated risk yet the insurance companies take no consideration of the risk factors of the person actually driving the vehicle.

6. We just put up with it and they continue to get away with it.

Let me add a few words to each to back up what I say. This is all based on my actual dealings with the insurance companies in this country. Maybe I am an isolated case but I suspect not.

Point 1: Insuring a new motorcycle for full coverage in the Czech Republic is disproportionately expensive and seems to be calculated solely on the purchase price of the vehicle and nothing else.

Point 2: I personally experienced this. I bought a new bike three years ago and when it was time to renew the insurance policy it was only a few hundred Korun cheaper than the previous year. After much probing I eventually spoke to a lady at the insurance company who admitted to me that if you renew an existing policy they don’t change the original conditions and it is best to cancel that policy and get a new one. This I did and suddenly I was thousands of Korun better off. You know that if you claim for the theft a three year old bike that they will not give you back its purchase price but they will charge you for the insurance as if it was.

Point 3: In the UK, where I come from, if you don’t make a claim on a policy then you get a discount each year for this care. It builds up over time and is of great value. People are thus encouraged not to make stupid claims as losing this benefit has a real cost.

Point 4: Unbelievable, not only is the cover ridiculously expensive but then they tell you when you can and cannot ride. Last Friday (March 21) it was 24 degrees, sun shining and dry. I was riding my bike but if I had an accident there would be no damage cover. The temperature very well may drop and perhaps by April 4 it will be zero degrees, snowing and wet roads but I shall be covered. It is complete madness and a blanket move by these crooks, treating all people like idiots.

Point 5: Very simple really. A 50 year old, living in a quiet village, with a secure garage, thirty years riding experience and never had an accident shall pay the same insurance for a new bike as a 20 year old, living in centre of the city with five months riding experience. There is no risk assessment done by these companies at all.

Point 6: These people see easy money and because like blind sheep we put up with it then they just carry on.

In talking about this with Czech friends they have told me that the insurance companies say it is because there are so many fraudulent claims and pay outs. Well I am sorry but that is a load of nonsense. It is their job to investigate what they are paying out and if they know claims are fraudulent then don’t pay them. It should not be the case that everyone gets punished for the crooks and because they are too damn lazy to do their job properly. The other point is that there is, as far as I know, no company willing to do things a bit differently and offer some real competition to the standard mode of operation. I also understand that in the Czech Republic it is the vehicle and not the driver that is insured but that does not mean to say that it cannot be challenged and changed. I really could go on and on about this but, for now, I shall keep it brief. I am trying to get friends from round the world to help me compile a study of how things are dome in other places and I am sure we shall see that we have one of the most apathetic insurance industries, especially towards motorcyclists, that there is.

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