In recent years, cell phones have become one of the most important purchases for us. We can’t seem to do without cell phones anymore. However, our emotional attachment to these devices is big enough to be exploited. Right after buying our mobile phones, we may be coerced to get an insurance plan for our phones, either from the carrier or from other providers. What we need to remember is, nothing is a compulsion.
Before taking any decision, we need to exercise our choices to get a well-rounded view of the matter. Let’s see what we need to know before we end up buying these insurance plans.
First step: Ask yourself, do you really need an insurance plan?
Insurance plans are useful for sure, but they are necessary for people who have a lot to do with their phones and can’t deal with its loss. If:
- There is a history of repeated loss, theft or disfigurement of your phone
- The headset is costly and a long term contract binds you with it
- You can’t afford to lose it
- You need rapid replacement to the stolen phones
You may need insurance plans to cover you then. However, if you use the mobile phone for just calling, or few purposes only and can settle for a cheaper model if needed, insurance plans are still an option for you.
What does your mobile insurance cover?
If your mobile gets lost, stolen or broken by any cause, the insurance plans do cover you for that.
But policies are variable to a great extent, their range of coverage will seldom be concomitant. Some insurance providers cover the consumers for unauthorised calls, phone accessories, protection while abroad, apps, games and music content as well. Thus, much before committing to anything of this sort, read about these well.
What are the exclusions?
The phone insurance companies don’t cover you for every little mishap. There are a few instances which can go uncovered. They are:
- Carelessness: well, life has different ways of punishing us, doesn’t it? If the mobile gets lost or broken because the consumer wasn’t taking reasonable care, insurance companies aren’t obliged to cover that.
- Stolen while unattended: How many times have we forgotten to pick our phone up from the table of the cafe we were chilling at, or for that matter leave it any random place? If you resonate with the above question, chances are your forgetfulness can cost you more than expected as insurance plans consider this to be an exclusion.
- Delay in reporting: Reporting should be done within 12 hours either to the police or the insurance company. Many companies don’t cover if there is a delay of more than that.
- Age: Insurance plans below 16 or sometimes even below 18 become difficult to find.
- Water damage: Not all insurances cover water damage. Talking to the insurance provider well in advance can give some clarity, as for many providers, they group these up under “not taking reasonable care”.How much does the insurance cost?
The cost of mobile insurance depends on the level of coverage, the type of provider you choose, and most importantly depends on the brand of phone that you use. However, it can rise as high as €14.99/month, which adds up to €360 over a contract of 2 years. Cheaper deals are available, but the authenticity, market reputation of that company should be checked for as well.
Are there any alternatives?
There are alternatives for sure. It depends on you which one you choose while in need.
- Self-insurance: Save up the money that you need to invest in cases of damage. If your phone gets stolen use the fund that you created. This provides you authority over your money. However, much before you could save up enough you can lose your phone. Not only does the amount of money matter, but the flexibility of using that money does too. A savings account is the best place to save it so it can be accessed
- Include it in the home insurance plan: Home contents insurance often includes mobile phones. Besides a few insurance operators, may allow additional accidental coverage to mobile phones. The insurance coverage for the phone becomes cheap under these circumstances, but that comes with its own challenges. The overall premium increases and that increases the burden at the time of renewal. Unauthorised calls may not be covered. Lastly, it takes time to come through which may not be feasible.
- Insure it for free: Surprise! There are ways you can insure your phone for free. If mobile phones are precious to you, then simply take good care of them. Don’t leave them unprotected, try not diverting your anger on your phone, use sturdy slings to carry them to prevent accidental damage.