Take cover to stay insured outdoors

By Bertus Visser Time of article published Oct 24, 2018

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JOHANNESBURG - As warmed weather sets in, many of us will be looking forward to some much-needed fun in the sun.

We all have different outdoor hobbies, from cycling or surfing to fishing or hiking - or any number of other alfresco activities - and it's important to consider adequate insurance to get the most out of time spent outside. Below are four considerations to keep the sun shining.

1.Make sure your expensive sports or outdoor equipment is insured. If this equipment is not insured, or is inadequately insured, an accident can really put on the heat. Depending on your chosen outdoor activity, it is essential to chat to your financial adviser about the insurance cover required to protect yourself against loss. It is usually a good idea to specify expensive equipment you regularly take out of the house in the All Risk section of your home contents insurance. (All Risk essentially means that any risk that your insurance contract does not specifically exclude is automatically covered.)

Cycling enthusiasts know just what sort of costs are involved in owning a bike. The cost of replacing a bike, or certain parts or add-ons, can be very expensive without adequate insurance. If your bike forms part of your All Risk cover, it will be covered whenever you are using it. Also consider the equipment you use to transport your bike (or any other sporting equipment), such as a roof rack. This in itself may be expensive to replace.

Another useful tip is to have a photograph on record of the contents you want included in your All Risk cover, as well as the documentation proving ownership.

2.The cover you need will depend on your lifestyle. If you kite surf or undertake similar water activities, consider the cost of replacing all your gear (boards, kites, wetsuits) should you need to. Perhaps part of your set-up is left on the beach and stolen, or you suffer damages in the ocean if the waves are strong. Are you covered to get new equipment of the same standard?

Or consider camping. While meant to be a peaceful activity, it can be very stressful if you run into trouble such as theft, unexpected weather damaging your tent or a camp fire burning your belongings. Your camping kit costs a lot to put together, and any fishing rods and tackle may be pricey too.

3.Insurance provides peace of mind even when there is no equipment involved. Hiking or going for a swim can mean parking your car and potentially placing your keys somewhere for safekeeping, or giving them to someone you think you can trust. Theft is a reality you must be aware of and it's advisable to make sure you are insured against such risk. Consider keeping only one key on your person, such as around your neck or wrist, and make sure your other belongings are stored safely. If you are going to carry your cellphone or fitness tracker, these will need to be specified in your All Risk cover.

4.Your financial adviser can advise on your unique requirements. Not using sunscreen can be painful. The same is true for insurance cover. Heading outdoors without adequate insurance puts you at unnecessary risk. Even if you think you are covered, double check and chat to your financial adviser to avoid any financial burns.

Bertus Visser is the chief executive of distribution at PSG Insure.


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