What is key cover?
Key cover or car key insurance is an add-on to your car insurance policy that protects you if you lose your keys or if they’re stolen.
Car key insurance covers the costs of getting a new set of keys. Because car keys are often quite sophisticated, this might take some time – so some insurers might also provide you with a courtesy car until your new keys are ready.
What’s more, some insurers will allow you to make a claim on your car key insurance without it affecting your no claims bonus.
Are my car keys covered by my car insurance?
Some providers will include car key cover as a standard part of their car insurance – while others might ask you to pay a little extra to cover your keys.
Keep in mind, though, that some policies will only cover you if your car keys are stolen, and not if you misplace them.
You can also buy standalone car key cover separately if your car insurance provider doesn’t offer it – and some policies will also insure the keys to your home at the same time.
How much does car key insurance cost?
The cost of car key cover varies, but if it’s not already part of your car insurance deal it’ll be around £20 to £35 a year.
If you’re on a tight budget, this might put you off – but key cover could be well worth the expense.
Car keys are among the possessions people are most likely to lose – it’s estimated that 16% of people lose their keys every year. And modern car security systems can lead to significant costs when it comes to replacing them: if your keys are lost or stolen, you can expect to shell out £250 or more for a new set.
Ultimately, whether buying extra car key cover is a good deal or not will depend on your needs – just make sure you consider all your options before you decide.
What’s included in car key insurance?
Every car key insurance policy is different, but the main features to look out for are:
- Cover for the cost of a new set of keys – sometimes up to £1,500, or even unlimited
- Cover for the costs of replacing or reprogramming your immobiliser or other security features, if necessary
- Cover for any taxis or public transport you need to take – just make sure you keep your receipts
- A courtesy car while you’re waiting for your new keys
- An emergency helpline
If you lock your keys inside your car you might not need to use key cover; this situation should be covered by breakdown insurance.
Keep in mind that if you report your keys stolen, you’ll need to show that you’ve reported it to the police to receive cover. Reporting lost keys as stolen is fraud – it’s against the law, and it could invalidate your insurance.
What should I do if I lose my car keys?
If your car keys are lost or stolen, speak to your insurer. They should be able to walk you through the next steps.
If you don’t have key cover, or if you don’t want to make a claim, contact a reputable locksmith. Keep in mind, though, that many car keys can only be replaced by the manufacturer – and this can be an expensive process.
The best way to avoid problems if your keys are lost or stolen is to keep a spare set. In fact, some key cover providers will cover the cost of a taxi if you need to collect your extra keys.
Where can I find cheap car key insurance?
MoneySuperMarket doesn’t currently offer a comparison service for car key insurance, our car insurance journey does allow users to see whether policies include car key cover. Our price comparison tool allows you to easily search through major providers to find the best deal on car insurance. Once you’ve been shown your results, simply click ‘more’ next to any quote to see if key cover is built in to your car insurance deal or whether it’s available as an optional add-on, and what features are included.