There is no better feeling than finally getting that luxury watch you’ve had your eye on for a while; however, as any watch collector knows, the best watches often come with the steepest price tags, and although you may be willing to spend an arm and a leg to get your hands on a timepiece the first time, you may not be willing to buy it again if it is stolen. So, watch collectors are forced to ask themselves, how can one wear a delicate, intricate timepiece if, while wearing it, the timepiece could be broken, stolen, or simply fail? Similar questions have been posed about a wide array of luxury items, from sports cars to grandiose estates. The answer: insurance.
Although the thought of getting your new watch insured may initially cause you to cringe remembering long, drawn out conversations with insurance providers, at some point owning a watch in a certain price range without insurance becomes irresponsible. Additionally, filing insurance claims has vastly improved in recent years. In this article, we will discuss some of the best insurance providers for luxury timepieces, so you can live your life with your watch instead of living it worrying about your watch.
Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group is by far one the oldest insurance groups that we reviewed while reviewing watch insurers. Insurance policies with Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group start nearly immediately and require no appraisal of your watch. If you need to submit a claim, you can do so online via the company’s website. Best of all, your coverage with Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group covers “all perils” not explicitly mentioned in their list of exceptions. In this list of exceptions, there are certain limitations you should be aware of. If you leave your watch unattended in the car, sell it, or (somehow) damage it due to a rodent infestation, you may be out of luck. So, generally speaking of course, your new Rolex should be safe, unless you get attacked by a swarm of angry beavers, but at that point, you have bigger issues.
Zillion has been in the business of providing affordable watch insurance for over over a decade, and their reviews are filled with thousands of satisfied customers. Zillion watch insurance is perhaps most notable for its $0 deduction policy, meaning that you do not have to pay any money upfront to get your watch fixed if it ever falls into disrepair. Moreover, filing a claim will not impact your premiums. However, Zillion does not cover intentional damages, war, military, or government actions, or nuclear hazards.
Chubb, headquartered in the land of watches, Switzerland, is one of the largest insurers in the world, and for good reason. Although Chubb is far from the greatest watch insurers in the world, for a serious and frequent watch collector, Chubb offers unbeatable automatic coverage for any new timepieces you acquire immediately for up to 90 days. Chubb also offers the option to receive a total cash refund on your watch if it is deemed irreparable or lost. Unfortunately, though, receiving insurance from Chubb can require significantly more effort than from some of the other providers on this list. There is no way to attain a quote without visiting an agent in-person, making them sometimes more geographically inaccessible.
BriteCo is one of the more modern insurers on this list, but it has already received an A+ rating from Glencar Insurance Company. BriteCo makes the list because of its minimal premiums, the options to pay for insurance in monthly installments, and its global coverage. Beyond just offering some of the lowest premiums on the market, if something happens to your timepiece, such as theft, which is one of the most common reasons for filing insurance claims, they will pay up to 125% of its original value to have it replaced.
First, it is important to realize what Lemonade is not: watch insurance. Lemonade is traditionally renter or homeowner’s insurance with the ability to easily add or bundle watch insurance with. In other words, although Lemonade can provide some protection for your watches, it is only really going to be an option for those that already use Lemonade on a regular basis to protect their residences. It becomes obvious that Lemonade is not necessarily the best option when you start to seriously consider the drawbacks of the service. For starters, watches insured through Lemonade must have both photos photos and appraisals, and they must have a value equal to or greater than $351 before your coverage begins.
Wax Insurance is another insurer that offers amazing coverage for serious collectors. Wax insurance understands that when looking for watch insurance, you are likely looking for quick coverage for your first insured collectable piece and rapid coverage for every new acquisition thereafter. For the most expensive collections, Wax is generally able to cover them up to one million dollars, and, in certain situations, even more. That level of quick coverage to such an extensive extent is hard to find with other insurers, which is why we recommend them for expensive collectors that often add pieces to their collections.
Every horological enthusiast knows of Hodinkee, a popular watch publication that explores luxury watches in the modern world, but relatively few know that they also offer their own insurance. Hodinkee watch insurance comes with all the standard best watch insurance features, such as quick coverage and simple policy management, while sporting additional exclusive Hodinkee benefits: universal coverage of watches for up to 150% of their insured value. Because most luxury watches naturally increase in value, it is important to find a policy that will financially compensate you for the value of the watch when you file a claim, not the price of the watch at the time of purchase, and Hodinkee does just that. Lastly, Hodinkee has robust theft protection built into their insurance plans, so if your watch ever goes missing from your hotel room while on a business trip, Hodinkee has got you covered.
In the end, all of the aforementioned insurers are excellent in their own ways and can help you navigate otherwise ruinous watch accidents. The most important takeaway is that accidents happen to everyone, but they don’t have to hold you back from getting the collection you have always wanted. Insurers offer a workable solution to life’s unpredictability, so, what are you waiting for? Choose a provider and rest well knowing that you have nothing to worry about (except for nuclear hazards; Zillion doesn’t cover that).
|Company||Final Verdict||Average Cost Per Policy||Online Quote?||Minimum Deductible||Worldwide Coverage|
|Zillion||Zillion had the best no deductible coverage||You usually end up paying approximately 1-2% of the watch’s initial value.||Yes||$0.00||Yes|
|Chubb||Chubb impressed us with the best automatic coverage||Undisclosed||No||$0.00||Yes|
|Wax Insurance||Wax was the best insurance for collectors that frequently update their collections||Undisclosed||Yes||$0.00||Yes|
|Lemonade||Lemonade offers the best bundling option for watch owners that already have home or renter’s insurance through Lemonade||You usually end up paying approximately 1-2% of the watch’s initial value.||Yes||This can vary depending on the type of watch insurance you choose to get.||No|
|BriteCo||BriteCo had the lowest cost per policy out of all the groups we reviewed initial value.||You usually end up paying a meager 0.5-1.5% of the watch’s initial value.||Yes||$0.00||Yes|
|Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group||Overall, Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group was the best watch insurance we looked at.||You usually end up paying approximately 1-2% of the watch’s initial value.||Yes||$0.00||Yes|
|Hodinkee Insurance||Out of all the insurance policies reviews, Hodinkee had the most robust theft protection.||You usually end up paying approximately 1-2% of the watch’s initial value.||Yes||$0.00||Yes|