Many people admit to hiding presents in their cars in the run-up to Christmas, but less than half check if their insurance provider will cover them if their car is broken into or stolen.
New research from price comparison website uSwitch found that over 8m Britons store gifts in their cars during the festive season.
However, the presents – worth an estimated £1.5 billion – may not be covered against theft if the car is broken into or stolen.
Of 3,079 adults surveyed, 16% said they plan to hide presents in their car. But shockingly, 58% won’t be checking their level of cover and if the contents will be insured with their insurance provider.
uSwitch warns that not all policies cover contents from theft, especially those with a high value.
When people did check if their contents would be covered, 39% found that they would not be insured if the car was broken into or stolen.
An insurance expert at uSwitch, Rod Jones, says: “Keeping presents hidden from the prying eyes of loved ones can be like a game of cat and mouse.
“But while hiding gifts in the car boot or the glove box might seem like the perfect plan, you could be leaving yourself open to a nasty surprise on Christmas morning in the event of a theft.
“It might not be top of your festive to-do list, but it’s important to contact your insurer and make sure your car insurance policy covers any additional contents. This means if the worst should happen and the Grinch comes to steal Christmas, you’ll have the right cover in place to make amends.”1
The study also found that the presents most hidden in cars are toys, with 49% of gifts stored in cars being for children.
A further 43% keep clothing-related presents in the car, while 29% hide bottles of alcohol for their loved ones.
The most common hiding place for presents is the wardrobe, said more than half of respondents. Over 30% also store gifts under the bed and in the loft.
However, 64% admit to not checking their home insurance policy to see if it provides extra cover for presents over Christmas.
Top ten Christmas present hiding spots
Amount of gifts hidden
|2||Under the bed||32%|
|5||Under the stairs||17%|