Contributor, Benzinga
January 24, 2024

Benzinga's top pick for best watch insurance is BriteCo.

A watch isn’t just to make sure you get to your next appointment on time. Watches are valuable ornamental jewelry pieces, and some are collectibles and very expensive. As with any important valuables, you may want to consider watch insurance to protect against losses like theft or damage as your homeowners or renters insurance policy may not cover the full value. Seeking out an insurance company that can go beyond your home insurance policy or a rider can be of great value to you. So, what sort of jewelry insurance policy do you need?

Quick Look: Best Watch Insurance

  • Best Overall: BriteCo
  • Best for Multiple Items Coverage: AKKO
  • Best for Zero Deductible: Jewelers Mutual
  • Best for Online Jewelry Insurance Quotes: Gem Shield
  • Best for Affordable Collectibles Coverage: WAX Insurance
  • Best for Flexibility: State Farm

6 Best Watch Insurance Providers

When searching for the best watch insurance provider, you want one with a good customer service record and the most comprehensive coverage at the lowest price. Benzinga has done the legwork for you and listed the best watch insurance providers according.

1. Best Overall: BriteCo

BriteCo LLC offers affordable pricing for jewelry insurance with customizable coverage limit options and also provides a zero deductible. In addition, the average price of a BriteCo jewelry policy is 0.05% to 1.5% of the watch’s value, so the company’s pricing is lower than that of many of its competitors.

Remember, if you choose to purchase watch insurance through BriteCo, you will need to have a recent appraisal completed. 

Pros

  • Easy application process
  • Zero deductible on many policies
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • No mobile app available

2. Best for Multiple Items Coverage: AKKO

AKKO offers accidental damage and theft protection for $15 per month. In addition, AKKO’s protection plan has a $99 deductible. Not only does AKKO offer watch insurance, but with the Everything Protected Plan, you can also cover your phone and all your electronic devices.

According to AKKO’s website, reimbursement for jewelry, watches, rings and other items consisting of gold, silver or platinum or furs is limited to $1,000 for any one incident of loss. 

Pros

  • Low monthly premiums
  • Coverage options for electronic devices
  • Multi-policy discounts
  • Student discounts

Cons

  • Replacement value determined by AKKO

3. Best for Zero-Deductible Option: Jewelers Mutual

Jewelers Mutual Group offers watch insurance with a zero deductible option. The company has been in business for more than 100 years and has vast experience covering watches and other types of fine jewelry. Your jewelry policy can serve as engagement ring insurance or protect a full collection.

One of the best features of Jewelers Mutual is its coverage for all perils. It is an all-risk policy, so you have coverage for it unless a risk is specifically excluded from the policy. In addition, coverage is worldwide, so it is an excellent option if you do a lot of traveling.

Pros

  • Quick and easy online quotes
  • No appraisals are required in many cases
  • Zero deductible

Cons

  • Slightly higher premiers compared to competitors

4. Best for Online Jewelry Insurance Quotes: GemShield

When you shop with GemShield, you’re tapping into an all-risk policy that will cover everything from loss to theft, disappearances, damage and more. There’s worldwide coverage on your watches, assorted timepieces and jewelry, meaning that you can wear them with confidence wherever you want to go. Plus, you can get a quote online, cover new jewelry, watches, and timepieces you just bought (even if you haven’t gifted them yet,) bind coverage online in about 10 minutes and pay 1% to 2% of the items’ value as your premium.

Pros

  • All risk policies
  • Repair and replacement coverage
  • Easy to get coverage for new watches or jewelry

Cons

  • Low limits

5. Best for Affordable Collectibles Coverage: WAX Insurance

WAX Insurance is a unique program for valuables, watches, jewelry and more that protects you from fire damage, water damage, loss or theft and even when your pet takes a bite out of your favorite collectible. Benefits of this collectible insurance program include:

  • Watch and jewelry coverage up to $100,000 (fine art up to $250,000)
  • No inventory requirements
  • Up to 150% replacement costs paid
  • Pricing as low as 1% of the item’s value
  • High limits
  • Insures accidental damage

Pros

  • Covers jewelry, fine art and collectibles
  • High replacement cost paid out
  • Low pricing for collectibles insurance

Cons

  • Can’t get an instant quote online

6. Best for Flexibility: State Farm Personal Articles Floater

According to the Insurance Information Institute, a floater added to your homeowner’s policy adds coverage for expensive items like watches. State Farm Insurance offers a personal articles floater you can add to your homeowner’s policy. The floater is not explicitly designed for watches but will cover them. The standard homeowners policy limits the dollar amount for jewelry while the floater raises those coverage limits.

With State Farm’s personal articles floater, you have worldwide coverage with replacement cost coverage. You choose whether you want to have a deductible. The amount of coverage is also adjusted annually to guard against inflation. Maybe the best thing about State Farm’s personal articles floater is that you can use it to protect all your valuable items, not just watches.

Pros

  • Flexible coverage
  • World wide coverage protection
  • Agents available in all 50 states

Cons

  • No online quotes
  • Must purchase through an agent

What is Watch Insurance?

A watch insurance policy covers watches or other jewelry pieces to pay for repairs or replacement because of a covered loss. Watch insurance sometimes also offers replacement cost coverage. Replacement cost is either included or can be added by endorsement when you review each insurance option, depending on the carrier you choose.

What Types of Watches Need Insurance?

Some watches, including family heirlooms, Apple watches or other tech-powered watches, can be expensive to buy, repair or replace. Generally, the jeweler doesn’t require you to insure expensive pieces (much like an auto dealer requires proof of insurance before you drive off the lot.)

While your standard homeowners insurance policy may offer coverage, a typical policy only provides around $1,000 for expensive personal items. As a general rule, if you own a watch with a value of more than $1,000, it pays to consider buying coverage specifically for your watch. A policyholder might also wish to purchase a rider for their condo insurance, thus adding to their insurance costs.

At the same time, a watch enthusiast or those with large collections of jewelry will likely save quite a lot of money using a specialty insurance carrier.

What Watch Insurance Covers

Watch insurance replaces or repairs your watch against a specific list of perils detailed in the policy. Some insurance providers cover less than others, so it pays to check what’s covered before you buy a watch insurance policy. Most watch insurance policies offer some form of coverage for theft, damage, loss or disappearance. Remember, your jewelry insurance quote should include the full range of insurance you will get, whether you’re covering a watch collection, a mass of fine jewelry, your auntie’s diamond ring, an engagement ring before you pop the question, the wedding ring upgrade you’ve always wanted and more.

What Isn’t Covered

Watch insurance is a great coverage to have in place, especially if you own an expensive or a collectible watch. However, you should keep in mind that watch insurance won’t cover every type of loss. 

Watch insurance won’t pay for your loss in most of the following situations unless you have added extra coverage with a policy rider. Some insurers exclude more items than others. Be sure to read your policy carefully to find out what is excluded. Here are the most common exclusions:

  • Normal wear and tear
  • Rodent infestations
  • Leaving your watch in an unattended car
  • Intentional acts
  • Fraudulent sales
  • Acts of war

Average Cost of Watch Insurance by Watch Type

You can expect to pay around 1% to 2% of the watch’s value for watch coverage per policy term. Here is the average cost per brand type:

Watch TypeAverage Cost of Watch Insurance
Rolex$75
Panerai$65
Breitling$63
Grand Seiko$33
Omega$30
Apple Watch Series 7 45mm Titanium$13

Is Watch Coverage Worth the Cost?

Whether or not watch insurance makes sense depends on the value of the watch. It could make sense to insure expensive watches against theft and other losses, especially because a scheduled property watch policy is relatively inexpensive.

For insurance information and money matters, it always makes sense to visit Benzinga for expert advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

Will homeowners or renters insurance cover my watch if it’s stolen?

A

Homeowners or renters insurance will provide some coverage for personal items, but it is limited. You will likely only receive $1,000 worth of coverage unless you add on more coverage with an insurance rider.

Q

If the face of my watch gets chipped, is it covered by jewelry insurance?

A

Yes, if your watch face gets chipped or otherwise damaged, jewelry insurance will cover the cost to repair it.

Q

If I have a watch warranty, do I still need watch insurance?

A

A watch warranty should not be confused with watch insurance. The manufacturer’s warranty has limitations and expires after a certain amount of time. For expensive watches, you may need protection well beyond the watch’s warranty expiration date.

About Janet Hunt, Insurance Agent

Janet has been working in, and writing about, the insurance industry for over 20 years.