Forget the pens and pencils: their mobile phone is the most important piece of equipment for older children going back to school next month. If your kid is starting in secondary school, it’s likely they’ll be experiencing a modern-day rite of passage which is ownership of a smartphone for the first time.
Getting a phone for a child is easy enough. Hopefully there is an ancient Apple or Galaxy in the back of the drawer which can be fitted out with a new, cheap SIM-only deal. The mini-Minteds are currently on a monthly contract each with Tesco at £7.50 a month. There are better deals out there though – have a look at Carphone Warehouse, particularly online. You’ll soon be up and running. But, if your child is anything like my Boy Wonder, the main problem will be NOT losing the new toy.
Hence the need for mobile phone insurance because, even as an old phone, replacing it would be costly. The trouble is, not many standalone mobile phone insurance policies cover under-18s. So, what to do?
Possibly the easiest and cheapest route is to list the phone under the all risks section of your household contents policy. You may need to pay a little extra and also to check any limits on claims ie that a payout will cover the whole cost of a new phone.
Alternatively, you can look at family gadget deals which usually cover the use of machines by all family members. These are quite pricey though. Finally, you could self-insure by saving a certain amount every month to buy a replacement should it be required.
This is stating the obvious but it’s probably best not to give your child the latest and most expensive model, no matter how intense their sulks or pleas. The worst may indeed happen and it will be a steep learning curve for everyone involved. But the humiliation of being phoneless, even for a minute, should be a deterrent to future carelessness.
See the SMM guide to mobile phone insurance here for more top tips.