AMI reveals claim trends for the holiday season

AMI reveals claim trends for the holiday season | Insurance Business New Zealand

AMI reveals claim trends for the holiday season

AMI has listed seven interesting claims trends for the festive season, when claims numbers are expected to rise to between two and six times the yearly average.

The insurer’s data showed that from Boxing Day to late January, contents claims increase by around two to three times more than the yearly average. In 2021-22, daily contents claim rates for the week following New Year’s Day were six times higher than at any other time of the year.

“There’s clearly a seasonal spike over summer,” said Wayne Tippet (pictured above), AMI executive general manager claims. “It’s likely because that’s when people finally relax after all the bustle of Christmas and are out and about on the roads. And I expect that last year was so high because of the loosening of extended COVID restrictions and lockdowns, particularly in Auckland.”

Amidst the joy and merrymaking of the festive season, AMI listed the top seven claims that customers should watch out for.

Christmas trees

AMI said it typically receives around 36 Christmas tree-related claims each year. These claims relate to damage caused while the tree is in transit, either on the road or being passed down from the attic, damage caused by pets, hitting the TV, or stained carpets from liquid glitter. Christmas tree claims usually start in late November but continue through to February and March.


In January, beach-related claims made up 5.3% of all claims, this was up from 4% in January 2021, and compared to an annual average of 2%.

The top items claimed for at the beach are:

  • Mobile phones, tablets, laptops and other electronics (33%)
  • Jewellery (23%)
  • Spectacles and glasses (22%)
  • Barbecues (10%)
  • Hearing aids (6%)
  • Dentures (2%)


Last summer, daily insurance claims involving boats jumped by 97% between Christmas Eve and end-January, according to AMI. The insurer said it receives around 4.1 claims for boats per day. Over the 2021-2022 festive season, it received an average of 8.1 claims. During the same period in 2020-2021, it received around 7.6 claims each day.

Christmas dinner

“We don’t receive a lot of claims relating to Christmas cooking,” Tippet said. “We’ve only had one single claim for a Christmas ham, related to flooding while pre-soaking the ham. However, turkeys do feature, with four claims last Christmas, with half of those relating to helpful children.”

For those having a chicken dinner this Christmas, they can rest assured that the risk remains about the same as any other time of year (approximately one claim every three days), with no seasonal spike. AMI said that 32% of chicken claims are for frozen food spoilage, 20% are for dentures, 14% are for stains, and 12% are for damage to hobs, cooktops, or ovens – usually from dropping the frozen chook. Butter chicken-related claims also feature regularly – both for stains and spills.

Kiwi pavlova

AMI said it has not received any claims related to pavlova in the lead-up to Christmas, but it appears the classic Kiwi dish is also popular in the new year, with several claims recorded in January, due to items being dropped into the mixture, such as a mobile phone. No claims were linked to brandy snaps and chocolate logs, and the traditional Christmas pudding has only been the cause of one claim.

Mobile phones

AMI noted an interesting trend during the festive season, with daily claim numbers dropping by 15% between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, compared to the previous month. However, for New Year’s Eve and the following week, mobile phone claims soar, with average daily claim rates up 47% more than the week prior.


AMI advised bicycle owners to make sure their bikes securely stowed – ideally inside – with theft causing 54% of all bicycle claims, even for bikes secured with a lock at home.

Around 20% of all bike claims are for incidents during transport. Most often, these are for bikes falling off racks or hitting a structure when mounted behind the vehicle or on the roof.

“At this time of the year, no one wants to be accidentally out of pocket, so it’s a good idea to put an insurance review on your Christmas list,” Tippet said. “And if you do need to make a claim, we’ll have people working throughout the festive season to get you back on your feet as quickly as possible.”