The main function of roadside assistance insurance is to supply fix, towing and other assistance to drivers who need emergency fixs and assistance while traveling. a lot roadside assistance policies also will cover the cost of emergency services if your car won’t start at home. In addition, a lot emergency roadside assistance insurance policies offer other features and savings for automobile owners.
Roadside assistance may pay for the cost of roadside fixs like changing a flat tire, replacing a broken fan belt or jump-starting a car. It may also cover the cost of a tow truck to your home or to the service station of your selection, or for locksmith services if you accidentally lock your keys in the trunk. In addition, a lot emergency roadside assistance insurance policies offer at least partial coverage for other expenses incurred when your car breaks down. The specific advantages offered vary from one insurance organization to the next.
There are two main categories of roadside assistance insurance–standalone polices and riders that can be added to your other automobile insurance to extend your coverage to roadside emergencies. The best known standalone roadside assistance insurance is offered by AAA, formerly the American Automobile Association. AAA offers 24-hour roadside assistance in any emergency as well as a lot discounts and free services for automobile owners. While there are other providers for roadside assistance insurance, the only other that comes close to being as well known is the Better World Club.
Roadside assistance coverage is also often included or offered as an extension to standard automobile insurance policies. These policies are often less expensive than standalone roadside assistance, but seldom offer the same level of benefit. In addition, using roadside assistance offered by your auto insurance organization may increase your insurance premiums by raising your damage profile with the insurance organization.
More recently, a lot other providers have stepped up to offer roadside assistance insurance. These include credit card organizations, cell phone providers and car makers. The newest roadside assistance plans are offered in conjunction with services like OnStar, that uses GPS and other high-tech solutions to help you with everything from changing a tire to finding an open restaurant at 3 a.m.
All roadside assistance insurance policies offer some basic features. Those features include free (or reimbursed) towing, delivery of gas and/or coolant fluids, jump-starting a dead battery, changing a flat tire or unlocking your car if you accidentally leave your keys inside. Other features are not as universal. Those features include discounts with travel agencies, shopping discounts with main merchants,discounts on other insurance products, special auto loan deals and services, auto monitoring and reminder services and free or discount services for basic automobile maintenance.
As more providers enter the automobile roadside assistance business, the array of plans available can become extremely confusing. If you are trying to decide whether to pick a stand-alone plan like AAA or use a roadside assistance plan offered by your cell phone provider, insurance organization or other business, these are some of the things you have to consider.
Some roadside insurance plans only cover you if you are driving your own car. Others will cover you in any car as long as you are driving and still others will cover you in any car, even if you are a passenger. One, the Better World Club, will even cover you if you are riding your bicycle when misfortune strikes.
rely on the roadside assistance plan, you may only be covered for towing to a dealership, or to a fix shop within a specific number of miles from your breakdown. Other plans allow you to pick your destination, and may offer discounts on mileage outside their stated mileage limits.
Roadside assistance that comes with a service like OnStar offers extra safety reassurance. Because your automobile is equipped with technology that reports back to the service center, your car can actually call for help even if you can’t.
Be sure to check the fine print of any roadside assistance program that you are considering. There may be unexpected limitations on the circumstances in that you can call for help. For instance, some roadside assistance insurance providers will not cover service for emergencies caused by fire, flood or theft.
Consumer Reports, one of the nation’s oldest consumer monitoring and testing agencies, makes the following recommendations about choosing roadside assistance insurance.
If you buy a fresh car and it is your only vehicle, opt for the service plan that comes with your fresh car.
If you own more than one car, or if there is more than one driver in your family, consider an auto club stand-alone policy.
If you frequently travel far from home, look for a roadside assistance insurance plan that includes a generous towing allowance and insurance for trip interruption.
Auto Clubs That Use Countrywide Roadside Assistance
Allstate Motor Club
With 35,000 service providers available no matter where you travel in the country, Allstate offers countrywide roadside service 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Vendors can handle flat tires, tows, empty gas tanks, jump starts and lock-outs for stranded members. Certain expenses for meals, transportation or lodging may be available for those in a car accident. Membership fees and advantages will vary as there are five plans to pick from.
Better World Club
This organization claims to be the only national auto club that is eco-friendly, and aims to prove it by lobbying for environmental issues, providing a newsletter with earth-friendly topics, and offering discounts to members who drive hybrids. BWC also provides countrywide roadside assistance for bicycles, as well as cars, RVs and motorcycles, with the average wait time at 38 minutes.
Auto Club of America
Founded in 1976, this auto club markets heavily to corporations, charities, non-profits and schools that use fleet vehicles, although the club is open to the general public. Countrywide roadside service is available 24/7 throughout the United States and Canada, and covers towing, dead batteries, flat tires, exchangement of fluids and fuel, and lock-outs.