Owning a car makes you susceptible to having car troubles at some point. Whether you get a flat tire, your car won’t start, you lose your keys, or you run out of gas in the middle of the road, we’ve all been there. Good thing there’s roadside assistance that can get you out of trouble, especially when you have somewhere important to be. But what does roadside assistance cover?
While roadside assistance is there for your convenience, the truth is that it’s there for safety reasons. Roadside assistance is usually offered through your auto insurance providers in case you’ll ever need a professional to solve your car problems while you are out on the road or you’re in your driveway. In this article, we will detail everything there is to know from roadside assistance coverage to cost of service.
What is Roadside Assistance?
Many car owners don’t know how to change a flat tire or have the tools to jumpstart their battery, that is why roadside assistance is there to provide services by sending a mechanic or towing company to fix the problem for them. But how does roadside assistance work? It is similar to auto insurance, but instead of repairs, it focuses more on urgent services like changing a tire or installing a new battery.
Not all insurance companies automatically include roadside assistance in their auto policies. However, you can purchase it as an add-on coverage for an additional cost. Since cars often break down when you least expect it, having roadside assistance included in your insurance can be a lifesaver.
What Does Roadside Assistance Cover?
What services does roadside assistance offer? Well, the best roadside assistance provides immediate help every time you’re having car troubles, especially when that leaves you stranded on the road. Though coverage may vary, most providers handle the following situations:
- Changing a flat tire
- Car lockout
- Jump starting a battery
- Car battery replacement
- Fuel delivery
For towing, you should confirm with your provider regarding the distance coverage because most companies set a limit to how far they will tow your car for free as part of your roadside assistance. You might be charged extra if your car is towed further than the limit.
If you’re stranded somewhere, you can call roadside assistance and they will send someone from the towing company to try and fix your car on the spot so you can be on your way. However, if they can’t make the necessary repairs, your car will be towed to an auto shop where a mechanic can perform a further assessment of the problem.
If your car is totaled in an accident, calling roadside assistance to help you get your car towed from the scene is often a cheaper option than calling a towing company directly. If the accident took place within the mileage limit, roadside assistance can tow your car home or to an auto shop.
How Much Does Roadside Assistance Cost?
In most cases, getting roadside assistance through your auto insurance provider is cheaper than getting it through a third-party provider. Insurance that has both collision and comprehensive coverage might include roadside assistance in the policy as well. To be sure, check with your provider if you’re already covered.
Third-party roadside assistance providers tend to be more expensive because you are getting benefits that insurance companies don’t offer. For example, getting roadside assistance through AAA can earn you discounted airline tickets, rental cars, and hotel fees — which can save you money in the long run, especially if you’re a frequent traveler.
Purchasing add-on roadside assistance through your auto insurance provider will cost you anywhere from $15-$60 a year. To compare, an auto club’s most basic membership costs around $50 per year, and the most expensive plan can go as high as $360 or more. Ultimately, it’s up to you to weigh the cost-benefit for each option according to your individual needs.
How to Get Roadside Assistance?
As mentioned earlier in this article, roadside assistance is offered through your auto insurance provider and third-party companies such as Neighborhood Roadside Assistance among others. Most third-party roadside assistance providers usually offer bonuses like member discounts.
You can also look into your phone provider to see if they offer roadside assistance services. Verizon, T-mobile, and AT&T have all started providing roadside assistance coverage, which could be a less expensive option if you are an existing phone customer.
Benefits of Getting Roadside Assistance
Accidents can happen at any time, just as car troubles can happen when you least expect them. Similar to any insurance, it is better to be prepared when such situations arise. Aside from what is typically included in roadside assistance coverage, there are other advantages you can get from it. That said, getting roadside assistance can bring you the following benefits:
- Convenience — of having someone to fix your car problems for you.
- Safety — of having someone to rescue you when stranded.
- Savings — for having to avoid expensive repairs
- Discounts — for airline tickets, car rentals, and hotel accommodations.
- Peace of mind — for knowing roadside assistance has got your back.
If you want to have a clever decision as a driver, try investing in roadside assistance. One can never go wrong in the middle of the road if help can arrive as fast as it can. With having coverage in roadside assistance, even when how classic or old your car is, you will be safe.
The roadside assistance insurance has varied services that a car owner can enjoy. It can either be availed through automobile insurance or have it with a third service provider. You may think it is that expensive but the truth is, it’s not. What roadside assistance offers is pretty much what you and your car need.