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Other options over AAA

Presently I am with AAA for my road side assistance and have been for a while, but was wondering if those here were aware of other similar type programs and how do they stack up against AAA.

Option is to call a local garage when you need help…many car insurance policies have tow coverage…how many times have you needed AAA? yearly dues? cost/benefit?

I use my current auto insurance provider for roadside assistance. It covers the vehicle I drive and wife’s for $15 each/year.

My insurance company offers a plan, but I am currently with AARP as my best deal. My American Express card also includes a free one. I do not know how they stack up, but they are options.

Well until the past year or so, I may have used it once a year, but since having cars 'with issues" I have used up my membership of tows, jumps and stuff before the memborship needed to be renewed. Right now costing my $64 a year for 4 service calls.

I just canceled my towing assistance with Allstate. I needed it a couple weeks ago, and was very unsatisfied. I am thinking about checking out AAA.

One of Car Talk’s advertisers was a towing service that claimed to be environmentally friendly (at least more so than AAA). I don’t see their banner ads anymore.

I am always concerned about using my insurance for these stuff, they might impact my rating and increase my rate, call me paranoid.
Pepboys has a toll free number and within certain range/cost to repair, tows are free. You can yank the yellow pages part for the tow trucks and keep it in the car, I used to do that for many years. We are now back to AAA due to wife’s paranoia, $73 per year as opposed to shrink visits at $150/hr…

$64 for 4 services call is an absolute bargain.

Try your auto insurance company and keep your AAA if you drive a vehicle in the state that it needs many tows per year.

I am a HUGE anti pepboys person, had a very bad experience with them. Also not keen on just picking from a phone book, and what happens when you are out of your city area. Looking more for a national wide service, call 1 number and get help.

The Good Sam club is along similar lines. It’s targeted mainly at RV owners, but they’ll cover your car too. Unlike AAA, though, Good Sam deluges you with junk mail advertisements and solicitations to buy various worthless items and programs.

I just dropped Good Sam too (in addition to Allstate). I was on a trip with my RV, my motorcycle, and my trailer. My motorcycle got a flat tire. I just wanted the motorcycle towed back to the RV so I could load it on a trailer and get it fixed later. They would not help me.

If you are a motorcyclist, forget about Good Sam, and forget about Allstate. Right now I am looking for one policy that can cover everything (RV, car, and motorcycle).

I checked out that AARP plan seems pretty good and i believe my dad is a an AARP member already.

The biggest advantage to AAA is that they have a wider and deeper provider network than most auto clubs. Calling most in a bad blizzard at 2:00am will probably not get you towed as quickly as with AAA. Trying to find one yourself in a situation where they’re all busy is hopeless…they’re all serving the network members.

Well trying to find one in a bad blizzard at 2am won’t be an issue for me, because outside of having to drive myself to the emergency room and even then i doubt i would, I would not be out on the road at that time in those conditions…

Calling most in a bad blizzard at 2:00am will probably not get you towed as quickly as with AAA.

Try telling my mother that. She once had a break-down right on the line separating two of AAA’s zones. One tow truck showed up (after 45 minutes). and the driver said the vehicle was outside his zone, so he couldn’t help her. So she called AAA again. Another tow truck showed up (after another hour), and the driver said the vehicle was outside his zone, so he couldn’t help her. After waiting for several hours, and making at least a dozen phone calls, a tow truck driver finally helped her, in spite of the fact that the vehicle was outside his zone.

Now that I remember that incident, I have ruled out AAA. Thanks for bringing up that issue, MB.

I’ve been meaning to join http://www.betterworldclub.com/. They have plans for motorcycles and even bicycles. Not add on sort-of plans, either, full support like you get with the auto, plus they fight for green alternatives.

That’s the one I was trying to think of that used to advertise on this web site. Thanks for posting a link.

Their rate for a couple is more than what I pay now for AAA. I have only used AAA twice in 8 years, well actually my wife. I changed my own flat and I will do that unless I am in the middle of the fwy, I also carry jumper cables.
Overall these clubs are luxuries for most of us who don’t use them as often, but definitely peace of mind to know there is a number to call.
Also have to say the two times my wife called AAA, the service has been great. Also use their discounts.

Hopefully your cars will start behaving soon…

I am the same way. In my car I have jumper cables and two (yes, two), spare tires (one full-size and one doughnut spare). I also have a small floor jack to make changing the flat easier. In addition, I just bought a spare rim and tire for my utility trailer since it didn’t come with a spare. However, I haven’t figured out how to carry a spare tire for my motorcycles, and I don’t think I am up to changing a flat on the motorhome. I wouldn’t know how to change a flat on the RV’s dual rear axle, and it didn’t even come with a jack to mount the spare on the front.

If all I had was a car, I would be all set without a towing service. With two spare tires, jumper cables, and my fastidious maintenance habits, I wouldn’t bother paying for towing service. However, when you throw a motorcycle and a motorhome into the mix, it makes things more complicated. Maybe I should have opted for a camper trailer and a truck. I could easily change the flat tires on them myself.

At least with my branch of AAA (Minneapolis) if you get the plus RV or premier RV package, they will cover anything, including motor homes, motorcycles, travel trailers, snowmobile/boat/motorcycle trailers and of course regular cars including rentals.