There are many companies that offer roadside assistance, and finding the one that most suits your needs isn't easy. QuoteWizard reviewed over 30 auto insurance companies on their roadside assistance programs to find the top 10 best programs.
Getting a flat tire, waking up to a dead car battery, or running out of gas far from a gas station can happen to anyone. That's where roadside assistance saves the day. It ensures that you and your vehicle are covered in the event of unexpected car troubles, and it's surprisingly affordable. Roadside assistance will save you money and headaches down the road.
There are many insurance companies that offer roadside assistance, and finding the one that most suits your needs isn't easy. QuoteWizard reviewed over 30 auto insurance companies on their roadside assistance programs to find the top 10 best programs.
Our reviews reveals that roadside assistance can cost as little as $5 for basic packages or as much as $124 for deluxe plans. Keep in mind that the cheapest roadside assistance companies require you to hold a car insurance policy through them, so that $5 price tag is misleading. But even the most expensive roadside assistance package only costs slightly more than $10 a month.
Because of the relatively inexpensive nature of roadside assistance, we decided not to factor price into these rankings. Our roadside assistance reviews focus solely on the quality of the coverage and the extent of services that each company offers.
Most companies provide the same basic services such as jump starts, flat tire changes, towing, gas delivery, and lockout assistance. Differences arise when you focus on the fine print. For example, some companies will restrict the distance they will tow your car, or they'll only pay for emergency services up to a certain price limit. You may pay a lower rate for a roadside assistance program. But you can end up paying considerably more in the long run in out-of-pocket expenses in the case of an emergency.
This review highlights ten roadside assistance programs that go above and beyond the minimum level of service. These ten plans will ensure that you and your car are back on the road with minimal stress.
Allstate offers a few different roadside assistance options, the most comprehensive of which is the Motor Club Platinum Elite program. It covers virtually everything you need in the event of an emergency and includes several extra perks. There's also the Motor Club Roadside Advantage program, a slimmed-down package with less service options -- but it still packs a punch. Motor Club membership is available to anyone, even if you're not an Allstate member. In lieu of a full plan, Allstate customers can bundle towing and labor coverage into their policy for a small additional cost.
Annual cost - $99/year
Annual cost - $52/year
For a little more than half the cost of the Platinum Elite membership, Allstate offers a pared-down plan. The Roadside Advantage program gives you similar access to roadside assistance, trip interruption services, and arrest bond certificates. However, cash limits are smaller for each service, and more restrictions apply. You also miss out on the personal concierge service, as well as the motorcycle and RV coverage.
Allstate offers a mobile app that will connect you to a countrywide network of roadside assistance providers. The app is free and available to anyone, so you don't need to be an Allstate customer to use it. However, it's a pay per use service, meaning you'll pay the full price of any assistance you require. It's a helpful tool, but with a minimum fee of $99 per tow, you're better off joining the Motor Club.
If you have an Allstate car insurance plan, you can add towing and labor coverage to your existing coverage for a small fee. As the name suggests, it will cover towing, as well as tire changes, jump starts, lockouts, and fuel delivery. The cost depends on your plan specifics, but according to Allstate, it "doesn't cost much."
Allstate's Motor Club Platinum Elite package is a no-brainer. It's comprehensive and affordable, and it will virtually pay for itself in a single vehicle problem. The Roadside Advantage plan is also an excellent option for users who don't need the luxury provided by the Platinum Elite plan. We like the concept of the Good Hands Rescue app as a useful tool, but you're not getting much in terms of discounts.
AAA is a non-profit motor club known for their roadside assistance programs. Since 1902, they have offered club memberships that include several benefits, chief among them are automotive services. Today, AAA's roadside assistance programs are still among the best. They currently offer three different tiered packages with varying prices and perks. The cost for these packages is dependent on what state you live in. For our study, we used Washington state's membership prices.
Annual Cost - $65/year
The most basic AAA roadside assistance package covers all your bases. You get free towing up to five miles, $50 towards accidental lockouts, and gas delivery. Unlike more expensive roadside assistance packages, members must pay for the fuel itself.
Annual cost - $92/year
The middle of the pack Plus package provides you a bit more than the Classic. Plus members receive 100 miles of towing, $100 on lockout services, and free fuel delivery. An additional perk with Plus is that you don't have to pay for the gas – AAA covers it.
Annual cost - $124/year
Premier is the top dog when it comes to AAA's roadside assistance. It features a 200 mile towing radius, a $250 stipend for lockout mishaps, and complementary gas and delivery. Additional benefits include a comprehensive identify theft restoration program. AAA's licensed investigators will conduct all legwork on your behalf in the event of an identity theft. That's not all – Premier members get a free one-day car rental from Hertz if their vehicle breaks down, as well as a trip interruption stipend of $1,500.
With over a century of roadside assistance under their belt, you really can't go wrong with any of AAA's programs. Their extensive history means that they have an enormous network of service providers, so you won't have to wait long for help to arrive. The Classic offers great baseline protection for roadside incidents, and it's very affordable. At just $32 more than the Plus, it's hard to justify skimping on the Premier. AAA is especially appealing for families, since additional memberships can be added to your plan for just $36 each.
Like AAA, National General Insurance has a membership-based motor club that offers three impressive roadside assistance programs: Basic, Standard, and Elite. Memberships are available for singles or couples, and family packages are an option for Elite members. Each membership level provides similar services, but the Elite level offers higher financial benefits across the board. It also includes multiple unique benefits like emergency room payments, arrest bonds, and legal defense. National General's roadside assistance plans feature attractive price breaks for family plans.
The Motor Club Basic membership is a good starter package for roadside assistance. It's reasonably priced and offers decent protection. Members receive three service calls per year, a five-mile towing radius, and lock repairs up to $60. There's also a dispatch guarantee of $120. The Basic program also includes the roadside service benefits that are standard for every membership level.
For a reasonable extra fee, you can upgrade to the Standard membership. Your towing radius increases to 20 miles, and you can use services four times, rather than the Basic limit of three. Your lock repair stipend and dispatch guarantees jump to $90 and $150, respectively. Standard members receive trip interruption protection, where you're reimbursed up to $750 for lodging and transportation in the event of a vehicle collision. You can also add dependents to your plan for an additional $15 each. Standard is a solid middle of the road plan, with improved benefits at a reasonable price increase compared to Basic.
National General's top of the line package, the Elite membership, comes with many bells and whistles. First, the call limit allows four calls for single members, five for couples, and an impressive seven for family memberships. Your towing radius skyrockets to 100 miles, alongside a $260 dispatch guarantee and a $130 locksmith budget. The big improvement comes in the form of a $1,000 legal defense fee, a $1,000 arrest bond protection, and $1,000 towards emergency room fees due to vehicle incidents. These benefits provide plenty of protection beyond the road. And of course, also included is the standard roadside service package available for all Motor Club plans.
All of National General's plans offer a solid roadside assistance plan, but their Elite plan stands on its own. At just $10 more for an Elite membership than a Standard membership, the degree to which the benefits increase definitely outweighs the cost increase. Elite members receive considerable more protection off-road with benefits for court expenses, vehicle repair, and arrest bonds. There's also significant boosts to all other services like towing radius, claim limits, dispatch guarantees, and locksmith stipends. Plus, with their reasonably priced family plan, it's a no brainer if you're hoping to cover dependents.
Travelers offers two great roadside assistance packages at very affordable rates. Unfortunately, these programs are only available to customers who have Travelers car insurance plans. But if you currently buy your auto insurance through Travelers you should absolutely consider adding their roadside assistance to your plan. It provides all the important services you need in the event of an unexpected vehicle emergency. Our study features approximate costs. The exact price of each package depends on your current insurance plan and where you live.
Annual cost - About $12/year
As the name suggests, this is a basic package. It provides you with 15 miles of towing, as well as these important services:
Annual cost - About $23/year
Travelers' fancier roadside assistance package provides all of the same benefits as the Basic service, but the towing radius jumps to 100 miles. Beyond that, there are two main additional perks for Premier members:
If you're already a Travelers customer, you should sign up for their roadside assistance. It provides you with all the basics necessary in a roadside emergency, all for a nominal fee. Their plan isn't spectacular enough to warrant switching your car insurance to Travelers. But it's a good benefit to consider if you're already interested in Travelers.
Nationwide insurance customers can add two different levels of roadside assistance to their plans. Each plan includes fundamental roadside services, and their Plus plan adds extra layers of protection in the event of an emergency. Roadside assistance members also receive Cross Country Perks, Nationwide's discount program for dining, travel, entertainment, shopping, and more.
Both Basic and Plus plan members have access to these essential roadside assistance services:
Annual cost - About $20/year
As the name suggests, Nationwide's Basic plan is definitely Basic. But basic is good in this case, as this plan provides members with virtually everything needed to get a car back on the road at a fair price.
Annual cost - About $40/year
Nationwide's top-shelf plan gives members some extra protection when things go wrong on the road. The towing radius expands to 100 miles, allowing for considerably greater flexibility. The Plus plan also includes a $500 trip interruption stipend. This pays for alternate transportation, lodging, and meals when your vehicle becomes undrivable farther than 99 miles from your home.
Many Nationwide policies include towing and labor coverage. If you have car troubles that require a tow truck or roadside labor, you can submit your bills to Nationwide for reimbursement. Of course, reimbursement depends on the specifics of your plan.
There are a few restrictions that apply to Nationwide's roadside assistance. It's not available in every state, and some benefit specifics vary depending on your state. For example, Plus members in Virginia receive an extra $100 towards trip interruption. Be sure to check your state's coverage level before adding Nationwide's roadside assistance to your plan.
If you're already a Nationwide customer, consider adding their roadside assistance to your plan. However, similar to Travelers, this plan isn't amazing enough to consider switching insurance providers. The Basic plan is affordable if you're looking for minimum roadside assistance benefits. But with a yearly price tag of about $40 for the Plus plan, you could consider one of the basic roadside assistance plans from AAA, National General, or All State. They're just a few dollars more, and they provide much more in terms of coverage and protection.
GEICO car insurance policy holders can add roadside assistance to their plans for as little as $14 per year, per car. Of course, this price will vary depending on several factors such as where you live, your car make and model, and the specifics of your plan. Their Emergency Road Service coverage will give you good service at a good price.
Annual cost - Starts at $14/year
Policyholders can request and track roadside assistance through the GEICO mobile app, a helpful feature if you're not a fan of phone calls. GEICO's ERS plan also includes a reimbursement option, where you receive compensation for eligible out-of-pocket expenses incurred during service.
This roadside assistance plan provides GEICO customers a nice buffer of vehicle protection for a nominal fee. If you're a GEICO customer and you don't feel that a more comprehensive plan is necessary for your needs, consider this coverage add-on. It's not an amazing plan. But it will definitely get you out of a jam if you find yourself facing car troubles. Plus, bundling roadside assistance with your car insurance is convenient and may lead to discounts.
Mercury offers a Mechanical Breakdown Protection plan, which essentially functions as an extended warranty. As the name suggests, this plan covers repairs to your vehicle in the event of a mechanical breakdown. These warranties cover your vehicle for up to seven years or 100,000 miles. There are a handful of plans to choose from, with the best option being the Platinum Plan. It covers virtually all mechanical and electrical components. Due to the warranty nature of this plan, pricing will vary greatly depending on your vehicle make and model.
As an added bonus, these plans include many additional benefits at no extra cost:
Mercury's plan isn't a roadside assistance plan at heart. It's an extended warranty with roadside assistance added in to sweeten the deal. This could be an attractive option if you're interested in purchasing a warranty in the first place. But it will cost more than a stand-alone roadside assistance plan. We are very impressed with the unlimited claims, as no other roadside assistance provider offers that. But you're likely paying for those unlimited claims in the form of an expensive warranty.
Progressive is yet another car insurance company that offers roadside assistance coverage in conjunction with their car insurance plans. We were quoted a price of about $36 per year for roadside assistance coverage, but your price depends on your location and the type of vehicle you drive. Progressive offers a solid if unspectacular plan that provides you with all the core services you need to get your vehicle back on the road.
Annual cost - About $36/year
In most states, customers will need to have comprehensive and collision coverage to add roadside assistance to their policy. There are also, of course, limits to how many service calls you can make without incurring additional charges. Progressive also consider each service call as a claim. They state that, while service calls won't affect your current premium, it will be factored into your renewal rate. Progressive also warns that excessive roadside assistance calls may result in cancellation or non-renewal of your policy.
We like that Progressive will tow your vehicle beyond 15 miles if there are no appropriate facilities within that radius. They also offer all the other common features that you may need in the event of an accident. Like other car insurance companies that offer roadside assistance, you may be eligible for bonuses and discounts by bundling roadside assistance coverage with your policy. This makes it appealing to people who already use Progressive for auto insurance, but their fine print may be off-putting to potential customers.
USAA insurance policies, available only to people or families that serve or have served in the United States military, consistently rank very well in customer satisfaction for car insurance. USAA customers are also eligible for roadside assistance programs with a premium increase.
Annual cost - About $60/year
Roadside assistance is part of USAA's towing and labor coverage add-on. It covers the important basics:
USAA's program will also reimburse customers for tows if they pay out-of-pocket, although restrictions apply. All repairs parts must be paid for by the policyholder. Like other insurance companies that offer roadside assistance as a policy add-on, the true cost of this service will depend on the details of your policy.
USAA has an excellent track record in providing high quality car insurance and customer service to military members. So it's no surprise that their roadside assistance is well regarded. The benefits aren't groundbreaking or comprehensive, but they provide a good safety net to address most unforeseen car problems. If you're lucky enough to be a USAA member, adding roadside assistance to your policy is a great idea. But if you want extensive protection from a top of the line plan, consider looking elsewhere.
State Farm car insurance policyholders can add emergency road service coverage to their plans for as little as $5 a year. It's a nice benefit for State Farm customers, and it offers all the basic services needed to fix unexpected car troubles. They advertise that they will pay for common and reasonable expenses needed to get your vehicle back into service.
Annual cost - Starts at $5/year
If your labor costs exceed one hour, or if you tow the vehicle beyond the nearest repair facility, you will incur extra costs. Additionally, State Farm customers can still call the emergency road service hotline even if they haven't purchased the extra coverage. They will have to pay for the services out of pocket. But State Farm claims that they negotiate rates with service providers that are lower than market average.
If you're already a State Farm customer, the Coverage H plan is surprisingly affordable and it'll cover your bases in the event of an emergency. You can bundle it with your current insurance policy, which is convenient and may provide a decent discount. State Farm's roadside assistance is by far the cheapest available, and there may be a reason for that.
We ultimately recommend purchasing roadside service. It's surprisingly affordable, especially when you consider the normal costs for most emergency vehicle assistance. All it takes is one unexpected tow to realize how beneficial roadside assistance can be.
If you don't drive much, or if you drive a new car, purchasing roadside assistance coverage through your car insurance provider could make sense. But if you drive frequently, or you just want the peace of mind, we highly recommend AAA, AllState, or National General. Their plans are in a league of their own, providing considerably more protection and extra benefits without wrecking your wallet.
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