Roadside assistance vs. AAA: which is better?
What is AAA and what insurance coverage does it provide?
|Coverage detail||Classic Membership||Plus Membership||Premier membership|
|Towing||Up to 7 miles, 4 times a year||Up to 100 miles||One per household up to 200 miles, remaining tows up to 100 miles|
|Emergency Fuel Services||Free delivery, pay for fuel||Free delivery and fuel||Free delivery and fuel|
|Vehicle Lockout||Coverage up to $60||Coverage up to $100||Coverage up to $150|
|Flat Tire Service||Included||Included||Included|
|Extrication/Winching Service||One service per year||Two services||Two services|
|Rental Car Benefits||Discounted||Discounted plus one car-class upgrade||One-day complimentary midsize rental car|
|Coverage detail||Classic membership||Plus membership||Premier membership|
|Vehicle inspection service||Included||Included||Included|
|Discounts (shopping, dining, hotels, and entertainment)||Included||Included||Included|
|Identity theft protection||Daily monitoring, email alerts, fraud resolution support, loss card protection||Daily monitoring, email alerts, fraud resolution support, loss card protection||Daily monitoring, email alerts, fraud resolution support, loss card protection, $10,000 in identity theft insurance|
|Discount on Carfax vehicle report||20% off CARFAX||20% off CARFAX||One free year, 40% for additional reports|
|Vehicle inspection service||Free 40pt, or discount 86pt||Free 40pt, or discount 86pt||$45 mail-in rebate for 86pt|
The difference between AAA and your auto insurer: AAA is a full-service auto owners' organization, rather than a company focused on insuring your vehicle.
How much does AAA cost?
Compare insurance rates quickly and easily.
|Coverage detail||Classic membership||Plus membership||Premiere membership|
Insurance companies' roadside assistance program comparison
|Program offerings||GEICO||State Farm||USAA||Progressive||AARP|
|Emergency jumpstart services||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Towing||Yes to nearest service station||Yes||Yes||15-mile radius||Yes|
|Emergency fuel services||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Vehicle lockout||Up to $100||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Flat tire services||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Labor/small mechanical repair||No||No||No||Up to one hour||Yes|
AAA vs. competitor programs
One major difference between AAA and insurer-provided roadside assistance is the level of detail they provide regarding their obligations. AAA has a more comprehensive and clearly outlined program. AAA outlines within its policy documentation the services it will and will not cover — for example, for how many miles the service will tow your vehicle. Personal auto insurance policies usually describe their towing limitations as “to the nearest towing facility.” Depending on your location, this could be 4 blocks, 7 miles, or 100 miles.
Insurance-provided roadside assistance programs are usually cheaper than AAA. Roadside assistance is factored into your monthly bill just as your comprehensive or collision coverage would be. See the table for average costs you can expect from these services.
Should you use AAA or your car insurance for roadside help?
If you live in a metro area and don’t drive much, but still want roadside support, your current provider’s roadside service might be a suitable solution.
If you’re looking for car insurance quotes with roadside assistance costs included, enter your ZIP code below to compare rates.
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About The Zebra
The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.
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- The Zebra’s insurance content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.
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- The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.