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      July 4, 2020

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AAA Roadside Assistance vs Best Roadside Service

To help you find the Best Roadside Assistance, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of AAA Roadside Assistance and Best Roadside Service.

To see ALL of our reviews for the Best Roadside Assistance, please Click Here

Get Roadside Assistance with Good Sam Today! Whether on a cross-country road trip or a quick errand across town, it’s never a good time for a vehicle to break down. With a Roadside Assistance plan, drivers have protection against the inconvenience and danger of being stranded by the side of the road and can trust that help will be on the way.

While motor clubs used to be the only way to access these protection plans, today there is a wide range of Roadside Assistance plans from which to choose, from credit card providers to insurance companies. Plans can include flat-tire changing, fuel or coolant delivery, help with stuck vehicles, and some even offer financial help with legal defense in the event of a speeding ticket!

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Best Reviews

2020

Roadside Assistance Program Reviews

4 stars
AAA Roadside Assistance

AAA ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE

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Cost:

There are 3 available coverage levels, but membership fees depend on your geographic area

Formed in 1902, the American Automobile Association—commonly known as AAA or even "Triple-A"—has more than 55 million members who use their roadside assistance plans to cover themselves in case of an emergency while on the road. All plans include towing, emergency starting, battery service, flat tire service, fuel delivery (member pays for fuel in Classic plan), locksmith service, extrication/winching, car travel interruption, travel planning, passport photos free or at reduced cost, and more. Some AAA regions also include bicycle coverage in all memberships, while others have it as an option.

AAA's website makes it easy to compare plans across Classic, Plus, and Premier levels; we appreciate that there are no secrets as to what is covered and what is excluded. Users of the website enter their ZIP code, which takes them to the site applicable to their region of the country. Different information is presented based on region/local website; however, it appears that the membership refund policy allows members to get unused months' fees reimbursed within the first three months of a new membership.

Coverage for motorcycles is available at all membership levels; RVs/Trailer coverage is only offered at Plus/Premier levels. Also, every level of membership covers users in their own vehicles, as well as rentals, borrowed vehicles, and while riding in a friend's car.

Across all three membership levels, roadside assistance calls are limited to four per member per year, after which members can get service at AAA's pre-negotiated, discounted rate with service providers. This puts them in the middle of the pack with respect to other roadside assistance companies. On the other hand, their towing coverage is only 5 miles for Classic, 100 for Plus, and 250 for Premier members. For such a large, well-established company, we would expect their minimum mileage to meet or beat other assistance plans on the market instead of being one of the least generous.

However, AAA is unmatched when it comes to its additional perks and benefits through their network: discounts at dining, shopping, motels, theme park and other attractions; prescription savings; identity theft protection through ProtectMyID; free registration with WeatherFX for severe weather alerts; and, notary, fax, copy services at AAA offices nationwide.

While we're not impressed with AAA's skimpy mileage coverage for its lowest-tier membership plans, their reputation within the industry and extraordinary level of additional benefits is worth considering.

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2.5 stars
Best Roadside Service

BEST ROADSIDE SERVICE

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Cost:

$65/year - 1 vehicle regardless of driver

$79.95/year - 1 member in any vehicle

Originally offering services to dealerships and commercial customers for almost 30 years, Houston-based Best Roadside Service checks all the boxes for individual roadside assistance plans: accredited with the BBB and currently holding an A+ rating. Plans are administered through Nation Motor Club, which has been in business for more than 50 years, handling more than 70,000 roadside assistance calls per month. Even more, Best Roadside Service's website has dozens of satisfied customer testimonials from around the country and Canada.

Their service coverage includes what one would expect from a roadside assistance plan: 24-hour towing, jump start, flat tire repair, lockout service, lost key replacement up to $100, delivery of 3 gallons of fuel at no charge, $50 toward extraction/winching, and the unique service of emergency personal assistance (such as sending messages to members' loved ones in an emergency). Best Roadside Service also gives members access to trip/travel routing services as well as discounts with other businesses, similar to what is offered by bigger-name companies in the roadside assistance industry.

We were also impressed with their coverage of towing up to 75 miles, especially when many household-name providers of roadside assistance only cover a mere five miles. Also, their average response time from call to arrival on-scene is an impressive 34 minutes. Their software can even use the member's cell phone to dispatch providers while on the call with customer service, and support is available in English, Spanish, and French.

Coverage is available for motorcycles and scooters, but there are no plans for RVs or trailers. Best Roadside Service's website clearly spells out any limitations on their plans, such as four calls per year on individual plans, lockout coverage up to $100, and no coverage for extrication/dig-out of snowbound vehicles.

Where Best Roadside Service falls short is in their plan structure and in their refund policy. Unlike most plans, Best Roadside's coverage is limited either to one vehicle or to one member. For families with multiple vehicles or multiple drivers, the cost of membership would go up quickly in order to cover more than one car or to cover members regardless of the vehicle. The majority of other roadside assistance companies either cover all vehicles or all drivers—or both. Also, family members must reside at the same address in order to be covered; this may not include children who are away at college within the membership plan.

With respect to refunds, Best Roadside Service will give members a prorated refund, minus an administrative fee of $10, only if the service hasn't been used for any reason. If a customer has an unsatisfactory experience with the service received, there is no opportunity to obtain a refund of any membership fees paid. This strikes us as overly harsh and might make customers reluctant to try their plans.

Overall, we like Best Roadside's generous 75-mile towing allowance, the clear evidence of customer satisfaction, and their easy-to-understand website. However, we think their refund policy is much stricter than other roadside assistance plans, and their pricing structure might be too expensive for families with multiple vehicles and/or drivers.

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Continued from above

Some plans also tie the coverage to specific vehicles, while others allow the covered member (and often the other drivers in the household) to receive roadside service regardless of the vehicle. The latter can be particularly useful if a covered member is riding in a car belonging to another driver when a breakdown occurs, as the coverage will be extended to servicing that vehicle.

If you’re shopping for a reputable provider of Roadside Assistance, you should consider the following.

  • Coverage Details. While all plans will cover the cost of towing, either by covering it outright or by reimbursing you for payments made to the towing company, there are significant differences in coverage depending on the provider you choose and the comprehensiveness of the plan. Carefully review the coverage details to make sure that your most likely needs are covered.
  • Length of Coverage. What best fits your lifestyle and plans for car ownership? A manufacturer plan might be enough to protect you, but if you want to cover more than one vehicle without worrying about warranty expiration, a traditional roadside assistance plan would be more appropriate.
  • Reliability of the Provider. How long have they been in business? How satisfied are their customers? How long does it take, on average, to get a tow truck or locksmith dispatched to the customer? Is there a satisfaction guarantee if the promised services don’t meet expectations?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Roadside Assistance providers available today. We hope this information helps you find the right roadside assistance plan for you and your family!

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