June 23, 2024
Best roadside assistance


Getting stuck on the side of the road with car trouble is nobody’s idea of a good time. Thankfully, roadside assistance plans exist to help stranded drivers. Not all roadside assistance policies are the same, though, and picking the right one can make sure you get the support you need at the best price.


What is roadside assistance?

Roadside assistance can cover a broad range of services designed to help drivers with car trouble. Here are some of the common services roadside assistance plans may cover:


Towing services

Lockout and key services

Tire changes

Battery jumpstart and replacement

Fuel delivery

Winching services (when your car is stuck in ice, snow, a ditch or mud)

You’ll typically use a mobile app or call the company that administers your plan to submit a request for assistance.


The best roadside service for you will vary based on your location, budget, vehicle type, driving habits and ability to handle basic repairs. There are companies that offer independent roadside assistance plans, but you might also be able to purchase a plan through your car’s manufacturer, your cell phone company, your auto insurance provider or your credit card company.


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Where can I buy roadside assistance?

Roadside assistance plans are available from numerous insurance carriers and may be included with some phone plans and credit cards. Here are some of the most common providers.


Car manufacturers that offer roadside assistance

Some car manufacturers include a free roadside assistance plan when you purchase a car. However, coverage may be limited to a number of years or miles, whichever comes first. Typically, this service transfers with the car so you might even be able to purchase a used car with an active roadside assistance plan. Additionally, you may be able to purchase an extended warranty plan to continue this service even after your complimentary period ends.


Cell phone companies that offer roadside assistance

Some cellular phone companies, like T-Mobile and Verizon, offer roadside assistance plans but are often limited in how many service events they will cover per year.


Credit card companies that offer roadside assistance

Some credit card issuers, like Visa and Chase, also offer roadside assistance plans. Plans are sometimes automatically folded into cardholder accounts but may still require a service fee.


Car insurance companies that offer roadside assistance

Many car insurance companies sell roadside assistance endorsements that can be added to your auto insurance policy for an added cost to your premium.


Best roadside assistance plans

Roadside assistance is available from a variety of sources, but some companies stand out in the industry for especially accessible or robust services. Some popular companies for the best roadside assistance plans include:


Company Standout features Average annual cost Availability

AAA Do not need to be an insurance policyholder to purchase a plan

Reputation for quick response times

Membership deals provide additional perks $64.99 – $124.99 All 50 states and Canada

Better World Club Roadside assistance is included in all auto plans

Bicycle and motorcycle coverage available for an additional fee $62.95 – $114.95 All 50 states and Canada

Good Sam Offers multiple tiers of roadside assistance plans

Higher tier coverage extends to rented and borrowed vehicles $99.95 – $179.95 All 50 states, Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the Virgin Islands

Do I need roadside assistance?

Having an emergency roadside assistance plan may provide you peace of mind on the road. You might also compare the cost of a plan with the out-of-pocket cost of a tow or other vehicle service. You might consider a roadside assistance plan if you:


Drive an older car or one that requires frequent maintenance

Have a long commute

Take frequent road trips

Live in a region with extreme weather like heat waves or winter storms

Are inexperienced or uncomfortable with vehicle maintenance like tire changes

Want additional roadside support for a child or other family member

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