Is AAA membership worth it?

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I recently bought a 1999 Buick Regal. It has a 3800 V6 engine which was highly recommended by
some FWers like SiS. The car just reached 80,000 miles and so far I'm pleased with it.

A basic annual membership to AAA costs $70 here. I wonder if it's worth getting?
From what I understand AAA is mostly good for roadside assistance purposes.
Sure they offer some discounts and maps but you can get a lot of that stuff online
anyway. Does anyone know of any good reasons to join AAA other than for roadside assistance/towing?

Are there any better options for road side assistance? Maybe I should just
keep the phone number of a towing company in the car, and only call them if I ever need them.
So far the car works fine.

Also I will not sign up for road side assistance from my insurance company because if you ever
use that service it goes on your claims history and can be used as an excuse for them to raise my rates.

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Jumping a car is one of the simplest things that a tow driver should know (some cars, ie Prius have special procedure, b... (more)

AcidSpectrum (Jul. 24, 2010 @ 4:25p) |

AAA plus is worth it 100x over if you do your own car work. Since you can have your car towed to your home it will pay.... (more)

efficacyman (Jul. 25, 2010 @ 10:09p) |

yes, yes, and absolutely

hiroler (Jul. 28, 2010 @ 2:57p) |

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maybe

I got towed one night 1.8 miles for $125. I didn't have a tow company business card with me so the cops picked the guy.
I was told I got a discount because the standard rate would have been $140.
Highway robbery with police assistance.

FYI if your disabled or wreaked vehicle is in a traffic lane the cops are going to call the first available tow. Most of the time these are not AAA tow companies and they will charge you a top dollar for an "emergency tow". If your vehicle breaks down get it off the road on to the grass/shoulder/in a parking lot ASAP and call the tow company on your own.

If you are in Ca, most AAA locations have their won DMV, avoiding lines at the State offices - worth the membership price alone. They also offer car, homeowners insurance in Ca, which has ome of the best rates, coverage available.

We haven't used the road service very much, but when we do, they have been very good. They do limit the number of calls per year, so it is not an excuse to avoid maintenance.

This is great insurance for the wife and kids, in case they have a flat tire, they run out of gas, car will not start, anything that can go wrong, rendering a car immovable. If it cannot be fixed, then it will be towed to a secured place. This is a worthy assurance for me.

One tow will cost you more than $70, and you get a lot more for your AAA membership than maps & towing. Go to your local AAA office and talk with someone there or go online to look at all the additional benefits/savings. It's worth it.

AAA insures the member, not the car. So if you break down in someone else's car, you can still get coverage.

If you have a fairly good car I'd skip it. Just call a tow truck when you really need one. Customer dialed tows will also be top priority for dispatch, since the reimbursements with AAA are low, tow companies aren't inclined to provide quick service. IMO one of the worst feelings is being stranded on the side of a busy freeway waiting for a tow truck while cars passing honk their horns, cops come by to harass, etc. Best to get out of there quickly..

Seems like most of you recommend paying $70 per year for Basic AAA membership.
Do they arrive quickly when you need towing? Some people say they take a long time to get
there.

TheThinker said: Seems like most of you recommend paying $70 per year for Basic AAA membership.
Do they arrive quickly when you need towing? Some people say they take a long time to get
there.


I guess it depends on where you live (city, rural, suburbs), the time of day, weather conditions, etc.. When I've called, they usually got there in 45 minutes or less.

I have it for what I thought were reliable cars, but I'm surprised how often I've needed it - at least twice a year for tows, and a couple of times for the battery on one car that had an electrical fault that we couldn't find. They will tow and drop it off to an approved repair shop without you being there, so it's handy to send your broken car off to get fixed while you take the other car.

Well I get a lot of benefit out of my membership, for me it is totally worth it, I have the premium membership ($104) per year

I get 14% off my T-Mobile bill every month, making it easily worth it.
Have used it for towing at least twice, once in a friends car. (< 45 mins in both cases)
They are also my first place to visit in any new city as they usually have great guide books with recommendations.
10 - 20 % of most hotel rates (this you may be able to find cheaper else where).
Discounted tickets for whole lot of attractions in most every city I have visited. Simple e.g. Biltmore estate in Ashville, TN got tickets for $40, when the regular going rate was $60 or so.

I used to think AAA membership was getting too expensive to continue, right up until the point that my wife called me at work and said, "the car has a flat tire," and I said, "call AAA."

Id say get Premier membership... with $70 you only get like 10-15 miles/tow. I live in a small pay, and the diff. in price for premier which gives 2 free tows of up to 75 miels is totall worth it because then I can have the car towed to my mechanic from pretty much anywhere and that saves the price diff of the membership plus some.

Although, have not had the needt o use AAA in th epast year !

I used to work with AAA, better get the membership or else the drivers will gouge you when you need them. Also, if you use your insurance co.'s roadside assistance, which is waaaay cheaper, any use of it will count as an insurance claim and be reported, which could jack up your insurance rate. So it's a definite yes, and I highly recommend getting the PLUS membership, so you can be towed for up to 100 miles. If you don't belive me, pretend you're stranded on a highway and call a towing company to get a quote on a 30 mile tow. You'll wise up real quick. Don't be left at their mercy.

Oh, also, if they damage your car while towing it, AAA will pay you, and then go after the towing service to get reimbursed. All this is excluding the tons of discounts you can get.

TheThinker said: I recently bought a 1999 Buick Regal. It has a 3800 V6 engine which was highly recommended by
some FWers like SiS. The car just reached 80,000 miles and so far I'm pleased with it.

A basic annual membership to AAA costs $70 here. I wonder if it's worth getting?
From what I understand AAA is mostly good for roadside assistance purposes.
Sure they offer some discounts and maps but you can get a lot of that stuff online
anyway. Does anyone know of any good reasons to join AAA other than for roadside assistance/towing?

Are there any better options for road side assistance? Maybe I should just
keep the phone number of a towing company in the car, and only call them if I ever need them.
So far the car works fine.

Also I will not sign up for road side assistance from my insurance company because if you ever
use that service it goes on your claims history and can be used as an excuse for them to raise my rates.

akacool15 said: Well I get a lot of benefit out of my membership, for me it is totally worth it, I have the premium membership ($104) per year

I get 14% off my T-Mobile bill every month, making it easily worth it.

Where do you set this up? I couldn't find it?

I been with AAA in Southern California since 1979; Used it many a times for emergencies including, gas,tow, tire change etc; Never a problem. Would not be without it.I upgraded my membership to include 100 miles of towing instead of the 12. Used to be that the CA Highway Patrol boxes used to connect you automatically to AAA if you select roadside assistence and you have AAA.

I had AAA for three years, it was good to have as I too have two older vehicles. I just switched this
past december to GMs motor club, and for me to cover both my husbands, and my vehicle it cost me 85.00
dollars. what I liked about this program is it does not limit you to only 4 services per year...the only
limit is on the gas replacement service. that will be limited to 5 gallons free, period. which i can understand
as many people would abuse this service if there was no limits put on it. I had to use the service 2x in a month
for towing in february, and you know what, I truly couldn't believe how awsome they treated me, and it was just as
good if not better than AAA, with a less rate for two of us to be covered. I would definately recommend them...and
you can own any make care, it does not have to be a gmc or any one of their products. any make or model....they too
offer discounts,maps etc. go to bing...gmc motor club...is how i typed it in and got started. been very happy with them.

Go for it. Its worth it. I have used them 2 times for flat tire and once for towing my car after accident. I have used it for battery replacement when I was in a friend's car and his battery died. I also have life and auto insurance from them and their rates are one of the cheapest and since I live in North CA, I can use their offices for DMV stuff too. Also past 4/5 big/small vacations I have used their travel service and have found discounts in dining using the card. I think I have made this almost as a commercial for AAA now

I own two "older" cars and would not go without AAA, just for the piece of mind.

I have noticed that if I keep AAA current, my cars run very well, but when my friends let their AAA lapse, their cars suddenly need emergency roadside assistance.

Out of state bail bond guarantee ftw!

AcidSpectrum said: I used to work with AAA, better get the membership or else the drivers will gouge you when you need them. Also, if you use your insurance co.'s roadside assistance, which is waaaay cheaper, any use of it will count as an insurance claim and be reported, which could jack up your insurance rate. So it's a definite yes, and I highly recommend getting the PLUS membership, so you can be towed for up to 100 miles. If you don't belive me, pretend you're stranded on a highway and call a towing company to get a quote on a 30 mile tow. You'll wise up real quick. Don't be left at their mercy.

Oh, also, if they damage your car while towing it, AAA will pay you, and then go after the towing service to get reimbursed. All this is excluding the tons of discounts you can get.


cell phone companies offer road side assistance for ~ $3 per month on your bill, also its free with some credit cards, if thats all you're going to use the AAA for, its NOT worth it, imho (but seriously, don't get roadside thru your insurance co, thats just dumb).

I guess it all depends on how are you going to use it. Some people use it primarily as a discount card and the others use it in the case they need a road assistance. I use it primarily as a discount card ( never use it for a road assistance in the last 3-4 years, but still renew the membership from year to year). I have saved from T-Mobile around $8/month (T-Mobile discount for AAA members starts several months ago). Many other vendors, hotels, restaurants give discount for AAA member. It's good idea to visit their website to check what this card can offer for your need before joining.

Lock your key inside the car can also happen but for me, a free credit monitoring is a good additional coverage that AAA gives for free.

You need to think of the odds. If your car is old and unreliable or you get in accidents or really want to protect your wife and kids, it might be worth it. I drive 40,000 miles a year and have only needed a tow once, so I'm willing to chance the $150 tow.

I used to think that AAA is worth the price until my friend told me that for $10 one can add emergency service option in auto insurance. Now I am paying $10 for Geico for six months for unlimited tows and other emergency services.

fogler said: I used to think that AAA is worth the price until my friend told me that for $10 one can add emergency service option in auto insurance. Now I am paying $10 for Geico for six months for unlimited tows and other emergency services.

I do the same thing through Farm Bureau. We pay a small amount yearly (I think $10-15 iirc), and pay for a tow if needed, and then file for reimbursement. This involves paying for the tow at first, but saves a decent amount of money since most cars have to be so rarely towed.

Well not sure if I would buy them just for the towing part, but we got a membership b/c their homeowners insurance rate was around $1400 when our next lowest quote was $2000. On top of that, their car insurance rates were 300/year cheaper (Houston). Now we have moved and their rates are still by far the lowest rates- we have to be a member to get these rates but the savings easily cover the fees.

Check with your car insurance carrier.

You should be able to endorse the policy for less than $10/year for $50-75 towing. One non-national company I represent, for a good credit/no loss-no violation client, will increase limits to $150 per tow and $100 locksmith coverage for FREE. For deadbeat demolition drivers, the fee is $35/year, still cheaper than AAA.

AAA used to be nice for the bound trip planners but with gps and mapquest these days, they are just more junk for the landfill.

AAA provides maps, travel guides and the best discounts on hotels and attractions (free parking at Disneyland too). Towing, battery jumps and gas are all hastle free with your card. I have had it since 1976 and it has paid for itself almost every year just with the discounts.

Many American Express cards include a towing benefit. It can only be used once every 6 months (I think)and it doesn't have all the other stuff like discounts.

As far as discounts go, not sure they really matter anymore. Travel sites like Expedia and Hotwire give you the same discount.

Also, we made disneyland arrangements thru AAA last year thinking we were getting the big AAA discount. Then we called disney reservations direct and got the EXACT same quote (to the penny!). We called back AAA and they said that there was really no discount.

Regards
SteveG

yes, but AAA is by far the biggest roadside assistance company, and guess what? If they get a call from AAA and a call from AM/EX you know who's the priority call? The bigger "customer," which in this case is AAA. AAA sub-contracts towing companies to provide service, and they can be servicing multiple clubs. AAA always stands behind their members and protects them if the local station isn't giving them quality service, who know how long you may have to wait for your cell phone co.'s roadside assistance, which is usually through Asurion.

skarydrunkguy said: AcidSpectrum said: I used to work with AAA, better get the membership or else the drivers will gouge you when you need them. Also, if you use your insurance co.'s roadside assistance, which is waaaay cheaper, any use of it will count as an insurance claim and be reported, which could jack up your insurance rate. So it's a definite yes, and I highly recommend getting the PLUS membership, so you can be towed for up to 100 miles. If you don't belive me, pretend you're stranded on a highway and call a towing company to get a quote on a 30 mile tow. You'll wise up real quick. Don't be left at their mercy.

Oh, also, if they damage your car while towing it, AAA will pay you, and then go after the towing service to get reimbursed. All this is excluding the tons of discounts you can get.


cell phone companies offer road side assistance for ~ $3 per month on your bill, also its free with some credit cards, if thats all you're going to use the AAA for, its NOT worth it, imho (but seriously, don't get roadside thru your insurance co, thats just dumb).

we have had AAA Plus for several years. a tow truck driver explained to us that the Plus service
covered much longer tows than the few miles the basic service covers. all of my kids have ended
up needing tows in excess of 50-70 miles, and each time we were covered. its really nice to know
that if there is a problem, AAA will haul the car all the way home to our local family mechanic
and not dump us three miles from whatever happens at whatever shop they want to.

looking back its been two timing belts, a clutch, a head gasket, a transmission problem, a stuck
brake caliper, and two traffic accidents. all tows covered by AAA Plus. and since the driver is
the one thats covered and not the vehicle, we ended up getting my uncles old junker truck towed.
6 times. in one 8 day trip. i thought i';d blocked that horror show from my mind, but i guess not.

Geico has roadside assistance for only about $6 more per six months. They cover roadside assistance including mechanical breakdown. IMO, highly worth it

thats what i am thinking. am sure every one having insurance for their car.. additional < $10/6 months, u r done with road side assurance with ur own car insurance company... why to invest in AAA for 80/year then? please guide me.

I used to have AAA and have enjoyed a discount on auto & home insurance the last few years. The company they placed me with stopped their AAA discount, but I am still insured through the AAA insurance agency.

Anyways, to make a long story short, I have let my AAA lapse and there have been no ill effects on my insurance. I bet I can make it to next insurance renewal before anyone notices.

We also have gone with AAA for our car and homeowners insurance policies. We save $800 a year on the car insurance and $700 a year on the house over what we were paying at LM (with the employeee discount). I was amazed at how much cheaper their rates are for same coverage/ same rating.

Between the cheaper insurance rates and added risk of needing assistance with older cars (can't add towing for cheap on AAA insurance) we find AAA plus well worth the money.

Skipping 31 Messages...
yes, yes, and absolutely



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