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Car Insurance Roadside Assistance

Emergency roadside assistance is an option offered by many car insurance providers. In some cases, it may actually come standard with your policy, but it is often an add-on. Car insurance roadside assistance can be a valuable asset to have for when things go wrong out on the road. If your car goes dead out on the road, or if you just need help changing a flat tire, it can really be handy to have this option in your back pocket. But there are costs involved with this car insurance option, some of which may not be apparent. Taking a closer look at car insurance roadside assistance from all sides can help you to decide whether it's worthwhile for you.

Who Benefits from Emergency Assistance

To begin with, it must be pointed out that any driver can benefit to some degree from having car insurance roadside assistance as an option on their policy. We have all been in situations from time to time when it would have come in handy to have access to a free towing service or a battery jump in a cold parking lot. Still, certain groups of drivers are probably the likeliest ones to use the services offered by a car insurance roadside assistance option. They are the ones either out on the road the most, or least likely to be able to handle emergency situations on their own.

The latter group is the one logging the most miles on their vehicles. The more you drive, the more chance you have of running into trouble of some sort. Business travelers who drive around the country putting high miles on their vehicles are perfect candidates for emergency roadside assistance. For one thing, their cars get beat up day after day through the constant use, and in a lot of cases poor maintenance. Many business travelers are too busy with their work to get their cars in for repairs and maintenance as often as they would like. This leads to an increased risk of trouble, from an engine overheating to a battery dying out and taking out the alternator or a bald tire finally exploding.

What makes this danger especially compelling for business travelers is the fact that these troubles could be occurring far from home, in an unfamiliar area. Emergency roadside assistance can be a life saver in these instances. The same holds true for vacationers who choose to travel by car or truck. As they make their way across the country, there is always the chance of trouble. Having roadside assistance built in to your auto insurance can give you extra protection to add value to your policy.

Parents with young children are another group who could greatly benefit from having such protection. Dealing with a flat tire in the cold weather while a child cries in her car seat can be a very stressful situation. It can make things a lot easier to simply wait in the running car off on the shoulder while you wait for roadside assistance to come take care of you. The same principle applies to seniors, especially those driving alone, and teens who may not have a whole lot of experience in auto maintenance just yet. Car insurance roadside assistance can benefit everyone, but for certain groups it is an essential item to include in your overall protection.

Roadside Help Key Features

Every policy may have differing features, and the specifics of limits may vary. But there are certain key features most emergency roadside assistance plans all have in common. Taking a look at these key features can help you to reasonably determine how valuable this kind of coverage would be you to personally. Many drivers will not get out on road without knowing they have this kind of protection; while for others, the idea of fending for themselves when something goes wrong with their automobiles is just not that big of a concern. It all depends on your perspective as a driver.

Pretty well all emergency roadside assistance plans come with some sort of towing coverage. The exact application may vary, but the basic idea is that by paying the premium for this added protection, you save yourself the cost of a tow should you need one. Some companies assign specific mileage limits in their towing policies, as tow trucks tend to get expensive as the mileage adds up. They may limit a tow based in the number of miles to the collision shop, or to a certain monetary cost of a tow. Any additional costs would be your responsibility. This detail is one example of the importance of knowing what kind of coverage you really have before you sign on and get out on the road. Don't pay for extra protection unless you know what you are getting for the money.

Most plans also contain provisions for flat tire changing, dead battery jumping and roadside fuel delivery if you run out of gas. Again, there may be limits to these provisions based on mileage or other financial factors. As with any part of your car insurance policy, it is good to get to know both the included coverages and any specific limitations before you pay the premium. These limitations may also include specifications on the vehicle covered. Unlike membership with an organization like AAA offering emergency roadside assistance, chances are with this plan your protection will be directly tied to the insured vehicle or vehicles in your policy.

Other Factors to Consideration

Car insurance emergency roadside assistance might be a suitable option for you to help maximize the value of your policy and protect the insured driver to the greatest possible extent. However, there are some other things to think about, things you should keep in the back of your mind as you consider whether to opt for a policy that includes this sort of protection.

Auto clubs and certain private groups who offer roadside assistance plans generally charge a flat annual fee for membership, but this is not exactly the the case when you add this protection to your car insurance policy. While the option of adding roadside assistance may raise your policy premium a certain set rate at the outset, since it is tied to your policy as a whole, using this coverage may affect your rates over the long haul. Just like any other part of your auto policy, you only want to use it when you need it, because it may end up costing you more than you think. If you can get similar protection from an outside source, think about pricing coverage both ways before you decide.

At any rate, you should find out how your overall premium might be affected by using emergency roadside assistance. Find out about monetary limits of protection so that you have the whole picture and can comfortably make an informed choice whether or not to include it in your auto policy. This is, of course, assuming that it doesn't come standard. Car insurance roadside assistance can be a very valuable part of your overall policy, but getting the full picture and learning more about limits and costs can save you down the road.

 

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