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This article was reviewed by Andrew Flueckiger, a member of the Finder Editorial Review Board and certified insurance counselor and licensed insurance agent in five states.
Roadside assistance is worth the money if you want help with car breakdowns, battery jumps, changing a flat tire and more. This coverage helps the most if you often travel long distances, drive an older car prone to breakdowns or want peace of mind that help is a phone call away. However, it’s an optional type of car insurance coverage that’s not necessary for everyone. And some insurers require you to buy comprehensive and collision coverage along with roadside assistance, raising the total cost.
Compare roadside assistance costs and benefits from the most popular car insurers and driving clubs. Some prices are based on state availability.
|Company||Annual cost||Flat tire||Dead battery||Lockout||Towing|
|AAA||$54 – $135||Yes||Yes||Yes, up to $150 cost||Within 5 – 200 miles|
|Allstate||$25||Yes||Yes||Yes||Up to $100 cost (typically 20 miles)|
|AMA||$25 – $98||Yes||Yes||Yes||Within 35 miles|
|Geico||$14||Yes||Yes||Yes, up to $100 cost||Closest dealership within 20 miles|
|Liberty Mutual||$12||Yes||Yes||Yes||Closest repair shop|
|Progressive||$16||Yes||Yes||Yes||15 miles or nearest repair shop|
|State Farm||$12||Yes||Yes||Yes, up to 1 hour||Closest repair shop|
When deciding to buy roadside coverage, consider the plan’s price, benefits and any limitations on getting service.
You’ll want to balance the cost of your car insurance with the cost of its roadside assistance to determine your savings.
For example, if you find cheap roadside assistance with one company but its monthly car insurance costs more than another company, you might not save money overall.
If you’d rather not worry about finding last-minute roadside service after a breakdown, you might want the convenience of having coverage. And if you drive a car that’s known to break down, roadside coverage might be worth it since you’re more likely to use your plan.
Consider how much the plan’s exclusions may affect you, such as the towing distance or no availability during storms.
For example, if you live in a remote area or want help during a snowstorm, the coverage may not help you. But if you drive in metro areas, you shouldn’t have problems finding mechanics or tow trucks.
Most roadside service plans include coverage for jumpstarting a battery, changing a spare tire, delivering gas or getting a locksmith. However, you usually pay extra for the cost of gas, a new battery or the spare tire itself.
The biggest benefit of using motor clubs like AAA or Allstate Motor Club is that the plan follows you no matter what car you’re driving. You also get travel planning tools and discounts, helpful if you’re a frequent traveler.
Compare companies that offer roadside assistance and select Get quotes to see costs and features in detail.
Roadside assistance typically costs $2–$3 per month or $24–$36 a year to add to your car insurance policy, unless your insurer includes it as a free benefit.
Premium roadside plans range from $4–$12 a month or $48–$144 a year. These premium plans add features like extra towing mileage or paying for hotels and meals if you’re far from home.
Buying roadside service as a car insurance add-on is typically cheaper than buying from a motor club like AAA or AMA. However, some insurers require you to buy comprehensive and collision coverage, which can add hundreds of dollars to your premium per year.
No. Emergency roadside service is part of your car insurance coverage, but using it won’t raise your rates like making a claim would.
In rare cases, your insurer may charge a higher premium or refuse to renew your plan if you make too many service calls within the year.
Roadside assistance is limited to small-scale mechanical problems, so you might pay an extra fee for getting stranded in a remote area, long-distance towing or to replace your battery or spare tire.
You won’t be covered for:
You can find roadside assistance from companies other than your car insurer. Some companies even let you get assistance without a roadside plan, though you may pay an on-the-go fee to use them.
Your options include:
A roadside assistance membership could come in handy, although you can find the cheapest options from your car insurer or car warranty.
Even if you don’t have a plan when you get stuck on the road, you can get a tow. Compare car insurance policies with towing service included to find the best deal for you.
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