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Understanding Roadside Assistance Insurance

Understanding Roadside Assistance Insurance

Having roadside assistance insurance can give you peace of mind if you worry about how a flat tire or a dead battery can leave you stranded on the road.

Roadside assistance coverage can help you resolve any breakdown issues in no time while reimbursing you some of the costs.

What Is Roadside Assistance Insurance?

Roadside assistance insurance can help you get assistance and payment when your vehicle breaks down or becomes disabled. Typically, you'll pay an annual fee for this service.

The primary benefits of getting roadside assistance coverage are:

  • Policyholders can receive emergency roadside service whenever their car breaks down, runs out of fuel, gets a flat tire, or needs a tow to a repair center.
  • The policy also assists in payment for car repairs in case of a breakdown.

A roadside assistance policy, like auto insurance, requires the policyholder to pay a premium for their desired coverage. However, if your car breaks down, the policy will pay for the emergency services up to the coverage limit.

Roadside Assistance Coverage

Your roadside assistance policy will typically cover:

  • Battery jump start.
  • Towing services.
  • Transportation of your damaged car and passengers.
  • Tire change.
  • Lockout services.
  • Gas refueling service.

In addition to the regular services, the roadside assistance policy can also cover additional services depending on the terms of your policy.

  • Reimbursement in case of legal procedure. When you need an attorney to represent you for a traffic violation, your policy can reimburse the legal costs up to the prescribed limit.
  • Guaranteed arrest bond: Whenever you face traffic violation charges, the policy can pay for the bond up to the prescribed limit.
  • Reimbursement of lodging due to breakdown. Whenever you need to stay in a hotel or motel because your car broke down, you can reimburse the lodging expenses up to the policy limit.

Benefits of Roadside Assistance Insurance

A roadside assistance policy can help you safely get back home if your car breaks down on the road. In addition, it can cover the payment of emergency services for towing and repairing stranded vehicles.

While everyone can benefit from having roadside insurance coverage, it is most advantageous to have the policy in the following situations:

  • Young drivers with new licenses.
  • When you have infants or young children in the car.
  • Elderly drivers or when driving with older adults on board.
  • When you drive a vehicle over 12 years old.
  • If you take frequent long-distance trips.
  • When you regularly drive more than 20 miles.
  • For people who live in remote areas.

Obtaining Roadside Assistance Insurance

You can get roadside assistance insurance from several places like:

  • Auto insurance companies. The best way to get roadside assistance coverage is through your auto insurance company. Typically, you can add it to your auto insurance premium. In addition, some auto insurance policies also have roadside assistance as a part of their package.
  • Auto clubs. Auto membership organizations like AAA and Good Sam specialize in road assistance. They have many members and often provide DMV and travel-related services.
  • Credit card companies. Premium credit card companies like VISA provide roadside assistance services to their members subject to a pre-negotiated fee.
  • Car manufacturers. If you buy a new car or a certified pre-owned vehicle, it can come with complimentary roadside assistance service during the warranty period.
  • Rules and Exclusions:

    Although getting roadside assistance coverage may benefit you greatly, there are specific rules and exclusions you should consider:

    • While roadside assistance coverage can assist you in the case of non-emergency car breakdowns, it is not a substitute for car insurance. Also, it will not cover serious emergencies. For that, you need a collision and comprehensive coverage plan.
    • Roadside assistance coverage will cover only your vehicle. If your friend's car breaks down while driving, you will not get assistance.
    • You can also purchase roadside assistance for your RVs, boats, and motorcycles.
    • You need to provide your membership card and other valid identification to avail of the service.


    Driving your car on the road can lead to minor hazards that can leave you stranded. Having roadside assistance insurance can help you get assistance to get back on the road again.