If you're worried about breaking down on the side of the road and you don't want to be stranded, you may want to sign up for a roadside assistance program. There are numerous options, and some new car dealers even offer this type of service. To ensure you choose the right roadside assistance service, you may want to ask the following questions.
1. Which Services Are Covered?
Most roadside assistance providers offer help for dead batteries and flat tyres. Those issues can often be fixed immediately so that you can get back on the road. If you have a more serious issue, the company should offer towing.
Make sure the company you select offers service for the type of issues that concern you.
2. Do You Have Mileage Restrictions or Surcharges?
Some roadside assistance companies have restrictions on the milage. For example, you may only get free towing within a certain number of miles of your home. If you live in a remote area where you drive long distances often or if you travel a lot for work, you need to select a company that has unlimited milage.
On the other hand, if you only travel far distances on rare occasions, you may prefer a company with restricted miles. That can allow you to save on the premiums, and if you need towing outside of the covered area, you can just pay a surcharge.
3. Do You Outsource the Roadside Assistance to Other Service Providers?
In some cases, when you sign up for roadside assistance, the company may just send mechanics that it employs to your aid. In most cases, however, these companies contract with third-party professionals. You may want to get a list of the companies they work with so you can check their credentials.
4. Do Customers Have to Pay Upfront or Later?
If the roadside assistance company sends a third-party to help you, you may be required to pay upfront. Then, the roadside assistance company will reimburse you. It's important to know if you're working with a model where you pay later or you pay upfront so that you know what to expect.
5. Do You Have an App?
A smartphone app can make it easier to call for help and track old assistance calls. It can also make it easier to pay your monthly or annual subscription fees. To that end, you may want to see if the company offers an app.