Is Your AAA Membership Worth It?

It may depend on the state you live in…under Arizona law, they cannot increase rates due to using towing/road services. So check your state.

The only reason I have a AAA membership is because I have my Auto Insurance and now my Homeowner insurance through them. I very seldom use AAA services, only once for their DMV part and never for towing.
The complaint that I do have with AAA is their member services. For the past three years in December AAA has billed me an additional membership fee in addition to the one I pay annually in May. After talking to their customer service, the past 2 years I was told they didn’t know why I was charged and actually claimed they didn’t have a record of it and to dispute it with my CC company. I looked back 3 years ago and noticed the Dec charge was there and that that one got by me. I went down to my local AAA office in person with credit card statements and the rep had to call someone up and basically said that I had a family member authorized to use my card which was bull. They would not tell me what family member and I was given a generic complaint form to fill out. I felt like they just gave me a kick in the butt so that I would leave. When I got home, I called the AAA customer service number so that I could talk to a rep and I wanted a copy of the notes that were written down from the other reps who were trying to help me. Of course, the rep wouldn’t give me that info but she looked at the notes and asked me some questions and discovered that I was being charged for my deceased Mothers membership the past three years. She took notes, filled out some forms, sent some emails out to her bosses and was very helpful and figured everything out. I would like to get an answer as to why they would use my CC in fraudulent way. If my friend Clark is reading this, he would tell me who to report it to.

I called USAA and asked if usage of tow service raised rates, they said “no”.
I have used it several times. To be honest I have so much stuff insured with them I probably wouldn’t notice.
I use the Clark method and look at insurance as disaster only except for towing. My “discount “ for no claims for 50 years is almost the same as my bill.

We have been members of AAA for 30 years and used it once about 5 years ago. When I broke down close to my house, it took them over 2 hours to get to me.

Today I broke down behind a warehouse picking up some furniture. When I dialed AAA, I got a prompt for voicemail and then said it would be better if I email. My phone was dying and my car already did. I kept calling and calling and never got anyone to answer. It said they would send a text so that they could locate me and go from there. The text came in and they couldn’t locate me…geeze. I’m not in the middle of nowhere…I’m outside Atlanta.
So after calling numerous times, I gave up and called a wrecker and left the key. Took an Uber home and car was towed by a local service.
NO NO NO…don’t waste your money! We are supposed to be premium members for the high price and received nothing!
They’re history!!!

Excellent point!
I’ve had AAA for many years, primarily for my wife. I did not want to see her stranded. No reason to have it now.

I believe my membership is worth it for all the reasons you’ve pointed out…plus…I recently needed to have several documents notarized relating to my estate plan, will, power of attorney etc. My bank (JPMorgan) no longer notarizes these types of docs. A local notary charges $10 per page ( I had 12 pages). I live near a AAA office and they notarized all for free and provided the witness notary I also needed. So I was thrilled to discover this benefit as well.

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I, like many others, have been recently left stranded by AAA. I live in North Carolina. Please check the BBB for the local AAA auto club.

In the Carolinas, and AAA-South in Atlanta the BBB rates the auto club as an F. I think that is enough said. My AAA membership is now canceled!!! Also, it looks like I can’t expect a refund, since it is seems to be against thei AAA policy. A no-timely response, is of no value to me.

I had been a loyal AAA-member for 30 years, and also giving gift memberships to my children.

The only reason I have it is because I have insurance through AAA and have to be a member.

MY AAA membership has worked well in Hawaii. I opted for the extended mileage ption so that my vehicle could be towed anywehere on the island (essentually the size of Conneticut). Tha=t means if I break down anywhere on island I don’t need a hotel room if the car can’t be worked on that day. Also, I can always have it towed anywhere I want for repair or to my house.

AAA is going to be limited to the ability and quality of its tow partners.

As for Atlanta, although they get a lot of traffic along the Perimeter/Interstate, I was always amazed at the number of vehicles that caught fire there. I wonder if it was an easy way to dump a junker and perhaps be able to claim damage on insurance. Here in Hawaii it appears that if you take a junker to the junkyard you have to drain fluid first. That is difficult for many, so they abandon them along the highway and the County tows them. If they are abandoned on someones private property, the property owner must pay for towing, even if not their vehicle. That happened to me where someone left a junk car on my property and the police said I had to pay to tow it and I could have them try to locate the owner (who it turns out had moved to the mainland). I was ready to push it onto the shoulder of the highway so the County would take it, when someone decided that they wanted it for parts and it disappeared. Sometimes problems solve themselves!

My recent AAA call was documented in this posting

Thinking about dropping AAA and my auto insurance has roadside assistance. Clark says NO

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I posted last year that I’ve been an AAA member for years, but I just cancelled my account with them this year. My auto insurance company includes emergency service (tow/flat tire/lockout/jump/gas etc) with my policy up to $75 service, but for $5 more on the policy they include the service up to $125 which I chose. So it’s only costing me an extra $5 a year to get the same (peace of mind) service that AAA offers. I never used the other services they offered.

AAA has a retention dept. that tried really hard to keep me, but they only offered me $10 off of a membership renewal.

It’s been about 6 months since I cancelled & I still get junk mail from them.

In the article I posted:

" many of the insurers will treat towing as an at-fault claim.”

“An at-fault claim will typically lead to higher insurance premiums for you”

Suggest you ask your insurer…

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I did read the article you posted. Thank you for that. Still sticking with my ins co (which happens to be one of the 3 top Clark picks) & hopefully I’ll never need to use it anyway.

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I have NJM for insurance and they give roadside assistance with my auto policy.
I called to see if towing gets counted as a claim, and they said “no”. But I wonder if that’s accurate?

USAA does not treat road service or towing as a claim

Definite NO from me. Paid Premiere member for years. Needed a tow. Waited eight hours. No ETA of any kind. No help. Spent the night in my car. I had a friend come help me the next morning. Deceptive program. They won’t deliver when you need it.

My state AAA has dropped the mileage limit on free tows to 5 miles. That is not enough in my area. I live in an urban area and travel to many places a few miles farther than 5 miles from my home community. On the open road I could be 50+ miles from a garage or dealership.

I bought three years of towing services from Good Sam club during a Black Friday sale or something like that. I think it was about $120 total. That is less than two years with AAA in my state. They will tow you to the nearest service cent affiliated with Good Sam even if it’s 100+ miles away.

Since i have only used towing services once in my life, I think the Good Sam club deal is the best for me.

“They will tow you to the nearest service cent affiliated with Good Sam even if it’s 100+ miles away.”

Is this the only place they will tow it? What about towing to a location of YOU choice? The Good Sam affiliated garage may be expensive enough to cost you more than the AAA would have. Just a thought.

“A tow from AAA will get you anywhere from three to 200 miles. However, it depends on the membership you have with them: Classic AAA membership will get you up to five miles of towing. Plus AAA membership will get you up to 100 miles of towing.”

For the basic plan in my area, it’s 3 miles! But I have the AAA Plus plan, which is about $30 more (about 8$/month).
Each year I debate whether to keep the membership…But I have also used many of the other services and discounts over the years.

I just reviewed my coverage…interestingly enough, it covers emergency bicycle transportation, too!

My auto insurance has towing coverage, but didn’t give any specifics so I contacted the company.
They said will cover up to $75 worth of towing.
I don’t know the current rates for towing, but I’m going to keep my AAA membership active (up to $100 miles towing, plus lock service, etc).