Author Topic: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?  (Read 1737 times)

DeskJockey2028

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 416
  • Age: 45
  • Aiming for 2028
Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« on: October 12, 2017, 06:54:01 AM »
We've got an older car (I'm going with the assumption that many of us do) - a 2003 Honda. We've also been AAA members for going on nearly 2 decades now. The few times we've needed their roadside service it's been very helpful. The additional discounts and other services are nice too.

Do you feel that the money spent (for us it's about $150 a year) is worth it? Do you have a AAA membership?

acroy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1382
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Dallas TX
    • SWAMI
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2017, 07:02:05 AM »
Used to
Then realized as a taxpayer in the state of TX, I get it for free. On the back of my DL: TEXAS ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE 1 800 525 5555.

You may get it in your area as well.

In addition, some credit card bennies include roadside assistance iirc, worth checking.

SWAMI (Satisfied Working Advanced Mustachian Individual) 1 stash, 1 DW, 7 Mini MM's...
God, Family, Country. Everything else is details.

jlcnuke

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 179
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2017, 07:03:24 AM »
I've found it's not even close to worth it to me and I almost never need such a thing. With my credit cards covering roadside assistance already, paying extra for someone else to cover it also seems like a waste. On the off-chance I do need roadside assistance, the cost of using the credit card services has been much less than paying for a AAA membership (~$60 last time I needed a tow iirc).

The only possible way I can see it making sense for most people would be if they took heavy advantage of AAA discounts as part of their regular spending, such that it made up for the cost of the membership.
Delta card referral, 10k extra for both of us (60k total bonus miles for you) http://refer.amex.us/JEFFRC3xlu?xl=cp52

Roots&Wings

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 847
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2017, 08:57:51 AM »
Adding roadside assistance to my car insurance was $2/month for my 04 Honda. Totally worth it, had to jump the battery recently.

NorthernBlitz

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 145
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2017, 09:06:56 AM »
It might be worth checking your credit cards. Many offer free roadside assistance, potentially for nothing (or at least comparable cost to AAA).

ketchup

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2633
  • Age: 26
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2017, 09:23:52 AM »
I have AAA.  It pays for itself in car rental and hotel discounts (GF travels a lot for work), and provides a cheap "what do I do?" answer to a car emergency for GF when traveling, especially far from "civilization."  It makes GF more comfortable with an "older" car (we now have a 2001 Volvo) for long-distance travel.

It's definitely not for everyone.  If it was just me, I wouldn't do it.

Raenia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 379
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2017, 09:34:00 AM »
I got it last year after a really bad year of breakdowns.  I also now have my car insurance through them, which saves me some money.  Overall, I don't think of it as a cost-saving measure, but as a peace-of-mind measure.  It makes me worry less, so that makes it worth the cost.

frugaldoc

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 334
    • thehappyphilosopher
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2017, 09:52:32 AM »
We have it. I think some plans will cover bike flats/breakdown as well. The most value we get from it is in the discounts.
http://thehappyphilosopher.com/
Enlightened Awesomeness - A Guide to Freedom and Happiness

ponyboy

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2017, 09:59:12 AM »
Waste of money.  A lot of credit cards cover it and my insurance actually covers towing...I think its $8/year.  I ditched AAA almost 10 years ago...saved over a grand doing so.  Never needed it once.

If you're special and cant change a tire you probably shouldnt be driving.  And if your a "man" and cant change at tire...you're not a man.

BeanCounter

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1433
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2017, 10:03:39 AM »
Gave it up after they left us stranded TWICE in one particularly bad winter. Their excuse was how bad a winter it was and that the were unusually busy. Um, that's exactly when I need you!!!
We now have roadside through our car insurance and carry a couple of tow truck numbers of guys our mechanic recommends.

SC93

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 248
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2017, 10:08:22 AM »
We have it and like someone else said, mostly for the little woman's peace of mind. Ours is $85 a year which we probably get back in savings but if I have to worry about $85, I have a whole other problem anyway.

Before we were together I never had it because if I break down I have a few friends that own wrecker services across the state AND all my racing buddies have trailers if they need to come and get me. Just a 1 year before his crash, I broke down near Salina, Kansas. I called my buddy that was the mayor in Belleville, Ks, he went and picked up Stan Fox's trailer and came and towed my van. That kind of turned out to be an honor using his trailer since he was soon no longer with us.

Tass

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 154
  • Age: 24
  • Location: Southern California
  • Working on a PhD and saving what I can!
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #11 on: October 12, 2017, 10:17:51 AM »
I have my insurance through AAA and the roadside stuff is included cheap, but I'm thinking about ditching it. It's become useful once when I needed a battery replaced - not jumped, replaced - but it's the biggest line item in my monthly budget after rent and groceries. More than gas. I'm planning on either slashing my coverage or switching once it's time to renew.

elaine amj

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1883
  • Location: Ontario
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2017, 12:13:06 PM »
We have it. Just discussed whether we should renew next year actually. We decided that since we have a lot on our plates now, it would be best to renew this time and then re-investigate next year.

Cranky

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 682
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #13 on: October 12, 2017, 12:59:28 PM »
We have it, and honestly, it's because of some traumatic car experiences many years ago. It's totally worth it for me, even though we don't often use it.

SC93

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 248
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2017, 01:38:52 PM »
Good Lord Tass, How much are they charging you per month? Ours only comes out to around $7.

Tass

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 154
  • Age: 24
  • Location: Southern California
  • Working on a PhD and saving what I can!
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2017, 03:12:15 PM »
Good Lord Tass, How much are they charging you per month? Ours only comes out to around $7.

I'm talking about my AAA car insurance as well as membership. The insurance is about $60/month; the membership is less than $4. Plus I also get renter's insurance through them (required by my apartment) for another $4.

I try to spend less than $40/month on gas. Also I forgot to count my travel budget, making AAA the 4th biggest item.

nancyjnelson

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 50
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2017, 06:25:50 PM »
I have AAA - I also buy it for my two grown daughters.  I've used it several times, my eldest has used it twice, my youngest not yet.  IMO what's great about it is that you can call AAA even if you are a passenger in a car whose owner/driver is not an AAA member.  Also, as of a few months ago, AAA offers a "towing" service for your bike - if your bike breaks down and you can't fix it yourself on the spot, you can call AAA and it will send a truck to pick up you and your bike and deliver you to home/the bike shop.  Only drawback is that you need to be near a road rather than on an isolated bike trail in the woods.

sequoia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2017, 10:02:23 PM »
We used to have AAA, but dropped it right after we bought a house with a garage. Decided that I can use the money to buy tools and parts to keep the cars in top condition. It is much more comfortable to do work in a covered garage, and I enjoy doing it.

We still keep getting mails from AAA begging us to renew our membership :)

SC93

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 248
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2017, 11:48:10 PM »
Good Lord Tass, How much are they charging you per month? Ours only comes out to around $7.

I'm talking about my AAA car insurance as well as membership. The insurance is about $60/month; the membership is less than $4. Plus I also get renter's insurance through them (required by my apartment) for another $4.

I try to spend less than $40/month on gas. Also I forgot to count my travel budget, making AAA the 4th biggest item.

So what you're saying is that my Dr. Pepper bill each month is more than all your other bills put together? lol :P

I wish we only spent $40 on gas. Just in the race car alone we spend prolly $700 for fuel. lol

alsoknownasDean

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1602
  • Age: 33
  • Location: Melbourne, Australia
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #19 on: October 13, 2017, 12:04:59 AM »
I do (although it's a different name where I am). $90 a year.

I've had to make use of it with previous cars (for a while quite regularly). If I call up and sign up on the spot, it's more expensive than keeping the membership going. At one stage I had to have my car towed three times in the space of about 18 months.

Driving a 2002 car now, it's probably still worth it. I know how to change a tire, but if I overheat the thing and it doesn't start again after cooling down or the battery (or clutch) dies suddenly or the keys get locked into the car (all but one of these have happened to me, and the last one happened to a friend of mine while I was there), it's good peace of mind.

Oh, and for the 'everyone should learn to change a tire' comment. I know how to change a tire, but I had to call them out to help with that once, because the tire shop had used an air-powered wrench to fasten the bolts on the wheel, and I couldn't budge it myself.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 12:12:36 AM by alsoknownasDean »

Astatine

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2549
  • Location: Australia
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #20 on: October 13, 2017, 12:21:01 AM »
I do (although it's a different name where I am). $90 a year.

I've had to make use of it with previous cars (for a while quite regularly). If I call up and sign up on the spot, it's more expensive than keeping the membership going. At one stage I had to have my car towed three times in the space of about 18 months.

Driving a 2002 car now, it's probably still worth it. I know how to change a tire, but if I overheat the thing and it doesn't start again after cooling down or the battery (or clutch) dies suddenly or the keys get locked into the car (all but one of these have happened to me, and the last one happened to a friend of mine while I was there with him), it's good peace of mind.

+1 to all of this, although my current car is only 4 years old. My previous car was 14 years old before it got written off in a minor bingle. For me, it's very much worth it if you go on even a short road trip outside the city. Towing costs can add up quickly.

Also, the company I have roadside assistance with kind of has golden handcuffs because of the discounts if you have multiple insurance policies with them as well as the roadside assistance membership, and the % discount goes up the longer you stay with them (albeit in a stepwise manner).

Quote
Oh, and for the 'everyone should learn to change a tire' comment. I know how to change a tire, but I had to call them out to help with that once, because the tire shop had used an air-powered wrench to fasten the bolts on the wheel, and I couldn't budge it myself.

Another +1.

And these days I'm not physically capable of changing the tire thanks to having a frozen shoulder on my dominant side and permanent damage to my other shoulder/arm from life-saving surgery and radiation treatment. So roadside assistance of some sort is not a luxury, it's an essential.

Dicey

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6009
  • Age: 59
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #21 on: October 13, 2017, 01:27:15 AM »
Yup. I've had it since I was 18, which is to say, a looooong time. As a single female road warrior, it was always worth it, often for the travel discounts alone. Not that I'm married and DH is a car fixin-type dude, I still have it, but he does not. We do a lot of road trips to our rental properties, with a lot of desolate miles from A to B, so it's worth it overall.
I did it! I have a journal!
A Lot Like This
And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

Mr. Green

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1398
  • Age: 34
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #22 on: October 13, 2017, 06:48:37 AM »
I had AAA for years, never once had a break down. They have brought me gas, because I was dumb. I've also had accidents but that can be handled through insurance with the right coverage. Finally cancelled it because it didn't seem to be worth the money I was paying.
FIRE, Take Two.

Stachetastic

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 412
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #23 on: October 13, 2017, 06:57:31 AM »
We got a couple of years ago when we realized our cars were aging and getting up there in miles. I also have a job that requires me to cover one quarter of my state by car. The first year we asked for it as a gift from my in laws, then it was inexplicably renewed for free (In laws got us meat for xmas that year instead). We are asking for it again this year. Husband just used it last week to tow our truck to a buddy's house so hubs/friend could repair the brakes after faulty calipers locked up and caught fire.

We have also used the discounts on our local science center, amusement parks, zoo, and occasional hotel. To us, it makes the perfect gift--Practical and consumable.

Helvegen

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 473
  • Location: PNW
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #24 on: October 13, 2017, 07:06:57 AM »
We have it for long distance towing. We generally want things towed back to our house to figure out or a mechanic we know instead of just whatever shop is closest and whatever madness they will charge. We drive older cars, have had to use the long haul towing before, so it isn't a theoretical exercise.

ponyboy

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #25 on: October 13, 2017, 07:14:48 AM »

Oh, and for the 'everyone should learn to change a tire' comment. I know how to change a tire, but I had to call them out to help with that once, because the tire shop had used an air-powered wrench to fasten the bolts on the wheel, and I couldn't budge it myself.

Not really an excuse.  You can purchase a breaker bar from anywhere for less than $15.  Gives you leverage...the shop can put those nuts on as tight as they want...with a breaker bar a child could take them off.

Also...if you do change your own tires you may want to replace the jack in your vehicle...they're usually trash and are hard to deal with.  My wife had to use one on the side of the road...the one you spin the end to jack it up.  I wasnt there but was walking her through it over the phone.  Since then I purchased a small 2 ton low profile jack you slide under and pump (something like this: https://www.amazon.com/Performance-Tool-W1606-Compact-Trolley/dp/B002KS9EDY/ref=sr_1_11?ie=UTF8&qid=1507900397&sr=8-11&keywords=car+jack

I keep a breaker bar, real socket and a real car jack that is easy to use in the trunk at all times. 

WonderfulLife43

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 5
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #26 on: October 13, 2017, 07:56:52 AM »
We've had AAA for decades, and have enjoyed the perks.  However, I've noticed a reduced return on my membership fees, so we've started to cut back ....   dropping my wife's AAA membership, but keeping mine for another year:

* Emergency services / towing:  We've used this a couple of times over the years, and it was handy.  However, my car insurance company provide this coverage for about $1-2 a month, so we added this coverage on my wife's car and dropped her AAA membership this year.  I'll likely add this coverage to my car, and consider dropping AAA completely next year.

* Trip Tiks / Maps:  Trip Tiks have been made obsolete by GPS.  However, I still find electronics less than 100% reliable, so I like to keep complementary AAA maps in each car, just in case.

* Discounts:  We've made significant use of AAA discounts over the years - hotels, restaurants, entertainment, etc.  This is the major reason that we've remained AAA members in recent years.  However, I've noticed that the 'AAA Discount' sign is disappearing from various businesses.  For example,  a local Dunkin' Donuts used to have a prominent 'AAA Discount' sign on the counter, along with a 10% discount every time I stopped.  However, on a recent visit, I noticed that the 'AAA' sign was gone.  When I asked about it, the cashier hesitated for a second, then volunteered to give me a 'Senior' discount instead  :-)

In another instance, we were visiting Baltimore's Inner Harbor, and considering a visit to the aquarium.  The expensive tickets were half price on Friday. But we already had plans for Friday evening, and wanted to go on Saturday.  I asked about AAA discounts, and the reply was that I had to pay full price, unless I had pre-purchased AAA discounted tickets online in advance. 

In the past at places like this, I would ask about AAA discounts in person, flash my membership card, and get a 10-15% discount on the spot.  In my opinion, AAA is losing LOTS of members, and businesses aren't seeing as much demand for AAA discounts, so the discounts are slowly disappearing.

sequoia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #27 on: October 13, 2017, 09:03:58 AM »

Oh, and for the 'everyone should learn to change a tire' comment. I know how to change a tire, but I had to call them out to help with that once, because the tire shop had used an air-powered wrench to fasten the bolts on the wheel, and I couldn't budge it myself.

Not really an excuse.  You can purchase a breaker bar from anywhere for less than $15.  Gives you leverage...the shop can put those nuts on as tight as they want...with a breaker bar a child could take them off.

Also...if you do change your own tires you may want to replace the jack in your vehicle...they're usually trash and are hard to deal with.  My wife had to use one on the side of the road...the one you spin the end to jack it up.  I wasnt there but was walking her through it over the phone.  Since then I purchased a small 2 ton low profile jack you slide under and pump (something like this: https://www.amazon.com/Performance-Tool-W1606-Compact-Trolley/dp/B002KS9EDY/ref=sr_1_11?ie=UTF8&qid=1507900397&sr=8-11&keywords=car+jack

I keep a breaker bar, real socket and a real car jack that is easy to use in the trunk at all times.

Not everyone drives a sub-compact. Our SUV tire + wheels are 70+ lbs, and not everyone is capable of moving/lifting that weight. Newer vehicles has even larger wheels which definitely weight more. So even with long breaker bar and better jack, this is not something that everyone can do. It is not an excuse to expect everyone to be able to do this... sheesh...

Beside the physical part, swapping out flat tires do involve some skills. It maybe common sense for some, but not for others.

If one fasten lugnut super tight (with/without impact gun), the real issue is not only trying to loosen it, but you can snap-off that lugnut the next time you touch it. Or it may not break, but it is weaken and will break later - hopefully not when you are doing 80 mph.

I will admit I am a bit more picky about how I maintain our cars. When I have someone work on the car, like after installing new tires, I would loosen all lugnuts when I get home, and re-torque them properly. If it happen to snap-off, I rather that happen at home, in a covered garage than in a busy interstate, at night, in a rain :) I do my own tire rotation just because of this reason. And of course, I do not feel like paying someone to do it.

AAA may make sense for other, but not for us.


 
« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 11:35:20 AM by sequoia »

facepalm

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 121
  • Location: California
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #28 on: October 13, 2017, 11:09:05 AM »

If you're special and cant change a tire you probably shouldnt be driving.  And if your a "man" and cant change at tire...you're not a man.
What a lame comment.
I have AAA - I also buy it for my two grown daughters.  I've used it several times, my eldest has used it twice, my youngest not yet.  IMO what's great about it is that you can call AAA even if you are a passenger in a car whose owner/driver is not an AAA member.  Also, as of a few months ago, AAA offers a "towing" service for your bike - if your bike breaks down and you can't fix it yourself on the spot, you can call AAA and it will send a truck to pick up you and your bike and deliver you to home/the bike shop.  Only drawback is that you need to be near a road rather than on an isolated bike trail in the woods.
By bike, do you mean motorcycle? It was my understanding that their moto coverage was extra, but perhaps this has changed.

I use them, but only because it gives me access to their insurance which is far cheaper than anything I can get from the other carriers. And their moto coverage (through progressive) is cheaper than what I can get directly from Progressive.

But they have become very anal about checking vehicle mileage driven (which affects your rate), so I will be ditching them as soon as I can.

sequoia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #29 on: October 13, 2017, 11:36:54 AM »

If you're special and cant change a tire you probably shouldnt be driving.  And if your a "man" and cant change at tire...you're not a man.
What a lame comment.
I have AAA - I also buy it for my two grown daughters.  I've used it several times, my eldest has used it twice, my youngest not yet.  IMO what's great about it is that you can call AAA even if you are a passenger in a car whose owner/driver is not an AAA member.  Also, as of a few months ago, AAA offers a "towing" service for your bike - if your bike breaks down and you can't fix it yourself on the spot, you can call AAA and it will send a truck to pick up you and your bike and deliver you to home/the bike shop.  Only drawback is that you need to be near a road rather than on an isolated bike trail in the woods.
By bike, do you mean motorcycle? It was my understanding that their moto coverage was extra, but perhaps this has changed.

I use them, but only because it gives me access to their insurance which is far cheaper than anything I can get from the other carriers. And their moto coverage (through progressive) is cheaper than what I can get directly from Progressive.

But they have become very anal about checking vehicle mileage driven (which affects your rate), so I will be ditching them as soon as I can.

I may need to give them a call to check their insurance price. Thanks!

bognish

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 161
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #30 on: October 13, 2017, 12:06:43 PM »
We have it since we end up in fairly remote parts of UT a few times a year. Also our minivan does not have a spare tire - I didn't even know that was a thing and never thought to ask when we bought it. Its $80 peace of mind for my wife driving around town & car pool and insurance for local shop gouging in case of breakdowns on road trips.

Altons Bobs

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 238
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #31 on: October 13, 2017, 03:03:18 PM »
They had to jump my car a few times, and drove me home once or twice because my car broke down, and one time I locked my keys in the car, they came within 5 minutes. Excellent service! I'll always keep them.

WhiteTrashCash

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 715
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #32 on: October 14, 2017, 05:36:50 AM »
I don't drive enough for AAA to make sense financially. Plus, the driving I do is usually on roads in my state where AAA are not allowed to operate. Saves me about $85/year.

albireo13

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 268
  • Location: New England
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #33 on: October 14, 2017, 06:09:31 AM »
We have it and it has been great.  Had 3 long distance tows in the last 2 years, plus 2 minor service calls. Totally paid for itself, not counting the other discounts we've gotten.



EarthSurfer

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 106
  • Location: 5280
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #34 on: October 14, 2017, 06:33:54 AM »
I just paid for my 10th year, and it is likely I will drop AAA next year if I am looking at my cost / benefit ratio rationally. I have come to the conclusion that I am over spending on this "insurance."

My primary purpose for having AAA is coverage for long distance tows since I drive high mileage vehicles. I am often in rural mountain areas of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming where it is feasible to be 50-100 miles from a repair shop.

Over the past 9 years I have had one tow, which was pulling me out of a ditch on a snow covered dirt road. Towing me out of the ditch would have cost about $150 from a local service.

Looking at the math, I have spent about $800 in AAA "membership" fees for a real value of $150. It's time for a self inflicted face punch...

I have used other AAA services, but I have found similar discounts through other channels.
Retired early, retired often since 1998...

BlueMR2

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1787
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #35 on: October 14, 2017, 07:02:30 AM »
AAA Premier plus RV here.  It's pricy, but it's a single number I can call and actually get ahold of someone when I need them.  I don't get my money's worth from the discounts, but they help offset the cost a little.

Oddly, when my cars were still young I had a lot of breakdowns, but now that they're old they've been really reliable.  Even when they were breaking down all the time, *most* times I was able to limp them home for repairs.  Although there was one year I used every single one of my included tows!

I'm probably an exception here.  While for the most part I stay around town and it wouldn't be a big deal, I do also occasionally drive a few hundred miles on trips.  Some of them are road rallyes out in BFE where your only friend is AAA (and it may be -15F, so getting stuck for extended time periods or having to try to repair on the spot or walk out is not a good thing).  Also, my motorcycle and bicycle are covered, which increases my comfort level on using them (at a lower cost per mile, at least partially justifying their existence) on longer trips than I might otherwise.

RedmondStash

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 577
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #36 on: October 14, 2017, 09:08:17 AM »
We get it when we travel, for the hotel discounts, which typically pay the annual cost pretty fast. Then we drop it after that year until we travel again. IIRC, my auto mechanic also gives me a slight discount when we have the AAA membership.

I'm not sure paying $150 a year for "free" roadside assistance is actually more cost-effective than just paying for roadside assistance if/when you need it. Plus, as others have mentioned, some credit cards offer that benefit too, or you can tack it on to a car insurance policy.

Janie

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 68
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #37 on: October 14, 2017, 10:38:10 AM »
It wouldn't make financial sense for me. In addition, I do not support lobbying by AAA's mid-Atlantic chapter against pedestrian and cyclist interests in my city.

dang1

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 68
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #38 on: October 14, 2017, 12:29:27 PM »
here in Cali, some DMV transactions can be done by AAA, been quite convenient

sequoia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #39 on: October 15, 2017, 08:31:51 AM »
My primary purpose for having AAA is coverage for long distance tows since I drive high mileage vehicles. I am often in rural mountain areas of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming where it is feasible to be 50-100 miles from a repair shop.
You should check if AAA would actually come and get you in that rural areas. We drive high mileage vehicles too, and my thought process shifted from spending the money for AAA into spending to replacing parts to reduce the chance my cars have a problem. When we had AAA, I think we used them at least once or twice a year which is how we justify the cost. Since we dropped them, we actually never need their service. 

EarthSurfer

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 106
  • Location: 5280
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #40 on: October 15, 2017, 02:41:33 PM »
My primary purpose for having AAA is coverage for long distance tows since I drive high mileage vehicles. I am often in rural mountain areas of Colorado, Utah and Wyoming where it is feasible to be 50-100 miles from a repair shop.
You should check if AAA would actually come and get you in that rural areas....
I confirmed coverage in those areas, but the response time is appropriately slow.

I definitely agree that a good offense (maintenance and proactive repair) minimize the likelihood of needing a tow.
Retired early, retired often since 1998...

Trifele

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 681
  • Location: US
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #41 on: October 16, 2017, 02:43:49 AM »
I've had it for 20 years.  If it were just for roadside assistance it would not be worth it (one serious breakdown [damaged transmission] and one lockout in 20 years), but we use it for the discounts.  it more than pays for itself each year, so it's a no-brainer. 

Chiang

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 1
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #42 on: October 16, 2017, 08:08:41 AM »
In response to super lame comments above that assume everyone on this forum has (or desires) the capacity or skill needed to change their own tires etc...

I roadtrip alone about half of the year with my three children. Iíve done so through pregnancy (so six months pregnant with two kids, and we started back up again when my youngest was two months old)... so no... Iím not strapping her to my back screaming while I get down and change a tire in an already stressful situation.

We have used AAA for lockouts a handful of times in the last few years (because...mom brain), including in remote areas of the Adirondack mountains. And have been thankful to have AAA for towing our van 100+ miles for free when we broke down once a couple hours from home.

They also towed us three miles recently when our EV ran out of juice when I tried to push it to far ;)


Larsg

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 91
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #43 on: October 18, 2017, 12:02:36 AM »
Have been a member for 20 years and have loved it every time. It has been such a reliable service. One year we accidentally let it laps and did not realize until we called them and it was no problem at all...I paid my fees on the spot while they dispatched someone to help. They have helped with everything from flat tire, towing, small repairs on site, jump start in the middle of nowhere when there were no cars that passed to help. we would not ever go w/out it and when my kids are old enough to drive, they will be added to the membership.

sequoia

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
Re: Just curious - for those of us with cars, who also has AAA?
« Reply #44 on: October 18, 2017, 08:36:55 AM »
In response to super lame comments above that assume everyone on this forum has (or desires) the capacity or skill needed to change their own tires etc...

I roadtrip alone about half of the year with my three children. Iíve done so through pregnancy (so six months pregnant with two kids, and we started back up again when my youngest was two months old)... so no... Iím not strapping her to my back screaming while I get down and change a tire in an already stressful situation.

We have used AAA for lockouts a handful of times in the last few years (because...mom brain), including in remote areas of the Adirondack mountains. And have been thankful to have AAA for towing our van 100+ miles for free when we broke down once a couple hours from home.

They also towed us three miles recently when our EV ran out of juice when I tried to push it to far ;)

Just to comment, we have two car keys and we always carry our keys even when we both going in the same car. We also hidden a car key in the car incase we lock ourselves out. While AAA is great in helping unlocking the car, I hate waiting for them. I would rather just crawl under the car, grab the spare key. 30 seconds and I am good to go.

I do understand this is not something that a pregnant lady wants to do :)