Author Topic: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?  (Read 4557 times)

jamesbond007

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AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« on: September 22, 2017, 12:41:42 PM »
I have been a AAA NorCal member for a long time and I get insurance for my Mazda, my leased Chevy Spark EV for both DW and myself and home insurance through them. I recently renewed my auto insurance along with membership. it came close to $2300 for the both of us. I feel it reached to the point where I feel it is expensive. What are my options? Any other alternatives that are as good as AAA. I tried Geico and Progressive but often time they end up being more expensive than AAA.

Catbert

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2017, 02:34:57 PM »
Any vets in your family?  If so, try USAA.

To get premiums lower in general, look at your coverage and deductibles.   With all insurance I go for the highest deductible I can but maintain a high maximum coverage.  Are you signed up for things you don't need?  Do you really need to get a rental car?  Do you have a credit card which provides roadside assistance?

lbmustache

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2017, 05:06:46 PM »
<$200/mo doesn't sound terrible to me, but my understanding is that AAA is on the higher end of the cost scale. Progressive and Geico are sometimes cheaper.

I also second re-assessing what is covered by the policies. Can you increase your deductible, drop rental insurance (esp. with two cars) etc.

EarthSurfer

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2017, 06:16:03 PM »
Why haven't you contacted an independent agent who can quote multiple insurers?

It doesn't take a lot of effort, and they can audit your coverage to ensure you have what you need.

I have had horrendous experience with quote through AAA. The representatives didn't quote equivalent policies. 

HipGnosis

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2017, 07:36:10 PM »
I didn't know AAA sold auto insurance, much less home insurance.

Clark Howard recently did an article about how using roadside assistance that you got from your auto insurer can lead to higher insurance rates.  So he recommends you get roadside assistance from a 3rd party.

You gotta shop around.  Yea, it's a hassle, but that's the process. 

I recently shopped for home insurance - mine expires in Nov and I've already been told that there is a new, higher rate.
The best I could find is via the discount thru AMAC (similar to AARP), and it's the best price by quite a bit.  So I'll be joining AMAC in Oct.   I've read from multiple people that you can let the membership expire and keep the insurance at the discount rate.

Dicey

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2017, 11:41:30 PM »
Why haven't you contacted an independent agent who can quote multiple insurers?

It doesn't take a lot of effort, and they can audit your coverage to ensure you have what you need.

I have had horrendous experience with quote through AAA. The representatives didn't quote equivalent policies.
Yup. We ended up with CSE, which is for Civil Service Employees. Super cheap. We didn't know it existed, but our smart insurance agent figured it out.

JLee

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2017, 03:50:31 AM »
I didn't know AAA sold auto insurance, much less home insurance.

Clark Howard recently did an article about how using roadside assistance that you got from your auto insurer can lead to higher insurance rates.  So he recommends you get roadside assistance from a 3rd party.


You gotta shop around.  Yea, it's a hassle, but that's the process. 

I recently shopped for home insurance - mine expires in Nov and I've already been told that there is a new, higher rate.
The best I could find is via the discount thru AMAC (similar to AARP), and it's the best price by quite a bit.  So I'll be joining AMAC in Oct.   I've read from multiple people that you can let the membership expire and keep the insurance at the discount rate.

Well, that figures. I used roadside assistance via insurance for the first time in my life today.

jamesbond007

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2017, 02:22:57 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions. I will try to find an independent agent in my area. I did try Progressive and Geico and they turned out to be even more expensive. Maybe I am getting a lot of stuff that I don't need? I will check my coverage once again. No Vets in my family nor do I know anyone for a referral to USAA. That would've been nice.

Greystache

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2017, 02:50:28 PM »
You might try Mercury. I live in SoCal and I have not been able to find anyone who can beat their price. I have auto and homeowners insurance bundled together. $500 deductable on the car insurance. Service is OK I guess. I have not had a claim in over 15 years though so I don't really know.

purple monkey

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2017, 03:06:27 PM »
Why haven't you contacted an independent agent who can quote multiple insurers?

It doesn't take a lot of effort, and they can audit your coverage to ensure you have what you need.

I have had horrendous experience with quote through AAA. The representatives didn't quote equivalent policies.

+1

WSUCoug1994

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2017, 09:51:00 AM »
FWIW - I just put all of my insurance out to bid to five providers and AAA was 20% cheaper than the next highest bid on my Auto's.  They were a little over the lowest bid on home insurance and cheapest on the umbrella.

ketchup

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2017, 09:55:36 AM »
FWIW - I just put all of my insurance out to bid to five providers and AAA was 20% cheaper than the next highest bid on my Auto's.  They were a little over the lowest bid on home insurance and cheapest on the umbrella.
Definitely do this.  It really depends on where you are and the current whim of the insurers.  I'll at least check about once a year or if I feel like I'm getting fucked (like when my State Farm policy doubled in price when I replaced a car last year).  I am actually currently with AAA.

patchyfacialhair

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2017, 10:00:02 AM »
Can't speak for all insurance companies, but roadside assistance claims should not impact your rates. Not sure where Clark is getting that information. It is possible that an insurance company could non-renew you for frequent claims, but that should go without saying. Source: just trust me, bro/bra.

My thoughts about AAA/roadside assistance: you're a mustachian and you keep your tires properly inflated and you replace them when the treads get low, right? You don't let your gas get too close to empty, because that's just a bad habit to get into, right? Your battery isn't 10 years old, right? Therefore, you'll probably only need roadside assistance around once every 2 years, and it'll probably only be a jump start. It's usually easy to find someone who has cables in their car, or is willing to jump you if you have the cables. Buying a battery and installing it is as simple as going to the nearest 24 hour Walmart and buying one.

My wife and I drive older cars and had "stuff" happen every now and then, but it's usually infrequent and we can take care of the issues ourselves. WORST case is that we have to pay for a tow 50-60 miles to the nearest metro area, because we get a flat and our spare tire is flat too. But what is that $50 bucks? $300 bucks? We're willing to take that financial chance for those one in a million scenarios.

patchyfacialhair

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2017, 10:03:13 AM »
FWIW - I just put all of my insurance out to bid to five providers and AAA was 20% cheaper than the next highest bid on my Auto's.  They were a little over the lowest bid on home insurance and cheapest on the umbrella.
Definitely do this.  It really depends on where you are and the current whim of the insurers.  I'll at least check about once a year or if I feel like I'm getting fucked (like when my State Farm policy doubled in price when I replaced a car last year).  I am actually currently with AAA.

Second this: it bugs me when people say "I heard XX company is more expensive than YY company for auto insurance."

So here's my rant: It's all just plugging your information into the computer and then the company returns a rate quote to you based on their loss experience, which can lead to wildly varied price quotes for two very similar customers. Just plug in your info, and if the price is too high, just move on! Don't sit there and cry while your friend is paying $1000 while their company quoted you $2000. Some other company will probably quote you at $800 and quote that same friend $2500.

ketchup

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #14 on: September 25, 2017, 10:21:46 AM »
My thoughts about AAA/roadside assistance: you're a mustachian and you keep your tires properly inflated and you replace them when the treads get low, right? You don't let your gas get too close to empty, because that's just a bad habit to get into, right? Your battery isn't 10 years old, right? Therefore, you'll probably only need roadside assistance around once every 2 years, and it'll probably only be a jump start. It's usually easy to find someone who has cables in their car, or is willing to jump you if you have the cables. Buying a battery and installing it is as simple as going to the nearest 24 hour Walmart and buying one.

My wife and I drive older cars and had "stuff" happen every now and then, but it's usually infrequent and we can take care of the issues ourselves. WORST case is that we have to pay for a tow 50-60 miles to the nearest metro area, because we get a flat and our spare tire is flat too. But what is that $50 bucks? $300 bucks? We're willing to take that financial chance for those one in a million scenarios.
As a AAA member and full-blooded Mustachian, this is one of those things where It Depends.

AAA has discounts at hotels and car rentals to the point where it pays for itself (we probably come out very slightly ahead) in our use case (GF travels a lot for work). 

In addition, we both also drive out of town a lot.  My last AAA call was when my previous car broke down (and turned out the engine was toast) in the middle of nowhere Michigan, on a Sunday afternoon, 150 miles from home, with a dog, right on the edge of cell phone coverage (calls baaarely worked with frequent drops, no functional data).  The one before that was when a car blew a radiator hose on the highway on the way to the airport at 4am.  Before that, GF's car finding itself with a three inch hole in the fuel tank (still don't know how that one happened, the shop it was towed to was really confused) and spewing out 18 gallons of gasoline onto I-94 on a Sunday afternoon 200 miles from home.

For us, it's worth the (slight and usually negative) cost for peace of mind (especially for GF when traveling long distances solo, which is usually at least once a month in her line of work).  Shit happens, every few years, never at a convenient time, and I'm certainly not willing to buy cars that cost ten times as much to attempt to mitigate it.  I do also have jumper cables and a booster, keep the tires inflated, replace tires/battery when it makes sense, keep the our cars maintained properly mechanically, and all that.

patchyfacialhair

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2017, 10:34:18 AM »
Fair enough,

Anecdotally, I'd agree with you more 5 years ago. I just got back from a mini-vacation and the AAA discount for the hotel was $3 a night. Since we only spend about a week per year in hotels, it's not that big a deal to save that much money.

5 years ago, it seemed the difference was vast at $20 a night or something crazy, meaning the AAA membership would easily pay itself off. Obviously this changes with your SO's business travel.

Also, to those reading this, check the benefits on your credit cards. They may have pre-negotiated rates with tow companies and roadside assistance providers to help with the cost of your incident.


jamesbond007

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2017, 11:27:28 AM »
Fair enough,

Anecdotally, I'd agree with you more 5 years ago. I just got back from a mini-vacation and the AAA discount for the hotel was $3 a night. Since we only spend about a week per year in hotels, it's not that big a deal to save that much money.

5 years ago, it seemed the difference was vast at $20 a night or something crazy, meaning the AAA membership would easily pay itself off. Obviously this changes with your SO's business travel.

Also, to those reading this, check the benefits on your credit cards. They may have pre-negotiated rates with tow companies and roadside assistance providers to help with the cost of your incident.



Thanks for the tip on Credit Cards. I, for some reason, never think of credit cards. I should go check out the benefits outside of just regular cashback.

JoJo

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Re: AAA is getting expensive by the day - Alternatives?
« Reply #17 on: September 25, 2017, 12:11:42 PM »
The Chase Sapphire Reserve has a $50 reimbursement for towing, but that doesn't seem like alot when you live in a HCOL place.