For anyone who’s ever been in that awkward situation, where you’re walking back to the car, only to notice that you left the headlights on – would certainly know that sinking feeling and immediate remorse.However for most Australians, getting a flat battery turning over again, is only a phone call away.
However for most Australians, getting a flat battery turning over again, is only a phone call away.In 2017 almost all car insurers offer some degree of roadside assistance.
In 2017 almost all car insurers offer some degree of roadside assistance.
Either as an add-on or as a part of their standard policy. And the good news is that as more companies enter the insurance landscape in Australia, such as supermarkets and budget insurers – policyholders are getting more and more choices and better deals on roadside assistance.
These days breakdowns from engine failure or electrical problems are far less common than they used to be, with less than 20% of all callouts due to mechanical problems. Far more often, is it simply a matter of flat batteries, people locking their keys in the car, or flat tyres.
So what does roadside assistance include?
A breakdown is at the heart of why most people sign up for roadside assistance. Breakdown covers anything from engine failure to locking your keys in the car. Most insurers have a cap on a number of callouts you’re entitled to in a given year, with four being the standard. If you’re driving long distances, interstate or on country roads, you’ll potentially require a more comprehensive cover.
Flat batteries account for around 35-45% of all roadside callouts and are the most common issue a motorist will face. A flat battery is still considered a breakdown so you’re limited to a certain number under your policy. Many insurers also offer battery replacement services in the event that your battery is too old to hold the charge. But be warned that you’re likely to a pay
Emergency Key Service
If you’ve locked your keys in the car, then, for the most part, this is covered under a standard roadside policy. Again it falls into the breakdown category. If you’ve lost your keys and require towing, then you will likely need a higher level of roadside coverage.
If you’ve never changed a tyre before, don’t fear. All roadside assistance policies allow for the changing of flat tyres, or even pumping up your spare if you haven’t been keeping an eye on it.
The use of hire cars, accommodation and towing, in the event your car breaks down, often falls under your insurance policy and is separate too many standard roadside services. If you drive long distances or in the country and there is a chance that you might need a hire car in the event of a breakdown, look to add this into your coverage.
Tips for sourcing roadside assistance:
- Compare the markets. Each provider has different inclusions in terms of what they offer. Price isn’t always the most important factor.
- Are you a country or long distance driver? If so then you might want more comprehensive coverage that includes regional areas as some roadside policies are only based in metro areas.
- Is your roadside actually included in your policy? Some insurers like Youi, actually include roadside in their standard policy, so check before you end up paying twice.
Standard roadside assistance varies in price from around $40 up to $120 per year depending on the level of service you require