Breakdown Cover Reviews

AA Breakdown Cover Review

Everyone knows who the AA are, if you don’t then keep an eye out for those professional looking mechanics that can be found on the side of the road in all weathers dressed from head to toe in yellow. They also drive very distinct yellow vans with AA printed all over them!

This company has been around for at least two generations that I can think of and I’m in my 40’s. They made it their business (initially) to protect people from all manner of issues that can arise when you’re out on the road. These days, their policies stretch over a good number of things but that’s not what this article is about.

What you will find here is some information on the types of breakdown cover the AA has to offer and why they stand out from the rest.

Why AA Breakdown Cover?

There are loads of reasons you would choose this company over someone-else, apart from the fact they already have a well respected reputation across the UK and your Grandfather has probably been using them since he learned how to drive!

Below are a few points to help you make a decision about whether or not you should look further into what they have to offer:

  • Awarded 5 Stars for roadside assistance by “WHICH?” magazine (no mean feat).
  • Awarded 5 stars by Defaqto for breakdown cover (yet again, no easy nut to crack)!
  • All the mechanics that work for the AA are properly qualified to the highest standard and this is why they can boast that 4 out of 5 vehicles are fixed at the roadside.
  • Every 9 seconds the AA rescues someone who is in trouble on the road (in the time it took me to type this sentence at least 1 ½ people have been rescued)!

Impressive statistics aren’t they? The best thing about them is they’re all absolutely true; otherwise I would not have posted them in this article.

So, now you know how good the AA actually is, let’s move on to how they can help with your breakdown cover.

There are three main polices you can choose from and I’ll start with the cheapest:

Roadside Recovery in any Car

This policy will give you around the clock roadside assistance and this doesn’t just mean any time of day, it means any time of year as well. So, if you’re looking forward to Christmas dinner with the in-laws (or not, as the case may be) and you breakdown on the way, a friendly AA mechanic will be with you in no time at all.

If your car cannot be fixed on the spot (and again, this may be a blessing), you will be towed to the nearest garage.

National Recovery

This can be taken as part of the above policy but you will pay extra. What AA offers with this is you and up to 7 of your passengers a kindly lift to any single destination if the problem cannot be fixed at the roadside. Do remember however, there are limitations.

At Home

Again, this can be taken as part of the first policy mentioned. If you like, you can have all three of these. If you come out one morning and find your car won’t start for some reason you can make a call and the AA will organise a time that’s convenient for them to come and fix it. Likewise, if you’re up to ¼ mile away from home, you will still benefit from a mechanic under this part of your policy.

Other Options

There are two other options you can take advantage of and these are parts and garage cover and onward travel options. Parts and garage covers the cost of labour and parts, and you can make up to 5 claims each year. Do remember though, there are stipulations. Onward travel means you can choose from public transport, a hire car or an overnight stay somewhere.

Note: What you should know is that all of the options stated below “Roadside recovery in your car” are optional extras to this policy and they are priced individually.

You should also know that if you travel in Europe there are various ways in which the AA can help, just give them a call and they’ll be happy to help.

Why AA Breakdown Cover is So Comprehensive

You may remember earlier in this article I mentioned that 4 out of 5 vehicles are fixed within minutes on the roadside. This isn’t just because the most common issue is something simple like a battery, it’s because the mechanics are so good at what they do.

This is why the company can offer all these little extras. They don’t often have to call upon them simply because their success rate is so high. However, not everyone is so lucky. Bear in mind the age of your car and how often it already breaks down before you opt for the cheapest option.


RAC Breakdown Cover Review

As a Company, the RAC have been around for so long that even my grandmother can remember them and she is in her 80’s! The fact that this company that deals in breakdown cover is still around today is testament to the fact that they know what they are doing. If you ask anyone about the RAC they will know who you are talking about and will more than likely have an insurance policy with them or know someone who does. When you are in a position to start looking for breakdown cover, you will need to know that the company you choose is reliable and will be around for the duration of your breakdown cover policy. You will have no such problems with the RAC.

So, let’s deal with what the RAC actually offer when it comes to breakdown cover. At the moment, if you look at their website, you will find that they currently have a spring offer. If you are new to the RAC and join up throughout spring you will be offered additional savings and they can give you a breakdown cover policy for as little as £29.99….this is some mean feat; there are not many other companies out there that can boast this sort of price.

It’s worth remembering here that the larger the company the more they can offer you in terms of service and affordability. The RAC are, quite simply HUGE…they have a network of branches right across the UK and when it comes to roadside assistance, they have mechanics that can be with you in as little as 40 minutes, for you ladies out there, don’t worry, the RAC will give you priority when you call them, especially if you are out on the road alone.

Incidentally, it doesn’t matter where you are in the UK, the RAC will stick to this time limit even if you have ended up in the middle of a field due to a tyre blowing out! For the people that like statistics that are reading this article, the RAC has approximately 2,000 mechanics out on the road 365 days a year 24 hours a day. As a company the RAC can boast that they have over 100 years experience in the breakdown cover arena.

Breakdown Cover that the RAC offer

  • You (something that many companies overlook) and your car.
  • Owners of motorbikes and 4×4’s can take out breakdown cover with the RAC as standard…lot’s of the major breakdown cover companies require you to take out specialist breakdown cover if you have a 4×4 or motorbike, the RAC see no reason why this should not come as standard.
  • You can have up to 5 callouts per year under your breakdown cover policy and if you have additional vehicles attached to your policy this number will raise. Unless you have a complete old banger that breaks down the minute you pull out of your driveway, it’s unlikely that you will need to make this many callouts in one year.
  • One important thing to note here is that many other companies that offer breakdown cover will charge you in addition to the premium you pay for any parts or labour that is required if you need roadside assistance. With the RAC you only pay for the part itself, the mechanics time is part of your breakdown cover.
  • When it comes to paying for your breakdown cover, you will be able to pay either monthly or annually. This is a great idea for those of you that would rather just get the whole thing paid for in one go and not have to worry about it again until it’s time for you to renew your breakdown cover.

Other Options the RAC offer with Breakdown Cover

Again, I cannot stress enough that you can get breakdown cover from the RAC for as little as £29.99 per month at the moment….get in their fast; this offer will not be there forever!

  • Nationwide Recovery – This means that no matter where you are in the UK, the RAC will transport your car to your home or another address. This can include you as the driver and up to 7 people travelling with you (for those of you that own 2 seat sports cars or minis, this will not be a problem you are likely to encounter). If you happen to get ill when you are travelling and can no longer drive your car and do not have any passengers that can take over then the RAC will come and rescue you.
  • From Home – With the standard breakdown cover from the RAC you will not be covered for any issues that arise within a quarter of a mile from your home address, you can opt to take out breakdown cover with them which will cover this. So, if you get up one morning and your car won’t start or it just gives up on you as you pull out on to the main road, the RAC will send a mechanic to help you out.
  • Onward Travel – This is also an optional extra and this will come into play when your car or motorbike cannot be repaired on the roadside. You can get a courtesy vehicle for up to 3 days whilst you own vehicle is being repaired…age limits apply here so make sure you check this out first. If you need to use public transport and incur a cost because of this the RAC will reimburse you up to £150 or £500 if you are a group of people travelling. Bear in mind that this breakdown cover extra does also include air travel. If you need to stay overnight in a bed and breakfast, you will also be reimbursed for the cost, the same amount applies as for public transport costs. If you happen to have a caravan or trailer, the RAC will take this for you, however, be aware that you will need to meet any extra costs for this yourself.

One of the most common problems that occur with cars on the road is that darn battery failing! I myself have been in this situation a couple of times and I’ll be honest with you it’s a right pain in the proverbial! As with other major breakdown cover companies you can become a member with the RAC. If you are a member and your battery does conk out on you the RAC will send a mechanic to replace it for you. All you have to pay for is the battery itself, everything else is covered with your breakdown cover membership.

So, you have had a new battery fitted under the breakdown cover that you have with the RAC, what about the warranty? Well, this is easy, depending on the type of battery you have had replaced the RAC will guarantee it for up to 5 years. There are conditions when it comes to the replacements of batteries simply because it is such a common problem, so make sure you check that this type of breakdown cover is just what you need. One thing to note is that you do not have to be out on the road when your battery fails, if you are at home and find that you need a replacement; the RAC will arrange a time to come out and replace it for you. Once again, be aware that this will only apply if you are a member of the RAC.

Some of you may be people that often travel in your vehicles in Europe; you have not been overlooked when it comes to RAC breakdown cover. There are polices for you too and these cover over 47 different countries throughout Europe. There are 2 types of breakdown cover that you can go for when travelling in Europe – Single Trip or Comprehensive. The benefits you can expect to receive are as follows:

  • Have your car fixed at the roadside or towed to a garage (if on a single trip breakdown cover policy this will only last for 5 days).
  • English speaking mechanics – great idea the RAC – trying to get across to a French speaking mechanic that your battery has died could be a tad difficult if you don’t speak the language.
  • If you are on a single trip breakdown cover policy, you will receive assistance in making it back the UK – again conditions to apply here so ensure that you check them out.
  • If you take out the comprehensive breakdown cover you will receive everything as mentioned above and….
  • Emergency repairs up to the value of £150.
  • If you become ill and cannot drive and do not have a passenger that can take over for you the RAC will provide a driver for you.
  • Help with costs should you need to stay overnight somewhere or need to get back to the UK.

Remember; don’t forget about that spring deal, its well worth taking advantage of!


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Breakdown Insurance

When we take out car insurance policies many of us do not take into account that we may need help if we breakdown when we’re out on the road. One of the most annoying things that can happen is that you get up on a frosty morning, already a tad late for work only to find that your car won’t start! This is where breakdown insurance comes in and many companies offer this as part of a fully comprehensive car insurance policy.

Why you should Have Breakdown Insurance

For you ladies out there, bear in mind that if you happen to be driving alone that breakdown insurance is of the utmost importance. It doesn’t matter which way you look at, if you have to abandon your car on the motorway slip road, you are much more at risk than your male counterparts of being a victim of crime. Sorry to say this, but it’s a fact. Many breakdown insurance policies have clauses that are specific to the needs of women drivers and pledge to be with you in less than 40 minutes when you break down. For those of you that are male, breakdown insurance is especially useful because when you breakdown this is more likely to happen when you are on the way to an important business meeting or God forbid your wife or partner has just gone into labour and you need to be at the hospital pronto

Who is the Best When it comes to Breakdown Insurance?

This question is a hard one to answer, there are a multitude of companies out there that offer great breakdown insurance, some of the companies that come out top are listed below:

RAC – This Company is the 2nd largest in the UK when it comes to breakdown insurance, they are not the cheapest but you will not find a bad word to be said about them. One of the great things you get with their breakdown insurance is a mobile locator; this means that if you don’t know where you are then the mechanic can locate you using your mobile phone signal. There are not many other companies that specialise in breakdown insurance that can boast this type of system. You will also get roadside assistance and they pledge to be with you within 40 minutes of you making the call. All of their staff wear company issued uniforms and have ID, so there is no need to worry that some undesirable individual has decided to stop and offer bogus help.

AA – This is one of the oldest breakdown insurance companies in the UK today. There breakdown insurance is pretty much the same as RAC however; you will find cheaper prices and more discounts to be had with them. One thing that this breakdown insurance company can boast is that they fix more vehicles roadside than any other company in the UK. The other statistic worth noting here is that almost 95% of members of the AA say they would recommend their service to a friend. This is possibly why you do not often see televised advertising campaigns for the AA, they simply don’t need to.

Green Flag – Although much younger than the RAC or the AA, Green Flag are still a great choice when you are looking for breakdown insurance for your car. They are doing their best to break into the breakdown insurance market to the point where they say that they will beat any quote that you receive from either the AA or RAC when it comes to the time for you to renew your policy. Not only that, they also offer a callout service which is available 365 days a year 24 hours a day, this means that even on Christmas Day you will be able to get your vehicle going again within the hour and make that all important turkey dinner.

Does Breakdown Insurance come as a Car Insurance Package?

Many breakdown insurance companies offer these types of policies as a stand alone product. The reason behind this is that there are many different levels of breakdown insurance cover. You can take out the most basic packages that include roadside assistance and this will cover you nationally, or there are more complicated policies that will cover you for the following:

  • Some of the larger companies will offer to put you up in a hotel if they cannot repair your car by the roadside. This of course is one of the highest premium types of breakdown insurance and will cost you more but if you are someone that is on the road a lot of the time it would be well worth you taking a look at including this type of cover with your breakdown insurance.
  • If your car, motorbike or caravan requires parts this can also be part of your breakdown insurance policy.
  • No callout charges are also an option with breakdown insurance.
  • Of course no claims discount is a must and this is offered as standard with most, if not all breakdown insurance policies.
  • If you use the preferred garages for repairs with the company you have decided to take your breakdown insurance out with, they will cover the repairs under your policy.
  • If you happen to be someone that drives regularly from the UK to Europe, you will find a breakdown insurance policy to suit you.

These are just a few of the options that are open to you when looking for breakdown insurance, some companies will even tailor the policy to suit your own needs. This is especially useful if you are someone that is “outside of the box” when it comes to standard breakdown insurance.

This said there are companies that only offer breakdown insurance as part of the fully comprehensive car insurance package; More Than is one particular company that works in this way. If you want my opinion, only go for this if you need the most basic breakdown insurance. If you need a policy that is more complicated it would be cheaper for you to take out a separate policy and it will also make it clearer to you exactly what you are covered for.

In Conclusion

I cannot stress enough here how important it is that you have some form of breakdown insurance cover. We rely more heavily on our vehicles than we think. You only realise this when your car does actually break down. Standing in the pouring rain with the wind whipping about your legs, whilst you wait for a friend or family member to come and pick you up is no fun, believe me, I know! The other thing that can be real nuisance if you find yourself in this situation is that you will more than likely have to leave you vehicle behind. This means that you may be without your car for some days.

If you have breakdown insurance, you can be back on the road within the hour, imagine how annoying it would be to have to leave your car behind only to discover that it was a flat battery that was causing the problem. If you have breakdown insurance it would take any mechanic minutes to sort this problem out for you. You may think that you could do without the added expense but think about it….someone has to come and pick you up, you can’t get to work because your car is stranded on the motorway or down some country lane. You then have to pay a towing company so that you can get your car to a garage and after all of that you find that you are charged premium labour rates just for someone to charge the battery on your car.

How many hundreds of pounds are you out of pocket so far? No, breakdown insurance is definitely worth having and it’s possible for you to find reputable firms that offer breakdown insurance policies at very reasonable rates. Don’t forget that you can also use price comparison websites to help you find the best quotes out there. If you decide to go down this route, make sure that you also take the best price you find to any companies that do not subscribe to price comparison websites, you never know, you might find an even cheaper price!

All in all, this article has been written to give you an idea of the sort of breakdown insurance that is available in the UK market place at the moment and also to give you an idea of why it is so important to have breakdown insurance. When you are out on the road it can be a potentially dangerous place to be and if you have the proper cover, there will be no need for you to worry about it if you do breakdown. Of course, you may be one of the lucky few that don’t have to make a claim against your breakdown insurance in which case, enjoy the no claims discounts!

GreenFlag Breakdown Cover Review

Breaking down in your car is possibly one of the most annoying and frustrating things that can happen, and it NEVER happens when it’s convenient! When you use your car, you want to get from A to B without an issue, so when little “Sarah” decides she no longer wants to play the game you really need to get the problem fixed, and quickly.

Lots of people decide not to take out breakdown cover for their cars because they think “it will never happen to me”, or “I have a new car, it’s not likely to breakdown”. Not so! Cars stop working for all sorts of reasons, and it doesn’t have to be a mechanical fault. It could be yours! Did you remember to top up the oil? Have you made sure there is enough water for the radiator? Worst of all, did you leave home with enough petrol?

So, you see this is why you need cover of some sort, and Green Flag is fast becoming one of the UK’s favourite insurance companies to use. They may not be the largest insurer out there, but they’re certainly giving the big boys a run for their money.

So, what can you expect from GreenFlag breakdown cover? Well, for a start you can take out a breakdown insurance policy for as little as £27.00 per month and you get a great deal for your money. Take a peek below:

  • Roadside Assistance – You’re not limited to what time of day you call them or which day. This service is available 24/7 and if you happen to breakdown on Christmas Day, Green Flag will aim to have a technician with you within 45 minutes.
  • Vehicle Recovery – If you’re vehicle can’t be fixed at the roadside (and this only happens in about 1 out of 10 cases), you’ll be towed to a preferred repairer or other destination of your choice within 10 miles of where you car decided to give up the ghost!
  • Callout Charges – Just kidding! There are none with this level of cover.
  • Message Service – Green Flag will send a free message to your family and friends so they don’t start to worry about where you’ve got to.

So, that’s the basic Rescue breakdown insurance cover, but there is more!

Rescue Plus

Everything included in the above policy and cover at home. If you come out one morning all ready to go to work, and your car won’t start Green Flag will send a specialist to help you out.

The Recovery Policy

This doesn’t include the extra you get with Rescue Plus, but it does include everything with the basic Rescue cover plus, if you’re car can’t be fixed a kind technician will take you and your car home, or to another destination of your choice.

Recovery Plus

This is the most popular choice among Green Flag customers, and it will only cost you £60.00 per month. Of course, everything I’ve already mentioned is included. Yes, everything! Along with the following:

  • Your Choice if your car cannot be fixed – If you’re car cannot be repaired the same day, you can either choose to have a hire car, or Green Flag will kindly pay for some overnight accommodation for you. There are limits if you choose the latter, so don’t expect a night in the Ritz!
  • Cash! Yes, Green Flag will give you money, but only so you can go and collect your car. Usually this will be a one way rail fare. Again, don’t expect to be able to sit in 1st class!

Euro Plus

Green Flag realise that many people travel in Europe a lot these days, and if you’re one of them you can take out the Euro Plus Policy. This means you will have complete breakdown insurance which includes everything you’ve read so far for 90 days while you’re in Europe. Beware though; your car does need to be less than 16 years old (for obvious reasons).

A Little Bit Extra

If you choose to go with one of the last two policies I’ve mentioned, you will get what Green Flag calls the “taste card”. This comes free for one year, and will give you the option to get great discounts at thousands of restaurants across the country. So, you can not only enjoy worry free travelling, you can also eat your way up and down the motorway!

Why Green Flag?

As I mentioned, they’re not the biggest insurer but after reading the extensive policies they have to offer on breakdown insurance, it’s easy to understand why they’re becoming tough competition. They have been awarded 5 stars (the highest) from Defaqto, and over 80% of current customers have told them they would give the roadside technicians 9 out of 10 for service.

You don’t have to take my word for it, visit the website today and see what others have had to say.



AA European Breakdown Cover Review

If you’re someone who often travels around Europe then lucky you! However, if you do fall into this bracket its unlikely you don’t already have European breakdown cover of some sort, in which case, you’re on the wrong page of our website. Why not check out what we have for home or pet cover instead, there are some equally good deals to be found.

So, for those of you that have breakdown cover for your vehicle in the UK but, you intend to take a trip to Europe for either business or pleasure, below you will find some information on what the AA has to offer you.

You may not know but, this company (which is one of the oldest around) will allow you to take out European breakdown cover as an add-on to the policy you already have. This is incredibly useful if you like to spend your holidays abroad and want to drive rather than fly. Personally, I would drive over flying any day but that’s a story for some other time!

Before we get started on why you should consider using the AA for your European breakdown cover, here is a little statistic for you. In over 80% of cases, this insurance company will settle any costs involved directly with the supplier (chosen by them of course) which means you won’t have to lift a finger in terms of claiming anything back. Not only does this take the hassle out of dealing with people outside of the UK, it also means you won’t have to reach for your wallet so you can get back on the road again.

Benefits of AA European Breakdown Cover

You may think all insurance companies are the same but they’re not! Some of the benefits you will find below are exclusive to the AA and cannot be found anywhere else:

  • An English speaking and translation service that’s available to you 24/7 (no excuses)!
  • You will either be towed to the nearest garage if a mechanic cannot fix the problem on the roadside which, in most cases can be done in the blink of an eye.
  • In more serious cases you will benefit from vehicle recovery back to the UK or to the destination you intended to get to in the first place (whichever is the cheapest).
  • It doesn’t matter how old your vehicle is, it is possible to take European breakdown cover out with the AA.
  • You can receive up to £1,200 towards flights, car hire and public transport if your vehicle has really given up the ghost.
  • If you need emergency accommodation the AA will cover you for up to £500.

Answers to Questions You May Have

Is it possible to buy cover once I’ve already left for my trip?

Yes it is. But, you have to do this before you leave the UK. There are AA outlets at both Folkestone and Dover where you can get cover. Or, you can call a number (found on their website) and the insurance will be arranged for you. Wondering how you get the details? Easy! The AA will text you once everything is in place.

What if I’m already abroad?

Ordinarily you won’t be able to get cover for your trip. However, if you have access to the internet, a landline and are in France the AA has kindly given you a telephone number to call. For any other country that’s covered and you have a mobile number (you will still need to go to their website), they also have numbers you can call. In fact, whilst it may not always be possible to get cover for your trip back to the UK, the AA will do all they can to help you.

What Countries are covered?

There are too many to list here but pretty much all Countries across Europe are covered by the AA. If you’re not sure just follow the link on our website under AA European Breakdown cover and you will find a full list there.

A Little More Information

For many of you reading this, you will, of course make plans with regards to breakdown cover before you go on your trip and doing this online is the best way to save some cash. If you’re already an AA member you can get up to 30% off when you purchase cover in this way. If you’re not a member you haven’t been forgotten, you will be eligible for up to 20% off.

One more thing worth noting is the AA has thought about all those people that love to take a one day “shopping” trip over to Europe. Cover for this starts at £4.73 however, your car must be no older than one year, and there must be fewer than nine of you travelling. If you fall outside of this bracket, it’s still worth giving them a call.

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