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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just thought i would start a thread to discuss different options with breakdown cover in the UK

i'm aware that various Insurance companies offer breakdown cover as part of their insurance cover but i have always done it seperately with the AA or RAC

this year my RAC renewal was £33 (RAC Cancellations team could offer me £29) which is just the basic cover (no homestart or onward destination) and they will only tow me up to 10 miles for free (they charged me around £120 to be towed 30 miles a few years ago!)

with me being the scrooge i am this year as i didn't call them out last year, i decided to see if there was anything better just for basic cover and comparethemarket.com showed me that for £18.80 i could be covered by The Green Insurance Company http://www.greeninsurancecompany.co.uk/
its a shame theres no meerkat toys available for breakdown cover lol

this gives me Onward Destination travel for that price as well, they quote that they will aim to get to me within 40 minutes (RAC TV advert says they aim for 38 Minutes) so i would guess pretty much the same

so seems like a good deal to me especially nowadays with the type of faults on cars it means the breakdown service is mainly just a towing service (especially if its a saab electrical issue)

i dont know if they are just an agent for a known breakdown service such as Green Flag etc or they operate their own fleet but for a what if case it looks like a good deal
 

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I think you will find it is run by DAS Legal Expenses Insurance Company Limited who just use a network of back street garages for recovery purposes. As such the quality is as good as the particular recovery driver delivers. It not an AA, RAC, Greenflag type of organisation, but they tend to offer a decent enough service.

Mine is through my bank and is run by AGA International SA who also do the OEM recovery for BMW, Mercedes etc. Mainly via Auto National as their agents, but could also be a local back street garage.

Its more of a level of comfort really as I have never had to use their services thankfully.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
you are correct i have just had the welcome pack over email, they are an agent for call-assist who as you say use a network recovery agents

i suppose the big question when thinking about breakdown cover is what are you expecting someone to do in the event of a breakdown i.e try and do a temporary fix on the roadside to let you drive away or just get the car back to a safe location i.e home for then a garage to then look at at a later time

with my life i think i would rather just get the car back to the house, as i can work from home or at a push walk to the office lol so its not crucial for it to be working 24 / 7, and with a 2009 car with 40k miles on it now i think its still a fairly low risk factor of a breakdown so cheap and cheerful suits me and knowing if i call them i get a "Sympathetic rescue controller" who is "able to deal with each vehicle breakdown or incident individually. " lol
 

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That's my view, its to get it off the side of the road and me home. The rest can be dealt with as needs be.

If I had an older or less reliable car and was dependent on it then I'd be looking at a much better policy with services that met those needs.
 

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For me RAC are the dogs, I called them out last year when in limp mode on the M6, it was my EGR valve. They removed it and cleaned it up on the roadside. I was then off with no problems. Cant really imagine the independents doing that. I've also had them out twice to jump my battery at home (my own fault as I was fitting & testing my amp :eek:, they were with me in 30 minutes each time.

I've got the full cover home start etc, my wife's car is on the same policy. Think it costs us about £130 a year. Hardly breaking the bank is it now.

Now previously I used my bank's policy who used Greenflag. 7 years ago one of my old cars got broken into when parked in an NCP in Bristol. The passenger window got smashed and it blew a fuse which affected the wipers and indicators and it was raining. I had to be towed home, they have a limit on the distance (60 miles if I recall) that they will travel, we nearly got dropped off on the M5 as the driver refused to drop us off at the next junction, it was a right faff, 4 drops it took and 7 hours from Bristol to Chester. Quick search on the net when I got home replaced the fuse and I fixed it. I was so pi$$ed off.. So never again will I use a cheapo breakdown company again.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
i have just checked the policy with The Green Insurance Company they say

We will pay for the transportation of your vehicle, you and up to 7 passengers to either:

i) your home address, or

ii) your original destination anywhere within the UK, or

iii) a repairer either in the vicinity of the breakdown location, or to a repairer of your choice.

so this seems to be the same as RAC that they will go anywhere in the uk (if you have the extra cover from RAC), so with exception to home start which is an extra £10 so £28.80 for all in from The Green Insurance Company

even if you double the cost for 2 cars other than reputation and possibly the roadside repair knowledge may be greater why would you pay £130 for RAC cover for the same level cover when £58 would do the same?

just curious is it the same old story that because they are a known brand name they can charge more?
 

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RAC do still at times relay people from one recovery to another which can mean a journey can take an age. Know someone it took 14 hours to be relayed 300 miles by the RAC last year. Mind you, a lot has changed in 7 years and even the ones provided by the banks etc work differently now.

For example, mine is roadside fix, if it can't be fixed there they will take it locally (provided it is a fix that can be done that day) else you have the option to be taken to your end destination, or home. Exactly the same service as the RAC.

Another big factor is how technical you are around a vehicle. If you are not technical then having that extra level of cover could well be a good thing.

Mine has an ODB2 reader plugged in all the time, if it went into limp mode I would be able to read the codes and unless it was something really serious I should be able to do something about it.

Everyone's situation is different, whilst £130 a year may not be much, it would be over £2600 I would have spent out for no reason whilst driving. Its all about the risk factors.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
my big gripe with RAC even though i stayed with them after i last called them out as they charged me £28 last year as a renewal

i ended up calling them out 18 months ago, they charged me £85 on top of the £30 membership fee i had already paid because i was calling them out to a flood related incident so that was £115 before they even attended

cant fault the guy who came out, took out the spark plugs and tried to eject the water etc which maybe i wouldnt have got from the recovery people i'm with now (although they do say they will try and fix at roadside)

then when he gave up and still no luck i had to wait around for another lorry to turn up to tow me and charged me £120 to travel 30 miles, so that year i paid the RAC a total of £235 to recover a car 30 miles away to my home location
 

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not sure who's mine with tbh think rac use to be green flag but it does cover me for either onward journey or back home,

think my bank co-op charges £13 a month for this along with travel insurance and mobile phone cover along with a Cpl other things

recovery to your home/garage of your choice is useful even to a mechanic lol
 

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Discussion Starter #13
if you go for the top of the range coverage from the green insurance company (£58 you are covered for 60 days in europe)

not entirely sure how that works, would a local company in belgium load your car onto a trailer and drive it all the way to birmingham? or would it be split up into multiple companies and journeys i.e someone to get it to the uk then a local uk company pick it up and take it to its final destination? rather than expect a single truck to go from belgium to birmingham and back?
 

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If it's anything like rac then they only tow to nearest garage & if its not fixed by the time you come back they will pay upto £600 for you to pick up your car when its done
 

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Discussion Starter #15
yep your correct checked the small print it obviously has a lot of what if situations and various things they will do etc if they cant fix the car locally they will transport the car back to the home address etc but primarily they will try and get it fixed locally to where it broke down in europe, but for the cost atleast its better than nothing if you do drive in europe lol
 

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if you go for the top of the range coverage from the green insurance company (£58 you are covered for 60 days in europe)

not entirely sure how that works, would a local company in belgium load your car onto a trailer and drive it all the way to birmingham? or would it be split up into multiple companies and journeys i.e someone to get it to the uk then a local uk company pick it up and take it to its final destination? rather than expect a single truck to go from belgium to birmingham and back?
They have deals with the likes of ADAC on the continent who will get you back to the UK where they normally pass you over to a UK recovery company. That is if they can't repair it on the continent first, which is the usual route.
 

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If it's anything like rac then they only tow to nearest garage & if its not fixed by the time you come back they will pay upto £600 for you to pick up your car when its done
That depends on what type of cover you have. If you have the home & recovery package with the RAC they will take you to any chosen destination in the UK.

One thing I do know is that the Natwest advantage gold policy only covers a local drop off up to 10 miles from your home. http://www.natwest.com/personal/adgold/g2/car-breakdown-cover.ashx. That was no good for me as I travel too much. They do offer national cover but it's all extra £. Too much ducking & diving in them policies for me, I just want a reliable service who actually want to help get me home.

Still for me, I'll never use Greenflag as they contract out too much work to independents.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
That was a reply about a European breakdown
i guess not as even the "Comprehensive European Breakdown Cover" just says towed to a local garage and they will help with the COST of getting home, not that they will take you home

so is it a case of you pay for it then have to try and claim the money back from them?

or one of the testimonials on their website says ""A big thanks to the RAC for helping me out on this trip to Austria, my poor car finally died. They have arranged a hire car for the week and my return flight home. Never go away without the correct cover"
 

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Where as my testimonial would read
went to Belgium had an issue with my car & the AA were a bunch of useless c**ts
Think I'll be with rac after next renewal date
 
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