Roadside assistance is an add-on to most automotive insurance plans that covers you in the event of some sort of calamity that leaves you stranded on the side of the road. There are several different types of roadside assistance plans which can be added on to an auto insurance plan, each of which covers a different set of circumstances. Understanding the differences between each type of roadside assistance plan can help you choose the one that is the best fit for your needs.

Towing Service

Towing service is the most common type of roadside assistance plan available on the market, and is exactly what its name would seem to suggest: if your vehicle stops working, roadside assistance will cover the costs of having a tow truck come out to your location and take your vehicle to the nearest mechanic. Usually, towing service plans have a specified number of miles that they will cover your vehicle for, so if you have to tow longer than your covered distance you'll have to pay for the overage yourself.

Lockout Service

Lockout service is another common roadside assistance plan, though it likely takes place just as often at home as it does on the road. Lockout service will cover the cost of having a professional gain entry to your car in the event that you lock the keys inside (or lose them entirely). Keep in mind that most lockout services will not cover the cost of having the locks changed if your vehicle cannot be opened without the keys: this is usually sold as a separate option, called locksmith service. It may make sense to add both to your insurance policy if you have had trouble gaining access to your vehicle in the past.

Fuel Delivery Service

Again, the name is descriptive. Basically, this roadside assistance option will cover the cost of having fuel delivered to your location if your vehicle ends up running empty. If you want to add this option to your automotive insurance policy, it's important to look at the details of this type of roadside assistance: sometimes, you'll have to pay for the fuel yourself, while other times it's covered by your policy.

Winching Service

If you do a lot of off road driving or live in a rural area, you may want to seriously consider adding winching roadside assistance to your insurance plan. This type of add-on will cover the cost of having your vehicle winched and removed if it ever becomes stuck in the mud, plants, or any other area where you simply can't gain any traction with your tires.

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