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I had a renewal offer from AA after leaving them last year for Halfords; a back to back comparison reveals Halfords are twice the price for exactly the same cover with the exception that Halfords will pick you up from your bicycle if that beaks down too. I had to use Halfords once last year when the E39 chocolate-made water pump bearing suddenly munched itself into oblivion - excellent and quick service to take me straight home.

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AA isn't all that for the type of hype that surrounds them. I've used them a fair few times with the latest one being last month. I had a bad experience. 

 

Friend's E60 broke down (Turbo went bye-bye) on the M25/A3 roundabout at about 3 am. A quick call to them and they said someone will be with you at 4:45 am. At 5:15 am I called them as I had not a single update on arrival time. The person who answered the phone then said that someone will be with you in 2 hrs time. At 5:45 am, the highway patrol towed us from the roundabout back onto the M25 and left us on the hard shoulder even though the next service was less than a mile down the motorway. At 6 am I had a phone call from the tow truck driver saying he will be with us by 6:30 am. When he arrived, he said he could only tow us to the next services where he would inform the AA to collect us. They arrived about 7:30 am but again, no update. We only realised he was there when we went back to the car after getting breakfast. Waited for about 4.5 hrs in total with no update from AA. 

 

I thought being close to the capital city, we would have been rescued sooner. I might switch to RAC or Greenflag come renewal time. 

 

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On 12/09/2020 at 17:45, oldtechnoman said:

Had an email from RAC offering cover from £5 a month, is it worth a punt.tim

Have checked over options, for £7.50 a month can have unlimited millage of car  to a  RAC approved garage. replacement battery for £2 a month and tyre cover for £6 a month. are these extras worth taking on. just to say my battery is 8years old and i have runflats.tim

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I've been with the AA for several years now. Yes I could have swapped and done more research but it was just was just easier. I need to be covered as I drive more than one car and they were the only people to offer me European breakdown cover for my E34. I also found out yesterday the amount of discount you can get in shops and days out - all Merlin owned attractions (Alton Towers, Thorpe Park, Legoland, Sealife...) nearly 50% off, a lot of chain restaurant, Channel Ferries, Halfords and generic tyre shops and that. Wish I knew about that sooner! Serves me right for not looking at it in too much detail.

I used them once when the cam belt tensioner failed on my old Octavis vRS. As I was on the M5 they came out immediately and I was recovered within 20mins. Apparently their policy is if you are on the motoroway they collect you ASAP. Wasn't so happy when he kept trying to turn the car over as I told him the timing could have slipped a few teeth so could have been just a retiming job - wasn't and each piston had a nice valve mark on so ended up replacing the engine. But they took me home (was about 5 mins anyway) and took me to the car rental place as I had a free rental car for two days from them.

Next time I needed them the new brake pipes I had fitted to that vRS were poorly fitted (how I managed to drive three days without noticing I have no idea). I was raining and late on a Sunday evening. I was about 5mins from the garage that changed them and I told the guy just take me there as they can sort it. He said he had to try and fix it as he wasn't a recovery service. Your decision to lie under a car in the pouring rain to try and fix something at the end of your shift! He saw sense and just towed me to the garage.

 

The previous break down cover I had I was a little sceptical with. AutoAid I think it was. Paid £40 for the year and I was covered, again as I had several cars. They also offered recovery from track days which was useful as I had a track car at the time. But it was you pay whoever collects you and then you claim it back from them. I was never happy with that principle but the price for the year was good. When I did need it as the wipers on my mum's Mini stopped working in the pouring rain I needed to be recovered back to their house - I borrowed the car as my car had broken and I needed to get to work. I was working and living in Reading at the time and they lived in Gloucester. Policy stated I could be recovered to any single UK destination. I was just outside work when it happened. Phoned up to arrange - they said don't need to pay which was a bonus so thay meant I didn't have to deal with that side of things. First guy turns up, tell him what happens - he is confused as by the time he arrives it is glourious sunshine (and it remains sunny for the rest of the week, typical). Said I asked to be recovered back to Gloucester, he pokes about the car and then leaves telling me someone else in on their way. Pretty certain he didn't want to recover me that far. Someone else turns up within anouther hour and takes me home. That experience put me off totally with them and just wanted to go with someone with their own recovery fleet, like AA/RAC.

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