March 28, 2011

Why I Keep Forking Out $130 Every Year

I ditched AAA the first time my old rig got stranded roadside.

How To Lose Business 101

I had a blown radiator & AAA was quite happy to tow away the truck...leaving the trailer & Solo behind in the dark on a bitter November night in Greensboro.  Obviously, they had no concept of what was important to me.  They could have set that POS truck on fire for all I cared, as what mattered to me was standing in the trailer behind it.  I hung up the phone in fury & tore up my membership card.

We Have A Winner!

Then I found US Rider, a roadside assistance plan designed for traveling horse owners.  This morning is a clear demonstration of why I love them.

Call #1 (8:20 am): They answer the phone:  "US Rider, are you and your horses safe?"

"Yes, ma'am." I love that these are the first words every time I call.  I then explain that I need a wrecker for my truck, which was sitting at the end of my driveway in the pellets.   Yeah.

The rep took my member number, pulled up my address & asked where I wanted it towed.   I didn't even have to give her the business address, as soon as I said the name of the shop, she had it at her fingertips.   She promised to call me back in five minutes with wrecker information.

Call #2 (8:30 am): Rep informs me that tow truck should be there in 30-45 minutes.  No worries by me, I am at home.  She will call back later to check on progress.

Call #3 (9:40 am): An hour has passed.  Rep:  "Has the wrecker has arrived?"  Me:  "Nope."  Rep:  "Oh no!  I'll go check on it."

Call #4 (9:50 am):  Rep:  "The wrecker will arrive in ten minutes," and she will check on me then.

Call #5 (10:10 am):  Me:  "It's here!!" and we loaded up my truck & headed to the shop.

Boiling It Down

That's FIVE PHONE CALLS, making sure I was safe & informed over the course of two hours.   Eat that, AAA.  The wreckers are contractors, so timing is beyond US Rider's control, but they made sure I was taken care of as soon as possible.  Had I needed a vet or a spot for a horse to sleep or an alternate truck/trailer, they would have provided it.  That is why I don't mind writing the check, because when I need it, that kind of service is priceless.



  1. I've never had to use them with a truck and trailer, but I like having the security. Their reputation is great, and no one else will service my F350 with dualies.

  2. Holy crap, you win "fastest commenter" award! I have not had to use them with the trailer yet either, but they've towed two trucks for me. The first one was much faster -- I think they had problems finding a wrecker today because it was raining ice, which tends to turn Raleigh drivers into raging idiots who crash willy-nilly.

  3. ok, I must live under a shrub, I have never heard of them or how great the service is. Awesome!

  4. Girlfriend, I think you just sold me a membership! Excellent to hear of such great service. Good on them for taking care of you, and good on you for sharing your satisfaction!

  5. I've heard about them and have often wondered if I should get a membership. With such a ringing endorsement as yours, I'll be calling them tomorrow to see what they can do for me. Thanks for the tip!

  6. This is really good to know. I am going to have to really consider doing this it sounds fantastic.

  7. I had to use them to repair a flat tire on the trailer.. they arrived just the way the promised, switched tires and off we went. LOVE them!

  8. I've always had good luck with AAA, but then again I just have a car, no trailer. If I ever do buy a trailer (and learn to actually haul it -- scary!), USRider sounds like a great idea.

  9. Before I saw your post, I finally got off my lazy butt and got a membership and an associate membership for my hubby. You would think after my last trailer emergency I would have jumped right on it.

    I'm a believer.

  10. Dude, I should totally get kickbacks from this, ROFL.

    Frizz, I had AAA for a long time when I just had my small trucks, they actually did fine. But when they offered to abandon my horse, well, you can imagine how long that particular lead balloon floated, LOL. As soon as you have a trailer attached, they will no longer be appropriate.

  11. Good to know they work as promised. When I have a trailer (someday), I'll definitely be looking into it.

  12. Oooh maybe I should get this... I have AAA... haven't ever had an issue en route with my trailer but now that I've said that it's bound to happen!

  13. Worth every penny, Andrea! They will also help you not only if you just have your car, but also if you are traveling in someone else's rig!

  14. Thanks for the suggestion! I have never needed saving while hauling the horses (thank God) and since I'm usually only doing things within an hours radius of home, I feel good about someone else with a truck coming to save me! I am SO lucky that nothing happened to us when I hauled all the way down to southern California last summer. It never occurred to me that the roadside assistance with my insurance wouldn't help me out with the horse and trailer! SUPER scary thought.

  15. Crazy things can definitely happen, TDS! I will never forget sitting on the side of the road with Solo in the middle of the night, in tears, trying to get people to answer their phones -- truly a horrible experience! And since, even though my truck is truly awesome, it is 10 years old, and people drive crazy anyway, the peace of mind is worth it to me!