When you find yourself in need of a tow, which isn’t something you hope you don’t need on a recurring basis, it’s often difficult to understand what the average cost should be. Even before the average costs, what makes up the cost of a tow?
If your car insurance policy includes roadside assistance, getting a tow can be completely FREE! That’s why, as a general practice, our agents always recommend roadside assistance when creating our auto insurance quotes. Including this type of coverage in your policy can ultimately save you time and money in a sticky situation. Here’s an idea of the average cost of a tow, the cost per mile, and why towing is priced the way it is.
How Much Will It Cost to Tow My Car?
The cost of having a car towed depends on how far you want the car to go, but the average cost of a tow is about $109. However, costs for a tow can depend on your location and car. Towing your car can cost anywhere from $75 – $125. Don’t forget to take into account tipping your tow truck driver (do you tip tow truck drivers).
According to Cost Helper, the following are common prices based on distance:
- 5 miles or less: $35 – $125
- 40 miles: $125 – $275
The cost may go up if you need your car towed at night, on a weekend, or on a holiday. The same is true if the terrain is difficult, like if you’re in the mountains on narrow, winding roads. If the car is stuck in a ditch or mud, the cost could be $50 – $250 an hour because of the need for a winch.
Also, keep in mind that a standard tow costs less than towing a car due to an accident. Towing a car from the scene of an accident typically comes at a higher cost.
To skip this hassle, you can get a AAA membership for only $52 to $144 a year and you can get your vehicle towed up to 100 miles. These memberships can be purchased from other roadside assistance companies as well. Most of the companies will also offer additional services within this membership such as flat tire repair, gas refill, and jumpstarts.
What Affects the Cost of a Tow?
According to Curbside SOS, the cost of a typical tow can vary based on the service provider but it typically has few common elements. The total, final cost, to tow a vehicle is made up of a base service fee and mileage to and from the location. The mileage rate charged by the service provider is often different between the mileage to the motorist and to the tow destination. Those rates can range from $2 to $8 a mile and are set by the individual service provider.
Will My Insurance Company Cover It?
That depends on your car insurance company. Most insurance providers will offer roadside assistance as additional coverage (it’s not included in the minimum limits of auto insurance). This means you have to add it to your car insurance policy and pay an extra fee on your premium. It may be worth phoning your agent to see if you have roadside assistance coverage or how much it would cost to add it.
If you do have roadside assistance through your insurance company, be sure to check if it has a limit for mileage and/or expense. For example, your insurance company may cover up to $100 for a tow. Or it may give you $150 for up to a 25-mile tow. Or maybe you’ll be lucky and they cover a 50-mile tow regardless of price. You need to check and see what kind of coverage your roadside assistance offers so you know what’s covered before your car conks out on you.
Pro tip – Keep your receipt from the towing company if you plan on getting reimbursed by your insurance company.
What Do I Do if I’m in an Accident?
Finding yourself searching for a tow near you, and needing it as fast as possible can often feel intimidating. While some look to insurance companies or motor clubs, not everyone has access to those resources.
An example of where to find pay-for-use towing or roadside assistance needs is Curbside SOS. For services like basic tows, flat tires, lockouts, out of gas, winch outs and won’t start situations, Curbside SOS can help locate prices and ETAs for available service providers in that area. It takes just seconds to get quotes back and you have the ability to pick what best suits you. Plus, you have the benefit of tracking your service provider throughout the process. Bonus is all payment is handled via credit card through the experience.
As you can see, towing prices vary. Much of the cost of towing a car depends on how far you need to go. It’s a good idea to have a reputable tower picked out ahead of time so that you know who to call if you have car troubles. Check out some online ratings and ask your family and friends for recommendations. A little bit of preparation can go a long way.
If you’re looking to compare rates on car insurance, we can help! We can help you get car insurance quotes so that you can save money. To get started, fill out our online form using the button above or give us a call.
Also, if you’re looking for affordable and quality tow truck insurance quotes then give us a call or fill out our online quote form. We work with many of the top carriers in the country and our agents can make a personalized insurance plan just for your towing business.