The Value of Triple A (AAA)

One of the first things that I received the Christmas after getting my driver’s license in 2002 was a Triple A (AAA, American Automobile Association) card. It was a shiny gold card with the words “AAA North Penn” on top of it. Now, of course, like many people, I assumed that this magic card was only in case my car broke down or I needed some help with travel. In the 10 years that I’ve had an AAA card (my family renews my membership yearly for a Christmas gift), I’ve discovered that my car isn’t the only thing blessed by the presence of an AAA card in my wallet. Today, we’re going to look at a few things that a Triple A membership can do for you.

Towing. I had a 1996 Pontiac Grand Am that was notorious for breaking down. Three friends and I drove to Virginia Beach for a week. We got there fine, but getting back was a different story. We were a little over 100 miles away from home, and the car broke down. No lie, we found someone to tow the car that 100-plus miles, and I only had to pay like $30 because AAA paid for the first 100 miles. Sweet!

Travel. The standard things that everyone thinks of when they think of Triple A are towing and travel. You can get a guide book for every region for free once a year by going to an AAA store and asking for one. Just make sure you have your card with you, and you’ll be good to go. I’ve found the best deals in these travel guides, and found gems I wouldn’t have found without it. Even with the internet, AAA helps you find the stuff you may not find online.

Meds. This was a surprise to me. A couple years ago, I found out that you can print out a discount card for medications. When I was still on medicationss, I saved $15-$20 a month on them because of the discount card.

Insurance. It’s the American Automobile Association, it just never occurred to me that they would have car insurance as well. I don’t use theirs (the company I’ve been with for like 5 years is a bit better) but some people I know say that the savings with them are pretty sweet.

Bail. No, I never used this, and I never will. But, if you read the back of the Triple A card, this statement is written: “This card can be accepted as an arrest or bail bond up to $1,000 or $5,000 respectively, for motor vehicle violations with exceptions as detailed in the Guide to Member Services.” Of course, out of curiosity, I looked up the guide. It includes being arrested for auto accidents and that’s pretty much it. Your Triple A card does not cover you if you do something really dumb, like get a DUI.

The longer I have AAA membership, the more I realize it has been totally worth it. I’ve saved hundreds of dollars over the years just by having a membership. Maybe you should consider it too? Have a good week, and we’ll see you here next week.

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