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Old 09-30-2022, 12:57 PM   #1
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Emergency roadside assistance

Here is my question. My Motorhome has to have insurance just like anyone else. Progressive (through USAA) has "Roadside Assistance".

While it seems the ESP or Repair Plans are not the way to go...what about "Roadside Assistance"? Once I get the MH to the repair shop, I can have the repair done with the money I have put aside...but which "Roadside Assistance" plan DO you recommend?? Is the one that comes with Progressive's insurance good or do you recommend an additional assistance plan?

All this talk has me wondering if I'm doing it right
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Old 09-30-2022, 10:11 PM   #2
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Jimmy,

I had Progressive roadside. Had a rear tire blowout and needed a new tire delivered and installed. Called Progressive roadside and the young lady on the phone literally did not know what a motorhome was! I kept trying to explain it was a bus...think greyhound bus... She kept trying to go to RV dealerships for help. I told her I needed a service like a trucker would need to deliver a very large tire to my location. Net, after about 20 minutes I gave up. Called Pomps myself and within an hour I was on my way.

I have Coach-net now. Kind of pricey the first year, then it drops by about $100 a year. RVTravel recently did a survey/study and of all the major providers coach-net scored the highest.

No service is perfect, but coach-net seems to get most of the best overall reviews.
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Old 09-30-2022, 10:23 PM   #3
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I believe that an ERS (emergence roadside service) plan or Roadside Assistance plan is probably good to have. In another thread, I'm one who does not recommend extended service plans because they're usually not worth the money or most likely will not pay off for most over time. However, I do think an ERS is good to have just for the convenience and because they are substantially less cost than extended warranties or service contracts but gives you some piece of mind that you'll have a number to call in case of a break down while traveling.

However, I too recommend spending a little extra to get Coach-Net or at least one where the call centers are trained to use the resources available to them that give specific contractors to use for motorhomes and other RVs.

There are dozens of threads on the forum discussing ERS or roadside assistance plans and the pros and cons.

Coach-Net has always been the premier choice but it is pricier. We always had Coach-Net and didn't mind paying the extra price.
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Old 10-01-2022, 12:52 AM   #4
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I think a Roadside Assistance plan is an essential part of your prudent coverage. I think CoachNet is the best option available. Weve had them throughout our ten years of fulltiming. Called them about seven times. Unfailingly prompt, professional, and knowledgeable. Recommend unequivocally.
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Old 10-01-2022, 05:10 AM   #5
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I have Good Sam Roadside Assistance and have had them for years. I will say that I have not used it for years, knock of wood.

Just remember a few things, there are only so many tow trucks out there so they all get jobs from the same companies. To me one of the biggest items to look for is, how far will they tow and where will they tow to. Keep in mind that the roadside assistance is only there for the purpose of getting you going and off the road not for repairs.

Good Luck
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Old 10-01-2022, 06:37 AM   #6
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I see the positive remarks about coach-net.... please look at my bad experience in the letter I wrote to the CEO of Coachnet.....

Subject: 29 Hours waiting for a tow


Mr. Ostlund,

Yes, we were on the side of the road for 29 hours and this was no rural country road. It was US 1 in Maimi-Dade county Florida with cars and trucks whizzing by at 60-80 mph literally a few feet from the side of our motorhome. To say I'm disappointed in the service and response from Coach-Net would be an understatement.

On Friday December 3rd we left our home in Apollo Beach, Fl to spend a few nights at Key Largo before going to Key West. At about 14:00 my coolant temperature rapidly rose and the alarm went off. I moved to the side of the road. This was at Mile Marker 122 on US1 south of Homestead, FL. The infamous 18 mile stretch. The road here is a narrow 2 lane highway with the lanes separated by Jersey barriers. The shoulder is very narrow and in many places not even wide enough for a car, fortunately I was able to find a spot that we could actually get out of the travel lane by about 5 feet without sinking into the mud .

After assessing the situation and finding a catastrophic water pump failure, I call Coach-Net at 14:30 for assistance.
The first person I spoke to asked a few questions and then passed me to a technical staff member. We discussed the situation and he said he would get a tow truck to the scene. I was told it would be about an hour before the truck would arrive. Well, that wasn't even close. At 19:30, a full 5 hours later, a truck shows up, the driver looks at the situation and says he isn't able to tow a motorhome due to the configuration of his truck.

I call back Coach-Net and after some discussion they start to try to find another tow truck. After a few more hours, they decide that it would be good to inform the Florida Highway Patrol of our situation. A trooper comes by and provides visibility to the oncoming traffic with his emergency lights. Another tow company was finally dispatched and when they got to the scene the driver said he could not tow from the front, but would tow from the rear by raising the coach by the trailer hitch. I told him and pointed out the label on the hitch, that the hitch was rated at 1000 lbs tongue weight capacity and that the coach weighs 42000 lbs and that there was no way I was going to allow him to even attempt to do that. If I hadn't stopped him, I'm sure there would have been tens of thousands of dollars damage. He left and soon afterwards, the trooper had to leave . It was now after 03:00 Saturday...over 12 hours since I called in the issue.

I called Coach-Net again. They decided there was nothing to do at this late hour and would resume their (feeble) efforts in the morning. I was told I'd be contacted at 07:00 .

07:00 comes and goes and a little after 08:00 I get a call and they are going to resume trying to find a wrecker. I was promised call backs on status, but never received them. I had to call back myself to find out what was going on. Finally at 16:30 Saturday a couple of guys show up and said they had it under control. These guys were super professional, efficient and demonstrated outstanding team work. After a short period of time, during which they showed me what they were doing, they had us all hooked up and ready to go. But, as we were staring to pull out, one of their airbags on the rear axle failed and in interest of safety, they decided to unhook and drive back to the shop to get another truck.

They returned with a different truck and reattached the motorhome and we were finally off the side of the road at 19:30 Saturday. A full 29 hours after the time I called in for assistance.

When we got to the repair shop they backed us into position and unhooked. As I was thanking them for their outstanding service , I asked why they hadn't been called earlier. They told me that they were not on Coach-Net's vendor list and were called in only in dire situations. These guys were by far the best. You should have them at the top of the list for towing large RV's. They are Edwin and Kevin from American Eagle Towing. The other companies that showed up should be removed from your vendor list.


The reason I am sending this letter to you is to make sure you are aware of how poorly this call for emergency assistance was handled and that hopefully you will take corrective actions to prevent this from happening to someone else.

Some thoughts to consider :

- make sure the vendor you dispatch understands what is being towed and make sure they have the equipment to do so.

- the second tow operator obviously had no experience in towing a motorhome and if he had tried to tow from the trailer hitch as he had wanted to do, he would have caused extensive damage. It is likely that if it had been another person in my situation they might have taken him for his word and their motorhome would have been destroyed. You need to thoroughly vet your vendors to help prevent unnecessary damage.

- we were in a potentially very dangerous situation on a heavily traveled road. Police notification by your team should not have taken over 10 hours.

- When your staff says they are going to call back in a certain period of time, they need to do so. Other than a couple times when they did call back as promised, in general, I had to call back and wait on hold to get status.

- Scrub your vendor list. You obviously have incompetent service providers that are wasting your time, my time and their time and at the same time destroying your reputation as a quality service provider.

- A 29 hour wait to get EMERGENCY service is not acceptable under any circumstances.

Try to put yourself in the situation that we were in and see what your reactions would have been.


I look forward to your response.


Sincerely,
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Old 10-01-2022, 07:43 AM   #7
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So many threads on this. 1st, as far as Progressive (also through USAA) knows, I am still stranded in Dumas, Texas since July 3rd. I will never rely on them. I give them a grade F.

As for CoachNet, the best I can say for them from my one and only experience on that same July 3rd is they were able to successfully communicate their failure to summon a tow for me. I give them a grade D (if D no longer exists in grading hierarchy, then I reluctantly give them a C).

What I've learned from my experience and after reading multiple threads on this forum, there is a bit of luck involved. It mostly depends on location and time/day. For me, it was a Sunday on a July 4th weekend in Dumas, Texas. Dumas is about 45 minutes from Amarillo. Amarillo seems to be a pretty large trucking hub, so I don't believe the issue for me was as much location as it was being a holiday weekend. After stewing since July 3rd, I came back around and decided I will likely renew my CoachNet when the time comes simply because when I need it again I feel it will give me better odds of getting a tow. But I will pinch my nose when doing it.
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Old 10-01-2022, 08:32 AM   #8
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Every Roadside Assistance Plan will have good and bad reviews. They are just a go-between you and a tow truck or mechanic. They just make the calls for you to contractors they use. Some areas of the country are better than others depending on available service. I had great results with Coachnet when I needed them. We have sold our MH, but would go back to them if we buy another one.
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Old 10-03-2022, 10:38 AM   #9
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Thank You to all who submitted views on this topic. I will be taking all of your experiences and knowledge to heart in making my decision for any roadside assistance.

I do appreciate the info
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Old 10-04-2022, 12:05 AM   #10
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Jimmy, keep in mind all emergency roadside assistance plans have the same basic business model. They maintain a list of participating providers. Each request for ERS demands they call through the entire list to find the one with the lowest fee before dispatching one.
PanJH was caught up in that scenario, the proper service provider was only called when all else failed.


When you call the ERS company, you are talking to a person who is only allowed to read what is on their computer monitor screen and follow directions.
This is when you need to request to speak with a supervisor.
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Old 10-04-2022, 07:54 AM   #11
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One roadside assistance plan is okay, but 2 is much better. Our experiences have proven this to be true. More costly, but I hate sitting beside the hghway.
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Old 10-06-2022, 12:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray,IN View Post
Jimmy, keep in mind all emergency roadside assistance plans have the same basic business model. They maintain a list of participating providers. Each request for ERS demands they call through the entire list to find the one with the lowest fee before dispatching one.
PanJH was caught up in that scenario, the proper service provider was only called when all else failed.


When you call the ERS company, you are talking to a person who is only allowed to read what is on their computer monitor screen and follow directions.
This is when you need to request to speak with a supervisor.
Thanks Ray,
I was thinking that at least...if there is a list of service providers to choose from, and with me not from that area, Coach-net can get a local guy faster then I could.
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Old 10-21-2022, 05:20 AM   #13
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I have Camping World roadside assistance recently. Still have AAA RV the past 15 years. In May on the way to pick up my grandson in my conversion van, not the motorhome, I hit some debris in the road and blew out the sidewall in a tire. Called AAA and was towed to a truck stop, as all new tire dealers were closed that late.
I called camping world and asked if they could have a tow truck there by 7am to tow me to a shop. The tow truck co. called and assured they would be there. When the truck arrived the driver received a call from dispatch and was told to tow me to a used tire shop 2 blocks away. I called camping world and asked what was the problem. The driver, a local resident had informed me that this was a used tire shop and would not have a new tire for me. The female on the phone was very nasty and said they would only tow me to the nearest shop 2 blocks away. Explaining that they could not help me did no good. I wound up paying the tow company for the extra few blocks to buy a tire.
The statement about towing up tp 200 miles is a joke. Still have not been contacted by Marcus's office after filing a complaint with receipts. Won't renew. What if it had been my 34ft motorhome? Would hate to think what those few blocks would have cost.
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Old 10-21-2022, 07:25 AM   #14
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My roadside assistance plan is my cell phone and credit card. Risky, maybe. But based on the horror stories we hear it seems more timely to call local truck stops, truck repair shops, tour bus operators whatever if / when in need. They will know the local landscape and be able to either send a mobile mechanic or refer one.

Now if I could find a respected national vendor who would do preventive maintenance and provide a written guarantee to backup their work and respond to roadside issues that slip through I would buy that in a heartbeat. Perhaps NIRVC will get into this. Camping World has the footprint but not the respected reputation.
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