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Ah… the joys of breaking down at the side of the road and needing roadside assistance. I have long since given up and canceled my AAA membership, but that doesn’t mean I kind of wish I had something like that when I need it. I just found that for me, at least, the benefits did not outweigh the cost.

But there I sat on a Friday night, with a broken down van that needed to be towed to the mechanic’s shop

a car on a tow truck

Credit Cards With Roadside Assistance

Maybe I am misremembering, but it seems like a few years ago all of the “ultra-premium” credit cards carried with them “free roadside assistance” where you could get a jump or a tow or other roadside assistance a certain (4?) times per year included with the cost of your (hefty!) annual fee. But as I quickly Googled through the terms and conditions of various cards, I found that no longer seems to be the case. Here is what I found

  • card_name Covered up to $50 for each service event, up to 4 events each year
  • card_name – covers certain services up to a set amount
  • American Express Platinum – no roadside assistance

Basically, Visa and Mastercard now offer roadside assistance, and most cards (outside the Chase Sapphire Reserve) just use that

Calling Up Capital One Venture X Roadside Assistance

So since I have the Venture X card (read our review), I called up the number on the back of my card. It took awhile to get transferred to the right department, but eventually I gave the lady my name, contact information and what was wrong with my car. She confirmed that through the Visa Roadside Assistance program, it would be $79.95 to send someone out. This seemed reasonable to me, especially given what I would likely have paid to just call up a random tow truck company. They texted me a screen with information about my tow truck driver, with an estimated wait time of 120-150 minutes 🙁

a close-up of a document

My Experience With Capital One Venture X Roadside Assistance

So then… we waited. It actually ended up being closer to 90 minutes which is still not a fun amount of time to just sit in the car, but it wasn’t that bad. My wife and son were with me initially and I had my wife drive my son home and then she came back and we just hung out together until the tow truck came. Call it the “poor man’s Friday night date” 🙂

Once the guy got there, he asked what was wrong, I told him, and he proceeded to just put my van up on his tow truck. I followed him up to the mechanic’s shop where he dropped it off.

The Bottom Line

Most premium and ultra-premium credit cards no longer offer complimentary roadside assistance or free roadside assistance. Instead, anyone with a Visa or Mastercard can take advantage of the Visa or Mastercard roadside assistance, which provides a set of services at a predetermined rate. I used the Capital One Venture X Roadside Assistance which ended up being just the Visa roadside assistance. They sent a tow truck for $79.95, and they towed my van to my mechanic’s shop a few miles away. While it wasn’t my favorite way to spend a Friday night, I thought the Capital One Venture X Roadside Assistance was pretty reasonably priced and the service was fine.

Have you used Capital One Venture X Roadside Assistance before? Leave your experience in the comments below

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