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Autonational Rescue

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2 Reviews

Autonational Rescue, Library House, New Road,
Brentwood, Essex, CM14 4GD
Tel - 08459 100 345

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    2 Reviews
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      17.05.2003 02:02
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      I'm terrible with cars. There I've said it but I am. Every imaginable breakdown that can occur has occurred with me. I've had flat tyres, flat batteries, clutches going on me, you name it, I've suffered. It doesn't help that I feel so vulnerable. I suppose there's an assumption that just because you are a fella then your natural home is feet dangling out from the underbelly of your latest auto conquest. Well, in my case that definitely ain't so! I'm something of a pleading maiden at the top of a tall tower looking down on a million spare parts like in that latest, rather clever, Honda ad. (You know, that one where the car's in pieces where the ball's rolling along the ground and it ends up as a complete motor blah, blah, blah...no? Oh well....) So, of all the insurance going, car breakdown cover would seem essential. As ever in today's cut-throat culture, this is a competitive market. The biggest names include AA and RAC who advertise extensively on TV but a lesser name worth considering is Autonational Rescue. ***Who are They?*** Autonational Rescue has been around since 1993 and is backed by equity Red Star Policies at Lloyds. You can find the company at http://www.autonational.co.uk/. The website will tell you that the company above has been providing insurance since 1908 and now has over 600,000 clients. ***What's the website like?*** I've been with ARN for a few years now and can point to a rather nifty website. The corporate livery is red and white with the company name in a box format with the motto "The breakdown service with the no-claims bonus". On site, you'll find background about the company in the guise of "about us" with more detail about services available via the next button down. Other features on the website include:  Fleet rates for operators of UK fleets  Nearly new cars is aimed at th
      ose who have bought their cars that come with ;temporary membership" of a UK breakdown service. A special discount is available to these drivers of cars that are 1- 2 years old falling into this category with Total SuperService (see below) available for just £38...bargain!  You can request brochures via an online form  There is the obligatory Q & A section  There is even a driving tips page aimed at prevention rather than cure e.g. checking tyre pressures before driving hundreds of miles on motorways and so on.  There are handy hints to help beat the crooks that might want to steal your prized possession.  Finally, there is a Euro Rescue section. I extended my cover to include the European cover when we went to France last year. Thankfully, we didn't need to claim and I seem to remember it was only about an extra *£28 or so to provide cover whilst abroad. ***Services Available*** There are different levels of cover along with certain add-ons that you might want to tailor according to need.  Roadside SuperService (must be taken) from £28.50 This basically covers the cost of repairing your vehicle at the roadside and/or a tow to the nearest garage. Any subsequent repairs are not covered.  Recovery SuperService from £23 this allows for your vehicle to be recovered to any destination within mainland UK for the driver and up to 5 passengers assuming it can't be fixed at the roadside  Home SuperService from £14 this extends the breakdown service to within 1 mile of your home address  Emergency Travel/Accommodation from £7.50 Where a breakdown occurs more than 25 miles from your home address and the vehicle cannot be repaired either at the roadside or at a subsequent garage within 24 hours then up to £100 of costs can be claimed in terms of travel/accommodation costs etc Caravan/Trailer SuperService from £6 this will extend cover to include caravans and small trailers  Total SuperService from £57 this is all inclusive cover ***Comparable Costs*** Venturing onto the AA website, I can see that basic cover starts from £40. However, to get the same cover that I have now for just one car would cost from £141 for the AA option 400. Bear in mind that this is for just one car too! RAC offers a headline deal from £34. However, the RAC standard cover (comparable to Total Superservice) was £113, again for just one car whilst the family version of this cover was from £136. ***My experience*** Like I said earlier, I've been with the organisation for a few years now and been pretty happy. I've got the Total Superservice as I have to cover 2 cars. I've claimed for non-starts in the morning, breakdowns on the road and each occasion has proved easy enough to resolve. You simply call the telephone number, which is stored on my mobile phone and the operator takes the details. Within the hour, somebody will be attending with the majority of incidents dealt with, there and then. As part of the welcome pack, you do get other items with the telephone number on e.g. credit card sized cardboard cut outs, a circular tax disc type holder etc. I've never had a problem with getting through and the operators have always been calm and efficient. The people that have been out to fix my various motors have generally known what they've been doing with the exception of one time when the chappie did get my motor going again but then suggested I drive it to my garage to get the problem sorted on a more permanent basis. I broke down again, on the way, and had to call them out to tow me. Sadly, I never drove that particular car again as it went up to the great scrapyard in the sky but at least they did come out and I did get sorted even if it took a couple of goes. ***Advantages of ANR*** Primarily, the organisation is cheaper than other breakdown companies. I've been quoted some high figures to insure 2 cars but their renewal, this year, was only £95 all together for both and that was after a couple of claims. Service is good and I've yet to have a problem in the last 3 years. The breakdown attendees are from local depots and whilst they don't have corporate gear on and all that, they are mechanics that know what they are doing. There is a 25% no claims discount, which can bring the premium down even more. Needless to say, you need to be claim free during the year - a feat which I've yet to manage! If you change address or vehicle during the period of cover, you can notify the company via an online form. Alternatively, you can ring through the details. There doesn't appear to be a limit on the number of claims that can be made. I know the AA have become infamous in the past for imposing a three claims and you're out policy but there is no indication that this is the case with ANR. It is possible to include a 2nd car (not always the case with some breakdown companies) at a reasonable cost. They took on my 2nd car for just £38 when I originally amended the cover a few years ago. ***Disadvantages of ANR*** Well, the company is overshadowed by its illustrious competitors so it's not as well known. There are no frills, in essence, the protection is more a less as stated. Some folks like the odd gimmick thrown in but you won't get that with ANR. Renewal options are quite limited with a paper based renewal invitation sent yearly and payment options including cheque and credit card only. ***Conclusion*** ANR only saved my bacon as recently as last Bank Holiday. One minute I'm sitting in the usual stationary bank holiday traffic, the next there's steam coming out from under the bonnet and my temperatur
      e gauge is on maximum! Another phone call to the good people at ANR and the problem was solved around 45 minutes later. Well, OK, I had to sit tight with my vehicle whilst hundreds of cars filed past me merrily rubbernecking away and offering lame advice but I did get out of that one eeeeeeventually. I?d strongly recommend AutoNational Rescue ~ they are a damned fine outfit and so much cheaper than the alternatives! Thanks for the read and have a great weekend. Marandina More info at: http://www.autonational.co.uk http://www.rac.co.uk/breakdowncover/ and http://www.theaa.com *Up to 17 days cover based on visiting France

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        03.12.2001 18:59
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        For years and years I have been with the RAC for my car breakdown cover. We were paying £65+ each year just to cover us for breaking down away from home. All this cover entitled us to was for somebody to come out and attempt to fix our car by the side of the roadside. If they failed to do this, the car would be towed off to the nearest garage. There was no provision for us getting to our destination or back home again from the breakdown scene. In spite of the cost and the minimal amount of cover included, I do not have any complaints against the RAC. On the few occasions I have needed to call them out, they have arrived promptly and completed their job professionally. It was because of their track record that my husband has always been reluctant to change breakdown organisations. His motto in life generally is 'you pay for what you get'. I do agree with him to a certain extent, but I also believe that some companies create such a monopoly and get such a reputation for themselves in their own market that people stay with them and put up with high prices. I am very pleased to say that after much persuasion, by both myself and my father-in-law, my husband has relented and agreed to let me take out cover with an alternative company this year. The company concerned is Auto National. I first heard of Auto National when I received their leaflet through the door last year. They were offering quite a good deal, but I seem to remember that it was an introductory offer only and that the price I would pay the following year was not far short of the amount I was already paying to the RAC. So I dismissed it and took out cover with the RAC again. A few weeks ago, however, I received another leaflet from them. I took a more detailed look at it and it really did look good. The alternative to RAC Roadside would cost me £35 rather than the £65 I was currently paying. Added to this, if I had not called upon my current breakdown insurance
        for the last year, I would receive a further 25% discount, bring the cost to just £26. Obviously other levels of cover are available and you can have a fully comprehensive cover for just £54 (inc 25% discount). This cover includes: - Roadside repairs or recovery of your vehicle to a garage - Recovery of up to 5 passengers to anywhere in mainland Britain - Home service in case your car breaks down at home - Emergency travel or accommodation if you are more than 25 miles from home - Caravan superservice (not relevant for me!) - Message service - they will phone your family for you Added to this, if you do not call them out within a year the 25% discount continues for the following year. In fact, having read the small print, you can call them out once within a two year period and still keep the discount. Another way of keeping your discount is if you call them out and they fail to turn up within an hour. Sounds like a speedy response to me as the RAC have always taken longer than that to reach me. My father-in-law also received this leaflet and was extremely enthusiastic about this new found service. He had rung a number of other breakdown companies to compare his RAC quote and although he had found cheaper quotes (Direct Line for one), nothing compared to the price Auto National were quoting. Unfortunately, the day before his RAC cover ran out, his car broke down (typical!) and so he has decided to stay with them for a further year. I was convinced by the leaflet and after having read a few ops on this site about Auto National (the one by Moose convinced me), I decided to ring up and arrange cover. As usual, I left it until the last minute to get my cover, but I rang up and after a very short while an assistant answered. She was very friendly and even started chatting to me about her kids when she heard my daughter crying in the background (never make a phone call like this with young
        kids around!). She asked me a few questions about the level of cover I required and details of my vehicle. I gave her the usual name and address details and my credit card number and the deal was done. Because I had left it so late, she gave me an emergency number to ring in case we breakdown before our policy documents and cards arrive. The price was actually £57 and not £54, but still very cheap as far as I am concerned. Just to add to my elation, the assistant also offered me the choice of: - an extra 3 months cover - a £10 M&S gift voucher for the person who recommended me I was armed and ready for the second offer, as, after having read an opinion on CIAO on the same subject I had promised to use the writer as my recommender. I would like to say that I choose that option, but sadly I decided to be selfish and opt for the free cover. She says she will forgive me and would have done the same thing, so I don't feel too guilty. So 15 months comprehensive cover for just £57. A bargain if ever there was one. I suppose I cannot really judge this service though until I have actually called them out, but for now, I am satisfied with what I have seen so far. If I ever do call them out I will update this op. I must say, I am quietly confident that this service will deliver what it promises.

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