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Need Your Car Towed? Expect to Pay More in 2022

If you’ve ever found yourself stranded on the side of the road, you likely know that a tow truck can be pretty expensive.

However, expect to fork over more of your hard-earned cash if you find yourself needing a tow in 2022.

Like many other items, the cost for a tow is going up. Let’s take a look at what you should expect to pay for a tow in the future.

How Much Does Towing Cost?

The cost of having a vehicle towed largely depends on the size of the vehicle and how far the tow truck will move it. Towing rates also vary from one company to another. However, JD Power shares that the national average for a tow is around $109. You can expect a tow to cost anywhere from $2.50 to $7 per mile.

Keep in mind that when and where your vehicle breaks down is also part of the equation. If you call a tow company on a weekend or holiday, expect rates to be considerably higher. Having your vehicle break down in a remote location can also add a considerable amount to your tow bill due to the travel time involved for the tow driver.

If you can shop around, do so. You don’t want to overpay when it comes to your towing bill. You want to make sure you’re getting a good deal and using a reputable company that won’t cause even more damage to your vehicle. Read reviews if at all possible.

Car getting towed on highway
Towing costs are increasing in 2022.

Breakdown of Towing Costs

It’s easy to have a bit of sticker shock when you first see or hear the costs of towing. However, you likely have very few options in this situation, and you’re most likely going to be at the mercy of the tow company. The average tow bill has a few standard fees that combine to make up the total cost.

Most towing companies are going to charge you a “hook-up” fee. This is typically anywhere from $35 to $100. Any per-mile fees will then start to kick in once the tow truck heads toward the storage lot or wherever you’re having them deliver it. They’re likely going to ask for payment in full before they’ll unhook your vehicle, so be ready to pay up when you arrive. If not, they’ll likely take your vehicle to a storage lot, where they’ll tack on additional storage fees per day.

Fees will vary greatly from one company to the next, and many factors go into towing bills. So it’s complicated to predict what you could expect without contacting a tow company for your specific situation.

Pro Tip: Accidents happen when on the road, but some are preventable. Read more on RV Tire Blowouts: 7 Tips to Prevent an Awful Accident.

Cars broken down being towed.
Roadside assistance is there to help when your car breaks down.

Why Is the Price Going Up in 2022?

We spoke with several tow truck companies, and they’re all experiencing increased expenses. The cost of doing business isn’t getting any cheaper for these companies.

Inflation is causing Insurance premiums and fuel expenses to increase significantly.

When you factor in salaries and maintenance on vehicles, it’s difficult for many companies to stay in business. The only way to offset these increased costs is to pass them on to customers. 

Can Insurance Cover Towing?

Many insurance policies allow you to pay a few extra bucks a month to include towing on your policy. However, this will require you to call your insurance company when you find yourself needing a tow, and you’ll most likely be subject to whatever company they select. 

Don’t assume that your policy covers any expenses when it comes to towing. Give a quick call to your insurance provider and make sure you’re aware of what exactly your policy covers. Finding out that your policy doesn’t include towing isn’t something you want to discover while stranded on the side of the road.

Car getting towed in neighborhood.
Keep calm when being towed and mentally prepare for costs associated with towing.

Is It Better to Have Roadside Assistance?

Whether or not you’ll benefit from roadside assistance is always a gamble. However, it can often be worth it for the minimal cost that it adds to your insurance premium. You never know if you’ll need to use it, but you’ll be glad you have it if you do.

Having roadside assistance isn’t only beneficial when you need a tow. It can also be a great thing to have if you run out of gas, have a dead battery, or if you’re locked out of your vehicle. Roadside assistance can come to your rescue whenever you need it the most.

If you decide paying for roadside assistance isn’t worth it, you’re going to be responsible for the full amount of any fees the towing company charges. So while a few extra bucks a month might be annoying, it’s likely worth the added protection just in case you do need it.

Pro Tip: Looking for good roadside assistance? Find out Is Good Sam Club RV Membership Worth It?

If You Have to Get Towed, Understand the Costs and Keep a Cool Head

If the day comes when you need to call for a tow, make sure you’re fully aware of any costs. Stay calm and understand that losing your cool isn’t going to help the situation.

Lashing out at the tow truck company or driver won’t help you. They’re under no obligation to serve you. While it may be frustrating to wait or pay more than you’d like, you’re at their mercy.

Have you ever needed to call for a tow with one of your vehicles? Tell us about it in the comments below!

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