Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-08-2018, 01:03 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
jhance's Avatar
 
City: Eastsound
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Audrey Grace
Vessel Model: 2003 Camano 31
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 101
Why TowboatUS membership if insurance covers tows?

Unless I am missing something here, but many insurance plans have towing coverage (I know mine does). If you have this coverage, why would anyone need a TowboatUS membership if you have little to no deductable for the towing? Even if you have to call them and pay the extra charges, it's covered by your insurance. I wonder how many people pay for a membership not knowing it's already covered by their insurance?
__________________
Advertisement

jhance is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2018, 02:21 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
City: Hughesville, MD
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Branwen
Vessel Model: Hatteras 48 LRC
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 186
As has been mentioned in other recent towing threads, it's good to have options, and the expense of towing insurance is minimal compared to what one would pay without it. The towing coverage included with hull insurance usually has caveats or limitations that are sometimes less than the unlimited plans one can obtain directly from the providers. Each captain should read the plans, understand the coverage provided, and decide for themselves if additional or optional coverage is desired.
__________________

GregBrannon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-08-2018, 02:25 PM   #3
Guru
 
Comodave's Avatar
 
City: Au Gres, MI
Country: US
Vessel Name: Never Say Never
Vessel Model: President 41 DC
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 1,782
One reason to have a towing membership is that if you file a couple of towing claims with your insurance company they may cancel you. If you get an insurance cancellation then it will be more difficult and expensive to get insurance with another insurance company. If you have multiple towing claims with a towing membership the worst that will happen is they cancel your membership. No ramifications on your boat insurance policy. Besides it is cheap and if the towing company gets your call and you are not a member at the same time a member calls, who do you think they will respond to?
Comodave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2018, 07:56 AM   #4
Guru
 
ranger42c's Avatar
 
City: Maryland
Country: USA
Vessel Model: 42' Sportfish
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 3,498
Quote:
Originally Posted by jhance View Post
Unless I am missing something here, but many insurance plans have towing coverage (I know mine does). If you have this coverage, why would anyone need a TowboatUS membership if you have little to no deductable for the towing? Even if you have to call them and pay the extra charges, it's covered by your insurance. I wonder how many people pay for a membership not knowing it's already covered by their insurance?

TowBoatUS isn't everywhere.

-Chris
__________________
South River, Chesapeake Bay
ranger42c is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2018, 10:00 AM   #5
Guru
 
Donna's Avatar
 
City: Palm Coast
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Southerly
Vessel Model: 1986 Marine Trader 36' Sundeck
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 896
I have both because I don’t like surprises.
Donna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2018, 01:29 PM   #6
Guru
 
caltexflanc's Avatar
 
City: North Carolina for now
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Small Incentive
Vessel Model: Boston Whaler 130 Sport
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 4,269
Another benefit is you don't have to pay the towing company full price on the spot and then file a claim. Plus they provide other services like jump start and fuel.
__________________
George

"There's the Right Way, the Wrong Way, and what some guy says he's gotten away with"
caltexflanc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 01:20 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
danderer's Avatar
 
City: Newark, DE
Country: US
Vessel Name: Sojourner
Vessel Model: 2006 Mainship 34T
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 308
Geico (who is writing for BoatUS today) has an interesting endorsement available.

They call it "TowBoatU.S. TOWING COVERAGE". It is targeted to replace typical towing coverage and the towing coverage sold through BoatUS. My policy has the coverage "TowBoatU.S. /$3,000".

Some highlights:

If you have a problem, call Geico, not TowBoatUS. Geico will call TowBoatUS and dispatch. You pay nothing--Geico handles it all. Just like having coverage through BoatUS. (However, Geico has told me that if you can't contact them--due to lack of cell coverage or timeliness or whatever--just contact TowBoatUS directly and things will get sorted out later. I have no reason not to believe them.)

If the problem occurs outside an area TowBoatUS covers, or they can't respond, the policy will pay up to $3K per incident to another towing provider.

IIRC correctly this coverage was about 1/2 the price of unlimited coverage from BoatUS.

One important difference for some: BoatUS coverage follows the operator (I think) or at least covers multiple boats. The Geico endorsement is for the insured boat and tender only.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Geico Marine Insurance Policy.pdf (62.8 KB, 9 views)
danderer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 02:24 PM   #8
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 779
Last fall I paid for a discounted renewal offered by BoatUS but didn’t get the renewal. I got nowhere after many calls for either insurance or my money refunded. So Now my intention is to not pay double for coverage, just not going to renew with them again UNLESS I need a tow! Yes, They will provide instant coverage for towing if you call and pay for the insurance at the time of need. And yes, my boat insurance does cover towing. After my needs are fulfilled, no additional renewals!

In the mean time, I intend to use the annual BoatUS fees to take Wifey out to dinner.
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 02:37 PM   #9
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 17,011
BOTH BoatUS and Sea Tow can not be signed up for at the time of a breakdown. Cant speak about the Geico insurance deal though.

Sea Tow sometimes includes a membership with a full price tow, but you are paying way more for that membership buried in the whole tow fee.

BoatUS starts its membership at midnight after you sign up.. (straight from their membership agreement..... ."This Towing Service Agreement becomes effective 11:59 PM on the day of payment and does not apply to: pre-existing conditions,*....."

Sea Tow, usually 24 hrs after signing up.

A very forgotten item.....if you ever buy or get as a gift a "box membership" for Sea Tow...make sure you you open snd activate it. Cant tell you how many poor souls have an unopened box and have to pat $1000 bucks or so because they never activated.

All franchises can always work some special deals for members....but never count on them unless in writing and never from any other franchise.
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 02:39 PM   #10
Guru
 
siestakey's Avatar
 
City: Sarasota,FL/Thomasville,GA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Steppin Stone IV
Vessel Model: Marine Trader Kelly Trawler 46
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,798
Send a message via Skype™ to siestakey
I have both towing services and my insurance has towing my thought is very cheap peace of mind. I have never used the service but like to have it same with my vehicles and AAA
__________________
Alan
Skype roatan63
siestakey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 02:46 PM   #11
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 779
Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
BOTH BoatUS and Sea Tow can not be signed up for at the time of a breakdown. Cant speak about the Geico insurance deal though.

Sea Tow sometimes includes a membership with a full price tow, but you are paying way more for that membership buried in the whole tow fee.

BoatUS starts its membership at midnight after you sign up.. (straight from their membership agreement..... ."This Towing Service Agreement becomes effective 11:59 PM on the day of payment and does not apply to: pre-existing conditions,*....."

Sea Tow, usually 24 hrs after signing up.

A very forgotten item.....if you ever buy or get as a gift a "box membership" for Sea Tow...make sure you you open snd activate it. Cant tell you how many poor souls have an unopened box and have to pat $1000 bucks or so because they never activated.

All franchises can always work some special deals for members....but never count on them unless in writing and never from any other franchise.


OH REALLY???? Have YOU tried to renew at time of need BECAUSE I HAVE! Four years ago I neglected to renew. That summer I had an engine failure and called them and explained that I required a tow, would they tow if I renewed? Certainly was the quick answer and I paid. Fortunately I was able to power home on one engine although I could have waited for a tow.
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 04:13 PM   #12
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 17,011
its in the membership agreements...that pretty well sums it up...but for the sake of discussion.

I have talked to dozens of franchise iwners and national hq for both fir 15 years that I worked in the business.

I did post that a franchise owner can make exceptions...not many of those and usually only for long time customers.

I wouldnt expect it 2X though....

Exvept for the few exceptions, they would have to be out of their mind to renew on demand.
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-10-2018, 04:33 PM   #13
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 779
Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
its in the membership agreements...that pretty well sums it up...but for the sake of discussion.

I have talked to dozens of franchise iwners and national hq for both fir 15 years that I worked in the business.

I did post that a franchise owner can make exceptions...not many of those and usually only for long time customers.

I wouldnt expect it 2X though....

Exvept for the few exceptions, they would have to be out of their mind to renew on demand.

Not really. Many sales departments are measured on sales and the reps could care less about the particulars
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2018, 05:39 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
danderer's Avatar
 
City: Newark, DE
Country: US
Vessel Name: Sojourner
Vessel Model: 2006 Mainship 34T
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 308
To plagiarize from another member here:

"There's the Right Way, the Wrong Way, and what some guy says he's gotten away with"
danderer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-2018, 08:41 AM   #15
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 779
No plagiarism here:

The right way was BoatUS’s choice to either provide a refund or the service I expected when I paid them last fall for this season’s insurance.
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2018, 05:05 PM   #16
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 17,011
just got this email from BoatUS headquarters...

Dear Mr. Neeld,



"Thank you for your email. If you join when you break down the Service will not be provided for. You can sign up and get towed, but you will have to pay out of pocket for the services"
psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2018, 05:45 PM   #17
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 779
Yes, I read the above post but that does not change the facts that I posted above. Maybe she does not speak for all those participating in their sales department.

Now for the IMPORTANT NEWS!!!! Today BoatUS contacted me pertaining to my payment claim from last October. The lady I corresponded with said they could not find evidence of my October payment and asked if I could help.

I sent her a copy of my CC statement for that month giving proof to my claim. Later she acknowledged finding my payment and it will be refunded! I responded saying I would put that towards my renewal. This mess should not have occured to begin with and I am pleased that it is now resolved.
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2018, 10:44 AM   #18
Newbie
 
City: Florence, Or.
Country: United States
Vessel Name: So...fea
Vessel Model: Tollycraft 40
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 3
Many different scenarios talked about and experienced here on this thread.

As a BoatUS member (only) with Progressive Insurance, 50 years of never needing anything from insurance (fix it, or use the radio for a tow from someone private), I blew an engine attempting a bar exit from a port...limped back to a dock, tied up and called BoatUS . . . who were polite but not going to participate, Progressive got into it and the BoatUS franchised guy arrived-towed us 45 miles to home port-and left. Cost "0", the discussion was that each BoatUS tow operator is independant, and has an area of coverage restriction by BoatUS, but, not for other carriers, in my case Progressive would have paid for a tow anywhere to anywhere, BoatUS only within region. Then I checked rates, BoatUS is more than twice the cost of my Progressive tow insurance, end determination was "it depends on the towing guy and his allegiance to one (or all) companies and the boating community (Commercial and Yachtee), I hear horror tales of "Sorry you are 5 miles too far out of my area, call someone else or drift into my zone" crap from weekender tow companies with a franchise and attitude. Not impressed with BoatUS.
WHAZAMMO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2018, 11:16 AM   #19
Guru
 
Benthic2's Avatar
 
City: Boston Area
Country: United States
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 1,086
I can't imagine BoatUS would allow boaters to sign up when they need a tow. Their very busniness model depends on having lots of people paying their yearly fee and only a few needing their service. If everyone just signed up when they were stranded, the cost would skyrocket.
Benthic2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-16-2018, 11:21 AM   #20
Guru
 
psneeld's Avatar
 
City: Avalon, NJ
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Freedom
Vessel Model: Albin 40
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 17,011
This is a good example of why towing memberships are not for everyone and all cruising areas.

John Baker made a good case either last year or a couple years back based on frequency of needing a tow versus just paying for ond when you need one.

It is good to know membership rules in and out before purchasing...but more important "expectations of service" and how they will fiddle with your emotions when service doesnt meet them...whether legit shortcomings or not.

Talking to a lot of captains formerly or currently in the business may give you insight to the ins and outs of the business.

Talking to national hq, franchise owners, office people, reps at boat shows or younger captains needing the job or ones selling memberships may not always give the best answers.....they are probably gung ho company people or dont have a realistic appreciation of how business is actually done.

Try some old timer captains who are finished with assistance towing or semi retired and just doing assistancd towing for fun.....they may be the ones who give you the most honest answers.
__________________

psneeld is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:37 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012