Roadside Assistance for Bike Breakdowns: Emergency rides for you and your busted bike

August 24, 2018 • Transportation

By Anna Walters - Events & Communications Manager at Bikes Make Life Better

**Plus, we’ll cover tows for bike commuters who break down to/from work; sign up for a membership with The Better World Club, paid for by SRPGO.**

I once carried a bike floor pump 1000 miles to avoid getting a flat. I was on a tour from Seattle to San Francisco, and each morning, I’d pump up my tires to the precise PSI and pray for pavement free of glass and nails. That was back when I was less confident in my bike-fixing abilities. So schlepping a large misshapen pump seemed worth it.

Luckily, I didn’t get a single flat or have a mechanical issue the entire bike tour. But that was more good fortune than preparedness. Maybe if I had known that roadside assistance for bicycles was a option, I’d have abandoned the pump and breathed easier.

SRPGO wants to make sure that you breathe easier too—that’s why we’re sponsoring an annual membership to The Better World Club for bike commuters. Members are afforded 2 bicycle tows per year; that means if you break down on the road, a vehicle with capacity for you and your bike is just a phone call away. You must register at SRPGO.com and track at least 1 bike commute trip to be eligible. Read on for all the details and SIGN UP HERE for your FREE membership.

Better World Club

Named “your best bike assist option” by Bicycling Magazine, Better World Club is an “Eco-Friendly Auto Club” that also deals in bike roadside assistance. Here’s the fine print:

  • Free transportation service for rider and bicycle up to up to 30* miles per service call with a maximum of 2 service calls per covered member, per year for $39.95. *Additional mileage rates dependent upon service provider.

  • Service providers do not deliver new equipment, but will dispatch a service provider with commonly available tools upon request.

  • Additional FAQs

AAA

The gold standard of auto clubs began recently offering bicycle tows as part of its memberships. If you’re already a AAA member, this benefit is available to you, although the level of coverage and limitations varies by membership type. “For example, if you're a Plus Member, you could receive a bicycle tow up to 100 miles,” says Jennifer Hanke, Senior Manager, Marketing for AAA Arizona (our region). “This will count toward the 4 service calls each Member receives each Membership term.” More details:

  • Will tow to one location, either work, home, or a service center

  • There is a whole host of things AAA won’t do when it comes to bicycle roadside assistance. Some examples:

    • AAA won’t pick up you and your bike in an not safely passable by vehicles (sorry mountain bikers)

    • If your bike is impounded, AAA won’t pay to spring it loose.

    • AAA won’t come get you if you’re too tired to finish your ride.

    • Fixing your bike or changing a flat is on you; AAA won’t help you there.

    • AAA will not break a lock.

    • For more conditions, see: https://membership.calstate.aaa.com/terms-and-conditions and do a key word search: “Bicycle Tow” or call the Member Service Center at 1-800-922-8228 with specific questions.

Spoke Insurance

Spoke is best for those with lots of bikes, people with bikes that cost as much as car, or those who’d like more specific coverage when it comes to their bikes. This is primo bicycle insurance, and cost varies depending on number and of type of bikes a member owns (and you must have $100/year minimum policy). Once you’re a member, you can add on roadside assistance for an extra $10. That means you have access to 24-hour emergency service with up to 35 miles of transportation per breakdown.

Ridehailing

Another option is to just call a Uber, Lyft, or a cab to pick up you and your bike, although this can sometimes be tricky as you must negotiate directly with driver on whether driver will take a bike. Calling an Uber XL—an SUV or other larger capacity vehicle—can yield better results, but loading in a bike is still up to driver discretion, so you’ll need to call the driver before they pick you up to confirm. Check out SRPGO’s Emergency Ride Home procedures, as Uber and Lyft can be covered if your bike breaks down on the way to or from work.

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