The Advantages of Auto Clubs

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Advantages of Auto Clubs

As a licensed driver in Canada, you want to get all you can from your driving experience.  Joining the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) or one of its regional auto clubs can provide you with a variety of travel-related benefits, from emergency roadside service to trip planning and member rewards.

CAA’s local/regional chapters include the following:

  •     British Columbia Automobile Association (BCAA)

  •     Alberta Motor Association

  •     CAA Saskatchewan

  •     CAA Manitoba

  •     CAA North & East Ontario

  •     CAA South Central Ontario

  •     CAA Niagara

  •     CAA Québec

  •     CAA Atlantic

Each of these chapters offers member benefits such as:

Emergency roadside assistance: Vehicle breakdowns happen.  When they do, emergency roadside assistance offers flat tire service, fuel delivery, battery and jump-start service, emergency towing, lockout service and more.  It is designed to rescue drivers from unforeseen circumstances such as overheated engines, blown out tires, getting stuck in the snow and miscellaneous breakdowns.

Network of approved car-repair facilities: Identifying a great mechanic or body shop often seems to be one of life’s great mysteries. Your auto club removes that mystery, however, by supplying you with a list of car-repair facilities that have proven their capabilities and reliability.  You can drop your car off with confidence, knowing that shop feels a sense of responsibility to not only you but to the broader auto club membership.

Travel agency services: The national organization of CAA offers travel agency services at more than 135 travel agency offices across Canada.  Through these offices, members can book cruises, flights and hotels; access vacation packages and last-minute specials; and get free road maps and TripTik® Travel Planners, which include turn-by-turn routing directions to keep you on course.

International licensing: CAA is Canada’s sole issuer of International Driving Permits, Carnet de Passages en Douane and Camping Cards International.

Information on travel planning, vehicle safety and maintenance, buying and selling vehicles and more:  Belonging to an auto club gives you access to a wealth of informational resources that can help you better understand your vehicle and plan trouble-free trips.

Member rewards: More than 300 merchants in Canada and 160,000 worldwide offer savings or CAA Dollars® (a reward equivalent to real Canadian dollars redeemable toward CAA membership renewal and select CAA products and services) when members make purchases from their stores or sites.

In addition to association-based auto clubs, you can join car clubs representing your make of vehicle – for example, the Rover Car Club of Canada, BMW Club of Canada, MG Car Club of Toronto, Edmonton Z Car Club and Toronto Triumph Club.  Clubs drawing a broader membership include the Antique & Classic Car Club of Canada (a national club with 13 regional chapters), Vintage Car Club of Canada and Niagara British Car Club.  These special interest clubs differ from association-based clubs in that they tend to focus on activities and events – car shows and cruise nights, for example – rather than benefits.