Green Flag is the newbie amongst the ‘Big Three’. While the AA and RAC can trace their lineage over 100 years or so Green Flag can claim ‘only’ 40 years of service, being formed by a group of motoring enthusiasts in 1971. First called the National Breakdown Recovery Club it became Green Flag in 1994.
Green Flag (and some other smaller, independent recovery clubs) were the first to offer nationwide recovery thereby forcing the AA and RAC to follow suit shortly afterwards; they also offered accident recovery from the beginning, something that was unheard of at the time.
The other significant difference between Green Flag and the AA and RAC is that Green Flag don’t employ their own patrols, preferring to employ local garages and recovery agents claiming that this helps to cut costs and will as enabling motorists to benefit from ‘local knowledge’. (The AA and RAC also use local agents to cover sparsely populated areas too, as well as to provide cover at nights in some cases, so you shouldn’t worry about it!)
Green Flag claim that up to 86% of cars that they attend are repaired at the roadside and that their average response time is 30 minutes; these are the best figures of all the breakdown companies and help to explain why they have 4.5 million customers.
Green Flag’s ‘route finder’ has been voted the most effective route map of the 3 major breakdown companies.
Vehicle Breakdown Cover
Rescue is the most basic and cheapest of the levels that Green Flag offer. They will send an operator out to your car and they’ll try and fix it there. If they can’t repair it they will take you to a local garage.
A point to note is that with all of the policies that Green Flag provide it is the car that is covered, NOT the driver. This could be a good thing if lots of different people drive the same car but will be less useful if you own more than one car that you want covered.
They will also help in the event of an accident.
Rescue Plus adds home cover to your policy, so if your car won’t start or you have another mechanical malady then they’ll come out and help.
Recovery cover allows you to choose where you want to be recovered to, whether that means taking your car home or onto your final destination. This can be useful if you are going away on holiday or would prefer your car to be taken home so that you can make your own arrangements to have it repaired.
Recovery Plus is the same as Recovery but gives you the option of a hire car, or hotel accommodation, or alternative public transport. Green Flag will also pay for you to go and collect your car after it has been repaired. Total peace of mind comes free of charge with this level!
You can add European breakdown cover with Euro Plus, which gives you the same cover as Recovery Plus and adds cover in Europe for 90 days a year.
One point to watch is that Green Flag Euro Plus will only cover cars that are up to 16 years old. This shouldn’t be a problem if you drive a modern car but classic and vintage car owners will have to look elsewhere for cover in Europe.
Green Flag offer a no-claims discount and will even protect this discount after four years.
Also, if they don’t reach your broken down car within one hour of calling them they will give you £10.
Green Flag offer an iPhone app to help you to pinpoint your location if you have car problems; it also gives you traffic updates and general driving tips.