Have you ever had a service so bad that you said to yourself, “I will never give these people my money again?” Maybe it was at a fast-food joint, bank or even the focus of this article, a towing company. The point is that there are bad service providers in every industry.
In the towing business, a so-called “bad service provider’’ might be rude, unprofessional or careless with your car. They may also overcharge, under-deliver or add hidden fees. For lack of a better term, it is everything that a good towing company is not. And you’d gladly avoid them, which is why you are reading this article, looking for tips on how to identify the good guys.
The professionals who respond quickly, do their jobs well and possibly save you from a bad day on the road. With what we are about to discuss, you will be equipped with enough tips to find a trustworthy towing service anywhere.
Ask people for recommendations
“Word of mouth” is still the best way to find any good service. There is a big chance that at least one person around you has used a towing company at one point or another. And they will have something to say about the experience, good or bad.
Either of these two will be helpful. You can choose the company they recommend and avoid the one they criticize. So, if you need any service or product, towing or otherwise, first ask people for recommendations before moving on to the next option on this list.
Google, the internet, search engines; this is how most of us find everything. It is simple, convenient and all-knowing. It is also likely the first place your mind tells you to look when searching for a towing company.
However, it is better to first ask someone for recommendations before settling for what the internet has to offer. Why? Because although Google will provide you with more and sometimes better results (company names), it can’t tell you much about their reputation. All you have to go on are ratings and reviews given by strangers.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t trust online reviews. Reviews are great for assessing a company’s reputation and professionalism. You just need to be more critical about using them to make your decisions.
Check their professionalism
What makes a towing company professional? Without overcomplicating things, let’s say: customer relations, ability to understand and solve the problem that they claim qualified to solve, having the right equipment, code of conduct, and so on.
We can keep adding to the list, but the number of qualities doesn’t matter. What matters is being able to assess their professionalism early to avoid entrusting your car to the wrong people.
So, here is a quick tip- start the assessment at the first point of contact. In some cases, that might be what you see online or on billboard ads. Other times, it may be the way they responded when you call. The assessment continues when they finally show up with their equipment. It doesn’t end until you have retrieved your vehicle and cleared the bill.
You have to keep asking yourself the following questions at every stage in the relationship. Can these people do the job? Can I trust them? It is that simple. However, you have to do this without expecting too much or being too judgmental.
Check their insurance and license
Every self-respecting towing company will have an operating license and insurance coverage. They know that a license will make you trust them. And insurance? Well, it covers everyone in case of liabilities.
When asking a towing company about their insurance coverage, focus on how it affects you. What do you get if something happens to your car while it’s in their possession? As they say, “it is better to be safe than sorry.”
Check their response speed
How quickly can they get a tow truck to your location to help with your situation? That is the big question. A good towing company understands that its clients don’t want to be stuck for several hours. So, it responds as fast as possible, running its business like an emergency service. Speed may not be the most important quality but it is still up there.
Before we get into this one, remember that price is not the best indicator of quality and reputability. The most expensive service is usually not the best and the cheapest is usually not the worst. Yet, as much as we all want good service, we also want it to be affordable. So, we have to mention this parameter because, like it or not, it is at the back of your mind.
So, here is a tip- ask about the rates before telling the tow truck to come to your location. You may not get the exact figures but even knowing the estimates is enough to go on. Then you can compare the price to that of competitors.
Towing services are usually charged by mileage and hook-up fees. However, some companies may include hidden charges that you will only discover when it is too late.
Check if they service your location and provide the type of help you need
Like price, the kind of service provided and the area served are also not the best indicators of quality and reputability. But what is the point of identifying the best towing service if you can’t get the help you need from them?
Because of this, we can say that these two parameters are almost more important than everything we have discussed so far. However, any towing company that Google or someone in your area recommends will probably service that area.
On another note, Google can also help you find out if that company provides the service that you need. It should also be the first thing to ask when you call in. With good companies, it is pretty easy to tell what they do. That is another parameter for assessing professionalism.
However, most towing companies do roadside assistance and car removal services. So, you won’t have to worry too much if that’s the kind of help you need.
Every good company cares about its reputation. Towing companies are not exempted. You won’t have a hard time finding the best, especially with the tips we just discussed. However, these tips are just helpers. You are the one doing the assessment and making the decisions.