Many people know the benefits of an AAA Membership when it comes to our cars. We’ve all heard the stories of AAA helping its members who are stuck on the road, out of gas, or locked out of their car. It was not until recently that I decided to look into the other benefits that an AAA card can offer. I was extremely surprised; a basic membership which costs roughly $30 can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year with huge discounts on almost everything.
I want to share some of these money saving deals with you so that current members can more effectively utilize their membership and that non-members might consider joining. If there are any great discounts I leave out, be sure to add some of your ideas in the comments section below.
1. Rental Cars
If you’re planning on going on a vacation and you need to rent a car – AAA gives you huge discounts on rentals from Hertz. You can save $10 a day or $30 a weekend on all car classes. Young renters usually have to pay $15- $25 extra per day for a “Young Rental” fee. An AAA card waives this fee. Another great discount is a $40 discount off a one week rental of any car.
2. Pay less for cruises, airport parking, and traveling via train, cruises.
Having an AAA membership grants access to many special travel discounts. If you need to take the train, an AAA membership can save you and your spouse up to 10% of the travel fare, offering you another great way to travel cheap. You may also be eligible for a credit of over $100 dollars on certain cruise liners (Azamara and Celebrity cruises) when purchasing your tickets with an AAA membership. Lastly, a few cities I searched for had discounts of up to $3 a day for airport parking. If you are planning an extended trip, this could add up to some great savings.
3. Get a discount on airplane tickets.
You can save up to 20% on your airplane tickets when booking early on the AAA website. The regular round trip flight from Phoenix to Los Angeles that I usually pay $155 for cost only $119 when I booked with AAA, giving me $36 in savings. I did some quick searches for my friends’ travel itineraries and savings ranged from $40 to $75 for round trip tickets. One round trip flight a year pays for the cost of the membership.
4. Load up on savings with insurance bundles from AAA.
If you want to save on insurance and currently pay for home and auto insurance separately, getting an insurance bundle from AAA is a great way to save a huge chunk annually. AAA boasts savings of up to $400 a year on auto insurance and more if you bundle with other types of insurance.
5. Save big on food and dining.
Get discounts on almost all eateries you can think of. A complete list can be found on the AAA website and includes discounts like “Buy 1 Get One Free” at Cold Stone Creamery or 20% off Robek’s Juice. Whatever your taste, AAA probably has some kind of discount for you.
6. Sporting events at a fraction of the original cost.
A quick search by zip code shows discounts on all types of sporting events – including discounted tickets for professional sports or college athletics. You can save up to 45% on baseball tickets or get special seating and pricing just for being an AAA member. If you’re into golf, AAA also offers special rates on golf courses.
7. Visit your favorite theme park for much less than what you usually pay.
Depending on where you live, you can get discounts on the theme parks in your region. As an Arizona member, I get discounts off local water parks as well as some nationally-known theme parks like Disneyland and Six Flags in California. Even at $5 off general admission, you can at least save the lunch money!
8. Reserve hotels at a discounted price.
Want to reserve a hotel? Using your AAA membership can save you 20% or more off your reservation! Most websites either have an option where you can reserve with your AAA member number or you can reserve directly from the AAA website.
9. Save on health care costs.
On top of all the other savings that AAA offers, members also get discounts on prescriptions and on your vision needs – one great example is 30% off Sears Optical.
10. Pay less for a variety of services.
Whether its shipping, insect extermination, a car wash, or even Geek Squad, your AAA membership is a valuable asset that can be used to save.
I hope that everyone sees the benefits of having an AAA membership and will use it efficiently. I already used it to purchase a pack of movie tickets at $3 off a ticket. Do you have an iPhone or an Android phone? There are convenient apps available that let you see the closest places around you where an AAA membership discount is available. I use it all the time.
If you are an AAA member, let us know about a time that you used your membership. Join the discussion!