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Jan 23rd, 2013
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BoatUS Insurance was acceptable except being tied to Boat US Towing membership #9900343 04/11/14 05:40 PM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,016
mstewart Offline OP
Extreme Angler
OP Offline
Extreme Angler
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,016
I am interested in other's experience with Boat U.S. (or Sea-Tow)
I need more assistance with Trailer towing, than boat towing.

Boat U.S. claims to provide Towing coverage for
1. On the water Boat towing, and provider of fuel
2. For Additional fee ($16.99), Trailer Tow assistance (for assistance with flat tires, axles, towing)
** very displeased with their Trailer Tow **
3. Discounts/service benefits at West Marine

Boat U.S. Insurance Coverage on your vessel (I had switched from State Farm)
I found their Rates very reasonable.. but later after initially refusing to renew
my Boat U.S. Towing Services membership (due to very poor service from trailer tow), I was
informed that I could not have Boat U.S. insurance coverage on my boat, without being
a Boat U.S. Towing Services member.

My experience with Boat U.S.::

Problem with Boat U.S. is that they can't guarantee me coverage for Trailer tow.
In June of 2012, In preparation for a long tow to the Florida Keys, (1 year old Carlisles tires), I had all tires removed from the rim, and inspected at Discount (then re-inflated at City Garage with Nitrogen).
The next morning, while heading to the Florida Keys, and towing from Dallas area through Monroe, Louisiana on Interstate 20, I had a right side tire blow-out at 5:30am on a Saturday Morning (**Terrible way to start a family vacation**). Pulled off to the side of the road (small shoulder) with damaged rim on the dirt/grass on the side of the road (in close proximity to fire ant hill). Large Semi-tractor trailers driving past were so close, it would shake both the truck and the trailer.

I called Boat U.S. for assistance and was informed they would call me back in 45 minutes. 50 minutes later, I received a call that it would be another 45 minutes to an hour before someone would show up. It appears that Boat U.S. simply calls around, and attempts to find a tow organization willing to accept their contracted towing fees (not easy to find someone at 5:30am on a Saturday Morning, in Monroe, Louisiana).

In the tractor-trailer created draft/gusts, I felt unsafe and rapidly became impatient, so I changed the tire myself, that was pretty scary (lots of fire ants). Still a good thing it was a passenger side tire failure, as the driver side would have been very dangerous to change. The tow service didn't arrive until I had already changed the tire, and was putting away both of my rolling jacks, and the destroyed rim back on the spare-tire carrier.

I was only a few miles from University of Louisiana at Monroe, and I had a High School friend that had attended ULM, located on a River (Bayou DeSiard) and he was involved in their Water Ski team. Boats all over the place (ski boats, very few fishing boats), so I expected with all these boats, they would cater to the boat owners (couldn't find a trailer tire shop open on a Saturday morning, and eventually had the opportunity to purchase a set of new Class 'E' trailer tires at a shop located at edge of the parking lot for the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss Rebels). Very good tires (not Carlisles), and will be replacing them before next trip. It is worth it to spend the Extra $250 to $300 for new tires before a long road tip.

BoatU.S. towing didn't provide the service that I wanted...so I refused to renew my Boat U.S. towing services (now looking at Sea-Tow which provides both trailer, boat, and tow vehicle coverage).

It was then that I was informed that I wouldn't have the Insurance Coverage on my Boat.

So for Boat Insurance, I think Boat U.S. provides very reasonable rates (you just have to pay, at a minimum, the basic Boat U.S. towing members of $24). I don't know anything about the Boat U.S. Insurance Customer Service and their handling of claims (never had one).

While I was pleased with their Boat insurance rates, I am very displeased with the Towing Services (on land) for Boat U.S. never used the on the water towing.

*Something to consider (Discount for Geico members)
3 months, after I allowed by Tow service membership to expire, I was informed that since both Boat U.S., and Geico are owned by Warren Buffet's Holding company (Berkshire Hathaway Inc), that Boat U.S. members, receive a discount from Geico insurance. A basic BoatU.S. membership is $24, and the discount from Geico is several hundred. I renewed for the very basic BoatU.S. membership for $24 (stupid timing as I didn't renew the desired Boat U.S. vessel coverage for my boat), and received the discount from Geico (auto coverage).

While I subscribe to a basic membership of BoatU.S., I am still looking into Sea-Tow to provide offshore towing coverage, trailer tow assist (covers the tow vehicle), during my visits down to the Gulf or Atlantic.

Re: BoatUS Insurance was acceptable except being tied to Boat US Towing membership [Re: mstewart] #9908269 04/15/14 12:23 AM
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 15,647
armadillo joe Offline
TFF Guru
TFF Guru
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 15,647
I had Boat US for almost 2 years filed a claim and it took them 3 months to give an answer and they denied the claim. Since if have changed insurance I have talked to two people that had the same problem with their motors I did they were with different companies and their claims were handled very quick and were paid. When I took my boat to the shop and said whose insurance I had I was told lots of luck.

Re: BoatUS Insurance was acceptable except being tied to Boat US Towing membership [Re: mstewart] #9942033 04/28/14 07:45 AM
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 348
Dicster Offline
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 348
I had a bad experience with Boat US also. I had a leaf spring on my trailer that broke due to uneven roads. They denied my claims due to wear and tear. My trailer in 10 yrs old, it's gonna have rust on it. That's was the whole purpose for having insurance just in case something goes wrong. But their Tow Service isn't bad if you need towing withing 100 miles limit. Twice it used the towing service and towing service came through within 1 hr.

Last edited by Dicster; 04/28/14 07:46 AM.
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