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Web Buzz: Travelers with car trouble can use the Honk app to contact roadside assistance

Pay-as-you-go roadside assistance could become the new security blanket for road trippers.

Name: Honk

What it does: The app helps travelers who have car trouble use their mobile phone or tablet to connect with more than 35,000 roadside assistance providers. Available around-the-clock, daily.

Available: In the App Store, requires iOS 8 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. In the Google Play Store, requires Android 4.0.3 and up.

Cost: The app is free, but there is a charge for service.

What's hot: It's a valuable alternative for drivers who can't afford an annual membership or don't often use the plan and are tempted to cancel it. The app's corresponding website — www.honkforhelp.com — has travel tips for road warriors, such as "7 Tips for Neck and Back Pain While Traveling," "15 Best Road Trip Destinations on Instagram" and "10 Healthy Snacks to Bring With You on a Road Trip."

What's not: It would be nice to know the actual price of a service before summoning assistance. The app quoted a price of $75, including tax and tip, to jump a battery in a 2009 Prius on the freeway in Carlsbad. However, a line said, "Book now, while rate is available." Uncertainty like that adds anxiety to an already stressed customer.

— Jen Leo

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
A version of this article appeared in print on February 21, 2016, in the Features section of the Los Angeles Times with the headline "WEB BUZZ - Car trouble? Get help with Honk app" — Today's paperToday's paper | Subscribe
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