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Newer vehicles nowadays often have a digital key of sorts. You can lock and unlock your car from your smartphone using an app. But, not every vehicle has this feature. If you’ve locked your keys in the car, can you call the police to help you out? If not, who can you contact to get back inside and driving again?

Is it a big deal if you locked your keys in the car?

A man that locked his keys in the car.
A person locked their keys in the car | Getty Images

Locking vehicles is the best way to deter thieves from stealing your car, but sometimes, you lock yourself out, which can be frustrating. Many people panic because they need to get back inside and retrieve their keys as soon as possible. However, dealing with this problem will be a little easier than if you lost your keys.

According to Erie Insurance, some drivers carry spare keys in their wallets or purses, and some even store one in a magnetic case placed behind the fuel cap door or underneath the vehicle. You can easily access the spare and unlock the door to get your keys.

But, not everyone does that. Some may even hand a spare to a family member or friend. That way, they can call them up and ask if they would come and unlock the car to retrieve your keys. However, this method isn’t utilized as often as it should. Is all hope lost if you still can’t get back in? Not at all. 

Should you call the police to help you out?

You can certainly call the police to help you if you find you have locked yourself out of your car. In some cases, they’ll be happy to stop by and lend a helping hand to get you reunited with your keys. However, they won’t always be so willing. 

Police officers strive to protect the city’s citizens, so officers may be busy on other more important calls. If they’re still willing to help, you might have to wait quite a while for someone to show up and help you get the car unlocked. 

If the situation is serious then they’ll likely show up within minutes. For example, you might have locked your keys in the car while your infant is in the back seat. That would be considered an emergency, and officers should be notified to ensure you can get back into the vehicle and your infant is safe.  

What else can you do if you’ve locked your keys in the car?

If the situation isn’t serious, there are still many other ways to get back inside. Roadside assistance is one of them. If you happen to have roadside coverage in your insurance plan, you could call and have a tow truck come out and unlock the vehicle for you. This, of course, would be paid for by your insurance, or a portion of it would be covered.

You can also call a locksmith. They get calls several times a year from other drivers who’ve done the same thing as you. However, you can expect to pay for this service. It could be $75 and up, depending on who does it and what all they had to do to get your vehicle unlocked. Locksmiths may charge nothing if a child or pet is locked inside in hot weather. 

Locking your keys in your car can be a frustrating experience. But know there are options out there that can help you when you need it.


What To Do If You’ve Locked Your Keys In Your Car