OCEANSIDE, CALIFORNIA -- We had a trip booked to Hawaii that AAA had to cancel because of COVID-19. AAA and Pleasant Holidays refused to refund us our money and instead said we could have only credit that was good for only one year. Here we are in the middle of a Pandemic, needing the $12,000 to pay our bills and they are holding it. There isn't even a time in the near future when Hawaii is going to open up travel, so how can we be on a deadline.
It is better to book directly with the hotel or an online site like Expedia or Priceline, then you would get your money back. AAA Travel is the parent company of Pleasant Holidays and they are not there for you and won't help you in a crisis. Don't book with them. They don't care how long you have been a member or how many insurances you carry with them. They don't care about you in a crisis!!
TEXAS -- I called to cancel membership in August. I have record on my cell phone bill. they said they would take care of it but I got billed again on 9/22. so I called to cancel AGAIN and get refunded and they refused. THEIR employee didn't do their job to cancel it. So they won't give me back my money. THIEVES!!!!
ARIZONA -- I have been a member since 1987 and am pleased with their road service. However, I now find out that I am being forced to pay $2 every year for a subscription to their magazine. I do not read it and it goes right into the recycle bin when I get it. If someone wants it then I am sure they would be happy to pay the $2. But why should people who do not want the magazine be forced to pay for it?
I contacted Customer Service at 800-922-8228 and was told that that was just the way their "system" is and that perhaps if more people complained about it they would change their "system." Their "system" in this regard is a bad one. If they want to use $2 of my membership dues for something, they should donate it to a charity of my choice instead and not force me to pay for something I do not want.
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA -- In 9/2017 replaced car battery when car failed to start. Called AAA and tech arrived to my location in about 30 minutes. Tech tested battery and said battery needs replacing. Spent almost $190 with assurance the battery was warrantied for 3 years. Then on 9/1/2019 the battery didn't start. Gave it about 10 seconds, and the car started and was fine. I thought I should have it tested just in case, so a couple of days later, drove to Autozone to have battery tested to avoid using up a AAA service call. Autozone found the battery was very weak. I proceeded start car, and found the car was completely dead. Even the power doors wouldn't open.
So called AAA, they came out, tested and said battery was fine, yet car was dead. So another AAA came with flatbed and towed to my mechanic. My mechanic said the battery was dead and couldn't test the system to rule out. He checked wires and fuses, but found battery is dead and wouldn't hold a charge and recommended I have car checked at Chevy dealer. So called AAA for another tow to Jimmy Johnson Chevrolet. To check car out, it was going to cost $190. They tested battery found it was dead and tried jumping and still no start.
They said battery wasn't taking a charge, so they left charger on for 4 hours and by then AAA again came out and car finally started. AAA put their tester on and said battery was like new. So dealer said they would let car sit overnight and recheck. I get a call from dealer saying the battery seems to have a bad cell and that it might be 2 days or 2 months, but battery is going out. Yet AAA checks and says battery is like new and won't replace.
So after all this, I had to buy a battery from dealership as I think AAA tester is rigged to say it's ok even when battery has no power. So after all this, instead of just replacing my battery because of warranty, I had to purchase new battery. Final cost to me $322. Thanks to worthless AAA battery. So in short, 3 independent sources said the battery was bad and need replacing. AAA says the battery is like new so they won't honor warranty until battery is completely bad.
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA -- I just received a letter from Tripple AAA of the Carolinas member services canceling my membership of over 23 years because just reviewed my usage of their services and felt it was over their policy and procedural guidelines. I spoke with Leroy in members services attempting to explain that as a customer since 1996, disabled, and a senior with ambulation/ health needs I have come to depend on their services.
I have not used my membership once this year, and have been taking care of my own problems in order not to abuse the program. Leroy was very rude, and informed me that regardless of whom I spoke to rather the supervisor, Tammy, or the manager, Becky I would not be reinstated. I am 63 years old, disabled, and a senior citizen who is part of a group of adults who are the foundational backbone of this society through our financial and overall community/state/federal support. I have the right to be treated with respect as a faithful client and as one of the many older adults who are the foundation of your business.
NORTHEAST REGION, MASSACHUSETTS -- Although I've been an AAA premier member since 2002, it was just recently brought to my attention, what in my opinion, is pure discrimination of AAA services to a great deal of its members. Beware AAA Northeast members, if you decide to go on a camping trip or snowmobile trip and break down, sure your tow vehicle is covered but plan on leaving your trailer on the side of the road. Or whip out your credit card and get ready for a hefty tow charge, if you can even get a separate tow service at that same time. Come to find out, AAA offers an RV add on road service for what I'm told is a pretty good price. I can't say for sure what that price is because the add on is not offered to us Northeast region folks.
I spent time and time making phone calls and writing emails to AAA that only seem to make it to deaf ears. Apparently us Northeast Region folks aren't worthy of this service. I haven't been given a true reason yet why we're not included with this same offer of service as members that are only 20 miles away from me are. So beware, if you have a Northeast region membership, even if it's a premier membership and break down pulling your camper, motorcycle or snowmobile trailer, you and your trailer are gonna be left in the cold. Just a heads up.
INDIANA, PENNSYLVANIA -- An hour and a half to transfer plates, renew registration and change license address. Couldn't believe it and the woman used my card so much for every little thing that my card company shut my card off. The place was packed with people needing service. And this woman who had no idea on how to fill out forms was waiting on people. We watched other employees wait on a min of 4 customers while we were still trying to get thru being waited on. My husband's Company pays for our AAA. What I saw of the service I would go to a private magistrate and support small business. Not a happy customer. I finally got cranky with her.
RENO, NEVADA -- I have been a member with AAA Emergency Road Service (Plus Member). My truck broke down in Reno Nevada, called the 800 number to get towed back to my house... app. 80 miles away. They informed me that there would be someone there in 40-45 minutes. About fifteen minutes after receiving that call, they called me again and said that there was no one available to tow me home and that it couldn't be done until the next day.
Well my truck is full of lumber that I had just bought and I could not let it sit in the parking lot overnight so I took matters into my own hands. I called my local towing company in Susanville (Susanville Towing). They we able to get a tow truck to my location and get me back home. Great job Susanville Towing... As for the AAA Towing in Reno Nevada... they failed to provide the service as stated per their obligation.
TUCSON, ILLINOIS -- I signed myself and my fiancée up for a membership online. The website even asked for her name, birthdate and email address. Needless to say, they did not add her, and when calling customer service to have her added they said there is an additional 48 hour wait time for her even though it was their error on their website. The agents Heather & Rudy (both allegedly supervisors), were rude and said I would need to pay an additional fee for the same day service (which cost more than the towing), and said I could file for reimbursement for my towing (even though it would most likely not be approved).
NEWBURYPORT, MASSACHUSETTS -- My 18-year-old daughter's car suddenly became really slow to drive forward. She immediately pulled the car over in a parking lot and called AAA. After waiting 1.5 hours, the tow truck driver arrived. Although the car obviously had a problem being driven, the driver gets in her car and tries to drive it so it would be easier for him to tow the front wheel drive. The axle makes a crunching sound and the left front wheel gets pulled backwards like it's going to break off. Not the right thing for him to have done. Turned out it was the ball joint.
He gets in his truck and races loudly around the block so he can back up to the rear of the car. He jacks up the front of the car with a really old jack on 2 wheels, attaches the winch and begins to pull the car forward from the rear onto the lift bed on the ground. As it rolls, the jack lists to the side and gets hung up on a crack in the pavement. Only the back tires are on the lift and he can't pull the car any further. He gets outs, lowers the jack, and because the wheel is broken, the car lists to the side and now he can't get the jack out from under the car.
He raises the truck lift so that the back wheels are up off the ground, gets back in the truck, backs it up. The car body moves backwards, but because the front tire is broken, it doesn't move with the car and the tire gets pushed into the forward wheel well. He still can't get the jack out so he gets back in the truck and drives forward. Now the car body is pulled forward but the broken wheel again doesn't move with it. He continues to drive forward so far that I see the body of the wheel well begin to actually bend as it is crushed against the tire.
I yell to him to stop and told him that he's damaging the car. He gets out, lowers the lift bed to the ground, stomps around to the front of the car and pulls the jack out. He jams the jack under a spot in front of the rear axle and jacks the car up so he can take the tire off. But the wheel is broken and stays on the ground. He goes back to the truck and lifts the rear wheels to take pressure off the broken wheel. He tries to take the tire lug nuts off and his tool breaks so he has to get another. He finally removes the tire. He pulls out 2 long pieces of 4x4s and a small one.
He jams them under the broken wheel hub itself, lowers the jack so the hub rests directly on the wood, and I hear the axle and hub make more crunching sounds and it appears that the wheel hub is now getting damaged. He then begins to pull the car forward again as the wheel hub stays stationary and the car body starts to move forward. This is crazy. I told the guy to stop right there.
I called AAA as he begins to try something else. I tell the service representative that this tow truck driver is damaging my car. She says there is nothing she can do, he doesn't work for AAA. I explain that if they don't stop him from causing damage to my car, then AAA is responsible. She asks to speak to the driver. After speaking with her, he gives my phone back to me. She says that he has to get my car off his truck and there's nothing she can do.
I ask when she can have another tow truck there. She says that it will probably be another hour before someone comes. I said that was not OK after already waiting an hour and a half for a guy to damage the car. She says that I have to go to the end of the list of other calls. I ask to speak to a supervisor. She puts me on hold for 17 minutes, then tells me there is no supervisor available. She says she's directing me to a complaint center. Another long wait before someone comes on to ask me about the situation. Meanwhile the guy has pulled my car off the truck, inflicting more damage.
The AAA guy I speak with asks me to describe what happened. He says it sounds like the tow truck driver was doing everything he should have. I said that I watched him bend the wheel well of my car and cause further damage to the wheel hub and axle. He said that he'll have an inspector come out to the mechanic's shop where the car is towed to examine the car in a few days.
When the new tow truck driver comes, he shakes his head at what the other guy has done and says that the first driver has made his job way more difficult. When I told him what happened he said he could see this guy doing it, and that that company doesn't have a good reputation. I watch him use professional tools to jack up the car with a four-wheeled jack and remove the car's front wheel, place a heavy duty and made-for-the purpose metal slider under the body near the broken tire to help slide it forward without the car leaning over where the tire is missing. He pulls the front of the car carefully on to the lift, lifts the car and all is accomplished simply and efficiently.
Days later, when I respond to an AAA message saying they have a report from the inspector and will discuss a resolution, the AAA representative tells me that their inspector has found no damage to the car; any damage he found was already there before the guy did the tow job. He said that my daughter already caused the damage when she pulled over. I told him that my mechanic said that the inspector who came out was very young and inexperienced and had previously been only a tow truck driver. The AAA representative says that the inspector used to work for Geico and is experienced. He says that their review shows that the first tow truck driver did it all well.
I said that I did not agree with their resolution, since I witnessed the guy crush the fender along with other damage to the wheel hub and axle. He will inform the complaint reviewer that I dispute their determination that the truck driver was not at fault. I asked him if they ever contacted the second tow truck driver for his evaluation of what was left by the first driver, but AAA did not. The representative says he will pass along my request and that I do not agree with their resolution. He does not ask for the name and phone number of the second tow truck driver.
Don't waste your money on AAA. You can sign up for roadside assistance through your insurance company for $15/year or call 911 for assistance finding help that you can pay for only when you need it. AAA isn't available everywhere and will take way longer than a call by police to a nearby tow truck company. Another better roadside assistance company is Better World Club, a green company which does not lobby against public transportation like AAA.