AAA’s Waiting Periods Now Come in Extra-Long

Are You an AAA Member Who Wants to Sign Up for Premium Coverage? Not So Fast…

AAA has over 50 regional clubs, and we often don’t hear about their latest changes to pricing and policies until former AAA members start grumbling to us in greater numbers than usual.

We’ve recently been hearing from folks in California, Connecticut, New York and New England that longer waiting periods are being imposed on AAA members who want more than the 3-5 mile Basic coverage.  5- and even 10-day delays are now standard. AAA’s new limits apply even to current members.  In some areas, if they have used their coverage at all in the past year, they have to wait at least 6 months to upgrade.

Now, don’t get us wrong:  we understand that certain delays are an attempt to keep people who might abuse the system from doing so. Auto clubs couldn’t afford to stay in business if their members only signed up (or upgraded) when they needed service.

At Better World Club, we are trying to keep the waiting period as short as possible.   For now, we believe that three days is enough to ensure that you’re not signing up just because your RV needs to be winched out of a cow pasture.  And it’s short enough that if you’re going on a road trip next week, you can be sure your vehicle will be covered for more than just the 5 miles it takes to reach the freeway.

We also want to let everyone become a Premium member even if they’ve needed roadside assistance before.

The irony is that AAA has always used roadside assistance as a loss leader while it makes its money on auto insurance.  AAA has misled American consumers in to thinking that roadside assistance is much cheaper than it is.  Few realize that a 100 mile tow in certain parts of the country can cost about $1,000.  Inevitably, AAA had to recognize how uneconomic their policies were.

Are they now going too far the other way and hurting their members as a result?   That’s what we’re being told as we receive calls from AAA members in good standing who can no longer get the coverage they’ve relied on for 20 years or more.

We recommend looking carefully at the policies of any road service you receive (including ours), and making sure that it serves your needs.  If you have questions or comments about anything in our member contract, we’re always happy to hear from you. 

Kicking Asphalt

This article is from Better World Club's monthly eNewsletter, Kicking Asphalt. To receive Kicking Asphalt in your inbox, subscribe today!

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