SUBMIT A COMPLAINT / horrible customer service

Tampa, FL, United States Review updated:

I never do this because i believe anybody can have a bad day but this is beyond one person and it looks like aaa is at fault. I have been a member for a couple of years and my family for alot longer. I have always had faith that aaa will be there when i needed them (Its why i pay for the service).

At about 6 pm on 06/16/2017 i needed aaa my van broke down at a gas station leaving my new husband (Whom i was going to get to become a member as well) at home with the kids and me stranded. I was 1 mile from my house and my husband came out to stay with me to make sure i was ok.

I had told him i contacted aaa to come get me and he could stay with the kids cause i would be home soon. He would have none of it thankfully and arrived to be with me within 10 minutes.

Within 30 min aaa showed up!!! Saved, or so i thought, it turns out that aaa deemed it prudent not to send a tow truck (Which i had asked for and the entire reason i have this membership) but instead to send me a salesman.

Can you believe it! A salesman ! I never in a million years would have thought that.

The gentleman was very nice told us it was probably the battery is the problem and he would be happy to see if it was. My husband knew what was going on and tried to tell me we were in for a sales pitch. I told him he was being silly that i called for a tow and that is what i pay for.

Well i had already been on the phone looking for a battery and found one for 60.00 the gentleman offered us a aaa battery for 115.00 right now ! What a deal... Sorry for the sarcasm but it gets worse.

My husband asked him if he bought this battery and the van did not strt would we still be required to purchase the battery and his question was avoided. So he declined thinking that the gentleman would just tow us the one mile to our home.

Wrong again!!! It seems that after aaa could not get more money from us they ditched us. The nice gentle man bid us a good day and gave us bottle water and said a tow was on the way leaving me bewildered as to what just happened. My help just took off. I guess to try to sell an over priced battery to another stranded person.

By now an hour and a half goes by and the nice sunny eavening turned into a lightening display that would make any fool run for cover. On top of it the road where the tow truck would be coming is now a construction nightmare

As we sit there smelling the tar fumes and hoping lightening doesn't get us or hoping our kids were behaving themselves for the 16 yo young lady we left them with (They weren't) i called again and was told that the call wasn't placed by the battery salesman and that no tow was on the way!

I waited longer and called back only to be told by the person answering the phone that "we know aaa sells batteries" lol can you believe it? This is not the work of one bad salesman it looks like aaa is selling batteries now.

My husband got on the phone and talked to a lady who transferred him to armando the dispatch supervisor who was very unsympathetic to say the least and no matter what my husband said armando would not budge told us it was not his problem basically and that a tow was on the way. My husband even said to please bring the battery guy back to hook us up just to get us home since he was there so quick the first time and was told that a tow truck was on the way again.

After some minutes we called back to inform them that our road was closed and the driver would be forced to come up another road aaa informed us that it should be there by 10 pm.

Even after the warning the tow truck over shot us backed up against traffic drove over cones and crossed a construction area to get us home at 10 from 6 to 10. Funny how when the idea of making some money shows up aaa is right there nice and fast but when a paying member needs a service for something already paid for they dont care!

At the current time i will be looking for another roadside assistance company. My family is up in arms as to how we were treated and aaa is going to loose several clients.In the grand scheme of things you will not miss us but i will tell my story every chance i get.

You want to keep us as clients ? I thought about this. How can aaa make it up to us if they care ? Easy give me that battery that caused all of this trouble. If the tow truck would have been there like i asked for then we wouldn't have experianced the storm or construction and we wouldnt have had to worry about our kids who didnt eat til ten pm either cause thats what i went out for.

I am buying a battery this evening when i get off if aaa doesn't try to make my happy other wise reply to this thread my computer will be on all day and my husband is home.

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  • Jo
      Aug 05, 2007
    AAA - Horrible customer service!
    United States

    I went to purchase a new car today. I had received a quote from AAA on Friday - everything was set. All I had to do was go pick up my new car, call in the credit card number and get a policy number so the dealer could finalize everything.

    The AAA agent I dealt with was not there, so I got another - Ramon. Ramon proceeds to run everything all over from the start, claiming he can get me a better rate if I can give him my D.L. from the state I used to live in 4 years ago. Why would I still have this? I wouldn't because DMV is required to destroy your old license. I tell him this. He keeps working on the better deal, ignoring me. I told him - 5 TIMES - I do not want anything more, all the work was done Friday, please take my card and give me the policy number for the dealer, he's wasting everyone's time.

    He kept working on the better rate. I told him to get a manager. He puts me on eternal hold. I hung up and called Progressive - whose agent had started from scratch at a moment's notice and I was off the phone in 3 minutes. Before I even made it across the showroom floor to sign the final papers, the faxed policy was in their hands. AAA lost 2 customers today - myself and my sister who heard everything that was going on. She went home and canceled her policy. Avoid them at ALL COSTS. (I did have previous experiences with their idiot agents before today. Today was the last straw.)

    0 Votes
  • Be
      Jan 04, 2008

    AAA Insurance
    MemberSelect Insurance Company
    1 Auto Club Drive
    Dearborn, MI 48126

    policy 1207161

    Insurance agency basically told me I didn't need a proof of insurance for my son pont sunfire.
    I paid them for insurance coverage for his car and mine.
    The police stopped my son for a broken light. And they informed him his license was suspended. I found out the agent was wrong an SR 29 was supposed to be filed on my son's coverage when we first received the policy. The police had the car towed and we paid $500 to get the car back. My son get a ticket and got behind on the car payments trying to get his car back.

    Got a policy and SR 29 with American Family Insurance on the same day I called them and they took care of it the same day.

    AAA never reimbursed us for the money we loss getting the car out the towing company. They fired the agent. And told me my reimbursement was being handled by another department. That was 6 months ago. A supervisor name Dean finally cancel the policy because as I explained why have two policies with two companies. He was very nice but it didn't take the ouch out of my pocket.

    I still would like my $500 from AAA. When we went to court the ticket was throw out When I explained we paid for insurance but agent didn't filed the SR form.

    0 Votes
  • Ka
      Sep 14, 2010 - restitution for inproper tire change
    triple A
    United States

    Triple a sent a subcontractor to change our tire in gatlinburg tn. The next morning we set off for pigeon forge and went about 2 miles and smelled a burning smell and then our tire flew off and into the river. Theyhave not paid for the damages and they were clearly at fault. We spent an hour waiting for the first guy who screwed it up and an hour on the next one then we spent 2 days without a car. Talk about poor customer service. To top that off they wouldnt return our calls after telling us we'd have to talk to so and so higher up in the company.

    0 Votes
  • Da
      Sep 18, 2010

    It is possible. Do you remember the recall in about 2017 on the 2017 Ford Focus, that if you went over 45 mph there was a chance the right front tire could fall off? It was something to do with a spindle defect (I'm a woman, cars aren't my thing.) But I did receive the recall letter from Ford, and did have to take my car to the dealership to prevent the tire from falling off at certain speeds.

    +1 Votes
  • Ne
      Oct 05, 2010

    Allstate is a better road club.

    +1 Votes
  • Ke
      Oct 16, 2010


    This was definitely a nightmare call for you!

    I'm contemplating how to respond to this as there are several issues that need to be addressed.

    First, I am the operations manager for a towing company in Oregon. We are also a AAA contractor and we suscribe to their battery service program. I've been in the industry since 1996 and with this company since 1998.

    I am not paid by AAA to defend them. I happened upon this site (and my 3 doing research for another project and was appalled by the number of complaints concerning AAA and the towing industry. As such, I felt it was my duty to try and clarify some of the issues.

    Now, for your situation. I am cringing because you did such a fabulous job detailing out the entire scenario, I can just visualize every aspect of what happened.

    My kids continually tease me that I missed my calling and should have been a detective, if not a lawyer, because I have this uncanny ability to pick out the details...or missed details.

    So please bear with me here...and you seem like a very nice person who had a horrible experience...but I am confused about something.

    I am not saying you are a liar, so please don't take it that way...

    But I am confused by the fact that you said you always needed a tow truck (had requested a tow truck) but then a battery "salesman" showed up, you had already been on the phone to price out batteries...and even in the end, could make all of this go away if AAA would just give you the battery they wanted to sell you to "make this right".

    So, my question is, did your car not need a battery? Because it sounds to me like it did. And if that is the case, was AAA really wrong in responding with the battery service truck and the "nice salesman"?

    The short answer is, "YES"----bet you were suprised by that!

    The long answer is, "NO"----what? How can this be?

    Neither here nor there, let's talk about the service you received. And since that is the title of your complaint, that is really the issue.

    Okay, the short answer first. I believe that when a member requests a tow, AAA should just send a tow truck. The idea is to please the member and provide the service. In fact, our drivers are NOT paid commission for that very reason. It encourages customer service and safety.

    As soon as you throw in a commission per call in an industry such as this, customer service goes out the window. And corners are cut on safety (specifically: tie down points when a driver does need to tow a vehicle).

    That's it. Plain and simple. I believe in giving the customer what they want, not what I perceive they need.

    If you want your car towed, we tow it. And believe me, we've towed for some pretty silly reasons!

    However, the long answer is more complicated. AAA, in their marketing and research, has determined that more of their members are satisfied if they can be put back "On the Go"-----yes, that is one of their official tag lines these days----and as such, they the time of call taking...listen to what you are saying and read more into it, then send you what they think you need. In this case, something you said must have prompted the call taker to send the battery service truck.

    Even though you WANTED a tow truck.

    Anyone with some form of sales training has been taught that your job is to provide the "best" solution even if the customer doesn't "know" what the best solution is at the time, right?

    I'm sure you've heard that before.

    Kinda of cheesy, but it's the truth. As a result the AAA call taker must have figured out that the best solution for you, wasn't a tow truck...but the battery service truck.

    Turns out they were wrong!

    So, Mr. Battery Service guy comes out...tests your battery, determines you need a new one and asks for $115, installed, at your convenience, on the spot and the disposal fee is included.'s pricey. And it's only a value if you "perceive it to be a value"-----another truth of sales and marketing. But this is not a perceived value for you, and in fact, you consider it a "rip off".

    Interesting point here, if it weren't for the cost of the battery, might you have been pleased with the service and then being sent on your way without having to deal with the "battery issue" at a later date and time?

    For the record? We are on the other side of the continent and they are the same price here.

    Anyway, before you bash the price too much, for many people they do consider it a value. Not for me. We sell them, but then I am in the industry...have some mechanical ability...and have the time and resources to buy my own battery and install it.

    But for many of the elderly, tourists, or people who need it now and know their time is money...the option of having "at your door" service for battery sales and installation is very appealing.

    So to be fair, the value may not be there for you, but for some it's very real.

    And...a little plug here...the additional value on a AAA battery is that it's a nationwide warranty. So if you are in the parking lot of XYZ store, your car won't start, it's the battery...AAA will come to YOU, test it, and replace it if necessary. Rather than you having to get jump started and then you needing to drive to Sears or Costco or Wal-Mart, etc. to deal with a warranty issue.

    Again, that "peace of mind" is rather appealing to some people. Maybe not you.

    Okay, so you decide the battery isn't for you. He gives you a bottle of water and says he has called a tow truck.

    The water was a nice touch. I've been trying to get our club to provide those to my drivers but no go out here.

    A side note here----IF it was a battery issue and not say, an alternator issue, then in theory the battery salesman should have been able to give you a jump start and you could have driven the car home! This is another point of confusion for me. Either you legitimately needed a battery or you didn't. If you didn't, buying a battery wouldn't have solved your problem. But if you did (and there weren't other problems with your charging system) then a jump would have gotten you on your way with no tow necessary!

    At this point, there is very little that is going to turn the situation around for you. It's going to be an uphill struggle from here on out. I recognize that. And rightfully so. You are extremely disappointed in the service so far.

    And to be honest, from here on out, AAA has definitely screwed up. The failure of the battery tech to verify a truck is enroute...and it goes downhill more from there.

    I can't speak for the AAA supervisor who was unsympathetic. There are bad employees who represent very fine companies all over the world. Hopefully they get weeded out.

    And with the time it took for this entire job to be completed, I don't blame your frustration level one bit. Nor your venting.

    I don't work for AAA, so I cannot speak for how they should make it "right" for you. But being that you were so disappointed with their service (and rightfully so) your request for the battery to be "comped" is not unreasonable in my opinion.

    To be honest, if you were dealing with our's probably what I would do. I believe in the power of "word of mouth" and your experience justifies some compensation to maintain a positive opinion about our company and AAA to continue leaving your lips.

    So in the end, the title to your complaint is very appropriate. Thank you for sharing. But please don't rule out AAA and the entire battery service program based on this instance.

    I see that one person said Allstate is a better motor club...we tow for them too. But, in general, you are better going with AAA. This particular experience aside. AAA has higher standards for their towers...not the least of which is the 7 year criminal background you have some assurance the driver coming to assist you is not going to be some convicted felon. Other motor clubs might make this claim that they do background checks, but AAA is the only one who confirms compliance.

    For me, that is a huge factor if I am ever in need of road side service in an unfamiliar area. I am IN this industry and I have AAA.

    +1 Votes
  • Of
      Jan 13, 2011 - refuses to warranty their products
    United States

    Approximately eight months ago after calling aaa for a dead battery, i was told that i needed a new one. Making it easy, i decided to purchase one from the aaa driver. Now, eight months later my battery died. No problem - i call aaa and they tell me that the battery needs a "super boost" and i should go to an auto dealer. I went to goodyear auto and after about three hours they tell me the battery is no good and won't hold the charge. (They recommended that since the battery was new i should call aaa. ) i return home and call aaa again. The same driver as previously returns and tells me everything is fine except i need to charge the battery a full eight hours before he can replace it. I have been charging the battery now for five hours - i turn off the engine and the battery does nothing. When i asked the driver if this is normal, he says no but he has to follow the instructions. I then procced to call aaa in new york, florida (Where the car was located) and get put on hold for at least another hour. Finally, i get a person who says that even thought the car has been charged for over five hours that is not enough and they can't do anything.

    I went to sears and purchased a battery - when i asked the technician if a battery has to be charged eight hours before they can tell if it will hold the charge, he said that was an absurdity that aaa always tells their members so they never have to replace batteries.

    Don't ever buy parts from aaa - they can start cars - they will not however, warranty any of their products.

    0 Votes
  • Ge
      May 03, 2011 - undependable
    United States

    My car was stolen and found 30 miles away. I paid aaa for 100 miles coverage annually so i was counting on them towing the car home. Not surprisingly they denied my request because stolen recovery was not covered. I was stranded and left paying a few hundred dollars to get my car home. The tow yard driver told me that aaa pays them very little and that's the reason why i was not getting any help.

    0 Votes
  • Lo
      May 04, 2011 - loss of reward points
    United States

    My dad was trying to get his reward points cashed in. We went to the web site only to find out that his world woide points card is no longer accepted in the system. They could have at least notified their customers of this since my dada is stilol using his card every month and they are still getting paid every month. This was a big rip off since he had over 25, 000 points accrued.

    My dad should have been notified and a new card issued in order for him not to loose the points he was using his card to get. This was a big diservice to the customer and they have been customers for a long time.

    0 Votes
  • Me
      Aug 02, 2011 - customer service/personal danger
    United States

    My car broke down on the batimore beltway, at mid-afternoon on a record hot day (100 degrees at time of incident). I called aaa 13 times before i got through (Several disconnections while on hold, several busy signals, several "call did not go through" messages). The rep said they couldn't come if i wasn't with the car. Their terms (Which i had to read to the csr, because she was unaware of them) said the following: "remain with the vehicle to receive service, however under extenuating circumstances exceptions can be made. " i explained that within 2 minutes of the engine shutting off, the heat became unbearable (130 degrees inside the car within 2 minutes) , and that this beltway is notorious for deaths caused by "disabled vehicles being struck, " and asked under what "extenuating circumstances exceptions can be made. " she didn't know of any, but agreed to ask her supervisor about this one. She was back on the phone in less than 15 seconds, saying "no sir. There is nothing we can do for you. " now i'm out not only the $130 aaa membership, but also the $200-300 i will need to shell out in order to get my disabled vehicle out of the county impound lot (Where they will eventually tow it). Do not get aaa; it will put your life in danger.

    0 Votes
  • He
      Aug 02, 2011

    so you woud just leave your car instead of calling a tow truck to come and get it yourself. You lazy piece of work...

    0 Votes
  • Eu
      Aug 05, 2011

    AAA Only implies quality didn't actually think they would asset you. After all you only paid a premium, service is extrrrrra.

    0 Votes
  • Eu
      Aug 05, 2011

    If you want service or quality service from AAA over and above your premium...well that's extra! Compassion is not in their vocabulary.

    0 Votes
  • Th
      Feb 29, 2012

    FROM DEALING with the same BULL [censored] from AAA ..I CANCEL My Membership on 2/24/2017 WHERE IS MY REFUND to MY VISA CARD ending in *** PLEASE GIVE ME MY MONEY BACK I AM VERY DISAPPOINTED Supervisor made notes on file REFUND as of TODAY WEDNESDAY Feb 29th 2017 in the AMOUNT OF $****... Theresa P !!! Damn AAA they are full of [censored]

    +1 Votes
  • As
      Sep 15, 2012

    I can not speak bad about AAA, however I have found a Excellent Company I pay 19.95 monthly for quality benefits!!! Review benefits here With Motor Club of America(partnered with tvc matrix) I actually get paid to refer others to their service!! They pay me $80 per referral!!! This is something I know AAA does not do! To sign up for your service go to to sign up for your benefits today!!!

    0 Votes
  • Kk
      Jun 18, 2014 - terrible service
    United States

    I experienced the worst service i have ever had with a company. I'm writing this to inform other customers of how terrible of a company triple a is. Over the weekend i was stranded with my four year old son for over 5 hours until triple a finally got to my car and to top it of it was in the middle of the night. 8 pm until 1 in the morning. I had to call several times none of the employees new what i was talking about they where a compliant joke and fought with me the whole time i was lied to for 5 hours ! I also had to leave my car unattended with my keys in it because it got so late. They forgot to put my order in and did not own up to their mistakes. I am letting people know don't ever sign up for triple a i had a membership for a year and got no benefits from in just a tone of stress and to top my nightmare of with them i had to pay 130 dollars for my tow on top of my membership. Please do not use there buisness and go threw someone else.

    0 Votes
  • Pr
      May 25, 2015 - service
    United States

    Aaa didn't honor our premium membership 200 mile tow stating that the membership wasn't 24hrs old yet. We requested a tow truck for our vehicle to be towed the 199 miles to our mechanic, they refused stating they would provide 5 miles of toeing free! They would not honor the rental car as stated in the premium package, again because membership wasn't 24 hrs old. We relented and requested that they sent the tow truck; we where in the middle of nowhere with two kids. They stated they would sent the tow truck. What showed up was a battery tech!!! She tested our battery and said it was fine-we knew that!!! It was another issue based on the cars symptoms! She then requested the tow truck. Luckily she was kind enough to drive me to portland airport where i could rent a car to get us back to seattle. Whilst i was getting the car, my husband calls; he was with the vehicle. The tow truck showed up, he checked the vehicle over and discovered it was a loose wite i'm the battery!!! The very battery that the battery tech said was in perfect condition!! The vehicle started up, luckily i hadn't driven out of the rental car parking lot and was able to void the rental agreement.
    This was a 4 hr process! If aaa had just either honored their membership or at the very least sent the tow truck mechanic out we would not have had to sit in the middle of no where with 2 kids for needless hours!
    I am digested at the custom service we received and how deceitful aaa are when you signup for a membership.

    0 Votes

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