• Report: #407012

Complaint Review: On-Line Traffic School

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  • Submitted: Thu, January 01, 2009
  • Updated: Mon, March 14, 2011

  • Reported By:Gilbert Arizona
On-Line Traffic School
2390 E Camelback Rd #260 Phoenix, Arizona U.S.A.

Arizonadriver.com On-Line Traffic School Online Defensive Driving School Lousy Customer Service and Trick Questions on Exam Phoenix Arizona

*Consumer Comment: Six RIPOFF REPORTs on Arizonadriver.com

*Consumer Comment: Completely disagree with Nancy...

*Consumer Comment: EZ Class, NO PROBLEMS!

*Consumer Comment: Worked fine for me

*Consumer Comment: What I don't understand

*Consumer Comment: Arizonadriver.com business tactics are AMAZINGLY STUPID

*Consumer Comment: Login Problems My Own? Yeah right, Ray

*Consumer Comment: Yeah right Ray, 16 hours of Study is total LACK of EFFORT on my part

*Consumer Comment: LACK OF EFFORT OR RUSHED EFFORT DOOMED NANCY FROM GILBERT

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I took the "online" defensive driving class after receiving a ticket thinking it would be a convenient way to clear a speeding ticket. Was I ever wrong. I would not recommend this class or this school (The Online Traffic School, Inc.) to anyone.

1. The class is advertised as "online", however, once enrolled you soon find out that the exam portion of the class must be taken at an "onsite" testing location. Nowhere on the company site does it tell you this (until after you're enrolled). I consider this false advertising.

2. The class is advertised for $39.00 and you soon find out (only after you enroll) that the charge to your credit card is $59.99. I am still in the dark about the total cost and can find no explanation on the website for the extra $20.99 charged.

3. Once enrolled, you must fax a copy of your driver's license, ticket and signature (very confidential data). This company lost my paperwork and I had to resend a few days later. Not very comforting and completely incompetent on their part.

4. The company advertises that the course is available "24 by 7", however, I quickly discovered when I tried to take the class one Saturday, that no one could approve my credentials (driver's license) until Monday. Yes, they do have an operator available, but all she was able to tell me was that I had to wait until Monday to be approved. I consider this false advertising.

5. After finally being admitted to the program, several days later, I was told I must fork over another $110 for court fees. Nowhere on the company site are these fees explained (nor any detail about the actual cost of the court fees listed or broken out).

6. I was out of town when I was "trying" to take the class and attempted to communicate via email (which is one of the "advantages" touted on the website). Some of my questions were answered via email, others the company ignored. For example, when I asked for my password they would not respond and waited until I called them several hours later. Very frustrating. This is when they hit me with the $110 fee mentioned above. I'm still wondering why they couldn't return my email and tell me this?? Something like "Please call because we need you to pay your court fees". Why is that so hard? Really poor customer service and communication.

7. Once finally into the online portion of the class I noticed right away that there were very few review questions. The class is 14 chapters long and you are only reviewed every third chapter or so. So what you end up doing is reading a massive amount of information and you get very little feedback (and completely no feedback in the majority of chapters). I found this very worrisome. The total questions asked during the four hours of the class was approximately 12. Big help.

8. The website advertised that you could "review" the coursework after you completed the course as many times as needed (before taking the final exam). I tried to log in the day after I completed the course and the company had already revoked my userid and password. So, net result, I could not study for the final.

9. When I finished the class I had to choose an "onsite" testing location in my area. The website page was quick to point out that the testing locations were located in MAILBOXES ETC stores around the valley. Additionally, the MAILBOXES ETC logos were prominently displayed on the website and the certificate that I printed out. What I discovered (after driving around looking for the place) was that MAILBOXES ETC was bought out by The UPS Store. Also, the "address" on the building was "535" both on the building and curbside. The "address" I was looking for was "550" (the individual address for the shop) was not displayed anywhere (not on the door, not anywhere). Very poor.

10. Once I finally located the test site, the test "proctor" set me up at a PC and logged into the site. I was asked to enter my username and password and could not do so because it had already been revoked (see above).

11. At that point the proctor called the company to reset my password (which took another 15 minutes). She then provided me with a "new" password. Not what I consider confidental or secure (as advertised). At that point I was wondering why the company even bothered to give anyone a "secure" password.

12. There are two sections to complete the final; the first section is called the "Environmental" test and you are asked questions about the class that prove you read the material. The second half of the test is the actual "defensive driving" questions.

The biggest SHOCK came when I took the first half of the final ("Environmental" test). Some of the few tips the reading material did provide were hints about the "Environmental" section. The "tips" were highlighted in bright, bolded yellow and were comprised of both photos and goofy sayings. I found all quite easy to remember and studied them carefully each chapter.

When I actually took the "Enviromental" portion of the test what I found was that in addition to the "tips" I was also expected to know things like;

---What color was the font on the page?
---What was the background color used on the site?
---What did the links at the top of the page say (exact wording)?
---Was your name printed across the top of each page?
---Which company logo was posted on the pages (the company has two or three which are intermingled all over the site, your guess).

Well, honestly, these are not items I paid ANY attention to when I was taking the online portion of the class. Plus, nowhere in the reading material were there any "hints" warning me that I should be aware of these things. What a shock when I found them on the test (and so many of them).

I felt the questions were complete "trick" questions and knew right away I would have a hard time answering them correctly (as they were just a "guess" at that point). Sure enough, I get a message back right away telling me I had FAILED the environmental portion of the test and could not proceed and that I should now contact the court to find out what to do next.

What a complete SHOCK and scam.. I received 22 out of 25 correct and I was "Expelled" from the class before EVER answering ANY defensive driving questions.

I am also wondering how color blind people manage to answer these questions? To me they are not ADA compliant and completely unfair.

13. At that point I called the school and was told I was expelled. I was very upset so the supervisor got on the phone and would not listen to any of the questions I tried to ask. In fact, this was the poorest example of customer service I have EVER received in my life. This employee was actually "hollering" at me (over the top of my questions, while I was trying to speak). I hung up the phone in complete exasperation with NONE of my questions answered.

14. Now I am asking for a refund and was told the $59.99 for the class would not be reimbursed, however, the court fees would. I am watching my bank account and nothing has been reimbursed so I sent an email asking for my refund. Here is the reply I received.

"Since you were expelled from the program you are only being refunded the $65 Court Diversion Fee, which you will need to repay to the classroom course you attend. Your $20 State Fee and $45 State reporting fee will not be refunded, and it will still be submitted to the state. If you have any additional questions or concerns please give us a call at 888-731-9237."

Need to repay to the classroom? What the heck does that mean?

None of this adds up to the total $169.99 I paid (for class and court fees)?? And it also sounds like I will not get a dime back. I am fighting this battle now.

In exasperation, I went ahead and paid the traffic ticket. Because I am now late (after dinking around with this inept school for two weeks), I must also pay the court $50 more for LATE FEE.

Net total I am out is over $400 for a $175 speeding ticket.

15. Now (after every endured and no results), I revisited the company website and found this explanation of the grades needed to pass both sections of the final;

"Tests will be graded electronically. There are 2 portions to the final test. If you do not get 80% of the answers correct for the content portion on the final test, or do not achieve 80% or better on the environmental portion of the final test, you will not have any more opportunities to take the final test. Any student not achieving the passing score will be referred to a classroom program if time permits."

Like I said above, I scored 22 out of 25 and am wondering why I even failed??? That is a score of at least 85??

This was the most exasperating, incompetent, rook of a company I have ever been unfortunate enough to deal with. I am now recommending to everyone I know, do not ever, under any circumstance ATTEMPT taking a class with The Online Traffic School, Inc.

Nancy
Gilbert, Arizona
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/01/2009 04:48 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/On-Line-Traffic-School/Phoenix-Arizona-85016/Arizonadrivercom-On-Line-Traffic-School-Online-Defensive-Driving-School-Lousy-Customer-Se-407012. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

Six RIPOFF REPORTs on Arizonadriver.com

AUTHOR: Nancy - (U.S.A.)

It's been a couple of years and I am checking up.  If am SO WRONG according to some who took the course and passed how come there are SIX RIPOFF reports on this place now?

Apparently ALL of them were filed after my bad experience and ALL sound like the exact same thing. 

I took what is called the Environmental test and failed with an 88% (they told me I needed 90% to pass, what kind of test needs 90% to pass just to begin, ridiculous)...

A week after they FAILED ME AND STOLE MY MONEY, they changed the passing grade on their website to 80% which means I REALLY PASSED.

As a result, I was not able to take any of the defensive driving questions on the test, only the stupid "environmental" questions (what color is the background of the page) and ended up after they failed me paying the ticket.

Double  ripped off on that ticket and now it's on my record to boot..  Really fries me.

In addition, when I stopped and figured out their dumb logic (about needing 90% to pass the test) that was IMPOSSIBLE anyway.  Each question was worth 4 points so means using their logic and found you needed at least 92% to pass and my 88% was failing.  

DO NOT TAKE THIS CLASS.  I AM REPORTING THEM AGAIN TODAY TO AZ COURTS.

NANCY
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#2 Consumer Comment

Completely disagree with Nancy...

AUTHOR: Abigail - (United States of America)

Everything was great. They must have changed EVERYTHING about the way they operate since you took it, because the costs and the breakdown are one of the very first things that are given to you when you start to register. The policies and procedures portion explains everything about the test-site option or paying an extra fee to take the test on-line. Within 15 minutes of sending them my neccessary documents (ON A SATURDAY NIGHT) they responded to me and I was ready to start. Each chapter has a review quiz of 2-4 questions and they are the exact same questions that ended up being on the final exam. The environmental exam hints were very exact and they included questions that would show up on the environmental exam in each chapter review quiz, so there was complete clarity on what they would be looking for on the environmental and the final.... literally took 4 hours and I was done without incident. I liked them very much. My sister had gone thru them and she never had any problems. I will recommend them to other people and if necessary I will use them again. It was amazingly easy and one would have to be legally retarded not to pass now.
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#3 Consumer Comment

EZ Class, NO PROBLEMS!

AUTHOR: kenj - (United States of America)

I was actually dreading taking this online class a few months ago after reading Nancy's complaints but I was pleasantly surprised by how easy and enjoyable it was. All it took was time, and the course explained exactly how much up front.

When I first signed up it wasn't made clear how much it would cost, so I shocked by the price and I agree that should have been made clearer up front.

But the class itself was no problem, and I have a hard time believing that anyone who actually took the lessons wouldn't pass it. The "trick questions" were there to make sure a person was actually going through the lessons and not just skipping them and hoping to pass, so though they seemed kind of silly, they still made sense in that context.

Nancy says she "did not pay ANY attention" to the "trick" questions but the course itself warned repeatedly that those very questions would be on the test, which leads me to suspect she never actually went through the courses and tried to bluff her way through the test and now wants to blame the company. All you have to do is write down the answers to the "trick" questions when they clearly give them to you in big bold type with a warning they'll be on the test.

Maybe I'm a hopeless nerd but I took a lot of notes from this test cuz I learned a lot of good info on the AZ traffic laws that I hadn't known before.

It was totally worth it.
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#4 Consumer Comment

Worked fine for me

AUTHOR: Kevbo - (U.S.A.)

I read this after i signed up for the online course and it definitely concerned me.

I read through the material once over the course of about a week and a half. (4 hours) I just casually read. I didn't take notes or re-read anything(other than when I realized I was zoning out because of boredom to re-read a paragraph.)

I finished reading last night and reviewed all the environmental Hints (5-10 minutes)

I read through them again right before I went down to test(5 minutes)

I took the test and got 100% on the Environmental portion and I'm pretty sure I got 100% on the Content portion. I had no doubt on any of the answers. Most of the questions have 1 obviously correct answer and 2-3 answers that are almost laughable. I'd say over 90% of the questions are like this.

Maybe she took a different test or they've changed it. I just called and they told me everything was fine and suggested I call the court on my court date to confirm the charges have been dropped. I'll update this if I have any problems.

Also, the background is clearly white. Her monitor may be out of wack. Or, once again, maybe they've completely changed everything since she took it.

If you're not a good or at least average test taker, save yourself the stress and money and just sit through the class.
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#5 Consumer Comment

What I don't understand

AUTHOR: Susan - (U.S.A.)

What I don't understand.

Why would a state give or restore a driver a license because someone took an online class?

There is something very wrong with this.

Nancy, you might feel ripped off. I now feel unsafe on the road.
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#6 Consumer Comment

Arizonadriver.com business tactics are AMAZINGLY STUPID

AUTHOR: Nancy - (U.S.A.)

What I can't figure out is why this crappy traffic school (arizonadriver.com) is so intent on failing everyone?? I read the many comments out here from others who all expressed the same problems that I encountered.

The stupid "environment test" was out of this world. I was "expelled" from the class (yes, you heard it right) before EVER answering ONE question about traffic law (yes, you heard that right too, as amazing as it sounds) after receiving an 88% (yes, and you heard that part right too).

And the crappy employee on the phone (customer service, yeah right), seemed to really relish saying that word (right away) when I called them on the phone. "You're EXPELLED" with special embellishment on EXPELLED.

What kind of imbecilic business plan does this place have? Fail everyone so they will rush back to use your services again? Or, fail them so the will eagerlly tell all their friends to use your services?? Sorry, doesn't work that way. YOU WILL NOT BE IN BUSINESS FOR VERY LONG TREATING YOUR CUSTOMERS THIS WAY.

And you will get nothing but BAD word of mouth from me.

One more thing I would like to mention, at the time I was going through all this (in January), I checked with the AZ Corporation Commission and discovered that this JOINT did not even have a valid business license (because they had not paid the license when it came due). Don't know if this is still the case, but it was in January.
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#7 Consumer Comment

Login Problems My Own? Yeah right, Ray

AUTHOR: Nancy - (U.S.A.)

The sleezy traffic school bungled my login account (and apparently deleted it before I even took the final exam). Yeah, right Ray, that was ALL my fault, I really BUNGLED it.

The woman who administered the exam spent 20 minutes on the phone (of my precious lunch break) with the crappy traffic school getting my login account re-established before I could even take the test.

Oh, and the background wasn't white. Are you color blind? Maybe you didn't get that TRICK question right either.

Plus, the environment test you called so easy was extremely HOKEY. You needed at least 90% to pass yet you couldn't even score 90% if you tried because the questions were worth 4 points each. Which means you could miss one and get 96%, miss 2 and get 92%. This means you needed a score of at least 92% to pass. So why do they tell everyone 90%? HOKEY HOKEY.

I figured they must have some math WHIZ working for them (probably the same dumbo who wrote the trick questions).

But what really angered me the most was when I went back to their site that evening they had CHANGED the percent needed to pass to 80%. HOW DOES THAT WORK? I received an 88% but apparently BEFORE THE RULES CHANGED so they flunked me..

DON'T TAKE THIS CLASS FOLKS. IT'S A RIPOFF NIGHTMARE. They waste your time and steal your hard-earned dollars.
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#8 Consumer Comment

Yeah right Ray, 16 hours of Study is total LACK of EFFORT on my part

AUTHOR: Nancy - (U.S.A.)

I stand by my word. This company is a total scam and their customer service SUCKS. Especially the SUPER B...H they have handling their phones. What a joke, she actually STARTS fights with the customers and goes out of her way to TALK OVER THEM on the phone when they are trying to get resolution. Real CLASSY broad.

Yes, and after 16 hours of study (versus 8 hours if I had taken the walk-in class) I was totally unprepared to answer questions about what color the background on the page was (light yellow or light gray) whatever it was.

Who would be? I'll tell you, no one. Especially when the color is so faded out it looks just about like white. Plus, none of the test questions (that were supposed to be representative of the actual questions on the final) EVER mentioned that you would be expected to remember stupid things like the color of the background on the page or the font color or what logo the company was using on each page (which happened to be about three different styles, apparently some old, some new smattered all over their site).. Who knows (or cares) what crappy looking logo was on the page? And what does that have to do with driving skills?

Plus, I wonder how COLOR BLIND test takers cope with these trick questions? It is certainly not ADA acceptable to even ask questions like that..

Everyone I've talked to since this nasty experience LAUGHS out loud when I tell them the story, especially an aquaintance who happens to be a certified AZ traffic school instructor. He told me about all the HORROR stories with this company, in particular, how so many people seem to FAIL the stupid thing and end up back in the classroom after they spend MEGABUCKS and LOTS OF TIME and have no results to show for it. Very common experience according to him. He was very familiar with my story and has encountered all the TICKED off test re-takers in his class (who, consequently, all seem to pass the 8 hour class with flying colors).

SO, I STAND BY MY WORD AND GO OUT OF MY WAY TO WARN EVERYONE NOT TO WASTE THEIR MONEY TAKING AN ONLINE DRIVING SCHOOL. YOU'RE MUCH BETTER OFF JUST TAKING THE WALK-IN CLASS AND GETTING IT OVER WITH (AND NOT RIPPED OFF).
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#9 Consumer Comment

LACK OF EFFORT OR RUSHED EFFORT DOOMED NANCY FROM GILBERT

AUTHOR: Rayban - (U.S.A.)

I disagree with Nancy. It sounds like she was in a rush and didnt really study the material. By taking written notes of the asterisks for review as much as you want, the enviornmental test was very easy. If she actually put any time reviewing the material, she would have known the background was white, and the letters were black. Her log on problems were her own. She seems to be taking no responsibility for her poor performance. It appears to be her lack of, or rushed effort on the program that gave her the outcome she got. She simply wants to put the blame on someone other than herself.



Ray
Phoenix, AZ
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