Follow is a write up of the facts surrounding our dispute with AAA Van Lines, Inc. (AAA). We contracted with AAA (note they are not affiliated with AAA the auto club) to move our possessions from St. Louis, MO to Bayonne, NJ, which they estimated to be 4,500lbs based on the size of the house and a brief description of our possessions. We made the contract was for 4,700lbs to be safe.
Upon pick up in St. Louis on 4/9/05 the movers were told the street condition in Bayonne was a narrow one-way street with cars parked on both sides. They said it wouldn't be a problem and indicated that they would be one delivering our possessions. The movers requested a tip four times and even indicated we may be overweight, but said they could take care of the problem, if compensated via a big tip. He received a $60 tip and dinner, but was not pleased. He openly expressed that he was unsatisfied with this amount and further suggested an additional tip would save us money, insinuating that we would be charged extra or that our possession would be damaged. We refused to give him an additional tip.
Two days later, we were notified it was overweight and we owed an extra $653. We contacted the owner of AAA, about the overage charge and told him of what the movers said. The owner, Nick Paz, said we could witness the weighing during delivery to verify the weight (which is a legal right of the customer).
Upon delivery, the movers said they would arrive at 4pm (4/16/05), but did not arrive until 10:30pm. Though very late, we still asked to go to a weight station to verify the weight, but the movers refused to allow us to witness a weighing. Although previous warned about the parking, they arrived in a semi (approx.55ft long) and were angry at us that they could not park directly in front of our house. The truck parked one-half block away. Had they arrived between 4 - 8pm in a 20-30ft truck they could have easily parked in front of our house. They demanded an extra $500 cash. If not paid, they would take our stuff to storage and charge our credit card storage and loading fees. Because it was late, they returned the next morning. Without an option, we were forced to pay them to avoid further fees and to have our stuff. We could only come up with $284. They accepted and demanded that we help move, which we did.
After we (we, not the movers) moved a few loads, our neighbors moved their cars alongside the road and the movers were able to park the truck directly in front of the house. We asked for some money back since the reason for the additional $284 charge was the additional distance. They refused and only gave us $44 back, saying that we owed them money because they lost a day of moving because they could not unload our things the previous day. We also had numerous items broken or missing and spent another $300 replacing things that were lost. In total, we spent another $1,000 more than was originally planned in bribes, fees, overage charages, and replacing items.
Bayonne, New Jersey