Report: #1036000

Complaint Review: CAA

  • Submitted: Tue, March 19, 2013
  • Updated: Thu, March 21, 2013
  • Reported By: susankim4a — Sarnia Ontario
  • CAA

    United States of America

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

It's a good idea to make sure you have some sort of travel insurance of some sort when travelling across the country by car right?   We thought so too.  We actually believe in having insurance no matter what the trip is away from home because you just never know.

When we ventured out on a family vacation from SW Ontario to Orlando Florida.  All seven of us loaded in the Suburban and headed on down the Interstate, we didn't consider additional road side coverage because there were three CAA members in the vehicle travelling all together for this trip.

We wound up having a break down just before the Florida state border on day two of our trip.  The transmission transfer case blew of course immobilizing the vehicle (just age and wear & tear).  We coasted to safety at the shoulder of the road and called CAA/AAA.  Of course we were concerned about the vehicle and the reality of a potentially big repair bill.  Everything went as it should with arranging for the tow as far as CAA/AAA went, except for the 3 1/2 hour wait at the side of I-75 and the vehicle was towed to a AAA repair facility nearby.  We attempted to get a rental car that day but all were had this weekend (Saturday afternoon).   We wound up at a Hotel in south Georgia for the night (wound up being 2 nights).  All is fine as we talk the fist night because two travelers in the car have "CAA Premier membership" that has a little extra coverage to help with the sting of having to rent a car and extra nights in a hotel, meals etc., they apparently have coverage for up to $2000 of incidentals.  

Remember we didn't think we needed any additional coverage because CAA follows the member(s) and is not limited to a specific vehicle.  So on Monday we carried on and rented a suitable vehicle for all 7 of us (including the CAA members) and carried on our way and completed our trip.  We had to spend an extra three days because of delays with the repair shop so we decided to find a place in Orlando for three more days.  We just didn't we the sense in returning to small town Georgina only to wait for three more days for the repair to be finished, besides staying at a nice resort type condo cost a little less than the 2 crappy motel rooms back in Georgia.  

We picked up our repaired vehicle up on our return trip home and paid the mechanic, reasonable rate for the job, no complaints there.  Returned the rental and carried on our journey back home.  

After we got back home and the dust settled we tallied up our bills that were over and above our expected trip and due directly as a result of a mechanical breakdown...we were an extra $4500.  

Armed with receipts and a detailed letter and a summary we took all bills and receipts to the local CAA office to be sent off CAA head office for remuneration.  About a week later we receive a reply from CAA explaining what they will keep it short, they decided they weren't covering anything!. Yup, the excellent auto club of CAA returned a letter stating they weren't covering anything because the expenditures weren't in the card holders names.   They didn't even consider that the reason they weren't in the card holders name was simply that the members do not have a credit card to make the hotel reservation or the car rental or even the repair of the vehicle (we know the repair wouldn't be covered anyway).   To keep it simple everything was invoiced to my name and paid for on my credit card(s), except for the meals that weren't for anyone specifically... coincidentally CAA didn't even cover the card holders meals.   CAA wouldn't even entertain the rationalization of there clearly being 2 rooms, one of which being for the two premier members.  We would have gotten our own coverage if we had of known CAA doesn't actually follow the member like they lead their members to believe.   

Our experience, I am sure doesn't happen too often where that you find yourself a thousand miles from home racking up big unexpected bills in clear continence that some of this would be covered.  I am glad that I didn't pay for a CAA membership because clearly they aren't going to help you much when you're in a jam a thousand miles from home.   I am sure the three members that we in the vehicle under the false impression they at would be covered are not going to renew.   I can say with certainty that we will not consider CAA again and have since signed up with another auto club that even costs a little more.   Thanks for nothing CAA!  

Buyer beware, it seems CAA goes out of their way to deny any unfortunate claim that their premier members have already paid for.  CAA markets their product in a way that it is supposed to follow the member, clearly that is not the case.   Good luck to the current members of CAA including the three family members that are with CAA currently outlined in this case, I hope you never need CAA for more than a tow or a jump start.   I can't seem to find a suitable, polite or tasteful word to describe how I feel about CAA right now. 

Again thanks for nothing CAA!

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/19/2013 07:34 AM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Author of original report


AUTHOR: susankim4a - ()

We are not concerned with our personal misfortune of the vehicle break down.   We know that it was likely to happen at some point anyway and we'd have to have it repaired regardless, we get that and are not asking for the repair to our vehicle be covered.  We keep our vehicles well maintained and save for potential problems such as this, we all know that repairs are inevitable especially with a later model vehicle.
The CAA members involved were inconvenienced and are out of pocket for extra hotels, meals, their portion of a replacement rental vehicle etc., to which they are entitled to and CAA is denying.  Their policy seems very clear and  states they are eligible for filing a claim such as this regardless of who's vehicle they are or were travelling in whether or not they are driving.  Fact is their mode of transportation broke down while on vacation and they incurred expenses for a trip interruption to which they personally have coverage for through CAA.   Let me reiterate, we are not necessarily asking for compensation for the vehicle repair or non CAA member expenses, even though according to their policy they could submit the repair too if you go letter for letter of their supposed premiere membership policy(ies)!   

Although I respect your comments, but please get off your high horse, uninformed comments aren't needed.  We are not in the wrong here, CAA is!  We only want the members involved to have most of their extra unplanned expenses covered that were directly caused by a vehicle break down causing them a trip interruption.
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#2 Author of original report

general comment reply

AUTHOR: susankim4a - ()

Yes, I see where you are coming from with CAA maybe having no proof that the member(s) were or were not with us except that the Florida park tickets were all purchased and scheduled through CAA before we left.  The CAA member(s) photos just happened to appear on their tickets at the same time as everyone else in our group (these parks actually take a picture and a finger print of each guest). Remember this was scheduled through CAA.  I suppose it is possible to surmise that everyone went their own way but really, come on, that's a pretty big jump.  The tickets were all bought together at the same time, CAA knew very well who we were and we were all heading out on a family vacation together.  It isn't that big of a jump that we'd be travelling together, especially when our vehicle is a Suburban, which has plenty of room for a large group of people.  CAA also has the hotel receipts that that clearly have the "members" name on the receipts for their room(s) for the one night heading down, also the unexpected room(s) as a result of the breakdown.  

Either way CAA has lost the renewal of three members and I actually chose to go with a different company as a result, I am actually glad I didn't purchase before we left.  We have another trip coming up and none of us for that one would have coverage otherwise. I just want to get the word out and hopefully prevent a similar situation with another family.   What's done is done and there are some hard feelings as a result towards CAA.
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#3 General Comment

CAA had no real proof the CAA Member was with you

AUTHOR: IamGood - ()

All the expenses were in your name.  For your Car,so how was CAA supposed to know if these expenses were incurred on behalf of a CAA Member?  Do you think just because a CAA Member was in your car, and the CAA member would  have been inconvienced that CAA should pay to fix your car, and pay your tow bill, and even your meal

The passangers in your Car had CAA to protect THEM from unforceen car expenses, not to protect you.  The CAA passangers were guests of yours.

So of course CAA would deny your claim.  Sorry to burst your bubble.

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