ALERT Re: Transporting your auto
- Hi all,
This is a long story, but an important alert if you're going to be
transporting an auto. Plus, there's also a recommendation in the last paragraph for the
company I am now using, which has thus far provided astoundingly good and
I wanted to give you all a heads up on a very bad experience I've had with
A-AAAdvantage Auto Transport (800-233-4875). THIS IS AN ALERT TO ALL NEVER TO
USE THEM! Despite that I did plenty of research and checked their BBB record,
I got burned, and have now learned from other transport companies that this is
typical of their service ethic. I also found out that a site I looked at
which rates transport companies has some affiliation with AAAdvantage, which is
why they are rated so high on the site.
I hired them over 3 weeks ago to transport my car using a covered transport.
They initially said it would take 2 days to dispatch a truck to transport my
car. Then it was 7 days. Then it was 10 days, etc. Every time I called for
a status--about 10 times over 3 weeks--they told me a truck would be
dispatched "any minute" and to call back "in a couple days" for a delivery date. A
week ago, on their online tracking system, they entered 14MAY as a pick-up date,
with a delivery date of 24MAY.
Finally, on Tuesday 19MAY, I called and demanded to know what was going on
since they hadn't picked up the car yet, and found out that not only had they
not picked up the car, but that they had no plans to! I spoke with the General
Manager, Jim Sprotte, who said that the guy who quoted me the price had under
bid the job, and they couldn't find anyone to take the car for that price and
therefore probably couldn't transport the car. First, I advised Jim that his
price was in line with several others I'd gotten; second, that as a
professional, he shouldn't have told me that, and should have eaten the difference if
that be the case, and provided the service I contracted for to avoid bad blood
and bad publicity; and third, that they should have updated me on what the
problem was rather than stringing me along. After 3 weeks of patience and being
reasonable, his comments finally caused me to blow my top. Yesterday, he
called and said he found someone who could "probably" pick up the car the first
week of June, if I was lucky. Of course I told him that was not acceptable.
He said he would try to find someone to pick up the car sooner and would call
me back ASAP. He never called, and I learned that he left yesterday for a
week-long fishing trip. I cancelled the order. Now they won't return my calls or
emails regarding a refund, and I've alerted my credit card company.
Tonight when I spoke with the gal who sold me the car, I learned that a
driver DID make arrangements with her to pick up the car this past Monday, but
stood her up after she'd changed her plans to be available for the day. The
driver finally called her and told her that he couldn't pick up the car because it
turned out his truck was full, and to make future arrangements directly with
AAAdvantage. I've now learned that AAAdvantage has a bad reputation among
suppliers for stiffing them, so many drivers won't work for them unless they get
their money up front. Maybe that's what happened here. Meantime, AAAdvantage
never told me about the seller getting stood up by the driver or that they'd
even FOUND a driver. I also heard from a member of my PontiacBigGuns group who
said this company damaged the front end of his car during transport.
I called several other companies yesterday, none of whom were able to pick up
the car in a timely manner, or said they'd get back to me and never did.
Then, last night I called a family-run company which brokers these transports,
and was instantly struck by how concerned and decent sounding Frank was,
compared to those at other companies I'd spoken with. He literally jumped right to
it and first thing this morning called to tell me one of his regular suppliers
could pick up my car within a day or two! In minutes, the whole transaction
was confirmed by his wife, Susan, who is nice as could be and rushed to get me
emailed confirmation in record time, and the car is being picked up tomorrow.
These people are not only professional, but seem genuinely concerned and
decent, and have a phenomenal work ethic you don't often see. It's a family-run
company called Trusted Auto Movers, http://www.trustedauto.com/, 866-822-8752.
I also called the supplier to confirm that they're aware of the
time-sensitivity of the situation, and again dealt with a guy who was nothing but
professional and helpful. I'll give you all an update when the car arrives, but I feel
good about dealing with these people.
So the moral is...let the buyer beware...
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