Get me out of AAA renewal hell, please!

Question: I recently received a letter from AAA saying that my membership was due on Jan. 1. However, I was not to return the statement because “annual dues will be charged to your credit card.” This is the procedure that had been in effect for years.

In December, I received a telephone call from an AAA representative, informing me that the company was unable to process the membership dues through my AAA-branded Bank of America credit card despite trying twice to charge my card. I asked AAA to try again, and to call me if they were unable to charge my card. I did not receive a phone call.

A few weeks later, I received a letter stating that I was to pay my dues directly because Bank of America would not take the membership fee from my AAA credit card. I did. Then I discovered that AAA had billed my card, too. When I asked for a refund, it told me it couldn’t do that — they could only send me vouchers which could be applied to my membership purchase.
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A rescheduled flight — and a lost night at a hotel

David and Dorothy Juergens are looking forward to their fourth Princess cruise next month. There’s just one little problem: Their airline rescheduled their flight, and that messed up their schedule — and cost them money.

Airline schedule changes are a fact of life, and it’s usually unrealistic for passengers to expect a carrier to compensate them for lost wages or extra expenses incurred as a result of change in flight plans. But this just might be one of those rare exceptions.

I’ll let you decide if this trip can be saved.
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The customer is never right

The customer used to always be right. Now the customer is never right. How did we get here?

It would take an entire book to answer that question (hey, there’s an idea!) but in the meantime, I wanted to take a closer look at those of you who are in denial about the whole thing. You know who you are.
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AAA: Pay us $30 or you’re on your own

I have been a loyal and happy AAA member since 1988, when my late uncle Clyde helped me buy a used Chevette for my junior year in college. But after today, I’m not so sure how loyal or happy I am anymore.

I got an urgent call from Kari this afternoon, who was over at the preschool to pick up our daughter. Our car wouldn’t start.

“Don’t worry,” I told her. “I’ll call AAA. They’ll be right there.”

Only, they weren’t right there.

When I phoned AAA’s roadside assistance department, they asked me if I was with the vehicle. No, I explained, I was at home.

“We won’t be able to help you today,” a representative explained in a matter-of-factly tone. Not until I added Kari to my membership, which would cost another $30.

“How would you like to pay for that?” the operator asked. She knew I didn’t have much of a choice.
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A no-show for my European tour? That’s no good

Shelia Oxsher was a no-show for her Trafalgar tour to Europe — at least according to her tour operator.

She sees it differently. She’d paid in full for the trip more than a year ago, showed up to the airport on time, but then had her flight to London canceled.

Trafalgar is making us forfeit 100 percent the cost of the trip. They expect my husband and I to walk off the price we paid of $7,697.

I recently retired and this was a planned dream vacation. I was assured I had all the coverage by the AAA rep. My husband and I were emphatic: We wanted all the coverage in case something would happen.

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