Posts Tagged ‘AAA Roadside App’

Despite Vehicle Advances, Break Downs at Record High

July 20th, 2016 by Jessica Souto

Mariam Ali Contact TileAAA rescued a record-breaking 32 million drivers in 2015

ORLANDO, Fla. (July 20, 2016) – Despite advances in vehicle technology, including maintenance reminders and other dashboard alerts designed to mitigate roadside trouble, AAA rescued a record-breaking 32 million drivers in 2015, with more battery, flat tire and key problems than ever before, a new study shows. Vehicles fewer than five years old in particular experienced a higher proportion of tire and key-related issues than older vehicles, suggesting that the trend toward eliminating the spare tire and moving to electronic keyless ignitions may have unintended consequences.

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“Vehicles today are advanced more than ever, yet are still vulnerable to breakdowns,” said Cliff Ruud, AAA’s managing director of Automotive Solutions. “Sleek, low profile tires are highly susceptible to damage, electronic keyless ignitions can zap battery life and despite advanced warning systems, more than half a million drivers ran out of gas last year.”

Owners of new vehicles may be unaware that some new vehicle designs and features may leave them vulnerable at the roadside. To reduce vehicle weight and boost fuel economy, spare tires are being eliminated from new vehicles at alarming rates, and are being replaced with tire inflator kits that can only remedy some flat tire situations. Additionally, new keyless ignition systems can drain the battery life when keys are stored too close to the vehicle and can lock a driver out of the vehicle while the engine is still running. Finally, despite nearly all new vehicles being equipped with low fuel warning alerts and range estimations, a higher proportion of drivers are using these systems to push the limits between fuel ups.

Other key findings from an analysis of AAA’s 2015 roadside assistance data include:

  • Battery failures, flat tires and keys locked inside the vehicle remain the top roadside assistance requests.
  • Vehicles fewer than five years old have a higher proportion of tire, key and fuel-related issues than older vehicles. Due in part to complex, electronic vehicle designs, one-in-five service calls for a newer vehicle required a tow to a repair facility.
  • Vehicles between 6 and 10 years old have the highest proportion of battery-related issues, as most batteries have a three- to five-year life.
  • Roadside assistance calls peak in the summer (8.3 million) followed by winter (8.1 million), fall (7.8 million) and spring (7.7 million).
  • Drivers are most likely to request roadside assistance on Mondays and least likely to request assistance on Sundays.
  • Drivers in the West experienced the most breakdowns, followed by the South, the Northeast and the Midwest.
  • Despite advances in key technology, AAA came to the rescue of more than four million drivers locked out of their vehicles.

“Drivers today have increasingly-connected lifestyles, and want reliable, flexible service options when trouble strikes,” continued Ruud. “AAA has responded with flexible roadside assistance offerings nationwide including app-based service requests and the ability to track assigned service vehicles in real time on a smartphone.”

To help prevent millions of roadside breakdowns from happening, AAA offers the following recommendations for common roadside problems:

  • Check for a spare tire: Before purchasing a car, check that the vehicle includes a spare tire. If it doesn’t, consider adding one as an option. Tire inflator kits — which have replaced spare tires on tens of millions of vehicles –cannot remedy all types of tire damage.
  • Check tires: At least once a month, check the tire pressure to ensure proper inflation. This affects tire wear and vehicle handling. Tires should be rotated based on the manufacturer’s recommended schedule for the vehicle.
  • Lockouts: AAA recommends motorists take special care of their “smart keys” and keyless entry fobs. Always take keys when exiting the car, avoid exposing keyless-entry remote or smart keys to water and always replace the key or fob battery when recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.
  • Battery: AAA recommends that drivers have their vehicle’s battery tested when it reaches three years of age and on an annual basis thereafter. AAA’s Mobile Battery Service offers free battery testing for AAA members.
  • Pack an emergency kit: A recent AAA survey shows that more than 40 percent of motorists do not carry an emergency kit in their vehicle. AAA recommends that every driver have a well-stocked emergency kit, which includes a mobile phone and car charger; a flashlight with extra batteries; a first-aid kit; drinking water; extra snacks/food for your travelers and any pets; battery booster cables; and emergency flares or reflectors.

Before hitting the road, download the free AAA Mobile app for iPhone, iPad, Android and Apple Watch. Travelers can use the app to request AAA roadside assistance, route a trip, find the lowest gas prices, access exclusive member discounts, book a hotel and more. In addition, AAA members can also track in real time the location of their assigned vehicle with Service Tracker. Learn more at AAA.com/mobile.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 56 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

AAA prepares drivers for what to do when new vehicles don’t include a spare tire.

ORLANDO, Fla., (January 25, 2012) – Buying a car can be a stressful experience. One thing buyers could depend upon was that the new vehicle they were about to purchase included a spare tire. That may not always be the case. To meet new government fuel efficiency standards some vehicle manufactures are omitting heavy spare tires and equipping new vehicles with an emergency sealant and inflator kit or tires that if damaged can run reasonable distances without air.

In 2010, the Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection Agency established new corporate average fuel economy standards for vehicle model years 2012 to 2016. The new standards are set at a combined 29.7 mpg for the 2012 model year, increasing to 34.1 mpg by 2016.

Achieving these standards will require many changes to the vehicles we drive.  One area of focus is to reduce the weight of vehicles without compromising occupant safety.  A spare tire, related tools and a jack can weigh more than 40 pounds. That may seem like a small amount but every little bit helps and unlike other weight saving changes, it doesn’t add cost to the vehicle.  

“Unfortunately many vehicle owners may be unaware that their vehicle has no spare tire until they experience a flat tire.” says John Nielsen, AAA National Director of Auto Buying, and Consumer Information. “Consumers should review their owner’s manual and emergency maintenance supplies they have in the vehicle and be informed about alternatives to a spare to prevent panic or a delay when encountering a flat tire.”

AAA recommends the following to ensure you are informed and prepared:

  • Inspect the car and consult your owner’s manual. If the vehicle has a spare, be sure it is properly inflated and stowed. If you cannot locate a spare tire, ensure your vehicle has an alternate solution. Options include the run-flat tires that allow the car to be driven to a safe location or an emergency sealant and inflator kit.  
  • If you carry a sealant, AAA recommends that you check the date and replace it every five years or after its use. Sealant can become less effective with age.

AAA members needing assistance with a flat tire can request roadside rescue at (800) AAA-HELP or by downloading the smartphone app, AAA Roadside. AAA members can also eliminate the stress of buying a new car by using the AAA Auto Buying Tools App. Build the car you want, including color and trim level, and the AAA app will give you information on available options, available incentives, crash safety ratings, AAA reviews, images and more.  

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 53 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

ORLANDO, Fla., January 21, 2011

AAA has expanded its suite of mobile offerings with the launch of an Android-compatible version of its AAA Roadside app.

Christie HydeThe free app allows AAA members to request roadside assistance from the nation’s largest motor club without even placing a call.

Users do not have to worry if they are unable to provide an address or location of where they are broken down, because the AAA Roadside app utilizes the phone’s GPS to transmit their location directly to AAA Roadside Assistance.

“AAA is committed to developing new and innovative ways to better meet the needs of its members,” said Marshall L. Doney, vice president, AAA Automotive and Financial Services. “Breakdowns are never a pleasant experience, but mobile offerings such as the AAA Roadside app can help AAA locate members quickly and be prepared to try to resolve their car trouble on-site so we can get them back on the go.”

The AAA Roadside app debuted in 2009 with an iPhone-compatible version that has been downloaded a half million times. In addition to a redesigned user interface, the app includes several new features.

AAA Roadside now offers a Battery Quote Calculator that instantly provides AAA member pricing on replacement batteries offered through AAA’s Mobile Battery Service. After entering the vehicle’s year, make, model and engine size, AAA members receive battery pricing and can choose to have their battery replaced by one of AAA’s roadside problem-solvers. If they do so, the pricing and part number are submitted automatically with their request for AAA Roadside Assistance.

AAA members also can register up to eight vehicles to their app profile, which is sent automatically with roadside assistance requests to aid AAA’s roadside problem-solvers in quickly locating members in need of rescue.

Additionally, the app enables users to locate nearby AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities should their car trouble require a tow to a repair shop, and they are in need of recommendations of where to go. AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities are inspected by AAA and must meet and maintain tough professional standards for training, cleanliness, customer service and equipment. Customers of Approved shops are surveyed on an ongoing basis, and the shop must maintain a customer satisfaction index of 90 percent or higher.

The AAA Roadside app is only the latest in a suite of free mobile offerings by the nation’s largest motor club. The AAA Discounts app, available for iPhone and Android, uses GPS technology to display nearby AAA Show Your Card & Save locations. AAA TripTik Mobile, available for iPhone, provides AAA’s mapping and travel planning tools on a phone in addition to being the first free app to offer updated gas prices at stations near the user’s location.

AAA Mobile Web can be accessed from any web-enabled smartphone and allows members to submit a request for AAA Roadside Assistance, receive a battery quote and locate AAA offices, AAA Show Your Card & Save locations, AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities and AAA Approved and Diamond Rated Lodgings and Restaurants.

Sprint mobile customers can take advantage of AAA FindMe, a free service for AAA members that allows a GPS-enabled mobile phone to transmit their location directly to AAA when requesting roadside assistance. AAA members can register their Sprint mobile phone number at AAA.com/AAAFindMe.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 52 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

ORLANDO, FLORIDA, December 15, 2010

Cynthia BroughAAA projects 92.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home during the year-end holidays, an increase of 3.1 percent from the 89.5 million who traveled a year ago. The year-end holidays travel period is defined as Thursday, December 23, 2010 to Sunday, January 2, 2011.

“It’s great to see so many Americans taking to the roads, rails and skies this holiday season, especially since this is the fifth consecutive holiday period this year in which AAA has predicted a year-to-year increase in the number of travelers,” said Glen MacDonell, director, AAA Travel Services. “After a challenging year in 2009, a modestly improved economic environment and pent-up demand resulted in more Americans traveling in 2010, and the year-end holidays are no exception.”

AAA’s projections are based on economic forecasting and research by IHS Global Insight. The Boston-based economic research and consulting firm teamed with AAA in 2009 to jointly analyze travel trends during the major holidays. AAA has been reporting on holiday travel trends for more than two decades. The complete AAA / IHS Global Insight 2010-11 Year-End Holiday Travel Forecast can be found below.

More than nine out of 10 will drive to their holiday destinations
Approximately 85.7 million people (93 percent of all holiday travelers) will drive to their year-end holidays destinations. That represents a 3.2 percent increase from the 83 million who drove last year.

Number of air travelers expected to increase by nearly three percent
Nearly 2.75 million leisure air travelers (three percent of holiday travelers) will take to the skies during the year-end holidays, marking a 2.8 percent increase from last year’s 2.67 million air travelers. The remaining four percent of holiday travelers are expected to travel by other modes, including rail, bus and watercraft.

Average travel distance up 33 percent; median spending about 3.5 percent more than last year
According to a survey of traveler intentions, the average distance traveled by Americans during the year-end holidays is expected to be 1,052 miles, which is 33 percent more than last year’s average travel distance of 791 miles. Median spending is expected to be $694. Median spending a year ago was $670. Similar to Thanksgiving, a majority of survey respondents (75 percent) reported that the main purpose of their upcoming trip was a visit with friends or family.

Hotel rates increase, airfares decrease and car rental rates unchanged compared to a year ago
According to AAA’s Leisure Travel Index, hotel rates for AAA Three Diamond lodgings over the year-end holidays are expected to increase five percent from a year ago with travelers spending an average of $125 per night compared to $119 last year. Travelers planning to stay at AAA Two Diamond hotels can expect to pay two percent more at an average cost of $88 per night. Airfares are expected to be three percent less than last year with an average lowest round-trip rate of $174 for the top 40 U.S. air routes. Weekend daily car rental rates will remain unchanged at an average of $50.

AAA reminds travelers that the motor club offers a variety of trip planning tools including:

  • Free printed TourBook guides and maps for members
  • Online travel guides and the TripTik® Travel Planner, available free to all travelers at AAA.com
  • Three free mobile applications that offer on-the-go access to AAA travel information and services:
    • AAA TripTik Mobile iPhone app provides updated gas prices, maps and directions functionality, and information on AAA Approved hotels, restaurants and attractions.
    • With AAA Roadside iPhone app, AAA members requiring emergency road service can quickly send their location, vehicle description and specific breakdown details directly to AAA without placing a phone call.
    • The AAA Discounts iPhone app, which has been downloaded more than 900,000 times, uses GPS technology to identify a user’s location and displays nearby businesses that offer members AAA Show Your Card & Save® discounts. A version of the AAA Discounts app is also available for Android-platform smartphones.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 52 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

AAA Roadside App for iPhone provides location information with requests for roadside assistance

(Orlando, Fla. – 8/14/2009) AAA announced its AAA Roadside app for iPhone users is now available on the iTunes App Store. The free app provides AAA members with a way to use their iPhone, and its innovative location based services, to quickly send their vehicle location, description, specific vehicle problem and other detailed information directly to AAA for roadside assistance. The user always has the option to place a voice call, and once the request is submitted, the AAA member receives a confirmation that his/her information was received by AAA Roadside Assistance.

“Dealing with a breakdown can be a stressful situation for anyone, even more so when you’re not familiar with your surroundings,” said Marshall L. Doney, AAA Automotive vice president. “The AAA Roadside app for iPhone is another way AAA helps members get back on the road and onto their destinations. We think the AAA Roadside app is an invaluable tool for motorists, especially for those hitting the road this summer.”

The app includes a While You Are Waiting feature, so members can search for nearby AAA Approved Auto Repair shops, Hertz rental locations offering AAA member discounts, AAA Approved accommodations, AAA offices and retail locations with discounts on auto parts and more. Each search displays key information for each location, such as the name, address, phone, distance from location,routing map, driving directions and a summary of the discount details. For those who are not AAA members, the app also has a Join AAA feature.

AAA Roadside is available for free from the iTunes App Store on iPhone or at www.itunes.com/appstore/. Please visit AAA.com/roadside for further details.

AAA’s first app, AAA Discounts, launched in April 2009 and has been downloaded more than half a million times from the App Store. AAA Discounts displays Show Your Card & Save® partners near the user’s location.

As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides more than 51 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1902, the not-for-profit, fully tax-paying AAA has been a leader and advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. AAA clubs can be visited on the Internet at AAA.com.

 

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