Jump to content

Finally A Member Of The Community


chuckbear

Recommended Posts

My wife Susan and I are proud owners of a 1999 Fleetwod Bounder and officially members of the RV community. I'm sure we will have lots of questions as we go along and we want to thank everyone that was helpful when we were shopping. One question, for road service and group memberships, which RV assocoiations will be best for us, like Good Sam, AAA, etc? Chuck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Haha trick question?? Escapees, 'natch. Seriously, you have to educate yourself on all of them and what they have to offer. Everyone has different wants, needs, and desires so there is no perfect solution that fits everyone. We personally found Escapees to be less about selling and more about helping and we liked the way the forum operates. We currently have AAA and will retain that for roadside service since we are longtime members and avail ourselves of many of the other services that go with that membership. We are not yet on the road full time but have subscribed with Good Sam, Escapees, Trailer Life, RV Travel, the BPOE Elks, Veteran's of Foreign Wars, RVillage and RV Business. We also have the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass and will join Harvest Host and our own trailer brand association. There is a motor coach association called "Family Motor Coach Association" (FMCA.com) that caters exclusively to motor coaches. These associations are services provide a wealth of info, so start reading and educating. Eventually you will "downsize" to those that are right for you. That is what we will do. Good luck and happy travels!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One question, for road service and group memberships, which RV assocoiations will be best for us, like Good Sam, AAA, etc? Chuck

 

 

That's two questions and I'll add a third.

 

For roadside service CoachNet and Good Sam are the most popular because they understand RVs.

 

For group memberships Escapees and Elks tend to be the most popular. Escapees because of this forum and because they support the lifestyle. Elks because they offer camaraderie and, in some places, good cheap camping. Other good memberships are the ones offered by your brand and or type of RV like FMCA.

 

For discount camping Passport America is the most popular but membership camping systems like Thousand Trails are good IF you will use them. And the national parks pass which gets you discounts at all nation facilities including Corp of Engineer parks.

 

Personally we joined CoachNet, Escapees, the Winnebago group, Passport America, Colorado River Adventures and the national parks discount program. Those all paid off for us. As did my AARP card occasionally.

 

I learned that last one by just spreading all my cards out on a check in counter and asking what would give me the best deal. That park took Passport America for Sunday through Thursday then gave me 10% on the AARP card for the weekend. Who knew?

 

What will pay off for you depends on how you travel.

 

Linda Sand

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have been members of most of the RV groups at one time but have slowly weeded things down as the years went by. In my opinion, the very best of the RV club/service groups is Escapees. Their membership brings what I consider to be the very best of the RV magazines, it gives access to discounted rates at their 8 company owned RV parks and also to the 11 co-op parks that are open to members only. They provide a host of additional benefits so I suggest that you take a look at the list provided on the Escapee website.

 

We did join the FMCA, motorhome onlly group but we found that with a gas coach and no real desire to ever own one of the half million dollar or more coaches, we simply didn't fit in well. I do consider them to be an excellent organization, just not one for us.

 

Good Sam has it's benefits and there are many Escapee members who belong to it as well, but after about 10 years of membership in it we gelt that we were not getting enough for the the money and the magazine they provide is little more than an advertising circular. They do provide some good benefits, just not enough to justify our paying dues there. Even so, you should probably check it out and make your own decision. AAA is another that we were once members of, but see no benefit to membership today.

 

For discount camping we have in the past been members of Passport America and would still be if we traveled more, but while considering this one you should also at least consider Happy Campers who is another discount association worth considering. There are also the commercial park associations such as Coast to Coast and Thousand Trails, which you buy a membership with and get to stay for free or reduced rates but I'd suggest not getting in a hurry to join one of those since they may not prove to be a good fit, depending upon the style of travel that you adopt once you adjust to the lifestyle.

 

For emergency road service, we presently belong to Coach Net, partly because they are associated with Escapees and partly for our very good experience with their service. We used to have Good Sam ERS but we are no longer GS members and so do not qualify for it now. We also once depended upon our RV insurance for emergency road service, but after one less than satisfactory experience, we returned to Coach Net.

 

There are many different groups out there looking to sell you a membership and most have some good benefits for at least some people, but you can spend yourself poor by overdoing this. There are Elks and Moose, veteran's groups, camping associations, and discount purchase clubs, all of them wanting to "save you money" but yet all of them also seem to show a profit somewhere. I suggest that you take a little time and not join too many such groups quickly, but give yourself time to get used to the life before you make your choices.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the feedback. One concern is the roadside service. I'm reading some very bad reviews about some of the very popular services. I don't hear so much about good service. I don't want to be stranded on a roadside somewhere afte paying for such a service. Chuck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Keep in mind that unhappy customers are far more likely to spread the word of their experiences than do most happy customers. And there are also some folks that no company can please. None of the road service organizations own any of the service vehicles or facilities but they are dependent upon the services of companies that they contract with. As such their control is not always what it might be and in spite of their best efforts there will be occasional bad experiences and those almost always get reported. I have been a witness to more than one good service by both GS-ERS and by Coach Net and my personal experience has also been that way. With GS-ERS we only called them one time, that in the city of San Antonio and it was not great, but it got the job done. That was a fuel delivery situation. With Coach Net, we have used their tech support line twice and it was excellent and we were towed one time and that was above reproach and probably even better than one had any right to expect.

 

I believe that with any of the reputable companies there are far more good to excellent services rendered than there are poor ones, but it just happens that angry people make more effort to publicize their story.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Although you said Motorhome, I will share our experience with AAA.

We tow a 5th wheel and had AAA for roadside. I had heard rumors so I called them to ask if they would tow our (at the time) F350. Answer?

No.

Now that we have an F450 we definitely wouldn't consider AAA.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

soos;

 

I've used AAA for a couple of minor things for the RV, flat tire, locking the keys in the car etc,

We have a F150 and small 5th wheel. They will tow our set up a 100 miles, both the truck and trailer. (different states have different limits, we're residents of Alabama currently) It takes the RV plus package. I don't find any restriction on tow vehicle size, and an F350 is certainly smaller than many motorhomes. Any indication why they said that?

 

We've been happy with AAA over the years, and use the heck out of the maps and guides.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First, let me welcome you to Escapees. Personally I am a member of Escapees, FMCA and GS. They all seem to have their own niche. I had Passport America, but found we never used it. Perhaps that is because we just never seemed to travel a lot. Our norm was to travel to an area then spend several months there before traveling to another area. We very seldom spent less than a month in an area, and those trips were mostly to visit family, not sight see.

 

For roadside assistance, really consider a company that specializes in RV's. Since you have a MH, towing may be different than towing a smaller vehicle. Plus the RV specialists may have more contacts with companies that are accustomed to the differences with large vehicles. RV's are sized more like tractor trailers than P/U trucks, especially MHs. As mentioned earlier, both the major companies are somewhat at the mercy of the companies they contract with to provide the service. If you are on the road, they may be able to provide assistance quicker than if you are in a safe area, at least in my experience. I have used both Coach Net and GS and cannot express either positive or negative comments about either company. Perhaps this is because a good maintenance program with your coach may alleviate some of the problems that would occur otherwise.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In our case our RV is insured with Progressive and we have the roadside rider. It was only an additional $24 a year and we've used it twice without any problem. Once had to use it in Destruction Bay, Yukon Territory. Tow truck had to come from Whitehorse 180 miles away, then tow us to Whitehorse for repairs. 360 miles round trip, that's not cheap, and we didn't have to pay a dime.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
RVers Online University

campgroundviews.com

Our program provides accurate individual wheel weights for your RV, toad, and tow vehicle, and will help you trim the pounds if you need to.

Dish For My RV.

RV Cable Grip

RV Cable Grip

All the water you need...No matter where you go

Country Thunder Iowa

Nomad Internet

Rv Share

RV Air.

Find out more or sign up for Escapees RV'ers Bootcamp.

Advertise your product or service here.

The Rvers- Now Streaming

RVTravel.com Logo



×
×
  • Create New...