Thursday, February 9


…don't even think about hitting the brakes—just run the damn thing over!

Alright, I’m going to spare you the long version of this disaster, to protect your sanity (and what little of it I have left, too). I signed up with Geico insurance a long time ago, thinking it was a better deal than my previous carrier. I mean, hey… their commercials feature that funny, little talking Gecko, so it can’t be all that bad, right?

Flash-forward, to this past fall: My car is broken into, right in front of my house. They bang-up the doors destroy the stereo and completely demolish the ignition core while trying to boost my poor, little soy-rocket. No, they didn’t get away it with, but the might as well have.

I call Geico’s claims department, and they tell me I have two options:

-One is to have the car towed (on my dime) to a mechanic I trust. Geico says they’ll send out a claims-adjuster to any shop I choose, and once they’ve looked it over, they’ll authorize a dollar amount, which will be used to pay me back for any charges I incur. The rep tells me it will be about two or three days before they’ll be able to look at it.

-The other choice is to use the Geico Express Repairs Program, which means they’ll pay to tow my car to a repair facility (about 15 miles away), where they have an on-sight claims adjuster and authorized repair shop. They’ll cover all the costs, after I’ve paid the deductible and work is guaranteed for the life of the car. Oh, and they also guarantee repairs will start on my car within 24 hours of the inspection.

This sounds like a bit of a scam, so I choose plan A. Two days later, they inform me they don’t have any adjusters in my area, and won’t be able to send someone. Ever. They let me know that I can pay for the tow and all repairs out-of-pocket, and when I send in some photos of the damage, they’ll consider reimbursement. So, I opt-in to their program.

A tow truck arrives that day, but the guy doesn’t know where he’s going. After I get directions, I sign all the paperwork, and sit back… thinking my car is going to be fine.

For two weeks, Geico couldn’t tell me where my car was, or how they’d lost it. First, they blamed me for not telling them where I'd sent it. Next, they said I never signed the paperwork to authorize repairswhen I dropped it off... which was the story they stuck to until they tried to bill me... for the tow service.

I’ll spare you the rest of the rancid details, but let’s just say that NOTHING about Geico’s service lived up to the promises and guarantees. Call after call, after call, no one at the repair shop or Geico could tell me what was going on, and they kept saying I was at fault, and never once said they were sorry for the "mix up."

It took almost three weeks before the whole thing got straitened out... at which point I switched to AAA Insurance, and cut my bill in half.

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