Living With Our Rapido 963f Le Randonneur Motor Home.

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Insurance companies (Again)!

One event I didn't mention about our journey down here because I considered it to be fairly insignificant and easily rectified, was that we were hit on the windscreen by an errant pebble thrown into our path accidentally by a passing BMW. As I have already posted, the roads were very quiet, so the chances of that happening must have been very small.

However, it did, and as a consequence we have a small "star" on the passenger side of the screen, which in my opinion is fully repairable as it stands.

We continued our journey down without further issue, and I decided to ring my insurer's glass repair helpline this morning so they could arrange a repair to the screen before the damage got worse and would need a (very expensive) replacement.

My insurer is Saga Motorhome, fully comprehensive, and I also have their premium motorhome breakdown and assistance cover for Europe.

I first rang the breakdown assistance at 9.00am UK time, and was told that as I had reached my destination then it wasn't a problem for them to resolve and I should contact the Saga glass repair line direct.

I immediately phoned the Saga switchboard, as their 0800 number is as much use as a chocolate fire guard to a mobile phone user ringing from Spain. I was connected, but nothing other than the automated response of "all our lines are busy" resulted from that for a whole 20 minutes before I gave up, and tried the online web address given within the announcement to book an appointment online.

First problem - the given web address no longer exists as a page on the AA website, who were obviously going to take care of my request for assistance. I went on to search their website and eventually found that requests for glass repair go to their affiliate, Autowindscreens. Onto their website, only to find you can only make an online booking from the UK, and I am in Spain.

I rang the contact number of Autowindscreens from their website. Obviously they can't help with a repair in Spain, but they gave me two numbers of other affiliated companies in Spain who could do the work and charge Saga direct.

I rang the numbers - both bloody fax machines!

I tried Saga glass line again, and waited another 20 minutes without reply listening to their automated annoying message that my call is important to them, before giving up - again.

I then found for myself the Spanish equivalent of Autoglass UK - Carglass ES, the same group. To be fair they were very helpful, requesting images of the problem while they contacted Autoglass UK on my behalf to find out if Saga would cough up if the repair went ahead. I received an apologetic call back from the Autoglass International team telling me that they were not on Saga's list of approved repairers, so all they could do was get Carglass Spain to call me back with quotes for the job so I could fund a repair myself. (A new screen could potentially be £1000+)!

In the meantime I rang Autoscreens back, Saga's affiliated repairer in the UK to tell them the first two contact numbers they had given me were fax machines. They gave me two more to try - one also a fax machine, the other number not recognised!

I then received another call back from Carglass Spain to tell me "very sorry we no longer repair glass in camping cars so unfortunately are unable to help on this occasion". This was becoming a farce.

Yet again I rang Autowindscreens, to tell them that the second round of numbers they gave me were also fax numbers. Their response, and I quote, " we only attend to UK screen repairs and replacements, the process you have to follow is find a repairer yourself in Spain, pay their invoice and reclaim the amount once back in the UK." And that is directly from my insurer's affiliated auto glass repairer. Like me, can I presume you dear reader think that this is a complete load of B****XS!

I am here in Spain with a damaged windscreen, that in my opinion would repair, but can't seem to get anyone interested in attending to the job. As for Saga, needless to say I will be looking for another insurer for next year. It was Saga Insurance who funded the legal expenses cover during my narrowboat problems, that in my opinion were also a complete and utter waste of time.

Today's farce lasted between 9.00am and 12.00pm UK time, cost me £15 in phone calls and got me absolutely nowhere!

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