Grrr at the AA

My car insurance is currently with AA Insurance. AA as in, The AA – the Automobile Association. They sent me a letter through last week to tell me that my insurance is up for renewal, and that they’d found a cheaper quote for me (it looks like they use a variety of insurance companies). They also gave me the option of renewing my existing insurance, or going with this cheaper quote.

So, I thought I’d renew my insurance online (like I’ve done before). The AA have got a new website (or section of their website) for doing just that. Unfortunately it’s the kind of thing you have to register for, so I tried to register…. it’s rather confusing.

Apparently you have an account with them, and you can add different ‘items’ – i.e., different services the AA provide. So you can have an online account with your car insurance, home insurance, all registered to your one account. Unfortunately the site requires you to add an item before you actually register! This seems a little counter-intuitive to me… surely you should register your username etc first?

Anyway, the actual page to add an ‘item’ is confusing in itself. There’s a field there for your ‘reference number’ (which varies depending on what service you’re selecting – for car insurance it could either be your policy number or your quote reference number). You also have a drop down list for the type of item which you have to select, which contained both ‘MOTOR INSURANCE’ and ‘MOTOR INSURANCE QUOTE’. So, I tried registering my current policy number. No dice. I tried registering using my quote reference number. Nope, sorry. I tried just about every combination I could think — nope, couldn’t get the darn thing to recognise me!

It didn’t actually help that the quote reference number contained an ambiguous character which looked like a “|”. I’m sure it couldn’t have been – it was probably just an ‘I’ – but it’s still a bad typeface which doesn’t clearly distinguish letters, particularly if it’s all in upper-case!

I still haven’t managed to renew my insurance – I sent off an email to the AA, hopefully they will get back to me soon.

Sorry this wasn’t very much of a rant, I’m probably more annoyed than I sound here 😉


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