Route 66 Dealer Network – What Does It Do for You, and What Does it Mean to the Dealer?

Route 66 – what does it do for you, and what does it mean to the dealer?

Apache Camper Center is a dealer member of the network known as Route 66.  That statement in and of itself doesn’t really set your heart aflutter does it?  Well, I thought it was well past time to explain the benefit of belonging to a group like this to your customer experience.

Route 66 is a group of what I like to term “Elite” RV dealerships.  It is a group of dealerships that are independently owned and operated, and want to enhance their customers’ experience as RV owners.  Each dealer has to adhere to a code of ethics, and has to be invited to join the network.  This group was designed specifically to give our customers a “port in the storm” of dealerships. 

Ever increasingly, customer dissatisfaction has been gaining, and is usually due to the big box dealers who are out only to turn units and make a profit, and have no respect for the customer or their needs.  We recently had an RV owner come in while they were on the road panicked because they couldn’t understand their water system and were about to abort their vacation.  Within a few minutes of looking at it, our technicians found that it was a simple matter of teaching the customer how to do it.  This customer had bought their motorhome from a big box dealer, and was given the point and tell version of a demonstration.  We were told that the person who walked them through the motorhome (their first ever camper) pointed at the stove and told them it was a stove, pointed to the refrigerator and told them it was a refrigerator.  The entire demonstration for this couple only lasted 15 minutes and then they were sent on their way. 

The wife kept complaining about the electrical and how they keep blowing fuses.  I pulled out a handy little sheet that I keep showing the amperage of various appliances on common items like toasters and coffeemakers.  Once she saw the sheet and realized that she only had a 30 amp service, her eyes lit up and she smiled probably for the first time since they bought the camper.  At this point, they said that they would come back to our dealership for all service and for their next purchase.  Just consider this a cautionary tale of the woes that the big box customers experience all over the country. 

The service that an independent dealer can offer is invaluable, but if the dealership is also a member of Route 66, you have the added security of knowing that there are nearly 400 locations across the US and Canada who will treat you like you are one of their customers whether you bought your camper in Florida, Canada, or even here in Nebraska.  As long as it was a Route 66 dealer, you will be treated to discounts on parts, free advice, and a dealer who operates their business honorably and is an active member of their community.  Kind of like your own safety net.  Your port in the storm.

With the membership to Route 66 which comes at no cost to you if you purchase a camper from a participating dealer comes peace of mind.  Peace of mind that you can visit any Route 66 dealership if you are having problems on the road and that they will treat you as one of their own customers.  You will receive the same priority service that their customers enjoy. 

Customer Care Promises

Every new or used RV purchased from a ROUTE 66 RV Network dealer comes with our exclusive Customer Care Promises at no charge. Enjoy the peace of mind knowing that there are over 150 RV dealerships across North America ready and willing to meet your service needs.

You can rest assured that you’ll not only experience the same quality service and preferential treatment that you’ve come to expect from your home ROUTE 66 dealer, but you’ll also be treated with integrity and respect.

Our Customer Care promises to you are . . .

  1. 10% off parts and accessories at any ROUTE 66 RV Network parts store in North America (not including service, special order or on sale parts).
  2. We will make every effort to diagnose your RV’s problem within one service business day of your arrival and, if possible, complete the repair or place your RV in the service schedule with a preferred status.
  3. We will use the Network’s Proprietary Parts Network to quickly locate and secure any parts needed that are unique to your RV’s year, make and model.
  4. We will assist you in securing nearby accommodations and local transportation, if needed, while any service work is being performed.
  5. We will make arrangements for you with another local service provider if the ROUTE 66 dealer you visited is unable to perform the service necessary due to manufacturer warranty or other service requirements.
  6. You will be treated like a valued customer by every ROUTE 66 RV Network dealer you visit in North America.

Buy your next RV from a ROUTE 66 RV Network dealer and join an elite group of RVers who prefer to travel the road with confidence, knowing that no matter where the road takes them … you’ll enjoy Customer Care from a friend you can count on.

As a dealer, what does it mean to us?  Knowing that there are Route 66 dealers who can help us attain parts from manufacturers that we don’t carry. 

Having the satisfaction of knowing that we are offering a service to all the owners of units from Route 66 dealers.

Knowing that all our counterparts are adhering to a code of ethics, and that they will treat our customers well on the road when we can’t be there. 

What is the dealer code of ethics and why is it so important?

Our 10 Commitments

These aren’t just shallow platitudes, but solid network-wide promises that each dealer makes to one another, as well as to all traveling ROUTE 66 customers.  Each dealer prominently displays these commitments in their dealership to publicly reinforce their dedication to the following:

  1. Conduct all business activity with the highest level of personal and corporate integrity.
  2. Treat every customer and supplier as we would want to be treated.
  3. Present our products and services in an honest and fully disclosed manner.
  4. Address any and all customer or supplier concerns with a civil and open attitude.
  5. Fulfill all promises, commitments and warranties made to our customers, suppliers and community.
  6. Fully comply with all laws that govern the operation of this dealership.
  7. Communicate with all sales and service customers in writing when at all possible, when providing estimates and quotes.
  8. Give every customer the best value possible for his or her investment.
  9. Never stop striving to improve our customers’ sales and service experience.
  10. Be a positive voice in our community for the benefits of RVing.

Operating under these commitments is not new to any of the ROUTE 66 dealers you may visit.  Quite frankly, long before this network was formed, each of our dealers had already earned solid reputations for running honest, customer-focused dealerships.

As we enter our 50th year of operations, it is more imperative than ever that we operate within a group like Route 66.  When we saw their 10 Commitments (or code of ethics), we knew that this group was the one for us.  Our dealership was actually one of the flagship dealers invited to join the network.  We have operated using these commitments for the entire time we have been in business, and knowing that we can deal with any Route 66 dealer who operates in the same fashion, it is a peace of mind for us as well as the customer. 

We don’t need to worry about sending our customers out to businesses who will take advantage of them or treat them poorly.  We can rest assured that our customers will be taken care of at our location or any other location in the country.  We can hold our heads up high and be proud about being a part of the most elite group of dealers in the country. 

Check out all the optional benefits of being a part of the Route 66 network.  Warranties, 24 hour tech, Only ROUTE 66 can offer its customers over 1200 service bays staffed with nearly 2000 RVDA Certified Technicians.  ROUTE 66 also has several specific ways to support customers after the sale, including the ROUTE 66 Customer Care Promises, ROUTE Proprietary Parts Network, ROUTE 66 RV Club, ROUTE 66 Roadside/Tech 24, ROUTE 66 Certified Pre-Owned, ROUTE 66 Classic Coverage Plus Service Agreements and Parts 66 Protection Plans.

So, now that your hearts are fluttering just a little bit, stop by a Route 66 dealership (like ours) and experience the difference that we can offer.  Education, service, accessories and parts, and a friendly face.  Find out what you have been missing with all the internet and big dealers – service and honesty.  Why shop elsewhere?  Support your local dealer.  After all, they are the ones who will support you.

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This article was originally posted here.

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