By Russ and Tiña De Maris
We’ve received more than 200 comments from our readers regarding our stories on the huge discounts that diesel-burning RVers can get. But in case you missed them, here’s a synopsis of what’s been going down.
We initially wrote about a fuel discount program offered by a Texas trucking company called TSD Logistics. In essence, RVers can “sign up” to use a company-issued fuel card and get discounts that often meet or exceed 50 cents per gallon at in-network truck stops around the country. Go here for the full story.
Last weekend, we wrote to update that Pilot Flying J had killed off the RVers’ discount, as the big fuel company had an agreement with the Good Sam Club that discounts for fueling RVers could only be given to card-carrying Good Sam Club members. No, we didn’t make this up – the information came to us directly from TSD Logistics. Click here to see all the gory details.
The reaction from readers was swift, with a vast majority damning the Good Sam Club and suggesting everything from boycotts to letter-writing campaigns.
A few pointed the finger at us, indicating that our story had caused the problem and, hence, somehow we were responsible for the loss of discounts. Like the man says, “Don’t shoot the messenger” – we’re here to report the news. If we hadn’t published the stories, how many of you would have known that you could sign up with TSD and get discounts? And to be sure, there are plenty of other fuel stops that still give great discounts to cardholders. So please, settle on down and put your pitchforks and torches away.
To bring it all up to speed, and “nice and official-like” as Barney Fife might say, we hereby add in the comments from Pilot Flying J management, who evidently hope the masses won’t go out and crucify the Good Sam Club. We quote (in full) from an e-mail we received from Bridgit Fletcher, an “Account Supervisor, Corporate” for Zeno Group, a communications group representing Pilot Flying J:
“Pilot Flying J is no longer in business with TSD Logistics (TSD). Unfortunately, it was recently brought to our attention that TSD was reselling our fuel by offering its discounts outside of the company.
“We were unaware of this activity and did not agree to the resale of our fuel. Our contract was with TSD and its fleet of drivers only.
“We aim to provide the best experience to all of our guests, including RV and auto travelers as well as professional drivers. We continue to offer discounts and rewards to RV customers through our partnership with Good Sam. This partnership had no influence on our decision to end our business relationship with TSD.”
So, by Pilot Flying J’s reckoning, Good Sam isn’t to blame for the shutdown of discounts for diesel through TSD Logistics. Did TSD get the information wrong? Is Pilot Flying J flying cover for Good Sam? We don’t know, and probably never will.
And yes, to those who’ve wondered, the “fritters hitting the fan” fallout includes truck drivers. A quick glance at the TSD Logistics fuel discount map still shows Pilot Flying J stops, but the prices listed are what Joe Anydriver would pay. Yes, we’ve heard from several who say they’ve used their TSD card at a Pilot Flying J and it was accepted. You’re right, TSD cards continue to be accepted, but you won’t see any discount in your price.
We still highly regard (and recommend) the TSD Logistics fuel discount program and, for us, we too will wave as we shoot past Pilot. If you want to join us, go ahead and sign up for the TSD Card. Go here to find out how.