Pilot Flying J issues official statement on diesel discount debacle

46

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.

Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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.

##RVT939

Subscribe
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

46 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Tom Edelman
4 months ago

The TSD card helps us use their service with our RV by : First, the card is used at the truck diesel pumps at Love’s, T/A etc. get us a good discount. Second, I don’t have to go into the building to give them any estimate of diesel gal. to put in to put into our tanks ( 50 gal. each side of our Super C ) or remembering what truck aisle I’m parked, or giving them our truck # (?) or Third, go back into building to get a receipt. In and out faster than a speeding bullet with out leaping tall or small buildings : O) Love it !

Judy Westmoreland
5 months ago

My question is: if there is no more Good Sams club or “Good Sam”, why did they just let us join and send us a card WTH?

Brenda S
5 months ago

I read your story on Good Sam being used at Pilot Flying J to get a discount and not allowing the TSD cared. You need to ask Good Sam why their scarfs don’t work when you try and get fuel through the truckers isle. We have tried every Pilot Flying J from NY to MS to TX and every cashier has no idea what it is. Now they may work on the gas isles, but they will not take them if your getting diesel in the Trucker isles. It’s not that they have a line of truckers, we were told by cashiers, they no nothing about the program.

John F Clauser
5 months ago

I’ve had a Flying J/Pilot Good Sam discount fuel card for a number of years. However I have not used it now for about 3 years. Their price, even with the discount, is higher than what I could find else where at no discount. Disappointing.

David Hagen
6 months ago

Even the comments are confusing. What in heck does TSD have to do with Good Sam discounts? Since the TSD program has nothing to do with Good Sam’s Flying J/Pilot discounts, why are people pissed at Good Sam?

Ken Quick
6 months ago

I was using the TSD Logistics card for my motorhome long before Pilot/Flying J stopped their discount. I never used the TSD card at Pilot/Flying J fuel stops because their prices were never discounted anywhere close to the discounted prices at Loves or Travel America or others. So, Pilot/Flying J stopped giving their paltry discount that was not bringing in any new business anyway. No loss.

Clark Hodges
6 months ago

The Good Sam discount was 5 cents per gallon and since Pilot/Flying J is usually 5 cents more than other stations, the discount just brought it back to the rest of the world prices

Ray
6 months ago

I am going to boycott Pilot/Flying J. In my opinion if TDS can give these substantial fuel discounts and still make a small profit for there trouble then how much of a kickback is Sams Club getting from Pilot/Flying J? I have often wondered how much these large trucking companies were paying for fuel in comparison to us RV’s. Sam’s club has done us no favors. I suspect they are getting a hefty kick back or they are bad negotiators for the RV community.

Rey L.
5 months ago
Reply to  Ray

You mean “Good Sam’s Club”, right?

Ray
5 months ago
Reply to  Ray

Good Sam not Sams Club .

Jan
6 months ago

I agree with the idea of driving past Pilot/Flying J but, we have a large, gas powered MH and toad. We really appreciate the RV islands at Flying J. Most other gas stations are difficult, if not impossible, to maneuver in and out of. We certainly would give our business to another company!

Howard Malpass
6 months ago

Thank you very much for filling in the blanks on the TSD issue! The one thing that comes screaming out is that GOOD SAM is using their muscle to control other services.

I belong to GOOD SAM, but this is not right!

Once again….THANK YOU for keeping us informed and knowledgeable of the actions and issues facing the RV’ers!

Mitch
6 months ago
Reply to  Howard Malpass

It’s every man for himself out there. I heard originally that someone at TSD dropped the ball. As with most situations it’s usually human error, nobody’s perfect. RV on Garth!!!!!

Jerry
6 months ago

I got the TSD card after reading your story and now it’s in the worthless pile along with my Good Sam discount card. Also, I don’t know if you actually downloaded TSD’s app and tried to use it, but it’s probably the worse app I’ve ever seen. The map doesn’t work and if it shows a station you can’t select it and get any useful info.

Last year, some RV blog (might have been you) wrote about Winegard ToGo and the great data deal it had with AT&T. Shortly after that, AT&T pulled the unlimited data plan. I’m glad I procrastinated on that one.

I used to laugh at people on RV forums that scolded people for telling others bout great camping sites, Now I understand why.

Peggy Coffey
6 months ago
Reply to  Jerry

We have used the TSD card since last year and it has proved to us that we can save a significant amount of money. I also use the app while we’re traveling and find that it’s one of the easiest to use. You might have tried reinstalling the app because it is as simple. I find fuel stations, get prices and can compare prices as we roll, I get immediate information on how much fuel we got and the amount we paid and the savings we received. Yours may have been user error.

Ray
6 months ago
Reply to  Jerry

Your TDS card is good but just not at Pilot/Flying J. You can use it at Loves.

John R Crawford
6 months ago
Reply to  Jerry

You better get that TSD card out of the worthless pile because it is still good at Love stations, TA and others. It’ll save you a ton.

carl newton
6 months ago

I remember reading a comment from TSD the Pilot Flying J discounts had just started sometime in Dec I believe so the loss of this is not a big deal. This has gotten blown out of the water and the comments directed at GS and Pilot have been harsh.

I have not used the TSD card thus far getting it the 19th of dec and at that time the FlyJ pilot discount was no all that.. only recently like in Jan to feb did it get better and now coming to a stop..

With all the other stations that we can use the TSD card, Loves TA Petro and other it still a great deal. So let do like this author is saying and put away the pitch forks etc and enjoy the great discounts and now with price at ALL time lows it a great time to be traveling..

THis CORV19 thing will be over in time for the new season of RVing.. so lets hit the trail and carry on..

Peter Thiessen
6 months ago

Flying J is the most expensive fuel in my area. They have the only card lock fueling station in my town ,and they take advantage of people. I refuse to open a account because of this.

Fred
6 months ago

If what the Pilot PR person says is true (& that’s a big if) that Pilot never authorized TSD Logistics to allow rvers to be included in the discount program for truckers, & has stopped doing business with TSD period, then how long before Love’s & TA follow suit & kill the whole TSD program for rvers & truckers alike? I’ll wait till this shakes out before going thru the process of setting up an account with TSD.

Ken Quick
6 months ago
Reply to  Fred

Why would any retailer want to limit their sales? Good Sam obviously muscled Pilot/Flying J into dropping TSD for RVs because of their contract for RV customers. It is far more likely that Pilot/Flying J will modify or not renew their contract with Good Sam than the possibility that Loves, TA, or others will follow Pilot/Flying J into limiting sales. Volume is power in the fuel industry! Think like a capitalist! Get the TSD card and start saving money.

bounder
6 months ago

It’s been earlier reported that Marcus Lemonis reads the RVtravel newsletter. I suspect he read the article about the TSD fuel card here, then directed his minions to take action. PFJ was likely fine with the increase in sales. It’s all about the $$$.

Alvin
6 months ago

I’ve never had a problem finding the best gas prices in the area, generally from the guy one block off or around the corner from where everyone else lines up in long stinking lines to save a few pennies.

I also challenge the guy stating he saved 0.56 cents per gallon of any fuel.

He wouldn’t in Canada, because the margins for a fuel retailer here are NOWHERE near the 56 cents he said he saved. They’d all be broke if they gave discounts of that magnitude, and we couldn’t buy fuel anywhere, there would be none.

Have you ever wondered why fuel retailers sell everything from ice scrapers to hot dogs and beer – answer – they’d go broke just peddling fuels.

Mr. Mustang
6 months ago

I’m also done with bad Sam!!!👎🏻 most of the employees at our local store are not happy people, and it shows, very bad customer service ! I went into the service dept. looking for two cabinet hinges antique brass, all they had were two used chrome hinges no screws they wanted 5.00 ea. Went to Home Depot, two brand new antique brass hinges three dollars and change! What a f- ing ripoff that bad Sam is!!!

Mark S Bond
6 months ago

How about the big truck stop chains stop the favoritism discounts all together. Even the playing field like the mega carriers want. Giving them huge cost plus discounts while charging a small business owner operator like me full pump price, gives them a financial advantage over me. It’s just anti small business and anti American. Level the playing field right Swift, JB Hunt Werner, Schneider?

Alvin
6 months ago
Reply to  Mark S Bond

Fear not Mark S. Bond, guys like me with a long history in the automotive biz who feel your pain, as I’ve felt it, will pay a little more if need be to darken your doorway and patronize you. Keep on doing what you’re doing, smile (rare today), treat people like people not another rig in an endless line and you’ll be fine.

Some of us still search out, and cherish what the little guy does for us.

Wolfe
6 months ago

On topic, i think GasBuddy gives you 5% off at any gas station.

Off axis, the biggest gas savings I’ve seen is never fueling in MegaTax states if you can help it, and auxiliary tanks to tip the scale there… making it over a state line is often worth 50-80 cents on every gallon. At max capacity, that may save Mr. Grant or even Mr. Franklin at every larger fillup.

Wolfe
6 months ago
Reply to  Wolfe

It probably varies by state, but most allow 1000lbs of fuel before needing placards. Here in NY i’m limited to 110 gallons per (properly installed) tank or 150 total before placards. With my truck, that’s a range of 1500mi towing or 2500mi truck only…

Portable 5gal tanks are supposedly limited to four/truck, but I’ve seen contractors with more (well secured) cans…

Bob
6 months ago

You have to understand that Good Sam makes a lot of money from Pilot/Flying J via the discount they offer. They give you $0.08 off a gallon all the while they are getting $0.40 cents off, Pilot/Flying J then sends Good Sam the difference $0.32 on each gallon.

James Saulsgiver
6 months ago
Reply to  Bob

I dont care what Good Sam gets,thats their business.Im just glad for the .08 cents discount.Every little bit helps.