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Old 04-20-2011, 04:02 AM   #29
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This will be my last post on this subject because it seems many of you don't understand. The OP said;

"Just curious can you buy direct from Airstream to avoid middleman upcharges and or negotiation headaches"

What he calls upcharges are used to cover the cost of doing business. If I don't like a dealer I go to another one. But, guess what? That doesn't happen very often. When I go to buy something or get something serviced I realize that I have to make the person I'm dealing with a part of my team. I have to make him want to serve me. If I go in and start by treating him like the enemy, he will soon become one. I don't go to the car factory to by my cars, I don't go to the pill factory for my medicine, I don't go to the clothing factory for my clothes, etc. If you feel that you are special and shouldn't have to pay someone for thier investment, then there is nothing I can say that will change your mind. Just remember, someone is paying you for what you do.

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Old 04-20-2011, 05:05 AM   #30
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I don't think that I have to pay anyone for their investment. That is their problem, not mine.
Someone pays me because I work. I have the choice to work there or somewhere else, according to my own interests, and they have the choice to employ me or not, according to their interests.
There is nothing that you can say to change my mind on this.
It is a Brave New World.

Panera Bread Company probably would prefer that I come in and buy my sweets, but I'd rather dive their dumpster. Does that make me a bad person?

As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say. I just watch what they do.
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:10 AM   #31
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May want to let Airstream know what dealer (salesman) treated you like an idiot. I am sure they would not want this kind of treatment from a dealer selling their line??
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:12 AM   #32
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We just decided to buy an Airstream last week. Right now I am actively looking for the best deal I can find on a 2010 or 2011 International 27FB. Should I just find the dealer that charges the MOST money, and be happy in that I spent as much as I could?

Seriously, anyone who doesn't look for the best can you even discuss it with them? Different world.

Does anyone know a dealer closer to Texas that is similar to Colonial in NJ? We are going to have to probably fly to Texas, buy a truck, then drive to the dealer where we buy, and then back to Texas. I really don't want a round trip Tex to NJ.

Anyone know what the differences were from the 2010 to the 2011 models?
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:25 AM   #33
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If the salesman belittles you the thing to do is ask for another salesman or the sales manager. This happens all the time. Voice your compaint then and there, not over the forums. Who knows you may have gotten the deal of a lifetime just by speaking up. Squeaky wheel. My wife had a similar situation buying a sewing machine. When she complained to the manager not only was her treatment improved but she received a discount on the one she wanted. Dealerships can not afford bad salesmen, please tell management because this kind of feedback is welcomed by them to root out the bad and keep the good. thanks zz.
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:48 AM   #34
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As Boondocker says, in trying to get the best deal you are not "gaming the system". The OP only asked the question about buying direct and the answer is no, he can't. His next option is to try other dealers and, of course, to let both the original dealer and Airstream know about his dissatisfaction.

I was just trying to buy insurance through a broker and two that I contacted failed to call me back as promised. Result? I bought my insurance from another broker. My only concern is that in these lean times, what insurance brokers can afford to pass up good business? I suspect that the OP feels the same about his RV dealer.
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Old 04-20-2011, 06:09 AM   #35
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This is a very interesting thread. I worked in sales for three years. It was probably the most difficult three years of my life! If you read "Wanderlust" there is a few paragraphs about how Wally initially didn't take a liking to a dealer network, but soon realized that to market his product successfully, he needed a dealer network. Things are very different now. The ability to communicate over vast distances is taken for granted. There are a few SOB manufacturers that do not have a dealer network, but make all sales and deliveries from the factory. Granted these are low production number manufacturers. When I was a young kid growing up on the farm my Mom used to say "The farmer grows, the grocer sacks and the middlemen buy the Cadillacs!"

Work is never done, so take time to play!
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Old 04-20-2011, 06:38 AM   #36
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Great answer

Originally Posted by Getaways View Post
Thanks for making that assumption. Did it ever occur to you that in this horrible economy I was treated like an idiot by a salesman at one dealer. And don't want to do business with that dealer after that. And yes I know one employee does not a company make.... but nonetheless at this time I refuse to deal with them. And if I have to go out elsewhere I'd just as soon go to the factory.... But no, it has to be me trying to game the system....

Sorry if I sound acerbic, but you jumped to a conclusion with not even asking why?
Great answer, as I was reading the reply all I could think of was how some people just jump to conclusions. Have a great day
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Old 04-20-2011, 08:04 AM   #37
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If the factory was to decide tomorrow to sell direct, it would be the beginning of the end. Any savings do to the elimination of the dealer will soon disappear do to new added costs at the factory. It would be like shifting all the dealers costs to the factory. Only one place to buy, no competition for the factory. There would be no deals, warranty service would be terrible.
The dealer network is there to provide effective serve to customers in their trading area. For this the dealer expects and deserves a profit.
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Old 04-20-2011, 08:35 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by Pahaska View Post
The only reason I would prefer to buy a new trailer direct is to insure that no faceless delivery driver tows it at speeds above what the tires are rated for. I wonder if that is the cause of some of the early Marathon failures.

One solution would be to buy a new unit as close to JC as possible to limit the exposure.

Good point. I felt the same about the delivery and tires, etc. My trailer was ordered and delivered to my dealer in Texas. I have already replaced the tires on my unit because of tread seperation which started to happen about 6 months ago. My trailer was delivered last year an May 5th. Was the driver driving too fast? You bet!
I also don't care for the trailer to sit on the dealers lot very long either. I arrived on the delivery day before the salesman called me. The driver pulled in and 5 minutes later I was there. Customers from the dealership were trying to view the trailer while it was in make ready as the saleman was bring them by to look at it.
I allowed one guy to look unside but when he tried to step into my new shower with his dirty shoes on I put a stop to the showings.
I got a better deal than Colonial offered on a ordered unit (got bids from several dealerships) and saved a lot of money on fuel and time by buying local.
I don't mind buying from a local dealer, but would have liked to be allowed to pick up my own unit and let the Jackon Center service group do the make ready and walk thru.
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Old 04-20-2011, 09:18 AM   #39
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It's been a few years but I did ask to do a factory pickup on my newly built Airstream and was told that the factory did not entertain that option any more. Apparently it was decided the price you negotiate with the dealer includes the overhead to prep the trailer and the time to give you the "training" necessary in how to operate the various systems.

Translating that into my mind means that the factory doesn't want to spend the overhead to truly bring a new trailer to what you and I would consider a deliverable state.

I know my local dealer Walbernizes the trailer prior to deliver and has all systems prepped tested. They also encourage you to stay overnight in one of their sites at the dealership to make sure the systems are working properly and to give you the support necessary to make sure you understand how to use your new trailer. Obviously the dealer could cut his costs if he could pass that work back to the factory but you have to pay for this somewhere. If it ever comes back to the factory, I wouldn't be surprised that in lieu of a delivery charge, the factory would substitute some type of prep charge in its place.

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Old 04-20-2011, 10:43 AM   #40
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Your right, we have to pay for the service somewhere.
The way A/S does it now is probably the cleanest way to handle the delivery and not entertaining any other way, all works in their favor in the long run.
Besides it allows the dealer to make some extra money if minor repairs are needed at delivery. That way the dealerships want to remain with A/S and make the extra bucks.
At least that's another way to look at it.

When I pulled out of the dealership last year, I could hear them singing this tune as I drove away.

"You can't alway get what you want, but if you try, you might find, you get what you need."
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Old 04-20-2011, 04:42 PM   #41
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I don't owe anything to a dealer with bad salesmen, bad service or bad prices. We looked at Airstreams at 2 dealers in 2007.

At the first one, I asked the salesman some questions I knew the answer to because I wanted to see if he would lie. He did, then he went to answer the phone and never came back. We walked.

Then we went to the 2nd and the salesman was more straight with us and we made a deal, a reasonably good one we think. But their service dept was awful and the managers were typical pushy jerks you sometimes find at dealers. We would never go back there. But at the time, we didn't know enough and didn't know where else to go.

The dealers that receive good reviews on this Forum are few and that's not good for Airstream. They know who the bad ones are in JC, but things don't seem to change.

There are plenty of merchants in this county who seem to want to stick it to you and complain people go out of county to buy things. They don't get it either.


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