Call up a call out
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If the vehicle operator has no such credit facility, he can nevertheless still get the vehicle repaired using the scheme, but will have to pay cash or arrange bank transfer in the usual way before removing from the workshops or continuing his journey from the roadside call-out. It is in the user's interest to procure a credit arrangement that will at least cover the basic callout fee, even if separate arrangements might have to be made to cover repairs of a more serious nature.
The operator of a single DAF vehicle can have other makes of vehicle in his fleet covered by the scheme as well. All DAF main dealers operate a round-the-clock cover and where possible make the repair at the roadside, so avoiding a detour to the base workshop. In any case the driver is encouraged to comment on the service in writing before signing the acceptance form.
All this sounds fair enough for operation in the United Kingdom, but what happens to vehicles travelling abroad? No worry. DAF, a Dutch company, gives almost identical cover under its International Truck Service Scheme, controlled from Eindhoven, in much the same manner.
However, work is charged in a slightly different way. The dealer, whether in say, Salerno or Lulea, makes the first charge on DAF at Eindhoven. In turn, Eindhoven charges Marlow; then it proceeds down the line, through the dealer. It can take weeks before the operator gets the final bill from his dealer at home.
This scheme is more than just a breakdown service. It can provide information and advice on such enquiries as the location of security parks and the times of ferries; and can arrange specialist services such as tyre repair, windscreen replacement and the provision of refrigeration expertise as well as a get-youhome service. What's more, it is provided without cost to DAF owners.
DAF Bus Aid is intended for customers who buy new coach chassis (DAF does not sell buses in Britain.) It operates using a different Freefone number, but gives all the help that DAFaid can provide, and more. For the first 12 months there is no membership charge.
The added benefits of DAF Bus Aid over the conventional DAFaid come with an allembracing insurance policy. If the coach needs roadside assistance then BusAid will pick up any callout or recovery charges. If the cause of the breakdown is covered within DAF's warranty terms, then this means virtually a free breakdown service. Repairs not covered by DAF warranty would have to be met by the operator which of course would still be free of any call-out or recovery charges.
After the first 12 months' ownership the coach operator is invited to continue membership of the scheme for a further 12 months. A quotation will be provided for the member with the membership reminder.
Cover includes the hire of a replacement coach if the passengers have to be transported to their destination in the event that a coach cannot be repaired within a reasonable time. The arrangements are usually left for the operator to make, but DAF contributes up to -2250 a day up to a maximum of 21,000 for the trip, to get the passengers to their final journey destination.
The scheme has been in existence only a few months, but already 140 members have been enrolled. DAF is not a benevolent society; it offloads the risk on to an insurance company. If many more customers join the scheme the rates are likely to become even cheaper. So roll up!
The dealers, who work to standards set by the manufacturer, are not allowed to add hidden costs.
Every year DAF GB runs a series of training courses and suggests programmes to suit the needs of individual mechanics. Area service managers assess their dealers' premises and facilities and decide improvements where they think this would promote continuous development. With correct training, staff and dealers are able to provide competitive fixed rate repair maintenance and service contracts, or the mileage linked DAFlube system if this is preferred.
With approximately 500 dealers distributed throughout Europe and the Middle East, DAF provides a total operator support service.