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AAA Celebrates 120 Year Anniversary
What started as a transportation pioneer has grown to an advocate for safe travel, mobility
This month, AAA celebrates 120 years of advocating for safe mobility for drivers and travelers alike. Started in 1902 by automotive enthusiasts who wanted to chart the path for better roads in America, AAA has transformed into one of North America’s largest membership organizations, providing roadside assistance, travel, discounts, financial and insurance services to enhance the life journey of more than 62 million members.
“Not many organizations can say that they’ve been serving the public for as long as AAA,” said Terri Petrick, president of AAA East Central. “Through our years of dedicated service, AAA has become a trusted voice that consumers rely on for automotive, insurance, and travel services.”
Throughout AAA’s history, the federation has been instrumental in pushing for legislation and training to improve roadway safety for drivers, pedestrians, cyclists and first responders. This includes advocating for the creation of the Interstate Highway System in 1956, fighting for Move Over laws in all 50 states, and developing driver education programs. AAA also created the School Safety Patrol program, and advocates for stronger legislation to deter impaired and distracted driving. Much of this work is supported by proprietary research conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.
As one of the largest full-service travel agencies in North America, AAA quickly recognized the importance of providing the public with trusted travel information. To serve this need, AAA created a suite of resources that include the TripTik, the AAA Diamond designation and TourBook® travel guides. AAA also developed a network of expert travel advisors who for decades have been instrumental in making dream vacations a reality for members across the country.
As AAA embarks on its 120th year, it stands among a small number of industry pioneers still in existence. Longevity of organizations has eroded over the years, impacted by economic depressions and recessions, mergers and technological disruptions. AAA, a pioneer from day one, continues to evolve to meet today’s changing mobility and travel landscapes and to meet member needs. The first 120 years are only the beginning.
“The best is yet to come,” continued Petrick.