Escort quests can take awhile to do. I have thoroughly tested all the escort quests in the game for time/xp. Most are worth doing, but as long as you are able to actually do them without failing. Most require you to pay special attention to the escortee as most are fragile and will die easily, so do your best to keep mobs off of the escortee during escort quests. The longest one in the game is the Tanaris chicken escort. The chicken escorts are only worth doing if you were able to do all 3 of them, as if you do, you will be able to turn in an additional easy quick XP turn in quest at BB, which makes them worth it.
This is the lamest excuse to try and pin it on a cash grab. Tbh this is just you complaining to complain, there is no issue. If you wanted to play classic on launch you'd have to sub before hand anyways you're still paying month to month you don't pay by week. The only way you'd lose that money is if you quit before your sub ran out later on down the road.