I began helping my elderly parents, in their late 80s and on fixed income, with trying to reduce their monthly expenses. So I was shocked to see Verizon ("VZ") was recently billing them $214/month for (what VZ calls a "grandfathered") outdated Triple Play bundle that's no longer offered to customers: 25/25 Internet, TV Essentials, and Freedom Essentials phone. (Total monthly rates in this forum post include taxes and fees.) Past bills show my parents have been paying about $200/month for that outdated VZ Triple Play package for about the last two years. Even worse, some of their recent VZ bills state the following offer: "Upgrade to FiOS Quantum 50/50 Mbps Internet for just $15 per month more." That would bring their bill to almost $230/month!
I therefore called VZ in Dec 2016 to find a better deal for my parents. I don't have VZ myself but used to think VZ's reputation was pretty good, however, what a horrible experience I recently had with VZ Customer Service. In a frustrating sequence during the past 1 1/2 months (including a lot of phone waiting and hold times), I spoke to a number of different VZ phone reps and their supervisors. The first phone rep said the best VZ could do was reduce my parents' monthly bill to $196/month for their same outdated VZ Triple Play. A second phone rep told me VZ can offer my parents a Triple Play of 25/25, Preferred HD, and Digital Voice for $182/month. I said that seems expensive for 25/25 when new VZ customers get 150/150 Triple Play for only $79/month. The second VZ rep checked with his manager and returned with an offer of $155.34/month for two years - 50/50 Internet, Preferred HD, and Digital Voice. I asked the phone rep if VZ would also apply some kind of long-term customer discount since my parents have been VZ customers a long time. The VZ rep checked their account records and said my parents have been loyal VZ customers for ... 57 years! So I said VZ should be able to do better than its current offer for loyal 57-year customers who've been paying an excessively high VZ monthly bill for an outdated bundle for at least the last two years, and probably much longer, while new customers get 150/150 Triple Play for $79/month (plus extra perks). That phone conversation was long and I was busy, so I had to end the call but the VZ rep said he kept the offer pending.
The next day, I spoke to a different VZ phone rep and told him VZ's offered price was still too high and asked whether VZ would apply some kind of long-term customer discount. The phone rep put me on hold, spoke to his supervisor, and returned saying: Good news, VZ appreciates that your parents have been a loyal VZ customer for 57 years and VZ will also apply an extra $30/month "Valued Customer" discount for two years, bringing your parents' rate down to $125.34/month for 50/50 Internet, Preferred HD, and Digital Voice for two years. The phone rep and I agreed to the deal and I twice reviewed the subtotals and total monthly amount with the VZ phone rep and we again agreed to all the terms. The VZ rep said the next monthly bill in late December '16 would be $155.34. He also said I must call VZ in January '17 because that's when a VZ phone rep will be able to activate the agreed-upon additional $30/month Valued Customer discount for two years. The VZ phone rep also said he added a note to my parents' VZ account records explaining that when I call VZ in Jan '17, the VZ phone rep is to activate the additional $30/month two-year discount. We again reviewed and agreed to all the terms, including the $125.34/month rate for two years. I thanked him and the call ended.
The new VZ service agreement for my parents started later in Dec '16. As directed by the VZ phone rep, I called back in early Jan '17 and was connected to a VZ manager. That VZ manager said the note from the previous VZ phone rep says only that I can call VZ in Jan '17 to ask whether there is any kind of Valued Customer discount that might be available. I responded that in Dec. '16, VZ and I already agreed to the $125.34/month rate for two years (including the $30 Valued Customer discount) and that I was directed to call VZ in early Jan '17 to have a VZ phone rep activate that additional two-year discount. The VZ manager told me there is no such discount and my parents' two-year rate is $155.34/month for two years - that's $30 per month higher than the rate to which VZ and I had previously agreed in Dec '16. I again explained the previously agreed-upon contract details to that VZ manager. The VZ manager then looked up information and said the VZ phone rep is a VZ "Outside Vendor" from another country and that she would open a VZ "Vendor Complaint" and she gave me a Vendor Complaint number. The VZ manager also told me that when the VZ phone rep (with whom I made the agreement) said he was speaking to his supervisor, he was instead probably "twiddling his thumbs." She also said the "Outside Vendor" VZ phone rep's supervisor would call me in several days to resolve the situation. Another week went by and the supervisor never called me (nor did anyone from VZ).
So, yesterday, I called VZ again and informed yet another VZ manager that I never received the "Outside Vendor" VZ supervisor's call. I also again asked the VZ manager to apply the agreed-upon $30/month Valued Customer discount and for VZ to stand by my parents' new Triple Play agreement with VZ. This VZ manager also said there is no such discount, VZ will not honor my parents' VZ Triple Play agreement rate of $125.34 per month, and their rate remains $155.34/month. Therefore, I relayed to the VZ manager how exasperating this entire VZ Customer Service ordeal has been, said I was very dissatisfied with how VZ treats its loyal long-term customers (of 57 years), and said I would post my terrible VZ Customer Service experiences on the web. His response was that my parents could cancel their Verizon FiOS contract if they wished. Needless to say, I have lost a great deal of respect for Verizon and am extremely disappointed in Verizon's Customer Service.
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