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VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
llhanley
Member

I have had VZW service since May 15, 2001. I've always had a contract and upgraded phones every year or two. That all changed tonight when I terminated my contract after 5 trips to the store in the last week, each over an hour, and totally fruitless. The kicker is that they made NO EFFORT whatsoever to try to keep me as a customer. Apparently,  "Verizon Wireless because we aren't 100% satisfied unless you are" doesn't apply, and clearly they have enough customers paying over $125/mo for phone/data plans to care if I was one of them or not.

 

Sorry for this being so long...  In January I decided that I might want to have corporate Blackberry service where I could get my work e-mail on my phone so I bought a Blackberry Curve. The phone was fine for a while, but I started having problems with it. I took it to the Clear Lake TX store at Baybrook on several occasions. Several months ago it started chirping in my ear. I brought it to the store and the rep put in a ticket with the "network." I got NO response whatsoever on this ticket. Then it started turning itself on and off at will, I couldn't back it up without errors and it was suddenly starting to drop calls left and right. I finally got really tired of it so I took it back to the store and I told the rep who waited on me that he was about to get the phone back. He messed around with it a while and then came back and ordered me a new phone. He told me the new phone would be delivered on Friday and I had to be there to sign for it. I happened to be home Friday afternoon and waited 5 hours for Fed Ex who never showed up. I went back to the store Saturday and waited 45 minutes to ask what happened to my replacement phone. Turns out it is 2-day delivery - it would have been nice if the tech had mentioned that before I left the store. Another 45 minutes lost.

 

The replacement phone came on Monday. I picked it up from my apartment office, ran a couple of errands and went back to the store. One would think that on a Monday evening when there are less than 6 people in the store and no one on the list that you'd be able to get waited on in less than 30 minutes. Apparently that is too much to ask. I was there over an hour.

 

Finally, I got someone (I hesitate to call her a tech because I've only ever seen her stocking accessories and not helping people back in tech support) to help with the phone. I had not opened the box or inspected it before I took it to the store - big mistake. First, when your phone is over 30 days old, you DO NOT get a NEW phone, you get some refurbished piece of crap that someone else has beaten to death, evidenced by the corrosion in the USB port and inside the phone and the gouges out of the case that didn't come off the phone. I paid money for that phone back in January. There is NO reason that I should get someone else's used crap back if mine "breaks" when it's still under warranty. Second, if I have a VZW online account and am paying for backup service, why in the heck can they only get the contacts out of the phone? Seriously.

 

So I don't figure out until I get it back home over an hour later and it's too late to take it back to the store that it's been beaten up by its previous owner. I also find out when I get it home that it's got missing pieces of software - how that happened is totally beyond me. Then this new phone also somehow dropped the mobile network this afternoon. Not sure how that happened, either, because it was turned off all day. So back to the store I go. Again.

 

Again, there aren't many people in the store but all of the technicians are tied up. A sales guy comes over and wants to know what my problem is. This is a first, so I tell him about this replacement phone that I got YESTERDAY and the girl who helped me should done something about because it was in unacceptable condition. I told him that I've been a customer for 8-1/2 years, that I've not had any real phone problems until recently with the Blackberry, and that I've been here 5 times already and that's unacceptable as well. He goes in the back room and comes out with a manager who starts looking through my account and then goes off to get me yet another refurbished phone insisting that nobody gets a new phone replacement after 30 days. Why? They go back to RIM so what's the difference? She hands the phone off to some other tech who's apparently already busy with someone else and when I try talking to him about the phone and asked if the new software load will allow me to access the GPS with 3rd party apps because the geo-tagging isn't working with the camera, and he goes off and comes back to tell me no, it won't and that the only VZW phone with the GPS unblocked is the Tour, which isn't true. He stood there arguing with me about the GPS access on the Curve and the Storm. It's not blocked on the Storm and a simple Google search would tell him otherwise, but he wants to argue. I said, "Fine, you can keep the Blackberry. I've had enough. I want to use the features of my phone and I can't so give me a simple phone instead or they can cancel my contract. He tells me he's going to get the manager and very slowly walked into the back room and after he came out, my issue was supposedly handed off to another tech who was on the phone during the entire discussion I had with the other two people at the counter. I told the guy who was trying to do the transfer to this other refurbished phone that I want to go back to a regular phone and be done with it. He tells me that I can't UPGRADE on my plan and so we go back and forth about the fact that going to a $29 phone isn't an upgrade and I finally get tired of this bantering with these guys so I tell him to cancel my account. He says, "Fine," and goes in the backroom and goes to get the manager again. She comes back out, asks what we're doing, I tell her that I want to access the GPS on the phone and if I can't to take me back to a regular phone. She says no, my choices are to take this other refurbished Blackberry or I can cancel my contract. I said, "Fine, go ahead and cancel it then." She starts that process and when I tell her I am not taking this piece of crap phone with me, she says it's MY phone and we go back and forth about the fact that MY phone is in a box on its way to RIM, it's not MY phone. She tells me that if I leave it there, it's getting donated and she doesn't give a crap what I do with it but I'm not leaving it there. Fine.  She takes another 10 minutes to document this in the computer, hands me a receipt to tell me that I now owe them $140 to cancel, and then spends another 10 minutes typing before she tells me I can leave and hands me the phone.

 

There is one technician there that I like to deal with - she was not working 4 of the 5 times I was there and she was busy with someone else when she was there. Out of my control, but I'm betting I'd still be a customer tonight if she were working.  And she's NOT a manager.

 

1 Solution

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
llhanley
Member

Between you guys and several other people who said I should at least try calling the 800 number, I did that. Boy, what a difference! I explained what happened between all the trips to the store and how it ended up that I walked out the door an ex-customer. She apologized profusely throughout our entire conversation and set things right. She told me that if I felt that I was treated rudely by the people in the store I needed to go to the Contact Us link and send e-mail there because that's where the people who make the decisions are, and that everyone at Verizon is trained the same way so no one should be treating people like I got treated at that store. Because my account was reinstated within 30 days, the termination fees are canceled, and because I was a customer for so long and was treated so poorly at the store, I also now have the option to purchase a different phone.

 

Tonight I stopped at a different store to resolve the issues with the replacement phone that didn't get resolved when I walked out of "my" store. The people at the other store were more than helpful and nice to deal with as well. They didn't have a BB Curve in the store and called the next closest store and had them hold one for me. I drove up to that store and they had it out and pretty much ready to go. A night and day experience.

 

Lesson Learned: When it comes down to arguing with the people in the store, leave and call the folks on the 800 number.

 

Thanks to both of you for your input - I may not have called them otherwise. This must just have been the perfect storm of customer service blunders for the VZW store. I'm a lot happier now than I was before.

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
Buttens
Member

I am very sorry you had such problems in the store. You should  have picked up your cell phone and dialed *611 and spoke to customer service. VZW customer service is Awesome. They bend over backwards to help you...I know I have been a customer since 08/2000.

 

The manager at the store location that you are speaking of obviously was not equipped to do her job. I understand that you did not want a refurbed blackberry that was beat up and applications that were missing that is standard with the original device and those applications that were there were unusable. Your right... this is unacceptable.

 

Your statement about VZW not caring about their customers is truly incorrect. VZW makes every effort to make their customers happy and you were dealing with a store mgr... a totally different thing.

 

If you have not already gone out to a new provider you should give VZW customer service a call and see what they can do for you.

 

As for the mgr. of that store VZW corp. really needs to call that mgr. and ream her good. Seems to me that she does not have the interest of VZW in mind. She single handedly lost a 8.5 year customer when all she had to do was go in the back grab a new blackberry from an unopened box activate the phone hand it to you and be done.

 

VZW then has a very happy customer spreading the news to all those poor schmucks out there using other inferior providers and at the same time collecting a cool $120.00 a month for the next 8.5 years.

 

No, now VZW has a very unhappy customer spreading bad news to the schmucks and VZW users, the schmucks are now thanking god they did not switch to VZW and on top of all that VZW is losing revenue from your business.

 

Yep a phone that probably cost less than $50.00 wholesale to VZW has now cost them a bad rep and loss revenue...WTG Store Mgr!.

 

 

 

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
lrando1
Novice
Don't take your problem to the store. You are dealing w/different personalities there. I have found that they usually say NO to everything! Instead call customer service 1-800-922-0204. Explain what happened.Try to stay calm and be nice. You'll find they are much more agreeable if you work together. Tell them how happy you were w/verizon before this all happened. Tell them you really didn't want to cancel but felt pushed up against the wall. I bet you they'll work w/you to figure something out. If the 1st person isn't receptive, ask for supervisor or hang up and call back to get someone different. They have been very helpful to me every time I called. I always call them 1st. They will then make a note on your acct. The people at the store can see this note. The customer service people seem to be more sympathetic. Keep us posted.
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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
llhanley
Member

I said before that I had always had good experiences with VZW until last Tuesday, including this particular store. I've never had a problem before that they did not solve to my satisfaction, and I've referred more of my friends and family to VZW than I can count. 

 

I guess maybe it could be just the store. Yeah, I know my tone changed and but I still trying to be nice. I did feel pushed into a corner because after I thought about it, the supervisor was all but challenging me to take it outside, which I would never do. It was almost like the techs expected something like that or it to get really loud with her out there.

 

Unfortunately, I have received zero communication from VZW at all since this happened. Not from the store manager, regional manager, corporate... no one. I would have thought that terminated accounts ould get someone's attention somewhere and they'd be following up to find out what went wrong or how they could do better. I mean, their business is all about numbers and not only bringing in new customers but also keeping existing ones. But I've heard from no one. What kind of customer service is that?  

 

First, I end up with a phone where I think about all the great things I can do because it's got all these features. I paid for the navigation plan. I wanted to be able to geotag my pictures and send them to Flickr. Didn't work. I wanted a compass application. Wouldn't work. Then I found out that VZW blocks access to the GPS in the Curve because they're apparently afraid no one will pay for their service if they let other apps access the GPS.Then I found that they were going to unlock it but I still can't use those features of my phone. VZW is the ONLY provider to do this. When I asked about it again that night because they'd gotten a brand new software load, they said no, it still didn't do that and they block it on all their Blackberries except the Tour, which isn't true.

 

Failures

  1. GPS is a feature I want to use and I don't get to use it even though I paid for it. I don't want to have to buy a Garmin for crying out loud. I feel that VZW misleads customers by not making it clear that they will not allow other non-VZW applications to access the GPS when they know the other providers do. 
  2. They submitted a network ticket to test a chirping noise on calls and never followed it up. 
  3. When I brought the phone in because the chirping was getting worse, the guy told me he was ordering me a new phone because he didn't have any in the store and it would be there Friday.  I thought I was getting a new phone, not a refurb. 
  4. I waited 4 hours for this new phone to arrive Friday and it didn't. I went back Saturday to find out what happened to it. That's when I learn that it's shipped Fed Ex 2-day instead of overnight. Couldn't the tech have said it was a 2-day shipment? 
  5. When the phone arrives, where's the quality control?
    • You can tell right out of the box that it's been less than gently used, and in fact was most likely abused. 
    • No one at the store will acknowledge that it's got physical evidence of abuse. They tried to tell me that the USB port wasn't corroded, it was just well used. Right. I know that ports that are well used are shiny, not dull. The cover doesn't come off without a pry bar and the inside of the phone is dirty.
    • Doesn't the person who puts my contacts into this phone notice that
      it's been abused? Why does she just hand me this phone and expect that
      I'll be happy with it?
    • The refurbished phone somehow has portions of the BB software missing. Don't know how that happened, but isn't someone supposed to be testing them before they go back out to be given to customers or resold?
  6. When I come back Tuesday with it, I'm challenged by 4 people who want me to believe it's in acceptable condition. Then I'm informed that their policy is to give me a refurbished phone period unless it's within the first 30 days. Why? When I buy one I'm given the option to buy a new or refurbished phone. Why do I not get a choice when you can tell that my phone hasn't been abused?
  7. The tech who ordered the replacement finishes up with the people he was working with and runs in the back room. He didn't come back out until after I left. Coincidence? Maybe.
  8. The tech who was at the workstation next to him was supposed to be working with my phone issue but wasn't. Couldn't be bothered to look at me when I talked to him - he was too busy messing with someone else's phone. When we talked about the GPS issue and I said I just wanted a plain phone if they weren't going to give me all the features, he just said I'd have to talk to the supervisor. I said fine and thought he went to get her. He didn't. And he took his sweet time going back there.
  9. The guy who did end up waiting on me just said I couldn't change to any other phone because I wasn't eligible for an upgrade. Don't know what part of getting a plain phone is an upgrade from a PDA, but it was just one more nail in the coffin at this point.
  10. The last straw was the supervisor coming back out and refusing to work with me at all, and now that I think about it, made it clear that I was wasting her time that she had better things to do. 

So Buttens, you're right. All they had to do was work with me to get me to a phone that worked the way I expected. I was happy enough with my plan. I would have been willing to put out some extra cash to get that device working properly. But they didn't. They let me walk.  And walk with a phone, that if I chose to go back to VZW, would still need to be replaced because it's not right. I just don't have the energy to go through anything like that again right now. 

 

lrando - I don't find it acceptable that I would need to hang up and call back again to get someone who will work with me.The first person should be empowered to deal with the issue. If not, one escalation to a supervisor would be okay, but the initiation for that should come from them - like "I have run out of options for you, please let me connect you to my supervisor." They don't do that. You have to beg. 

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
lrando1
Novice

I can understand your frustration and yes in a perfect world the 1st person should be able to handle your problem. But we don't live in a perfect world. My experience with customer service has been pretty good. Unfortunately no matter how much you want all verizon reps to want to go the extra mile, they are humans with their own personalities and attitudes. As I said before, I usually go through customer service over the phone. they are the final decision makers. I've gotten no where at the store and then called customer service. Explained the situation. They would work w/me and then note on my account what should happen. Then I go to the store. I have even had the store rep tell me "no" to something. I then tell him to check the notes on my acct. He does and then does what it says. Should I have to jump through these hoops to get what should have been mine in the 1st place? absolutely not. There are people on this board who have spent weeks working w/Verizon until they are satisfied. I guess it all comes down to how far you want to go with it until you get satisfaction. If you feel that it should have been solved by now and your done, then check around w/other companies and see what they can do for you. Verizon has good coverage tho. I have had no problems w/dropped calls, no signal etc. They are very good in that respect. I have heard stories about other companies where the people have nothing but trouble. My son has AT & T and has issues w/having to go outside sometimes to get a call.

No matter what anyone here says to you, you are the one involved in the situation. I'm not sure if my level of frustration was that high, I'd really want people telling me to give verizon one more chance either. :smileyhappy:

I hope you find a company that works for you.

Message Edited by lrando1 on 08-23-2009 05:45 PM
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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
llhanley
Member

Between you guys and several other people who said I should at least try calling the 800 number, I did that. Boy, what a difference! I explained what happened between all the trips to the store and how it ended up that I walked out the door an ex-customer. She apologized profusely throughout our entire conversation and set things right. She told me that if I felt that I was treated rudely by the people in the store I needed to go to the Contact Us link and send e-mail there because that's where the people who make the decisions are, and that everyone at Verizon is trained the same way so no one should be treating people like I got treated at that store. Because my account was reinstated within 30 days, the termination fees are canceled, and because I was a customer for so long and was treated so poorly at the store, I also now have the option to purchase a different phone.

 

Tonight I stopped at a different store to resolve the issues with the replacement phone that didn't get resolved when I walked out of "my" store. The people at the other store were more than helpful and nice to deal with as well. They didn't have a BB Curve in the store and called the next closest store and had them hold one for me. I drove up to that store and they had it out and pretty much ready to go. A night and day experience.

 

Lesson Learned: When it comes down to arguing with the people in the store, leave and call the folks on the 800 number.

 

Thanks to both of you for your input - I may not have called them otherwise. This must just have been the perfect storm of customer service blunders for the VZW store. I'm a lot happier now than I was before.

Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
lrando1
Novice

Excellent!!! I'm so glad you decided to contact them. Isn't it amazing? The difference is unreal. Seems they bent over backwards to keep you which is what they should do. I have always found that calling the 1-800 # works better. I'm sure there are some great people in the stores, but alot of the time you get someone who isn't happy in that job and takes it out on the customer.

Enjoy your new phone and I hope everything continues on a good path!

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
jessntex
Member

Hey im going through the same issue too. I upgraded to the bb storm in sept and it broke 32 days after i got it. I like you also assumed i would be getting a new phone due to the fact i had it for such a short amount of time. WRONG! The refurbed phone i got to replace the first one broke in 3 hours. It wouldnt charge due to the beat up usb port.  I tried to return it to the store only to be told they didnt have any replacement bb storms so they sent me to the nearest store which was an hr and a half away. This is pitiful ive been with them for 3 yrs now and have 4 phones and they tell me they cant replace my phone with a new one because i missed the deadline by two freaking days.  vzw needs definitely step up their customer service.

Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
NancyJo
Member

This is very consistent with my experience with  Verizon stores.  I was a customer BAM then VZW 1997-2007, and in that time always got good service on the phone and the store...........

 

  • Well I have been out and out lied to - I was told VZW had plans to build a tower near me to secure my sale. In fact there were zero plans for such a tower and that lie is what, ultimately got me out of a contract with no fees.

 

  • Ignored - it seems more important to chat with co-workers than wait on customers

 

  • Told I did not want what I wanted

 

  • Buying a phone took HOURS including standing in a line after the decision was made

 

The customer service on the phone has always been stellar [thought I have recieved inconsistent information and never did get my email question answered about the env touch}.........well, I did get an email back to confirm my conversation with sales and I will find out Saturday if buying the phone by Nov 8th really did grandfather me in RE data plan.

 

-------------------

 

I really hope \Verizon listens to things like this and considers that the stores are their "face" to the community - and what an awful face they can be.

 

 

My experiences were at the Rock Hill SC store but recently in a Greenville SC store I went in and after standing there a few minutes looking at the salespeople turned around to leave.  That did get their attention, but I decded right then I was NOT going to make any purchases there.

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Re: VZW Customer NO MORE After 8-1/2 Years
ismcolorado
Member

Wow.. Read your entire story.  You are far more patient than I.  Glad your issues were resolved finally.  Thanks for the Lessons Learnt.  Will remember that.  The VZW store near me has always been overly kind to me..but just in case.... thanks for the tip..

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