After a couple weeks of considering signing a new 2-year contract, I went to a Verizon Fios store yesterday for details about my options. I was told I could upgrade from my current Double Play with Extreme HD and 100/100 to Ultimate HD and Gigabit for only about $10 more per month. When I was advised about a $99 upgrade fee for Gigabit, I asked for more details about why there's a fee. I was told it was because some installs require a technician to visit and switch the configuration of the ONT or even swap out the ONT to one that supports Gigabit speeds. I was told that if we scheduled the upgrade for later this week instead of ASAP, I could call and have the Tech department evaluate the situation and if no changes were requried, they could switch from tech-install to self-install and waive the upgrade fee. Based on this information, I went ahead with approving the order and scheduling the install.
When I got home I called the Tech Department. The tech I spoke with verified that he saw the pending order and confirmed that my configuration didn't require any changes—the ONT is Gigabit capable and the ethernet port is already active and in use. He said he would write up all of his notes and that the Billing department would be able to switch the install to a self-install and waive the $99 fee. When he transferred me to the billing department to schedule a call with them since it was after their hours for the day, the IVR just hung up on me. I was pleasently surprised when I then got a call back from the manager of the Tech department to make sure I was able to schedule a call back. He helped me with scheduling one via their mobile app instead.
The Tech manager then re-confirmed everything I was told by the in-store rep and the Tech: the fee is for the tech visit to swap out or reconfigure ONTs when the current setup is not capable for Gigabit. He also confirmed that my configuration is fine, no tech visit should be required and therefore no fee required. He said when I spoke to the billing department they should be able to switch the install from tech install to self install and even activiate the TV and speed upgrades right then rather than wait for the scheduled window this weekend.
This morning when I got my scheduled call back from the Billing department everything has been contradictory! I was told there was no way to switch this to a self-install and no way to waive the fee contradicting what every other Verizon employee had said. I was told that there were no records on my account about the conversation I'd had with the Tech or Tech Manager last night. When I asked to speak to a manager I was told escalating wouldn't accomplish anything, the system won't let a manager change anything either.
After I insisted on speaking to a manger I was transferred to escalations who could provide no explanation why a tech needs to visit and incur a fee when the Tech Department says my current configuration is fine. Additionally I was told Verizon will always honor what has been put in writing—implying that everything else I was told doesn't matter. She also had no explanation for why 3 other employees told me the exact same thing but her department couldn't honor what I had been told. She told me that even if the tech department wrote up notes, the billing department wouldn't be able to see them in the system. If this is true, it sounds like it makes whatever details have been put in writing, beyond the boilerplate automated emails, not available to me and not available to Billing reps.
It feels like such a set up and waste of my time. Now I'm inevitably going to have to spend more time on hold and dealing with Verizon to find out if I can back out of this still or if I'm on the hook for a $350 ETF if I want to explore other options.
I've been a loyal Fios customer for almost 10 years and can't believe any of this!
Unfortunately the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. Maybe by design or by accident. You choose.
other providers offer a early termination fee reimbursement via gift card. I cannot say what service on an open forum since Verizon likes to call it “spamming” however I will write you direct to let you know.
You can also contact your states public service commission or Public Utilities Commission via a google search.
If you believe it was bait and switch you can contact your states attorney generals office and they will step in.
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