Friday, January 02, 2009

Verizon Sucks...

Verizon... I will never, ever support Verizon in any way for as long as I live.

Now you may think with a statement I am coming from a political stance. Like they support some stupid bill or prop that may offend me, but no. Plain and simple, Verizon has the worst most convoluted, broken customer service setup EVER. I have to believe something so complex and so hard to navigate is by design

I am not exaggerating, that I have spent about 8 hours on the phone with them (2 of those sessions 2 hours long each) all over a bill mistake. As I write this, I am on hold with Verizon to cancel, not going to complain, or even go into what the problems are, just going to cancel with them... So here's the story...

In June of 2007 I decided the best bet for me was to consolidate my internet connect, telephone service and eventually TV service to one company. Saving a few bucks now and even more later when FIOS came online in my area. So as stated FIOS was not yet available so I went with middle of the road DSL and Verizon was ever so eager to save me and extra $15 by upping my current phone service to add things like VoiceMail, Caller ID, etc ,etc. As I normally only have bottom of the barrel phone service "just in case' all my cell service, and everyone's' around me goes bad, an upgrade in phone service was like a bonus for me. I thought maybe I can get a nice fancy phone and save some battery juice on my cell phone when I'm at home.. hmm well whatever. BONUS. COOL.

Everything sounded so good, I was all setup to go. They got the DSL modem self install kit to my house relatively fast, about a week. I went to install it and since I'm an all MAC house as expected there were a few issues. No biggie, I'm a IT Manager (helpdesk at that) for a living so I was expecting and prepared to be on the phone for a bit with support while they perform their 'MAC users' workaround for the IE required setup that this type of DSL required. Well that turned out to be 4 hour phone call(s), and to no avail. They scheduled a tech to come out and troubleshoot the line, etc. They came out twice, no go. Thankfully, I did not cancel my cable internet yet! But wait, cause that's not the problem I have with Verizon, that's just the back-story.

(BTW 16 minutes on hold with Verizon now, still no service)

So after 2 weeks of techs coming out to no avail, and considering the pain of all this I called and canceled all extra service, returned the modem in the mailer they provided, and was convinced by a very nice Retention Specialist named Donna to keep the super basic phone service, "Just in Case". I obliged asked if all credits are applied to my account and she confirmed with a cancellation order number, and all was well in my world.

Then comes October, and my less than 25 monthly bill from Verizon jumps to 170. I immediately call and ask what's going on. They profusely apologize and say it was an error and the bill returns to its normal nominal amount. Guess what I get in the mail around Dec. 15th? A Collections notice (from Verizon's own internal (but separate, more on that later) collection company) for 133. My wife opened this bill so she calls and was not only put through the automated phone system ringer was then YELLED at and hung up on, left with no explanation. The next day I call, I tried same day but Verizon is very keen at closing shop at exactly 6p, and without exaggeration I was transferred to 12 people over a 2 hour phone call I took while I was driving to work. This was a classic finger pointing as every one I was transferred said they couldn't access the account because it was in the others department. This happened again when I came back from lunch that day and still have not received a call. Almost like a system... and again was promised a call back, that never happened.

(25 minutes in someone finally answers!)

Overall I talked to over 20 people and was promised a call back 3 times, never received one. So I have made it this point to inform everyone I know the best know way I know how to please reconsider using Verizon, as it seems obvious that there system is designed to annoy you to just pay. I have wasted much more of my time to try and save 130 rather than just pay it and move on Verizon Free for the rest of my life... In fact I am glad to learn this lesson as I was really considering moving all my services to get this wonderful FIOS TV everyone is talking about. After learning how amazingly hard it is to deal with ANY type of bill discrepancy.. I couldn't imagine any TV service being worth it, and trust me I watch allot of TV...

So 40 Minutes into this phone call with apparently the 'right person' and I'M ON HOLD AGAIN. I really just want to cancel and move on, and IF they ever pick up the phone again... I'm going to just do that.. and then I'll pay their collection agency as slow as I can so I don't pay a cent more than I need to.

At 47 Minutes I have finally closed the account and to make this conclusion. The woman Anna on the phone was not shocked at what just went down, oh she tried to save the account and even help me with the wayward charges but she couldn't get anyone on the phone with her that would help her.

Hows that for customer service?

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