Now all of us have had problems with phone companies at some point of another, whether we are being charged too much, our signal cuts out or they just won’t admit when they cock up. But with technology and communication as one of the most rapidly growing businesses in the world, is it any surprise that we still put up with rubbish treatment from certain companies in order to stay in constant touch with friends, family and complete strangers?
I was rather annoyed last week because I had found out my contract was due for upgrading and renewal, so I contacted my network (who shall remain nameless but own a massive arena in London) and tried to speak to two different people about my best options for upgrading and changing phones. After being passed around, I spent a further 20 minutes either waiting for a straight answer or simply trying to make it clear that I was not interested in paying a further £13 on top of my current contract which came in at £37 a month! For that I was getting a ridiculous amount of minutes, data and text that I simply wasn’t even using a fifth of! I complained at this point and pointed out this fact but just got the same sales pitch repeated over again in slow motion. Needless to say, I quit the online chat feeling less than impressed.
On my lunch break the following day, I popped into Phones 4U on the off chance someone might be free to chat about my options and met with the loveliest woman who actually listened!! And she not only was horrified to hear about the treatment and the way I had been ripped off, but made it her mission to find me the best possible deal. In less than five minutes, she had found me a better deal (cutting my monthly payments by £26) and a network with better network coverage in my area (they love the colour red!). I was thrilled to pieces because this is a further £25 that can go straight in my savings pot each month and it meant finally leaving my original network who have caused me nothing but trouble over the last few years.
I have become a savvy shopper. By doing a little research and speaking to the right person, I have saved myself £300 a year on my phone contract and I am free to quit any time I want. I used to scoff at those programmes that said they could save you loads on things like this, but now I eat my hat and vow to research thoroughly in future. And I recommend all of you do the same – it really can make such a difference!
So, here are my top 10 problems with phone companies:
- They aim to rip you off, despite all the marketing saying otherwise, they aim to make money and lots of it.
- They are huge companies full of nameless, faceless workers who don’t care about your individual case, they just want to sell you more stuff you don’t need.
- It is really difficult to get a straight answer out of them regarding things like usage/the real value of deals.
- They like to send you on a tour of all the departments and to use the hold button.
- They will always try to put you on the general and most expensive contract available before looking at which one might suit you more.
- They like to baffle you with their phone jargon and to hand over pages of tiny print contracts to be read and signed without you even understanding what you are signing.
- They don’t care if you leave because there are thousands of other chumps who are signing up at the same time!
- The same deal on minutes and data on different networks can be dramatically different in price – the new deal I am on between both networks, my original costed £5 more, but I know other deals with far greater differences.
- Companies know that if you get on a network young you are likely to stick to it for years and they play on this by offering high figure contracts to those they know would rather stay than researching the best deal.
- The people you are speaking to about the deals are sitting in a call centre in Mumbai or somewhere the other side of the world – often there is a language barrier and they have no concept of your phone usage or need for a smaller contract.
Put simply, don’t be a fool like I have been and fork out thousands on phone contracts unnecessarily when you could be paying a hell of a lot less for the same, or a better, deal and you could be saving hundreds which could go on your next summer holiday! I’ll leave you on a happy little note – this still has to be my favourite advert for a phone company ever! Nothing to do with the company, it just brings a smile to my face every time!