The reason why I am writing this note today is because I have recently experienced a situation I am hoping never happens to anyone and to make the public aware of some conditions cell phone providers are doing in particular, FIDO.
On February 10th, I went to a Wireless Wave store to purchase a new cellphone. After an hour of reading the contracts and plans from varies cell phone providers, I decided to choose Fido because they offered the best r ates for my needs. I signed a 2 year contract with them that allowed me to use the phone for at least 15 days and cancel my contract with them without
paying the early cancellation fee if I wasn't happy with it.
After receiving no service reception in my house and outside in the Scarborough and Markham Ontario area for a couple days, (I watched the reception bars to see if maybe it was the weather or some other problem)
I called Fido's customer care centre and spoke to a rep. The rep explained to me that they would need to send a techinication out to those areas to test the reception level but it would take up to 2 weeks to do
this and there was no gaurantee that the reception level could be improved.
I respectfully declined the offer as waiting the 2 weeks was a big risk considering that it would take me over the 15 days grace period I had to cancel the phone contract without paying the penatly and cancelled
my phone with Fido on February 19th.
After a week, I received my first bill stating that I owed them 84.00 for their services. ($45.00 for my rate plan and $35.00 for an activation fee plus taxes when agreeing to their contract) I quickly called up Fido's customer
care centre and rebuttaled with numerous reps about these charges until I was transferred to a supervisor.
The supervisor explained to me that Fido works on a pro rated system of charging for the plans a month ahead like every cellphone provider does. I told the supervisor that I understand that it how the cell phone charges work but was confused as to why I had to pay the first months bill and activation fee if I cancelled my contract.
After 2 hours on the phone with Fido reps and supervisor he agreed to credit back my account of the first months plan rate but I would still be held accountable for the charges of 2 dollars I made on the phone and activation fee.
Again, I questioned why I had to pay for the activation fee since I cancelled the contract within my time limit and there is nothing that says the activation fee is non-refundable on the contract. In fact, the only thing it says on the contract regarding the activation fee is this:
"In addition to your monthly fee, your invoice will include the following: A one-time activation fee of $35 per line (first invoice only)"
As you can tell by that line in the contract, I should not be held reliable to pay the activation fee once I broke the contract but the supervisor explained that it was the time and effort the rep took to set up my account. I disagreed that I should have to pay for that as it was Fido's mistake for not checking their reception levels in certain areas.
As it stands to this date, I am still being held responsible for the activation fee.
Being a mortgage agent, its my job to look and verify contracts before my clients sign them, if I read in the contract that if I wasn't happy with the service and cancelled the contract early that I wasn't entitled to my $35 activation fee back, I would have never signed with Fido.
After reading this over again, I am so happy that I am not stuck with Fido for 2 years, Just imagine how much money they could have soaked me up for.
Consumers, I advise you to just stay from Fido at all means