Where do I begin to articulate the feeling of disappointment, regret and disgust with having a wireless phone with Rogers?
I’ve lived in Toronto for some time and, against the advice of many I bought a phone from Rogers using a pay-as-you-go plan. Several months later, after considering the plans advertised at the time and the advice of a Rogers Customer Service Representative I took a 3 year plan which should have considerably reduce my monthly bill as the plan was “tailored to meet my particular calling need”. This was my first mistake.
One month I received a bill for over $600. I called Rogers and, after navigating the seemingly treacherous labyrinth of options and waiting for what seemed like an eternity to actually speak to someone, I was finally able to explain my reasons for shock and confusion over my bill and asked for, at a minimum, a reasonable explanation and adjustment to these charges. To the CSR’s credit he did make what I considered a just and fair adjustment to the bill. However an explanation could not be provided as to many of the charges, only apologies, and a modification to my plan which should “prevent a re-occurrence” and would allow me to see “even more cost savings in my monthly bill”, to which I accepted. Mistake number 2.
Months later I moved to Northern Ontario for work purposes taking my phone and, off course, my Rogers plan with me. I soon noticed an increase in my monthly bill and upon closer inspection discovered that I was being charged long distance fees for incoming calls. I also discovered that my ongoing plan, for which I was paying an additional fee for early evening calling, was already a part of the original plan and I was paying for this additional add-on unnecessarily. This was immediately corrected, although no refund was forthcoming as the CSR’s are apparently not authorized to make those adjustments. A long distance plan was recommended that would correct this problem as it would allow me to keep my 905 number while living in a 705 area, which is for the moment temporary presently my preference, to which I agreed. Mistake number 3. You would think that I would have learnt my lesson by now. I’ve also discovered that whenever you make a change to your plan during the course of your billing cycle you also have to pay month in advance, for reasons which are still beyond my comprehension. Now comes the proverbial straw.
This month I received a bill from Rogers for over $760. Over $360 were long distance charges for incoming calls, over $100 for my original plan, and the rest were for outgoing long distance charges where “Roaming” fees are attached.
I called Rogers on Sunday night, 11th March, seeking an explanation and a resolution to this bill. To her credit, the CSR was quite understanding, pleasant, knowledgeable of the details of my present plan and even expressed shock at my bill. She explained that the long distance plan I had (which was recommended by the Rogers Customer Service Representative) only covered Rogers-to-Rogers cell phones. It also did not address the charges for incoming long distance calls. She, however, couldn’t not explain why I was being charged roaming fees for outgoing calls as I assured her that my apartment building (where I was when I made those calls) was certainly stationary at the time. After over an hour and a half she indicated that she shall send a “note to the back office” and that someone would call me within 48 hours to update me as to the status of this bill. She also recommended changes to my plan which included:
1. A long distance plan which was considerably more expensive than the original but I was assured would definitely the correct one, which we activated immediately and deactivated the original long distance add-on plan.
2. Changes to my calling plan going from 300 minutes to 200 minutes with a My-10 as she was able to determine that based on my calling history and my present and foreseeable needs would be more than sufficient and ensure that my overall Rogers bill would be less than $100 per month. This was put in a note on my account to be activated at the beginning of my next billing cycle to avoid the additional ‘one month in advance fee’ that Rogers charges when making changes to your plan during your billing cycle.
I called Rogers on Wednesday night (14th March) having not received any call from them within the promised 48 hours. The CSR indicated that according to her files a decision was already made, that the bill and the charges “were legitimate”, and though I was required to pay it in its entirety, she was willing to make some reasonable adjustments. I told her that I was both shocked and disappointed by the decision, particularly after outlining my conversation with the CSR of the 11th March, and immediately asked to speak to a Manager to which she acquiesced.
The manager greeted me with “Hello Mr. Ramnasibsingh, I am told that you are not willing to accept a P adjustment to your bill? ”. I immediately attempted to correct his error by informing him that no offer of made. After my second attempt to correct him and after putting me on hold he apologized for his error but then reiterated that my bill was indeed legitimate. I attempted to explain to him what my concerns were and my conversation with the CSR of the 11th to which he insisted that he already understood the circumstances of my bill and needed no further explanation. Despite incorrectly outlining my calling history and the conversations I’ve had with Rogers CSR on several occasions during our 30 minute conversation, he still could not give an explanation as to why such exorbitant charges were attached to my bill. Despite being, in my personal view, insistently argumentative and somewhat arrogant, said that Rogers are not responsible for these incoming charges as the Rogers CSRs only gave me ‘advice’ and it was my responsibility to accept it or not.
After insisting he did not need any further input from me and that he was more than acquainted with the facts of my case, made an ‘offer’ to give me an adjustment to my bill for the next 6 months based on the details of ‘my plan’ which he proceeded to outline incorrectly. After several attempts I was able to explain to him his errors after which he proceeded to make a ‘final offer’ which, in totality, was less than the original. He claimed that he does not have the authority to make any changes to my present bill (a contradiction to my history with Rogers as well as his opening statement to our conversation). Upon request he also explained to me the cost terminate my plan with Rogers in its entirety so that I could switch to another service provider, which together with my bill, was simply unaffordable. I am now faced with this ridiculous bill with what seems like no option for recourse and no fair or just solution to my present predicament.
All I request from Rogers is that they:
1. Take ownership and responsibility for their poor advice which contributed to over $360 in long distance charges for incoming calls
2. Provide an explanation as to why I am paying Roaming fees for long distance calls
3. Provide an explanation why, all of a sudden, CSRs and Managers no longer have the authority to adjust the bills of a Rogers customer, but can seemingly negotiate only some charges to future bills for only a limited time, contradictory to even the conversation between myself and the Rogers ‘Manager’ on the night of the 14th March.
4. Provide an explanation as to why, after my numerous attempts over the last year to work with Rogers, be reasonable in solution finding, trusting the advice to trained Rogers Representatives I am yet to receive a bill which remotely resembles my official wireless plan.
5. Investigate my conversations with agents of Rogers on both the 11th and 14th March to determine the validity of my claims (all calls are recorded for ‘training purposes’), review my present bill and billing history to determine the validity of my concerns and that my present bill be reasonably adjusted prior to my stated bill date.
Since I have been with Rogers I am yet to receive a phone bill for less than $100. It is my opinion based on my experiences to date that when someone is locked into a contract with Rogers, the service seems to mirror the formal definition of extortion (Illegal use of one's official position or powers to obtain property, funds, or patronage; An excessive or exorbitant charge). Because of the cost I am being required to pay now and the stated cost of terminating my plan ($500 plus tax) I simply cannot afford to switch to Bell, where I have been assured by many present Bell customers is exceedingly better and free of the experiences I’ve had over the last year.
I am seeking any assistance that can be rendered in finding a solution that would see the next couple of years not reflect my wireless experiences of the previous year with Rogers.
One thing’s for certain, I presently do not recommend Rogers wireless ‘plans’ to anyone. The actual phone service is, in my view, reliable. It’s everything else that has me feeling trapped, abused and in some respects violated particularly after my last conversation with one of Rogers representatives. Believe me when I say it is simply not worth it. There isn’t a day that goes by that I do not regret my choice in wireless service providers.
A seemingly trapped, definitely dissatisfied and disappointed Rogers’ custome