I am no longer a customer of Vodafone. I lasted less than eight weeks before throwing in the towel. The constant battle to speak to anyone in customer care empowered to correct obvious problems was just too much. Being chased for hundreds of pounds in incorrect roaming charges because of a billing system error was the last straw. It took Vodafone weeks to admit fault.
So that was it. I terminated my rolling month on month agreement. I thought that would be the end of it. But no. This is Vodafone. Nothing is that simple.
I receive my closing invoice for £38.03
I pay my bill within 5 days of receiving this bill. I use internet bank transfer and, as instructed by Vodafone, use the bill / invoice number as the reference number.
A month later I get another bill. This time, for the same £38.03, but with an extra £4.17 add as a late payment fee.
Then the next day I receive this wonderful letter. I’m being threatened with debt collection.
Ok. So there’s been a simple mistake. I’ve learned that Vodafone’s back office billing systems are not the most reliable, ….so let’s try and fix this.
The final demand letter includes a telephone number. 0333 040 170.
I dial it. Go on, you try it to….it’s a belter.
“This number is no longer in use. Please hang up and redial 0333 040 191.” #fail1
I redial. I’m asked to validate myself with my mobile number. I do, but of course it fails. I’m no longer a customer so the number doesn’t exist in their system. There’s no other option – I can’t authenticate via my account number. Nothing. I hang up. #fail2
I call the generic Vodafone support line. I sit in a queue for 5 mins. I give up. Instead I call the new customer sales line, the call is answered in 30 secs. #fail3
I apologize to the call handler for playing the system. I am not an new customer interested in being freshly screwed by Vodafone, but an old customer still raw from the experience. Could he please pass me along to the collections team.
He is unable to do this (?), but instead transfers me to someone in the billing department.
I’m told I should visit a Vodafone store with a copy of my bank statement. I tell him no. That’s a waste of my time. Let me speak with the collections team. I’m told I can’t do that, but I can email them on firstname.lastname@example.org.
I do this. I send them all of the documents included in this blog. I ask them to at least acknowledge the email while they investigate.
I hear nothing. I email them again. Nothing. #fail4
After a week of daily emails, I take to Twitter. A friendly chap in the Vodafone Twitter help team promises to investigate. I hear nothing. I email him again. I hear nothing.
So that brings us up to today. I’ve been into town and queued for 20 mins at a Vodafone high street store. We’ve gone through paperwork, they’ve acknowledged the error and I’ve been told it’s been logged in the system and should be resolved in 5 working days.
I doubt this.
I’ve also been told that this only applies to the original £38.03 bill. The late payment fee of , £4.17? Well, there’s nothing they can do about that. I need to speak to the collections team.
What? Have you heard nothing? These are the people I have been trying to talk to for weeks. The same people that send threatening letters, the same people that ask you to an call incorrect number, the same people support teams aren’t even allowed to talk to and the same people that won’t respond to my emails.
Do you know what Vodafone…I’m done chasing. I’ll see you in court.