June 2, 2006

I’m spoiled. Some might say that I am a control freak, but I think it’s just a collision of intelligence and experience getting in the way.

I’m bringing this up because my latest phone bill from Verizon is going to be (billing cycle ends tomorrow) about $60 OVER my regular monthly fee. This I blame on Struan, Sitboaf and Bryan Stimson.

I was ready to suck up that charge and blame it other people (and take a little blame myself) when I took the time on my commute to Tweeter to call Verizon and ask if they could help.

This is the one bright spot in my entire customer service experience that has spanned the past three days. First I had a hosting issue, then I had a WordPress issue, then I had a sales issue and today I had Victor and the team at the Braintree Verizon store. Might I add right here the comment that if you don’t like people, GET OUT OF CUSTOMER SERVICE!!!!!

So, on the commute I called Verizon corporate. I spoke with Sarah, extension 3734, who was very nice and was the brightest and cheeriest person with whom I’ve ever dealt with at a cell phone company. She was intelligent and I think I love her.

But I digress. She and I came to the conclusion that my phone calls to Canada over the past few days, and my overage minutes to the aforementioned trio of people who are not thoughtful enough to switch to Verizon so all my calls can be free to them, were going to sting me hard in the wallet.

Sarah had a plan of attack. Instead of just paying the bill, she suggested I go to the local store where they have the leeway to make more sweeping changes to existing plans than they can do on the phone. She even called the store to set up my visit with idiot Victor.

Sadly, Sarah didn’t tell me that Verizon had changed its policy about changing price plans and I HATE HATE HATE being locked in to a provider. It turns out that the company has instituted the INSANE policy of extending your plan for two years any time you make a change to your service.

In the past, you could change every month for free as long as you stayed within a certain pricing range. Now, you can’t. So, if I wanted to get the plan upgraded for this current month (which makes my plan $60 a month instead of $40), then I would have to be locked into Verizon for two more years at the higher rate.

You do the math. $20 x 24 is far greater than a one-time bump of $60. SO, you’re reading it here first. If I ever have enough money to buy Verizon, I will do so and fire Victor, change the policies and then retire to Provence.

More to come…