Advantages all in one package, only one bill, teleport tv
Disadvantages poor customer service, offshore call centres, long wait times, understanding and lack of training
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Up until a year ago, I had been with NTL when I was in Aldershot. When I moved to Sheffield I transferred the number to Telewest (I think their the same really) and the service wasn't too bad at all. Well I would have to say it was completely faultless really as I didn't have to contact them at all in the beginning.The internet service was fantastic, never had a problem at all with that service. The phone was great no problems there either. The television package with them was great way back when. At the time you were able to choose a selection of channels rather than the packages they have now devised.
Slowly but surely the channels were packaged up and so to get the few channels you were after you also have to accept the ones that would be better suited to the refuse bag. After years with them the price had crept up and up and eventually a year ago I changed over to BT for the telephone, Sky for the Television and AOL for the internet.Having had the worst possible experience with AOL (if your interested I have a review of that also) I decided that as soon as possible I would revert back to Telewest and take the whole package with them again. I was lucky as they were offering all three services for £30 a month for the first 12 months.
The service was installed and it was like having an old friend back in the house, LOL. Everything was fine, the internet was ok and I had perfect connection all the time, unlike my previous experience with AOL. The whole package was great and there were some new services available to me.Teleport TV: This is a really great addition; there is a library of programmes available, comedy, film, documentary all at the touch of a button. Let face it when you do sit down to watch TV there is never anything worth watching. With this you have a choice to watch what you want and when you want to watch. No more planning for the occasional programme you want to watch.
A couple of months ago there were a couple of times when the service would go off and the TV would freeze up. It was a simple case of resetting the TV as described on the help channel, no major problem. This began to happen more and more frequently, the internet service became erratic and the connection speed has been very slowThe payments were set up on direct debit and came out automatically, the bill would arrive and that was that nothing to worry about. Then the bills started to be incorrect, I was on a fixed agreement for a year. The bills would be out by an additional £40- £50, the first time this happened it was fairly straightforward to sort out on the telephone.
This happened again the following month and was slightly harder to sort as I had to go through all the information from the previous error, still once again it was sorted. Then last month having been changed over to Virgin Media a letter came through the door, this stated that the services would be disconnected as I owed £125 and a charge of £10 would be added.I needed to get this matter sorted and after hanging on the phone for about 15-20, eventually got through only to be cut off immediately. I called the telephone number 3 more times to dispute this and I was eventually connected to an offshore call centre. After giving the account number about 5 times it was clear that this advisor was either new or could not understand. It was very difficult to explain and the advisor did not seem to be listening at all. Just that the services would be disconnected and this is all he would repeat over and over again.
When I asked to speak to a manager or supervisor the advisor became very angry and obstructive and repeated that the services would be cut off if no payment was made immediately, he refused to allow me to speak to a supervisor. I had no choice but to make the payment and to sort this matter out at a later stage. The advisor had no problem at all understanding the card details and the payment was accepted.I then asked for a receipt to be sent as I wanted written proof that this payment had been made and details of what the payment was for, as no bill had been received. When this was refused I asked again to speak to a manager and eventually I was put through.
I explained the situation to the lady and when she looked into this matter she advised that the letter had been sent in error and that I had now paid for the next 2 months. I asked if this could be refunded as I couldn't really afford to pay this additional amount. This was declined and the money would come of the next 2 bills. What really went against the grain was that the manager said 'As a gesture of goodwill we will remove the £10 charge'. I could not believe this as it was not my error to begin with.The trouble with companies using offshore call centres is that they want the savings without providing the necessary training for their staff. The advisor had obviously had little or no training and was unable to deal with my enquiry or subsequent complaint.
I am determined to use businesses that do not utilise the offshore market as they do not provide the training needed for the staff to carry out their role. I work full time and I do not have enough free as it is, without having to come home and spend hours on the phone correcting mistakes.I am tied into a 12 month contract now with Virgin Media and I only hope that this is not a taste of the things to come. I would love to hear from others with either a similar experience or a fantastic experience. That was I can relax a little knowing that this was a hiccup.
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