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AT&T Wireless fraudulent offer

Discussion in 'Southern US Wireless Forum' started by grasstronica, Dec 20, 2002.

  1. grasstronica

    grasstronica New Member

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    AT&T Wireless fraudulent offer

    I got a cell phone a few
    months ago from AT&T Wireless. I just called their 1-800 number. I'd never
    had a cell phone before so I just called and told them what I wanted. I told
    them that I wanted to use the phone for business trips around the country
    and I wanted to be able to know exactly what my phone bill would be every
    month (no hidden charges.) I said I'd travel to different areas of the
    country and was interested in getting free evenings and weekends and a
    reasonable amount of minutes during the day. The woman offered me a plan
    that gave me 500 minutes per month, plus free weekends, free evenings and no
    long distance or roaming charges. So the last thing I said to her before I
    got the plan was "Okay, so let me get this straight. If I stay under 500
    minutes a month during non-evening or weekend hours there is NO POSSIBLE WAY
    that my phone bill will ever exceed the monthly amount ($35). She said
    "YES." I said, "Sign me up."

    You get a 30 day trial period. When the phone came it came with a contract
    (2 year) and oodles of other paperwork. I read every single line, even the
    fine print, looking for anything that would refute what she said. There was
    nothing. It was solid. I signed up. Around 30 days later we got our bill and
    everything was fine...$35 (+tax). No problem.

    Well now two months later we get a bill taht is for $60. I called to find
    out what happened and they said that my wife used the phone out of the
    calling area. I said "You must be mistaken, we have free roaming and free
    long distance." The rep said "Well, it is only free if you are within our
    network." Huh? This was *never* mentioned to us on the phone and it is not
    in any of the materials I received, nor is it on the contract I signed.

    To make a long story short, I've talked to three different reps on the phone
    and every one of them has admitted that the only mistakes that were made in
    this process was that the person on the phone did not describe the plan well
    and that she did not mail me an extra material that would have pointed out
    this little oversight of theirs. But, they say, I'm stuck with the plan. I
    say "But you made the mistake? This isn't the plan I was quoted?" They said
    "Sir, I'm just trying to help...we are telling you that the plan you bought
    doesn't actually cover the areas that you have been traveling too."

    Obviously I feel duped. I threw up my hands and asked them to let me out of
    the plan, but they said they'd only let me out if I paid $175. I told them
    they were crazy, that this was *their* mistake and that I shouldn't have to
    pay. I even said, "Come on, this doesn't cost you any money to cancel my
    phone," and they replied that this was true, but that this was also their
    "policy." We went around in circles.

    I've talked to three different people (and one supposed supervisor) and
    nobody will let me out of my plan. They only thing they try to do is to get
    me to buy the more expensive plan that would cover me everywhere. Yeah,
    right.

    So what are my rights here? Do I have any? What should be my plan of attack?
    I was so thorough and I tried so hard not to get screwed and yet I totally
    did. *sigh* All I want is off their plan. I'll return the phone, pay my
    bill, and all that.

    Anyone anyone?
    steve
     
  2. tylerdurden

    tylerdurden Senior Member
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    If you need legal advice I would recommend you talk to a lawyer. The advice you get here is worth what you pay for it (i.e. nothing).

    Good luck.
     
  3. TelZone

    TelZone New Member

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    Your last paragraph is not quite correct. If you had actually been "thorough" you would have found the different available plans and would have known the plan you purchased was a network plan, not a plan without roaming anywhere in the U.S., given the price and unlimited night and weekend minutes.

    While the marketing info for the Network Plan can seem a bit misleading, a careful check quickly reveals what the plan actually is. Unfortunately, unless you recorded the call (which is quite legal, since they notify you when you call that "this call may be monitored or recorded") it will be difficult to prove that the rep assured you there would be no roaming anywhere in the country. And since your claim is quite common from many customers, it's not likely to be accepted. I can't imagine any sales person assuring you that your bill would never be over $35 a month. Nothing keeps you from making international calls--not covered--or 411 information calls, which run about $1 each or more.

    That having been said, it should not be a big deal. Since you state that you need a plan with no roaming anywhere in the country plus night and weekend minutes, you have only one choice among national carriers--AT&T One Rate. While both Verizon and Cingular offer no roaming / no long distance products, neither currently offers night AND weekend minutes with those plans. AT&T does--$10 for 1,000. So, for about $70 you would get 450 anytime and 1,000 night and weekend minutes.

    The other way to look at it is that your bill seems to have included $25 roaming in three months. That would be about $100 a year (about $8.50 a month), if your use is consistent.

    Again, while no plan may be exactly what you hoped for--at a price you want, the thorough research you claim does not seem to have been that thorough. Talking to one CSR is not quite deep research. And, any level of research of the industry would show that nobody offers a roam-free plan with 500 anytime minutes, unlimited night and weekends for $35. Anyone who did would quickly become the biggest carrier by far, and then likely go broke, almost as quickly.

    Best of luck. While it's not likely they will let you out of your contract, you can change to One Rate or accept a certain level of roaming charges.
     
  4. DandyDon

    DandyDon Senior Member
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    Yeah I feel for ya, it is ashame that on top of the confusing plans, offers out there consumers have to go and read fine print for discrepancies between what was verbally stated and stated in print somewhere. I think if you really want to get out, you might want to contact a lawyer. Better to try and work your way up to get someone to let you out. I see many providers claim No Roaming Fees... then you hear the "when on the blah blah blah network."

    False

    Nextel has NO ROAMING on ALL of their plans.... $55 gets you 1000 minutes, unlimited Nights and Weekends, Unlimited Direct Connect.

    $39.99 NO ROAMING EVAR 500 minutes 2000 Night and Weekends which is more than plenty for most.

    Sorry to Plug Nextel heavily..... granted the coverage all over isn't the best...... but it does work in most of the population....... and since it is on a different playing field with the 2-way, many carriers try to compete and make false or misleading claims that they can't truely back-up.
     
  5. PhonePerson

    PhonePerson New Member

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    As stated in other replies, it is unlikely you will be able to get out of your contract. The rep made a mistake, it happens. Were the roaming calls from areas you frequently travel? If so, change to the AT&T One Rate. If not, stay with what you have and pay attention to your phone's roaming indicator. Good luck.
    Also, the statement that it costs the carrier nothing to cancel your phone is incorrect. All wireless carriers pay to add each new subscriber. The metric to measure this is call Cost Per Gross Addition (CPGA). I am not sure what AT&T's CPGA is currently. The average is between $200-$350. Taking phone subsidies, marketing and advertising costs, employee compensation, etc. into consideration shows it costs carriers money to even add customers, much less lose them. Assuming AT&T's CPGA is $200 and your rate is $35, it would take AT&T about 5 months to break even.
     
  6. TelZone

    TelZone New Member

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    In reply to my ealier post, "Dandy Don" claimed that my assertion of AT&T being the only national carrier with a no roam product including night and weekend minutes was false. Nextel was given as the example.

    The problem with that, as even "Dandy Don" later stated, is that Nextel doesn't have the best coverage. What the original post concerned was being charged for off-network roaming. Nextel doesn't even allow it, so, sure, it doesn't bill for it either. Take your Nextel phone to Yosemite, or on I-40, east of Albuquerque and many other rural areas. If you need to make a call, borrow someone else's, your's is a paperweight.

    The claim that Nextel "works in most of the population" is probably true, but not too useful for many travelers. You could cover most of the population by having coverage in and surrounding the 25 largest cities in the U.S. Obviously, Nextel has more coverage than that, but does not come close to offering coverage throughout almost any area with wireless service. Of the national carriers, the only ones to offer non-roaming service that really covers the country are Verizon, AT&T and Cingular (assuming you are from a TDMA service area).

    This is not to trash Nextel. It's great for some users--as is Cricket for others. It just isn't a true national carrier.
     
  7. parthery

    parthery Senior Member
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    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    My Phone:
    BlackBerry 9810
    Wireless Provider(s):
    AT&T
    Was this a 1 shot deal? Will your wife be traveling to this area all the time?

    500 min. for $35 is cheap...and if you are otherwise happy with the service, and you don't expect to be in this situation except every now and then, I would pay the $25 and be done. You could give yourself an ulcer fighting with AT&T, but look at it this way...you know the phone - in an emergency - will work anywhere. And if you are going to be traveling to this particular community where you incurred roaming charges, you can always change your plan. AT&T is among the most liberal at allowing rate plan changes...they back date them to the beginning of the billing cycle (NOTE - TDMA ONLY)...and they do not require you to renew your contract unless you are taking advantage of a new promotion.
     
  8. djcmaz

    djcmaz Junior Member
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    :lmao: OMG :loony:

    First time in a long time I read something that made me laugh... Everyone knows that there is no roaming charges on nextel cause nextel phones can't roam..!!!

    They are on a system (IDEN) all alone and by them selves... the only other systems that use those frequencies and technology are government communication systems (which no one can leach off of).

    Who are you going to choose when they shut NEXTEL down 3xQ 2009 ..
    The only thing that was holding them back was the Q-talk off of the VOIP system.. This should launch 3xQ 2008 or sooner.. From there NEXTEL will transgress. :confused:
     
  9. strunke

    strunke .:|Always Covered|:.
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    Hey, 6 years ago Nextel was probably high tech :)
     
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  10. WirelessBeachBum

    WirelessBeachBum Soylent Green is People
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    Nextel has NO ROAMING on ALL of their plans.... $55 gets you 1000 minutes, unlimited Nights and Weekends, Unlimited Direct Connect.



    Doesn't the NO Roaming with nextel... mean "NO Roaming capability"?
     
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  11. WirelessBeachBum

    WirelessBeachBum Soylent Green is People
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    As for the original post topic... more than likely you are going to have to take a look at your carriers "terms and conditions" of service, which usually have a disclaimer about anything verbal promises by sales reps, and an arbitration clause if you have a complaint.

    Your best choice is to have someone review your prior three months usage and make a recommendation on a plan that will cover your needs the best. I'm sure there are AT&T employee members of WA that could do this for you.
     
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  12. strunke

    strunke .:|Always Covered|:.
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    Ha, the original thread is from 6 years ago.
     
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  13. Jay2TheRescue

    Jay2TheRescue Resident Spamslayer
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    Yes, Nextel's claim of "No Roaming" is exactly that, you will not be charged for roaming because it is impossible for you to roam. The other carriers say "No Roaming Charges" or "Free Roaming"

    -Jay
     
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  14. WirelessBeachBum

    WirelessBeachBum Soylent Green is People
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    I didn't even notice that.... I thought this seemed familiar.... :lmao:
     
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  15. Jay2TheRescue

    Jay2TheRescue Resident Spamslayer
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    Mmmmm, vintage goodness.

    -Jay
     
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  16. djcmaz

    djcmaz Junior Member
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    yes it was an old post.. But it made me laugh...
     
  17. strunke

    strunke .:|Always Covered|:.
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    Kind of like when you see someone still dressing like the "stylish" 80s? :)
     
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  18. Jay2TheRescue

    Jay2TheRescue Resident Spamslayer
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    Hey, another 5 years and people will be scouring the Goodwill and Salvation Army stores for the coveted Members Only jackets... (I had a suede Members Only jacket I gave to my nephew about a year ago.)

    -Jay
     
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  19. Eric47

    Eric47 Bronze Senior Member
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    hmmm......
     
  20. Eric47

    Eric47 Bronze Senior Member
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    [​IMG]


    i thought this was appropriate :p
     
  21. AnthroMatt

    AnthroMatt Big Meanie
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    Holy Crap....a post (albeit an old one) from Dandy Don!
     

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