Verizon Fios / bait and switch
On August 29, 2007, I ordered Fios over the phone. I wanted internet and television service. I was never interested in their phone service. I went through my choice with the rep and got a price of $87.97 plus taxes which I was told would not amount to more than $5 per month. I also recorded this phone conversation unbeknownst to her which is legal in NY. Before install I added a DVR box which should have cost me no more than $7 more than the regular box per month so I expected my total bill to be around $100 per month. The service was installed as promised on September 13 at which time I canceled my account with Cablevision. I am very happy with the quality of the service overall. Unfortunately, my first bill was $183 for the month which was automatically charged to my credit card and I have not received a paper statement detailing the charges.
When I called to complain I was told that I had subscribed to some virus package that was $8 per month and some game service that was $20 per month. I did not. I believe the tech that installed the service set up these features which I never used. I was then told that the $87 price I was quoted included a reduced internet rate that was not given to non-phone customers. I then played the tape for this customer service rep. She continued to inform me that the rate quoted was not available to me since I did not have the phone service. I then threatened a Public Service Commission complaint and she put me on with the disconnect department. (This is the short version of events that took place over about 3 phone calls with lengthy hold times. Total time on the phone in all of this was over an hour.)
I played my tape for the disconnect department rep who informed me that he would give me a lower internet price although the price was still not the $87.97 originally promised. He also told me that I have to call every 3 months to renew this price and that it would only be locked for a year (the original quote was for 2 years.) I genuinely believe that this whole experience was the typical "bait and switch" scheme. I highly recommend that anyone signing up for Fios tape the phone conversations with their reps as I don't believe the company is upfront and honest.
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