Jumping ship for a new cell phone carrier

Written on August 14, 2010 at 9:14 pm
Filed under: Personal, Shopping with tags: , , ,

Isn’t it pretty???

173/365 - For me?

I was previously with Telus (although, I still sort of am, for about another half of a month). But my contract is ending (very) soon and I tried calling in and seeing if they had any sort of incentive for me to stay with them (all I really wanted them to do was to be able to price match an advertised student plan that was available through one of their competitors). But instead, after the first (super friendly) customer representative I got, I was passed onto their retention department and the woman I got tried to get me to agree to a more expensive plan than the one I was looking at (from their competitor’s website) or a plan that had the same price, but with a lot less included things. Also, the plan she wanted me to agree to was advertised on the Telus website and was available to all new customers, so there wasn’t really anything ‘special’ about it. I wanted them to be able to match it for me with something equivalent, not make excuses about how their plan is so much better.

The second customer service representative I got tried to convince me that the follow plan was an excellent deal and was comparable to the one I was wanting to see if they would match the price for the plan over at one of their direct competitors:

$30/month + taxes for:

  • 150 anytime minutes
  • Unlimited nation-wide family calling (this only applies if there’s more than one phone under one account holder)
  • Unlimited evenings and weekends (local) starting at 9pm
  • Voice mail (3), Call Waiting, Call Forwarding
  • Free local calling on my birthday (whoo…?)
  • Unlimited local calling for 1 month
  • Unlimited local talk, text, picture & video messaging for 5 numbers

Which is actually worse than my current plan (200 anytime minutes, evenings and weekends starting at 9pm, free local calling on my birthday, I had unlimited talk and text for 3 months when I first signed, and unlimited talk and text to 8 local numbers). I don’t actually care about the picture and video messaging, my big thing was having unlimited texting, essentially. But I also wanted to Telus to match this student plan (which I qualify for) over at Rogers:

$30/month + ‘government regulatory recovery fee BS’ + taxes for:

  • 150 anytime minutes
  • Unlimited evenings and weekends (local) starting at 9pm
  • Call Waiting, Call Forwarding, Group Calling
  • Unlimited messaging (text, picture and video, email, IM)
  • Unlimited social networking access (via preinstalled apps for sites like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, etc.) and unlimited on-device mobile browsing

But they wouldn’t match it. The first Telus customer service representative I got was really nice and seemed to think it was a ‘doable’ plan for me, but he couldn’t authorize changes like that so he had to pass me along to someone else, who tried to talk me into their other plan (the first one listed) and how it was ‘equivalent’. Or, better yet, tried to pass off a $40 student plan to me that had slight differences (200 minutes, earlier evenings/weekends at 6pm, unlimited talk/text/picture/video to 10 numbers plus the unlimited text/picture/video messaging, and 100mb of data usage per month). Why would I want to limit myself with 100mb of monthly data usage when I could get a phone that comes with unlimited mobile browsing (please note, I did not get a smart phone – the unlimited mobile browsing add-on can only be applied to non-smartphone handsets).

Plus I took advantage of a promotion going on at Bestbuy where if I activate a new cellphone through them, I get an extra 800 points through their rewards program (equal to $10 to spend in store on anything). Plus there’s a referral program going on at Rogers where one of my friends and I get a little bonus, 60 days from when I signed the contract.

So I ended up with a new cell phone, a new carrier, a new contract and, most importantly, and new phone number that essentially sounds like a tongue twister except for the last four digits. But… I’m happy with the phone that I got! Of course, the sales representative at the store was working as slow as molasses (over an hour to activate a phone? He kept on wanting to clarify my date of my birth, even thought it was clearly shown on one of my pieces of identification for the credit check.).

One of my Twitter-ite friends pointed out to me that if I needed a phone just for emergency purposes, it’d be a lot cheaper to go with a prepaid phone – and it would be. My sister uses prepaid phone with Rogers (same carrier that I’m with now) and she loaded up $100 on it last August and it’s not even used up yet ($100 worth of credit won’t expire for 365 days). She uses her phone sparingly and doesn’t talk on the phone all that often (well, as compared to how much she used the phone when she was in her teens…). But the thing is… I don’t think I could go back to not having a cell phone. I text far to much and I’m reliant on my phone for a lot now – alarms, calendar, texting, phoning people (not very often though – my usage has been under an hour per month for the last year). Plus it’s just an easy way for people to get a hold of me, like if we’re meeting up somewhere. So while it’s expensive, I do use the features that come with my phone and fully intend to utilize all the features that come with my new plan (besides, well, stuff like call forwarding).

And I’m not trying to bash Telus with this post. I’ve always had excellent customer service with them, my first cell phone was set up quickly and easily and I never had any issues (besides one billing issue where someone from my ‘unlimited talk and text to 8 numbers!’ came up as a long distance number because they didn’t have a 1 [the country code] in front of the phone number) with them. But I kind of expected more from them in terms of the end of my contract and if I was going to renew one with them, or anything like that. I asked them for a comparable plan and to match the price of an advertise plan, not even beat the price – just match it. To be honest, if they had, I probably would have decided to resign with them for the new contract (and to get a new phone, my first one – the LG Chocolate – is all cracked up on the key/number pad). But instead, they decided to offer me what was available to new customers right on their website and it was not what I was asking for to begin with so… Toodles to Telus.

I liked you, I really did, and it was a nice three years, but now I’ve found someone else. They were just.. a better fit for me. It’s not me, it’s you.

2 Responses to “Jumping ship for a new cell phone carrier”

  1. nichole says:

    you all have phones we don’t have here :( that looks like a cute phone. and if we have it in the us, i haven’t heard or saw of it!! but it looks awesome :)
    I saw you tweet something about it said you could do fake calls? what does that mean exactly? :)
    cell phones can seriously be one big headache!!

    • Michelle says:

      Yeah, my new phone can do ‘fake calls’.

      What it is, I turn on the function, and I can preprogram my phone to ring at a certain time or just hold one of the volume keys until it goes off. The manual says that it’s an easy way to get out of awkward situations and out of meetings 😉

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