(If you must have politics, keep scrolling)
I am a patient person with a long fuse. Verizon Wireless, however, burned that fuse down all the way and kept on burning the fuse until I exploded. The particulars are below the fold.
When Mr. AOW was approaching cataract surgery in June, the Medicare hoops to jump through required a great deal of my time. As a result, papers got misplaced. By "papers," I mean bills. The bill from Verizon Wireless was buried in the avalanche and didn't surface until after the bill was due. Of course, I decided to wait until the next bill arrived. When it did, I wrote the check and mailed the payment the very next day.
One day later – One day! – I started getting calls from Verizon Wireless on my cell phone. Do these people sit around and plot the most inconvenient time to call, or what? I missed several of the calls. Once Verizon Wireless started leaving messages, I immediately accessed those messages and, via my cell phone, attempted to contact the number given in the message.
When prompted, I entered the required last four digits of my Social Security number. Dead air.
I tried again. Dead air again.
Then I thought, "Well, maybe the account is tied to Mr. AOW's Social Security number. Or – God forbid! – my father's Social Security number. You see, Dad originally held this cell phone number. I TRIED to get his name off the account immediately following his death in 1998. I even submitted two notarized death certificates. TWO! Well, his name is STILL on the account. Of course, Verizon Wireless didn't have any difficulty with changing the billing information. Figures.
Call after call came in from Verizon Wireless within a twenty-four-hour period. Finally, I decided to call the company from my land line, that is, to call the company number on the statement instead of the number consistently left in those voice mail messages. To access the number on the bill, I had to go digging through another stack of papers. I didn't know what I was going to do if the company requested Dad's Social Security number, which I had long since forgotten.
By this time, I was loaded for bear. I had other things to do that day, for pity's sake, including squaring away the referrals for Mr. AOW's resuming physical therapy and contacting Medicare to find out just where to go to get his new eyeglasses.
Anyway, once I finally reached after a serious of tedious machinations, Verizon Wireless Customer Service, the company representative got nasty. The exchange went something like this....
Verizon Wireless (sneering): You haven't paid your last bill. We may cut off your service.
AOW: I have paid it now. I misplaced the original bill. We had some trouble here....
VW (interrupting and more sneering): When did you pay that bill?
AOW: I don't know. I mailed the payment the day after the second bill arrived.
VW: We don't have the payment. We may cut off your service.
At that point, I demanded a supervisor. She protested.
AOW (growling): Do you hear the anger in my voice? I want a supervisor. NOW!
The supervisor, a man of dulcet tones, came on the line. I told him off, too, including the fact that, in some fifteen years as a Verizon Wireless customer, I had never before been late with a payment. A lousy $80! I screamed the details about my husband's surgery, misplacing the bill, and so on. He started to say something. I slammed down the phone while he was still in mid-sentence. I believe that my parting words were "Don't call here again."
A few minutes later, my cell phone rang. I couldn't answer the call because I was on the land line with Medicare.
A few minutes later, my cell phone rang. Again.
You guessed it.
Automated Voice: Verizon Wireless calling with a customer satisfaction survey.
I'm sure that you can figure out the gist of my input for that survey. Yep, scorched earth.
I am not the only one who has trouble with Verizon. See THIS, written some time back by Black Sheep of News Bleat.
Customer service is a wasteland.