FiOS For $99 A Month, Except When It's Really $114

Kevin Cowherd of the Baltimore Sun was recently offered an exciting new Verizon FiOS bundle at his home:

“Have I got a deal for you,” he said.

He handed me a brochure.

On one side, it said: “Bring the Excitement Home.”

On the other, it said: “TV + Internet + Phone. $99.99 a month. Plus a free 19-inch HD LCD TV.”

There hadn’t been much excitement at home lately, so I let him stick around for a minute.

He said that Verizon FiOS was the best, most super-duper TV, Internet and phone bundle of all time.

It will completely change your life, he said, with the fastest cable and greatest all- fiber-optic network and unlimited calling anywhere in the U.S. and Canada.

“And all for just $114 a month,” he said.

OK, let me say right now that I am not a numbers guy. That’s one of the reasons I got into this business, because if you throw a lot of numbers at me, it’s nap time.

But even I could figure out the price had jumped in 10 seconds.

“What happened to Bring the Excitement Home for $99.99?” I asked.

“Well,” the guy said, “to get all that excitement, you need converter boxes for your TVs. For three TVs, it would be $114.”

Mr. FiOS went on to say that he could not give Mr. Cowherd the $99 price because “there’s no box to check that says ‘Resident does not want converter boxes.’ That’s why it’s $114.”

Riiight.

Bundles of joy? Not from these FiOS [Baltimore Sun]
(Photo:cmorran123)

Comments

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  1. JPropaganda says:

    hahahaha thats great.

  2. tripnman says:

    $99.99 except when its $114 plus taxes, recovery fees, mysterious non-governmental fees, fees for charging you fees – total monthly $157.32.

  3. HeyThereKiller says:

    Cowherd is a great name

  4. Blueskylaw says:

    These contracts are written by lawyers, psychologists, and sleight of hand artists.

  5. warf0x0r says:

    114 for TV+Internet+Phone, pffft what a ripoff Verison. Try 189.xx for TV and Internet…
    wait a minute…
    3 plus 5 minus 1…
    carry the 8… oh, goddamnit.
    I hate you Comcast.

  6. TV + Internet + Phone. Starting at 99.99 a month. You can bring the excitement home starting at $99, you want to spread your excitement to more than one TV, so obviously your starting price increases. I bet if you call Guam everyday it goes up too.

    Tripnmman caught the real devil– taxes & fees. Federal Subscriber Line Charge = $8.00 wtf?

  7. pureobscure says:

    Meh, this is pretty much the standard MO of any of these types of service providers. Whether it’s digital cable, satellite TV, HD TV, etc. etc., there’s always an extra fee for additional TVs or boxes.

  8. Adam291 says:

    It’s $99 for the service from Verizon to your house. What happens between the wall hookup and your tv is extra (the wall hookup itself might be extra too), as are all the fees. Companies are too cowardly to say that upfront, and too eager to nickel and dime people to have $99 be the actual price.

  9. backbroken says:

    I never understood the ubiquitous Comcast Triple-Play for $99 ad. Does the TV portion of that $99 cover any but the most basic 10 channel package? I’m guessing if you want anything more, the $99 goes up considerably.

  10. elf6c says:

    Bring back the “show us your Verizon face” please.

  11. xamarshahx says:

    no, u get a good deal for 99 from comcast, they just rape you after the first year when it goes back to 140-160 a month depending on your area. read the TOS, it explains it.

  12. xamarshahx says:

    also, don’t forget the “taxes” (the real ones and the ones they charge cause the government forced them to do something).

  13. check out this guy’s bill. the “taxes” are more than the service! [www.nwtrcc.org]

  14. Still cheaper than Comcast no matter how you try and spin-it.

  15. lostalaska says:

    Yeah I live up in Juneau, Alaska we have GCI Cable and I’m paying nearly $180 a month for a small selection of channels (only 3 in HD, National Geographic, NFL and TNT-HD) landline phone, and a 2mb down 512kb up cable modem. I keep wondering if Alaska will ever get a second cable TV company around here.

  16. ITDEFX says:

    Sadly this is true… we have the same service (TV, phone and Internet)3 converter boxes and with taxes/fees it comes to about what the poster said.

  17. homerjay says:

    @lostalaska: Can’t you get satellite up there??

  18. swalve says:

    @homerjay: Appears that way: [www.expertsatellite.com]

    I’m surprised though, even here at 41.669963 deg north (nerd!), the dishes are tipped pretty far toward the southern horizon. I’m surprised the satellites are up high enough for the dishes to get a signal.

  19. Falconfire says:

    @Papa Midnight: only cheaper if their 99 dollar service doesnt go up in a year either…. which it does to the tune of 160 bucks.

  20. MariaLeigh says:

    $99 for us comes to $109. That’s still cheaper than Comcast, but after spending 4 hours on the phone yesterday with Verizon I was told the following about the tv:
    1. The free tv will arrive on the truck with the installers.
    2. The free tv offer will come in a letter a week after installation.
    3. The free tv offer will be emailed.

    All three of these statements came from Verizon employees at their 800-number. I finally called the customer advocate line and was told the following: IF you qualify, despite the numerous things that might make you ineligible for the offer, you should receive a letter in the mail 3 weeks after installation. That letter will contain an email address and reward number. Enter that number and wait another 6-10 weeks for the tv.

    I was dumbfounded that I kept getting a different story from each Verizon employee I talked to. It will be a miracle if anyone receives a free tv.

  21. dmartinez says:

    All cable companies do this

    I have Milenium, Comcast and FIOS all available to me in my area and they all send me junk mail for $99.99 but none include the boxes.

    FIOS is really the best though as I have used all three.

  22. OminousG says:

    I have Brighthouse / Time Warner in Tampa.

    Their $99 dollar service actually does include the price of a standard converter box for one TV; at $7.
    So for me (before taxes) it really is just $99.

    Why would anyone else think that this deal from verizon would include unlimited converter boxes? Also, anyone notice that at $7 a pop, the OP is paying for 2 extra boxes, bring the total to $114? I smell bullshit when the OP says there is no box to say no converter boxes for 3 bedrooms.

  23. OminousG says:

    Am I overlooking the edit button? Or has The Consumerist put has effort into their forums as they do into checking their stories?

  24. create says:

    yeah, this is really standard operating procedure anywhere with any cable/satellite company… first $99 is a promotional rate, they get you hooked, it *will* go up

    second, its normal to charge ~$7-8 per converter for additional TVs (advantage cable as at least for now, you don’t *need* a box to get tv on your other TVs), advertised pricing usually includes one converter