Hey, AT&T customers: be very, very careful when dialing three-digit numbers. If you’re trying to dial, say, 211 or 311 (local government information), 611 (AT&T Wireless customer service) or 711 (TTY relay), and you dial 411 for directory assistance by mistake, you’ll be charged for it even if you realize the mistake and hang up immediately. And you’ll need to live with the consequences of your error, since, according to reader Stephen, AT&T will not refund these charges.
Stephen learned this the hard way.
If you have an AT&T phone, you can contact customer service by dialing
611. When I tried to do this recently, I accidently dialed 411 twice
instead, but I hung up as soon as I realized what I was doing wrong
and without speaking to anyone. When I got my phone bill, I was
charged $3.98 for making the calls.
After contacting AT&T Customer Service, I was very surprised and
dismayed that AT&T claims they cannot give refunds for these calls
UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, users are billed just for placing the call
even if they hang up immediately, and there is no way to block calls
from being made to 411.
P.S. After asking to speak with a supervisor and whining enough, I was
given a “courtesy credit”, but I am still upset that I couldn’t get a
normal credit without having to get my blood pressure up.
It makes sense that AT&T might do this in order to avoid people trying to game the system and get free directory assistance calls by pretending that they made the calls accidentally. It’s just not a very nice policy.
But why can’t you block directory assistance on a phone when there are so many perfectly good free alternatives?
Dial carefully, kids.