Get $20 Back From Comcast Just By Asking

Without telling him there would be a fee, Comcast charged Tom $30 to fix the cable wiring going to his house. By simply questioning the charge and expressing his disappointment he wasn’t notified about it, Tom was able to get $20 back. Here is the chat transcript of his success, which is also enjoyable for the inane interjected advertisements that try to sound like human conversation.

Tom: I have a question about a “trouble call” on my bill and “additional digital equipment.”

Crystal: Hello Tom_, Thank you for contacting Comcast Live Chat Support. My name is Crystal. Please give me one moment to review your information.

Crystal: How are you doing today?

Crystal: I thank you for giving us the opportunity to resolve this issue and I am happy to help you with it. As your service representative today, I want you to know that your satisfaction is of my topmost priority and I assure you that we can resolve this issue together on this chat.

Crystal: I understand that you have a problem with your bill. I do apologize for that. I’d be very much willing to help you with that.

Tom_: OK

Tom_: My acccount number is xxxxxxxxxxx

Crystal: Thank you.

Crystal: To verify security, could you please provide me the last four digits of your Social Security Number?

Tom_: mine are xxxx

Tom_: my wife’s is xxxx

Tom_: i think the account is under her name

Crystal: Thank you for the information that you have given me.

Crystal: Please give me a minute or two to review your bill.

Crystal: I appreciate your patience while on hold, I am still working/checking on your account. Please give me another 2 minutes for this, would that be okay?

Crystal: Did you know Comcast Customer Central is the one place for you to pay your bill, manage your account settings, and get help and support for all Comcast products. You can easily access Comcast Customer Central from Comcast.net. From http://www.comcast.net, you may find the links to Customer Central under the ‘Account Links’ option of your ‘My Comcast’ box at the top right of the page.

Tom_: ok

Crystal: Thank you for patiently waiting, Tom.

Crystal: I have reviewed your bill and the $6.99 charge is the amount added to your bill for the additional outlet for your digital cable box.

Tom_: Another outlet?

Tom_: I don’t understand

Tom_: I only have one box connected

Crystal: How many televisions do you have?

Tom_: Two

Crystal: That is it.

Crystal: The additional outlet charge is for the second television.

Tom_: I see

Tom_: The second television does not have a box, however.

Crystal: The cable box you have can support two television. The charge was for the additional outlet for your second tv.

Crystal: By the way, Comcast brings you thousands of movies and shows with On Demand and great picture quality–rain or shine. But your television experience doesn’t stop there. When you sign up for a Comcast Digital Cable package your subscription goes even further with dozens of other features that will keep you tuned in all day and all night–all at no additional charge.

Tom_: Okay

Tom_: Can you explain the trouble call?

Crystal: It’s been my pleasure to have assisted you . I am happy you contacted Comcast today.

Crystal: Is there anything else you’d like to clarify before you close our chat?

Tom_: Yes

Tom_: Please explain the trouble call

Tom_: I had a technician come to my house

Crystal: Sure thing.

Tom_: but I have never been charged $30 before

Tom_: why was this different?

Tom_: And why wasn’t I notified that I would be charged?

Crystal: If the technician determines your issue is not Comcast-related, you could be charged a service fee.

Tom_: The issue was a faulty component on the wires outside

Tom_: he had to get a ladder and climb up to fix it

Tom_: The fault wasn’t caused by user error

Tom_: That ‘s hard for me to understand

Crystal: Since the problem was with the wiring not with your Comcast equipment, you were charged for a trouble call fee for the technician appointment.

Tom_: I don’t understand

Tom_: is the wiring not comcast equipment?

Tom_: whose equipment was it then>?

Tom_: it certainly wasn’t mine

Crystal: I definitely know where you’re coming from and I truly apologize for the inconvenience. Comcast is determined to resolve your issue today and I know you we can do this together.

Tom_: My main concern is that I was blindsided by this charge.

Tom_: I would’ve appreciated it if a Comcast representative would have told me about the charge either before or after completing the service.

Tom_: It’s difficult for me to feel confident that I won’t be levied surprise charges in the future.

Tom_: I don’t have time to sift thru the fine print everytime comcast changes its terms

Tom_: It’s a great inconvenience to me and I am very uneasy with this practice

Crystal: I do apologize for any inconvenience or frustration that you may have experienced with this issue. I appreciate you for bringing this to our attention.

Crystal: What I can do is to process a $20.00 credit on the account. I apologize however that is the maximum amount I can process. Will that be fine with you?

Tom_: Yes, I appreciate it.

Tom_: Is there anyway that I can have a note put on my account so that Comcast representatives speaking with me will know to notiify me if I will be levied an additional charge beyond my typical monthly bill?

Crystal: Sure thing, Tom.

Crystal: I will note it here.

Tom_: Thank you very much

Crystal: You are most welcome, Tom.

Crystal: I have processed your request. The credit will be posted on your next bill.

Crystal: Is there anything else you’d like to clarify before you close our chat?

Crystal: There will be a 3 question survey that will follow our interaction. Please take moment for this, your feedback will greatly help us to continue improving how we serve you. Thank you very much.

Tom_: Nothing else. Thank you!

Crystal: You are most welcome.

Crystal: By the way, before we end the chat, let me remind you of the things that we have done on this chat today.

Crystal: We have discussed your bill and explained to you the charges. The trouble call charge has already been credited on the account.

Crystal: By the way, our phone service is available in your area.
With Comcast Digital Voice service you get one phone line. You have the option to add up to three additional lines for a small, monthly fee.

Crystal: It is with gratitude to have you as my customer on this chat and I appreciate the opportunity you’ve given us today to resolve your issue. Enjoy the rest of your day and take care. Do you want to watch full TV shows and movies online? Go to http://www.fancast.com. Thank you for choosing Comcast as your service provider and have a great day! Comcast appreciates your business and values you as a customer. Our goal is to provide you with excellent service. If you need further assistance, you can chat with one of our Customer Support Specialists 24 hour a day, 7 days a week at http://www.comcastsupport.com/videochat. To close this chat, please click the end session button at the top of your chat window.

Crystal: Analyst has closed chat and left the room

Squeaky wheel gets the grease.

Comments

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  1. lehrdude says:

    I would wait to see if the $20 ever actually appears…I don’t think I’ve EVER had an online chat with a Comcast rep ever result in actually getting what the online rep told me I would eventually get.

    • NarcolepticGirl says:

      Exactly. We went through that about 4 times over the last year. Probably about 20+ phone calls to get the refunds.

    • Marshmelly says:

      agreed. I am still patiently awaiting a $26 credit from like June that they continue to tell me will be credited to my account.

  2. Tim says:

    When I had Comcast installed when I moved, the installer was about 45 minutes late. At the 20 minute mark, I called Comcast to say he was late. The CSR immediately gave me a $20 credit (and also had the local dispatch give me a call with an estimate as to when the installer would be there). I didn’t even ask for it!

  3. tedyc03 says:

    Wouldn’t justice in this case have been a $30 refund? $20 back of $30 taken seems like a loss.

  4. Scooter250 says:

    I got the whole fee removed yesterday with a much shorter call.

  5. Zegridathes says:

    I always imagine, with support chat transcripts like this, that the CSRs have a customized keyboard where a single key outputs a whole canned phrase. Something like those old dumb-terminal keyboard with 24 function keys. haha

    By the way,

    • Raekwon says:

      Nah, they have a link or button in their chat client that injects these. The call center where I work does it too and it sounds justs as ridiculous.

    • Rena says:

      My guess is the software injects these ads automatically. Although the “software” could be their reprogrammed brains.

  6. sirwired says:

    I just thought I would point out that once the signal passes the splitter box located on the outside of your house, YOU own the wiring, even if it was installed by the cable company. Some companies will include a “wiring service plan” as an option you can buy, some don’t.

    If there is a problem with your wiring (and not the box), then it is perfectly reasonable to expect you to pay to have it fixed.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      How does that work for an apartment complex? We didn’t know there were issues like this when we found an apartment and when we found that one outlet was working but the other one wasn’t, the company wanted to charge us $30 to fix the wiring – I asked them, “but we weren’t the reason the wiring was messed up” and they said, “too bad, that’ll be $30.”

      Turned out well for us – we didn’t need a TV in the office anyway.

      • sirwired says:

        How apartments work depends on the cable company’s contract with your apartment complex. The “cut-off” between the company wiring and the wiring belonging to the unit varies. In any case, if the wiring that is busted does belong to the apartment, your landlord should be covering the bill, since they own the wiring (and probably prohibit the installation of additional wiring.)

  7. curmudgeon5 says:

    Ugh, I’m so so torn about using online help services for Comcast and similar companies. On one hand, it’s nice not to have to deal directly with them sometimes and be able to read a book or whatever while they babble on. On the other hand, they’re way more scripted than phone agents, I think. But also easier to ignore.

    In any case … Am I the only one disturbed that he so willingly provided the last four digits of his and his wife’s social security numbers? No way am I giving that out to random Comcast representatives. (They’ve asked for it before, I’ve said no, and they’ve found a different way to verify the account.)

  8. vastrightwing says:

    Pro tip: Save even more than that by dumping Comcast.. I mean xfinity, and use an antenna or some IPTV. There’s no reason to abuse yourself with Comcast. Forget the money aspect, don’t waste your time.

  9. Lynne says:

    We had nothing but rip off from Comcast, until we finally went with a different company. We had equipment problems they wanted to charge us to fix. When we moved, they quoted us one price and then we found out by accident when the install tech arrived that they had no intention of giving us that price – but they assumed we would go with it anyway. Nope – I sent them packing. They never refunded overcharges without too many phone calls. They promised what they couldn’t deliver. And so on. My mother in law and several friends have gotten the same garbage. I will never use comcast again.

  10. tacitus59 says:

    Actually the whole call sounds like BS – if it was a problem outside the house – the guy had to get a ladder to fix it; comcast is responsible plus he getting charged an extra $6.99 for an extra unneeded connection because the box supported it. Sounds like OP got ripped to me. Now inside wiring is another matter unless you pay the “inside wiring tax” to comcast.

    I had an issue with comcast: I had swapped my cable modem, but I could not get it out of the “walled garden.” And I tried with comcast for probably an hour to get it resolved on the phone so they sent out a repairman and he fixed it. But I later called to get a credit because my internet was down for a few days and the CSR mentioned I was charged for the visit, because there was nothing wrong with the equipment. I yelled and after some convincing she fixed it and I apologized for yelling.

    • Raekwon says:

      Yeah he got ripped. Any undisclosed charges should be fully refunded. Comcast always throws undisclosed charges at me when they do anything and I always get them fully refunded. Even if it was his wiring that was faulty the tech needs to get the go ahead to fix it if there will be a fee involved.

  11. ITDEFX says:

    I like how Comcast service was “Pimped” during the chat. :|javascript:void(0);

  12. jbl-az says:

    I would complain about all the ads interspersed with the analyst’s comments.

  13. Chaluapman says:

    so…now they charge for the number of tvs you have in your home? Reason #123237098 to hate cable.

  14. erinpac says:

    Aren’t they supposed to have 2 free outlets with any of their plans? And what box do they have that does ANYTHING for the second TV? That 2nd TV is likely only getting the unecrypted basic stuff. He’d have noticed if they’d actually added equipment/service/outlets.

    I have to call fairly regularly when they randomly add outlets I do not have, or extra HD service, etc. to the bill.

  15. BurtReynolds says:

    I’d want $30, not $20. Am I going to get billed by my electric company if a line goes down during a storm? Since when is utility infrastructure my responsibility? If it is in my wall, I can understand it.

  16. err says:

    Success!? You call that success! Comcast is still $10 ahead on this deal. I wish I could steal moeny so easily.

    They should have refunded all his money.

  17. ComcastBonnie says:

    Actually, we do have the Customer Guarantee… which is country-wide (not the bank!). Check it out, it’s pretty sweet! http://bit.ly/9kjMbK

  18. legolex says:

    The Comcast person who was helping Tom creeped me out.

  19. KianteWench says:

    I actually had something similar happen to me last night. I called to tell them I had a new TIVO that took the card and I needed to let them come get their box and give me a card. on top of the 7 dollar one-time fee and the 2 bucks a month for the card, they wanted an additional 30 dollars to come get the box and give me the card. I said I was unsatisfied with that because it seemed stupid to pay 30 bucks for them to pick up an item which takes a dollar in gas MAYBE. They took the 30 off. WOOT!

  20. Difdi says:

    The problem is, Tom still got screwed. That he managed to negotiate them into screwing him less isn’t something to celebrate.

    Cable systems (wiring, parts, junction boxes, etc) are divided rather sharply into two categories. Customer-owned and company-owned. Generally, from the box on the outside of the house inwards is customer-owned, while junction box outwards is company-owned. There are different box designs around, and some are 100% company-owned, a rare few are 100% customer-owned, and some are a mix.

    But one thing is always true: If the repair was to the company-owned section of the system, the customer doesn’t owe a single penny. From the sound of the article, Tom got charged $30 for a repair to a company-owned component, which is a fraudulent charge. It’d be like being charged for the repair of your neighbor’s car. The fact he talked them down to only a $10 charge isn’t so great, because they shouldn’t be charging him that $10 either.

  21. Benj says:

    You think this is bad? I had exactly the same issue with Dish Network this weekend – loss of signal because of poor connections between cables installed by one of their employees. Once tech support determined that our trans-oceanic phone call won’t solve the matter and I would need a live technician, I was told that my choices are as follows: a single $95 payment or a “protection plan” where I pay $6 each and every month – and $25 if I ever cancel the plan. Makes even Comcast look benign, doesn’t it?

  22. cupcake_ninja says:

    Comcast loves to just slap a fee on things just for fun, hoping customers won’t notice. Just last week we called them to come out to fix a problem that was never really fixed in the first place. About 2 months ago, when they “upgraded” our service, we stopped getting a channel we frequently watched. It was just 1 channel. We called them out to fix it. The first guy that came out did nothing other than just tighten up some wiring and called it good. We got the channel back for maybe 12 hours and it was out again. They sent another guy out, he actually checked the wiring and fixed a problem that was as a result of my neighbors. They slapped a $40 charge on my account for the service call basically saying the problem was our fault. Um, no, it wasn’t. Then they sent me a letter saying that our account was credited $20 because the first guy failed to fix the problem, but I still had another $20 charge from them coming out and I disputed it, so they waived the service fee. Here we are 2 mos later, the same channel is mysteriously out again so we called them to come out to fix it. They told us that they would charge us another $40 service fee to fix a problem they failed to fix and apologized for in the first place! Yeah, that was a fun conversation to have with them on the phone.

  23. operator207 says:

    This is the first time I have seen commercials in Tech Support Chat.