Life Lessons: Curb Your Love Of Neil Diamond While Your Phone Is Roaming Or Pay $4,300

Define "essential."

Define “essential.”

On the one hand, satiating a burning desire to hear the sweet, sweet vocal stylings of Neil Diamond piped directly into your ear at the exact moment you want to hear them could make anyone act crazy. But one woman didn’t realize that getting Diamond-on-demand isn’t so great for the old wallet if you’re downloading an entire album while your phone is roaming.

A 43-year-old British woman visiting her boyfriend’s family in South Africa had an inexplicable itch to listen to Neil after having “a bit of wine but not too much,” reports The Telegraph.

“People were playing music through their iPads or on phones through an iPod dock. Someone had put on the Traveling Wilburys but I just fancied hearing some Neil Diamond. I don’t know why,” she admits. “He’s more my boyfriend’s musical taste and I’m more of a James Blunt fan.”

So she downloaded The Essential Neil Diamond — an album she had at home in her car, she adds — to her iPhone for £8.99 (or about $15) and submerged herself in aural bliss… until she returned home and found that her bank account was overdrawn by thousands of pounds as the result of a debit to her phone company for £2,609.31, around $4,300.

The download had taken 20 minutes and used 326 MB of data, with a fee of £8 per megabyte once her 10MB monthly foreign allowance had been used up.

After some back and forth with the phone company, Orange, she was allowed to buy a backdated bundle offer to take £2,209.31 off her bill. But she’s still ticked that the purchase went through in the first place.

“There is no way this huge bill relates to the actual cost to Orange,” she says, while admitting that she feels foolish, as should’ve known better. “But I also feel it is morally wrong to be expected to pay this sort of money for a Neil Diamond album.”

I don’t like your tone, lady. And neither does Neil, frankly, after the conversation I just had with him in my head.

Maths teacher’s £2,600 phone bill for downloading Neil Diamond album [The Telegraph]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.