JC’s child is an aspiring pizzeria owner, or maybe just a 3-year-old who appreciates a cool play kitchen. Whatever the case, the Little Tikes pizza kitchen of his kid’s dreams went on sale at Toys R Us back in October, and he ordered one to be shipped to the local store. Then it vanished. Well, it didn’t vanish, but the kitchen is stuck at “in progress” in the store’s delivery system. JC’s debit card was charged, but where did the toy go?
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Mobile phone carriers are supposed to let you out of your contract without an early termination fee if you move outside of a coverage area. That’s a theoretical exercise as far as Tom is concerned. His son uses one of the lines on his family plan, and moved outside of a coverage area. Should be easy enough to end that line without an Early Termination fee, right? Nope. [More]
While there are no guaranteed ways to convince a customer service rep that your complaint has merit, there are certain things that can only help you make your case — and others that will only submarine your efforts. [More]
So you’ve exhausted all the standard customer service and complaint-resolution routes and decided it’s time to unleash your issue via an Executive E-mail Carpet Bomb. Only problem is, you can’t find any contact info for these executives. What to do? [More]
JC had been limping along with the same smartphone since 2008. The same smartphone, but with an unlimited data plan at Verizon. He had the horrible choice when picking out a new phone: accept a limited data plan, or pay full price for his phone. He chose to send a sarcastic letter to Verizon instead. [More]
Navid’s idea wasn’t bad: he wanted to install wood floors in his condo, and chose to hire installers from the store where he bought the flooring and supplies, Home Depot. This should be a simple transaction: he gives them money, they come over and put floors in his condo. It’s just that something that employees assured Navid wouldn’t be a problem suddenly became a problem. There’s a large dip and some cracks in his subfloor, and Home Depot’s original rough estimate for how much it would fix to cost the problem was much lower than it should have been. Navid agreed to pay that expense, and the contractors walked off the job anyway, saying that they wouldn’t be able to warranty the work. Now Navid is stuck with a lot of supplies and a ripped-up floor.
Samsung USA CEO Y.K. Kim Doesn't Want You To Know His E-Mail Is 'First Two Initials, Last Name At SEA.Samsung.com'
Last week, reader Mike wrote to us about his frustration with Samsung and his Ultrabook’s repeated trips to Samsung’s anti-repair depot. Many companies seem to keep similar facilities, or take a more efficient route and send technicians to your home to break your gadgets without the inconvenience. When we last heard from Mike, he was talking to Samsung’s Facebook team and also to someone higher up in the customer service food chain. kept us posted in the comments to his original post, and sent us this update.
When Mike had a problem with his lovely Ultrabook’s trackpad, there was no reason to fret: it was under warranty. He shipped it off to Samsung’s repair depot and waited for the return of his freshly repaired computer. He didn’t know that he was actually doing the opposite: that he was sending his notebook to Samsung’s top-secret anti-repair facility, where your devices somehow emerge more broken than they were in the first place.
Lance says that he babied his Sony Vaio computer. He fed it electricity, kept it comfy, and left it docked into an LCD monitor all of the time. He didn’t take it everywhere or even toss it into a swimming pool. Yet after an odd negotiation with the world’s only onsite tech who refuses to make appointments, he learned that his version of reality wasn’t true. The computer had liquid corrosion, and Sony would only repair it if he paid almost 2/3 of the original purchase price in repair fees. Lance wants to know why the tech didn’t notice the corrosion until after he replaced the entire motherboard.
Here is the lesson that everyone who telecommutes or runs a computer-based home business learns at some point: you need more than one working computer. Otherwise, when something goes wrong with that computer, you will be stuck the way that Meredith is right now. Her HP laptop needs repair for two relatively minor problems. Wanting to get it fixed before the warranty is up, she inquired about sending it in for service. Of course! She would just need to wait 15-20 business days to get her computer back. Shut down her business for a month, that’s all.
Douglas has been a customer of Verizon Wireless and its ancestor companies for more than 20 years. He’s an executive at a company that cuts Verizon a five-figure check every month for employees’ devices. You’d think that they would be interested in making sure that he’s always happy, but not so much. When his phone stopped working, they didn’t send him to smartphone replacement purgatory: they killed him. Well, they suspended his account in a way that made it look like he had died.
Travis is heading to college in a few weeks. That’s very exciting, but he’s nervous that he’ll be heading to school with no computer or no working computer. He got a new laptop at the beginning of the year, and it’s no longer working all that well. The touchscreen keeps touching itself, moving the pointer to random points on the screen and disrupting whatever he’s doing. A Dell technician came to his house, didn’t fix the problem, and broke his headphone port. A second tech didn’t help all that much, and now it’s at Dell’s repair depot, still not getting the touchscreen fixed. What should he do?
Here’s the problem with scheduling your travel and accommodations as a package deal: if you need to reschedule or change one part of the package, you run the risk of losing other parts of the package deal. Victor used Jetblue Getaways to buy a flight and hotel package, and not a cheap one. When he needed to change his travel dates less than a week before the trip, he called up to cancel the package. Nope, said JetBlue. They wouldn’t let him cancel the stay he had booked through them at the Waldorf. That was weird, because when he called up the Waldorf directly, they were happy to cancel his booking. It’s just that JetBlue won’t give him the money back, even as a credit for future travel.
Elizabeth missed her grandfather’s funeral because of a broken seat belt. Well, that’s not entirely true. United Airlines claimed that there was a broken seat belt on the plane she was supposed to take from Chicago to Savannah, then kept pushing back and ultimately canceled the flight. By the time they finally canceled the flight, there were no more flights to Savannah for days. A broken co-pilot seat belt and a massive customer service failure is what kept Elizabeth and other passengers in Chicago.
April called up Orbitz to make a change to part of her flight itinerary, because customers can’t be trusted to handle that kind of thing ourselves, and must speak to a trained customer service representative. The helpful employee she spoke to apparently can’t be trusted to handle reservations, either, because–click!–he canceled the whole thing when she only needed to change part of the reservation. Now she apparently has a large credit with United, when not all of her travel was on United. How wonderfully useless.
There are still a lot of users around with the original HTC Incredible, and many of them need to go out and buy alarm clocks. That’s because a new software update that Verizon just sent out makes their phones go into a freaky reboot loop around 2 AM, wearing down the battery and sometimes locking the phone up entirely. The phone does wake its owner up, though. At 2:00. Reader Joe reports that every night, it makes the DROID startup noise at least once. Loudly. Every time it restarts.
Dariush was pretty happy with his Verizon FiOS Internet service. He wanted to become even happier, and add voice phone service to his plan. But Verizon’s site and customer service reps weren’t about to let him talk on the phone at the advertised “new customer” price, which he should get, as a new voice customer. Did he whimper, walk away, and keep the subpar VoIP service that he had been using? No. He took his complaint to the very top, e-mailing the Verizon CEO. And he got results.