Tuesday, January 06, 2004

A Letter

Dear T-Mobile Customer Relations,

On September 21, 2003, I purchased a Samsung X105 phone and also signed up for the “T-Mobile Get More 600 Nationwide Minute Plan with Unlimited Nights” as a first time subscriber at Amazon.com. As a result of the poor reception I was getting with the X105 phone, which I thought was caused by the phone, I contacted Amazon.com to exchange the X105 for a Sony/Ericsson T610 instead. A customer service representative from Amazon instructed me to order the T610 from the website WITHOUT a T-Mobile plan since I had activated the plan earlier when I purchased the Samsung phone. I asked him if this would jeopardize the $100 rebate on the T610 phone because my invoice for the new phone would not show that I had activated a plan with the phone. He subsequently transferred me to a T-Mobile customer service representative, who assured me that T-Mobile would honor the rebate as long as I didn’t send in the rebate for the X105.

I ordered the T610 and then returned the X105 to Amazon without any problems. Because I had given out my new number to family and friends already, I decided to keep the old SIM card from the X105.

A couple of weeks ago, when I was filling out the rebate form for the T610, I decided to call the T-Mobile rebate center (877-311-8853) just to confirm that the rebate would go through. A rebate representative told me that my rebate would NOT be approved because I should have activated the T610 phone with a new account instead of keeping the old account that I had gotten with the X105. After I repeated to him what the other T-Mobile representative had told me earlier in September, he apologized and said that the other representative should have informed me of this technicality. In any case, he said I wouldn’t be eligible for the rebate and suggested that I talk to a regular T-Mobile representative about getting a $100 service credit instead.

After I spent 30 minutes being on hold and explaining my situation to another T-Mobile representative, he apologized profusely and transferred me to his supervisor. Despite her repeated apologies, the supervisor refused to give me the service credit, even after acknowledging the first CSR’s oversight. When I offered to go through the hassles of opening a new account and getting a new number, she told me I would still need to keep the current account and pay for it as well, a remedy I find entirely unacceptable, which is why I’m writing to you in hope of rectifying my problem.

I bought the phone and signed up for the service almost 4 months ago in good faith, with the expectation of receiving the $100 rebate that was promised to me. Now I find myself out of $100 because of a technicality that a representative from your company had neglected to inform me.

T-Mobile’s reputation for providing the best customer service was one of the main reasons that I chose your service. However, this whole rebate experience has completely changed my opinion of your company, an opinion that I will not hesitate to share with all my friends and family members. I will also not forget the hours that I have wasted fighting for the money that I am entitled to in the first place when it’s time to make a decision on whether I should renew my service contract eight months from now.

Thank you very much for having the patience to read through my excruciatingly detailed letter. It certainly was a chore to write :) I hope to hear from you soon.