Before I went to Japan I dropped in to my local cell phone provider’s store to inquire about a package deal that would allow me to use my mobile in the event I couldn’t get online while I was away. They were offering a deal that included something like 40 minutes talk time, 150 texts and 20mb of data for $70. I asked what would happen if I wasn’t able to use my phone in Japan and was assured that it wouldn’t be a problem – if I didn’t use the service, the company would refund the $70. What could I possibly lose? So I went for it.
Today I called the company to let them know I hadn’t been able to connect to a wireless provider while I was in Japan and could I please get my money back. No, I was told. There was no way they could refund the money. They don’t do that. So I asked to speak to a manager.
Armed with the fact that I have 6 phones on my plan, and have been with the company for about 20 years, I formulated my response to the next guy I was to talk to while I waited on hold. After five minutes my speech was at the ready. The gentleman who answered was polite – he said he’d check in to the matter, and would I please hold for a moment longer. Eventually he came back and told me that they don’t normally give refunds for travel packages, and the store shouldn’t have told me they do, but he would make an exception for me since I was a long-standing customer and he agreed to remove the $70 charge from my bill.
Now call me suspicious, but I wonder why I had to go through all that. The store told me I could have my money back. Was all the tension-building just a strategy to make me believe that the company is, in fact, wonderful and cause me to tell all my friends to go to them because they are kind and forgiving if you’re loyal?
I smell a rat.