Apr 22, 2004, 3:36 PM
Post #1 of 3
Well, I have received a couple of private replies to my previous post alleging the same or similar treatment from Vonage Customer Service. So, I'm apparently not alone here and I'll post my sad story for the enlightenment of all. (Although I don't know what any of us can do about it).
A few weeks ago, I received an e-mail message from Vonage telling me that MasterCard had denied my Vonage monthly charge. When I called my bank I was told that someone had tried to make several fraudulent charges to my MasterCard and it had been canceled as a security measure. I immediately contacted Vonage to tell them what had happened and to explain that my bank had already issued a replacement card but that it might take some time to reach me here in Mexico.
On five occasions over the next ten days I sent e-mail messages to Vonage Customer Service, fully explaining the situation, asking whether my Vonage account could be placed on hold until the new credit card reached me, and offering to pay my account in full by any other acceptable means -- such as a direct deposit to the Vonage account, mailing a cashier's check, using PayPal, etc. All of my good-faith attempts to resolve the situation were firmly refused -- and a couple of the replies even contained errors in grammar and sentence structure. I call that pretty poor customer service!
When the new credit card arrived (about two days after Vonage had suspended my account for non-payment) I immediately paid the overdue monthly charge. A few days later, I noted with dismay the posting of an invoice charging me Vonage's standard $9.99 reactivation fee, plus 30 cents tax. I sent them another message at once. In that message, I told them that I have no quarrel with any company's right to charge a fee for reactivation when an account has been suspended due to the failure of a client to pay that account in a timely manner but in this case I believe that Vonage is "adding insult to injury," after I made every attempt to advise and cooperate with them.
Now, most efficient and well-run companies recognize that an obviously honest attempt to resolve a difficulty merits good treatment in return. They also realize that a satisfied customer often refers new clients, while a dissatisfied or angry one can lead to poor public relations and the loss of thousands of dollars in business. I believed that Vonage must have a policy allowing its Customer Service representatives to waive a reactivation fee in an unusual circumstance such as this one. I further believed that it was not Vonage's company policy to punish a customer by charging an extra fee for a situation that has already caused financial loss and emotional strain.
Hoping for fair treatment from Vonage, I asked to have the reactivation fee waived. The response from Vonage Customer Service was: "I am sorry but the reactivation fee cannot be refunded. If there is anymore questions that need to be answered, then please contacted us by the information provided below." Am I wrong here? Am I being overly sensitive or demanding? Or, am I being "gouged" by Vonage?
Zapopan, Jalisco, México