The T-Mobile Pay As You Go plan, $100 for 1000 minutes rate, cheated me from bonus minutes up front, then overcharged minutes until I complained to customer service.
I went to a T-Mobile store in San Francisco and was given a SIM card free with the $100 for 1000 minutes prepaid refill plan I purchased. I put the SIM into my own PDA and it worked fine. I got a text message an hour later saying I had been enrolled in the "Gold Rewards" program because I bought $100 worth of minutes, and that I had %15 bonus minutes. Then it said my balance was only 1039 minutes. Now, I can do some simple math, and that did not look like 15% free minutes but I didn't care much at the time because free minutes is free minutes.
I had a phone number from another provider (NET10, who was cheating me from minutes) ported over to T-mobile, but T-mobile didn't activate that number until I called to ask what was taking so long. By that time I had made a few calls from the original phone number and noticed I was being charged 11 cents a minute when the plan was supposed to be only 10 cents a minute no matter what, according the guy in the store, T-mobile's website, and the paperwork they gave me.
I told the customer service rep, who said welllllll, actually, "you're not being charged 11 cents a minute, you're being charged 10.999 cents a minute."
She was friendly and helpful but when pressed for answers to WHY I was being over charged when I was sold 10 cents a minute, waxed eloquent on how the Gold Rewards program works without answering me. So I asked again: Why am I being overcharged? The rep finally admitted: "I don't know" and said it was some mysterious glitch. She credited my account with the time I'd lost and said she would have the problem fixed by somebody named Daniel, who was "the only person in this call center who has access to fix pre-paid accounts." She told me the problem would be fixed within the hour.
Six hours later I was still being overcharged 11 cents a minute so I called customer service again, and the problem was fixed while I waited on the phone. They credited my account with the cheated time, and it's not overcharging me at the moment, but I don't feel I can trust this company now and am disappointed about such dishonesty. I believe the customer reps when they say they don't know and it makes me wonder if some of the systems are set up to cheat and go unnoticed by many people. Maybe because I'm not using a T-mobile phone, but using my own phone which tells the truth about minutes calculated and money spent? I don't know either, but perhaps somebody will see this report (and others) and see a pattern.
I switched to T-mobile because NET10 was doing something equally sneaky with my minutes and I can't use their SIMs in my own phones. I was hoping for no more dishonest bullshit but that's what I was faced with right-off-the-bat from T-mobile.
I'll say this however, their customer service is way better than NET10 and the fact I can use their SIM in my own phone without having to buy one of theirs is a big plus. And 1000 minutes for $100 expiring in a year is a great deal. JUST MAKE SURE YOU'RE ACTUALLY GETTING THAT DEAL. DO SOME MATH THE FIRST DAY YOU USE YOUR PHONE AND CALL CUSTOMER SERVICE RIGHT AWAY AND BE VIGILANT.
San Francisco, California