Bt cheeky charges and incompetence

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Broadband & Internet Access
12 replies 1.1K views
maudycowmaudycow Forumite
10 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Broadband & Internet Access
Hi There

BT has been my internet provider for at least two years now. I pay £24.49 a month for this service. I have contacted them at least 4 times this year to raise concerns over the level of charges on my account. Every time I have been fobbed off with the best package advice, fastest speed 8mb download etc etc. Each time I have reached a call centre in India or where ever. Although extremely polite service it is about as effective as banging a nail into the wall using your head. Having read an article this morning (one of Martins) and doing a speed check I discover my download is actually only 2.77 my upload even slower. I had not realised that there were so many variables to receiving this service. Long storey short I decided to cancel and was transferred to a call centre in Scotland. Where upon the operative actually went through my account details since May and discovered I do not need to be on their highest package in fact she was able to offer me a unadvertised £7.33 rate to retain my custom. This will still provide me with usage above the amount I currently use but less than a third of the cost. Why in all my previous calls couldn't someone have done this instead of giving me the hard sell about speeds and downloads etc. That it is not until I actually go through to disconnection can I be given clear advice and offered this lower price. Sharp practice BT or is it my fault for trusting what I was told?
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Replies

  • edited 1 November 2009 at 12:26AM
    ComplexPComplexP Forumite
    328 Posts
    edited 1 November 2009 at 12:26AM
    I'm a cynic (especially when it comes to BT). Never trust anyone who isn't impartial, which is practically no-one.

    For the record, 2.8MBits download speed isn't a major problem (you hadn't noticed until you checked, right?) and upload speeds are supposed to be lower, usually about 0.5MBits maximum unless you are on ADSL2 which is unlikely.

    If your speed is being limited by the physical length of your phone line then I'm surprised BT have taken this long to offer you the lower rate. Well actually I'm not, but you know what I mean.

    I'm guessing you were on their top notch unlimited service yes? Sometimes these services can still be worth paying for even if you cant get the speeds advertised.

    For example, I can only get 3MBits where I am but I pay for the top package because it has no traffic shaping, meaning I get the fastest speeds I can at all times of the day. Since my speeds are a little low I don't like things slowing down much further. 3MBits is perfectly fine, 1MBit isn't.
  • BT base there plans on usage and not speed.

    If you renew you contract you can get a cheaper deal and the lower your usage the cheaper the deal is.
    Its a retention offer to keep you with BT.
  • Hi ComplexP

    No, I hadn't noticed and to be honest I don't really care. What irked (love that word) was that every time I have phoned up BT aghast at their charges I have been fobbed off with the fact that I have this all singing all dancing 8MB speed and download service. Consequently I have hung up completely unsatisfied and still paying such high charges. They used the 8MB as a hard sell to justify their charges. I never knew until this week that it is highly unlikely that you will actually ever achieve this due to the amount of variables that would need to be considered. For the record the download is 2.77 and upload 1.97. No I don't have ADSL2.

    On each call no one checked my usage and I continued to pay. So having realised that I had been hard sold this rubbish I was cheesed off. Phoned them up again had the most ridiculous conversation about not being able to cancel broadband till after my next bill in Nov, but that although by then it will no longer be active I would still have to pay the 3 months in advance but this would be adjusted on my next bill in Feb. So I said fine I will just pay my bill less the advance charges. I was told that my account would not understand this and they would suspend my phone line. I said I was not talking to an account but a person. At this point I lost the will to live and decided to terminate my contract for broadband. Here I find out that they can check my account back till May and I advise me I am on the wrong package and could from today offer me a special unadvertised £7.33 rate.


    I am appalled. Have spent vast amount of time today responding to emails about this from BT Customer Service that just don't get it.

    Sorry for the rant, but they really have taken the biscuit. That's why I ended up with this user name. Bad! Bad! Bad!
  • edited 1 November 2009 at 1:36AM
    maudycowmaudycow Forumite
    10 Posts
    edited 1 November 2009 at 1:36AM
    Hi syko29793

    When I spoke to disconnections I was told that I am on 10 whatever the term is but my usage has been between 4.0 and 4.5 whatevers a month between May till now. With the exception of Aug when it was 10 as my daughter is on school holidays.

    Yes if you change your plan they then tie you in for another 12 months
  • The_EconomistThe_Economist Forumite
    635 Posts
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    Hi maudycow can i point to this link as there is a BT representative that might be able to help. It is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=1806691
    If i could i would, but i cannot so i wont, but maybe one day i will.
  • Here's a link that might make you feel a bit better.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/watchdog/2009/10/bt.html

    Just scroll through the many different stories and shake your head in amazement.

    I had huge problems with BT trying to get them to fix my phone line because I was suffering constant broadband disconnections regardless of ISP. After 2 YEARS, 4 engineering visits, massive amount of my time and money and an erroneous bill for £125 (which I disputed and they finally conceded with issued in error) it was fixed a few months ago.

    Despite being told multiple times over the phone that it must be my equipment because their brilliant tests told them my line was fine it turned out to be a loose wire up at the pole by my house. It took 4 engineers to spot this! Unbelievable.
  • macmanmacman Forumite
    48.5K Posts
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    The tariff you were on was not 8MBps, it was up to 8MBps. As ComplexP pointed out, if the most your line can support is 2.8MBps, then that is the best speed you will get regardless of what tariff you choose. Use the BT checker below and this will give you an indication of the best speed your line can support.
    http://www.dslchecker.bt.com/adsl/adslchecker.welcome
    BT are not alone in reserving their best offers for new customers and those who show serious intent to cancel their service.
    What I don't understand is why, if you are so hacked off with BT, you chose to renew with them without even seeing if you could get a better price and service elsewhere?
    No free lunch, and no free laptop ;)
  • edited 1 November 2009 at 11:59AM
    maudycowmaudycow Forumite
    10 Posts
    edited 1 November 2009 at 11:59AM
    Hi Macman

    I understand now about up to speeds, as pointed recently by BTs rep in BTs terms and conditions, as opposed to you will receive. What particularly bugged me was the fact that when I phoned up to raise the issue of high charges, BT reps would say well you are receiving 8MB speed etc. Using this as part of a selling tool to justify high charges. My computer knowledge could be written on a grain of rice. My fault I don't understand and took it word for word. I am sure I am not the only one who has been told this also. The issue really isn't about speed, I don't care, I just object too the fact they tell you, you are getting the fastest speed, and don't say not up to.

    Why on earth did I re-sign? Firstly, I need to keep my email address as I can't bear the thought of having to go through changing that. True, I am told that I can keep my address even if I am not with BT. but bearing in mind the rubbish it has been to get someone to actually check information they have at their fingertips to put me on the correct package, I just can't go through it. On top of that my brother has been very ill and has required 24 hour care for the last 12 months that I simply do not have the time to waste spending up to an hour at a time sorting this. Having moved house and changed supplier once before where it took BT 4 weeks to take a marker off my line for my supplier to put theirs on. Plus my daughter teaches A level English and needs the internet for a lot of her work. Following an article of Martins I found a supplier for £5.99, BT's is £7.33 with the rubbish that has happened before ,bottom line I just do not have the energy.

    ComplexP
    Thanks for that I will take a look.
  • edited 1 November 2009 at 12:23PM
    macmanmacman Forumite
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    edited 1 November 2009 at 12:23PM
    maudycow wrote: »
    Hi Macman

    I understand now about up to speeds, as pointed recently by BTs rep in BTs terms and conditions, as opposed to you will receive. What particularly bugged me was the fact that when I phoned up to raise the issue of high charges, BT reps would say well you are receiving 8MB speed etc. Using this as part of a selling tool to justify high charges. My computer knowledge could be written on a grain of rice. My fault I don't understand and took it word for word. I am sure I am not the only one who has been told this also. The issue really isn't about speed, I don't care, I just object too the fact they tell you, you are getting the fastest speed, and don't say not up to.

    Why on earth did I re-sign? Firstly, I need to keep my email address as I can't bear the thought of having to go through changing that. True, I am told that I can keep my address even if I am not with BT. but bearing in mind the rubbish it has been to get someone to actually check information they have at their fingertips to put me on the correct package, I just can't go through it. On top of that my brother has been very ill and has required 24 hour care for the last 12 months that I simply do not have the time to waste spending up to an hour at a time sorting this. Having moved house and changed supplier once before where it took BT 4 weeks to take a marker off my line for my supplier to put theirs on. Plus my daughter teaches A level English and needs the internet for a lot of her work. Following an article of Martins I found a supplier for £5.99, BT's is £7.33 with the rubbish that has happened before ,bottom line I just do not have the energy.

    ComplexP
    Thanks for that I will take a look.

    The other point you have overlooked is that the package prices do not just relate to line speed. The cheaper BT packages have a 10GB monthly data usage limit, the most expensive package is unlimited and has no traffic shaping. So the call centre may well have been correct in saying that the more expensive package was the most suitable for your needs.
    Changing your email address (set up a Googlemail account) takes 10 mins to do, then a group email to your contacts, then change any online accounts as you next log in. If you're not prepared to do this then you're stuck with BT for life.
    However, since you ask to be cancelled before retentions changed your mind indicates that changing your email address woud not have been an obstacle to switching.
    No free lunch, and no free laptop ;)
  • Hi Kim

    Thanks for your comment it is constructive and true to a certain point. But you know something there is a saying

    "Walk a mile in my shoes and then judge me"

    As stated, I have tried to find out about my account on at least 4 occasions this year. I am sure you are aware just how long this process takes, usually at least 45 minutes to an hour. That is generally with most suppliers not with BT. I obviously have not asked the correct technical questions and BT have not reacted to the cause of my telephone, high charges or used the information they have readily available to advise me of the correct package for my use. Time is a luxury I do not have That is not a woe is me line. I work full time, I have a family, I stay at my brothers 3/4 nights a week to help with his care and try and keep his business running in the process.
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