Eastlink and their Customer Service practices

I have a cell phone with Eastlink. Google Nexus 4 and I love my phone, it is awesome. What I don’t love is my Customer Service experience with Eastlink.

I dropped my phone. My phone is less than 6 Months old, and I went straight to Eastlink to ask about my options. Two reps greated me at the counter and explained that it will cost about $300.00 to repair my screen. That is 50% the total value of the phone. Rediculous. And on top of that I would be paying a $50.00 “Diagnostic Fee” which is to be refunded upon the return of my phone.

The reps suggested I go to a repair shop downtown called NetEffect Repairs. I have mentioned them previously on my blog. They were not able to get the part in for me due to the high cost. So, one month later I was forced to go through Eastlink.

My second trip to the Eastlink store and I ran into the woman that sold me the phone. Showed her the damage and was met with the same expectation in terms of cost and a wait time of 3-5 Weeks. The catch now is that they CANNOT send a phone out for repair without providing me with a loaner phone. The rep was helpful in locating me a phone AN HOUR AWAY. WTF!? I want service from the store I purchased from in my own city. Not an hour away.

I loitered in the store, considering buying another cheap phone. I considered use’n my old cell. But all said and done, neither are a viable option. The phone MUST come from Eastlinks loaner warehouse. Soo…

After a lot of milling about and reasoning with the rep she produced a phone from thin air. And “moved” it into the loaner warehouse. Obviously a fictional virtual environment dynamic in it’s ability to hold a large number of SIM/IMEI ID’s. I’ve now been in the store for two hours.

I have also not been able to use my phone for over a month, my usage history reflects that. I’ve been in the store for two hours, with the prospect of being sent an hour away to pick up a loaner phone. The cost of repair is looking ridiculous. The rep runs back n forth from dealing with me to her supervisor who I never see come out to address a clearly escalating matter. I am starting to loose a lot of confidence in Eastlink. My rep was very competent but her hands bound by the policy of Eastlink she was helpless to offer any relief.

I out rightly asked for a credit, due to the extravagant delay and a courtesy credit for the month I was not able to use my phone. Again, the supervisor was consulted in a room without a view somewhere in the bowels of the Eastlink store. My rep comes out and offers me a credit of $10.00 … To which I quickly replied “that is an insult, I can take all my services and get a free phone less than 100 ft down the hall. There are at least five other providers in this mall.” And all they responded with is… “if that’s what you gotta do” It became instantly clear to me that Eastlink does not value its customers or value the way in which their reps treat customers.

I paid my $50.00 diagnostic fee. Sent my phone off and began to play the waiting game… My phone came back in about a week, a positive note. The damage, $230.00 that’s with taxes in. I received a phone call yesterday morning (Nov 12th, 2013) let’n me know my phone was back. I confirmed with this rep that the “Diagnostic Fee” will be refunded to which he replied yes and estimated the true value to be about $180.00 and then he proceeded to NOT leave a note on the acct. to that effect. Instead he just left a note that I am to pay $230.00 …

I arrive at the Eastlink store and there is one lonely rep working the desk. Closing rush is come’n in and I’m at the head of the line. This woman had no idea what she was doing. I handed her copies of my receipts, the loaner phone and charger. Explained I was there to pick up my phone. She went to the back for about 15 Min, came out and began to process the transaction. She says to me that’s $230.00 please 😐 So I explained to her the “Diagnostic Fee” is to be refunded. Of course she see’s note, just the one left that says I owe $230.00 and I was called about it.

Not certain how to process the transaction she called another store for advice. They also said if the bill says $230.00 that’s what I pay. They banter a bit about how to actually activate the phone ect. I’ve now been in the store for close to 40 Min and there is a line up of people building. She tries to unload the $230.00 on me. But I refused and explained myself again. Just in that same moment the night manager come’s out and confirms that yes my fee is to be refunded. THEN I had to teach her how to use the calculator. How to calculate the refund, taxes ect. Great hiring practices Eastlink, a high school diploma should be at least your minimum hiring criteria.

The ideal customer service scenario here would have been to KNOW YOUR JOB. REFUND ME even if I wasn’t right after holding I and five other customers up for over an hour. And be competent in your math skills. It’s not like we were calculating the re-entry trajectory for the space capsule.

In the end, over an hour later I got my phone back. The repair cost me $175.00

I got my refund and I’ve learned my lesson. Eastlink has great prices but they clearly don’t value their customers. Through the entire experience apologies were scarce and if anything they were often rude and insulting.

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