November 11 2012 by Ellen Roseman
Erin Paul told me that she had a weird story. I’ll say.
I’ve heard many sad tales about outrageous data roaming charges, but this one hits the jackpot.
Everything was resolved after she wrote to me (and I had nothing to do with it). Rogers has apologized for the information she was given in error.
The story started last July, when Paul was heading to the United Kingdom for the Olympics. She called Rogers to buy a data plan for her smart phone to go overseas.
“They said I had to do it online. I made a mistake — it’s very confusing and I’m actually quite able at these things! — and signed up for a US, not a UK data plan,” she says.
“Though I screwed it up, I got hold of a great woman when I came back, who said she could fix things. Told me what I owed, we agreed on a price, done.
“Then I started getting billed for roaming charges overseas and monthly service fees. I tried to call to ask what these were. I would be put on hold endlessly. Sometimes I’d get to a voice mail, where I would energetically leave my name and number.
“All the while, I was getting notices through mail and email and text that I owed Rogers money.”
On Nov. 2, she did a live chat with Rogers to clear up the confusion. She was told that if she didn’t pay a $225 fee, she would owe close to $2 million.
“Yes, two million dollars. I have photos of this insane conversation. It doesn’t seem right that one lonely person (a former Rogers employee) would owe close to $2 million.”
By Nov. 5, all was fine again. Paul contacted a friend at Rogers, who managed to get someone in the President’s office to rectify things.
“They are refunding the fees in question, the ones added on after I returned from the U.K. and had dealt with my mistake,” she told me.
“My real frustration was the ‘customer service’ side of things, particularly the tone of this Live chat that I’m including as an attachment.
“This woman ‘Sarah’ was just downright rude… and I had resorted to Live chat only because I couldn’t get through on the telephone and no one had returned my messages.”
Sarah should never have used that $2 million figure, Rogers said. Her managers would be notified.
“The situation is resolved, but only because I knew someone on the inside! (And yes, I used to work at Rogers Sportsnet as a reporter.) I thought you might get a kick out of the figure she quotes me.”
By now, you’re probably itching to know what happened on the phone. Check the comments below for the verbatim details.