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Vol II: The Mis-Adventure Continues
Funny stories, witty encounters and serious reflections from Malaysia as experienced by a vegetarian struggling to understand the world.

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

My Maxis and Sony Ericsson nightmare

What started as a 'present' to my wife is now slowly turning into a nightmare!

Just a month ago, I had bought two units of Sony Ericsson K618i as a present for myself and my wife. I'll write about the phone in a week's time as the review of the phone is only half complete.

As both of us are on Maxis (012), I had also taken the opportunity to convert my wife's P75 plan to the Family Plan as we were told that "everything remains the same" for myself and my wife needed to pay only rm50 (minimum) as compared to rm75 currently. What more, we would enjoy (limited) free talk time and sms. A wonderful deal, right?

My nightmare started a few days back when I had a look at my phone bill. It came to rm230+ when usually it is not more than rm120! Even though we converted middle of the billing cycle, I am sure we didn't call that much (on top of the free calls to each other). Also, I had at least rm80 carried forward from last month's bill (I am using the P138 plan). So why so much?

3G? I had to admit that the new phone is feature packed and having heard how fun 3G was, I just had to try it out. I just didn't realise that 5118KB (or 5MB) of download would cost me rm51.18!! Ack, that does it! No more surfing from the phone! But that's only about rm50.

Time to look at the breakdown...

After numerous calls, the last one just about 1 hour ago, this is what I found out about Maxis and also the new Family Plan:
1. The double-charge is indeed an error and they will refund me in the next bill.

2. Although I had talk-time of rm173.57, I could not really use the current month's amount of rm89.03. That means I only have last month's rm84.54 that can be deducted from this month's usage... So much for "everything remains the same".

3. So, why only deduct rm72.70 from my bill and not the total usage of rm150.31 (or at least the max of rm84.54)? That is because rm72.70 is the amount BEFORE I switched plan.

4. Now... This means this month's usage is NOT deducted from any of my 'talk time'. Why they never use the rm48.97 (the portion of the bill after I switched over) is something I can't answer (and I don't wanna bother finding out).

5. Because I only used rm72.70 from the available talk time (from PREVIOUS month, if I may add) of rm84.54, so there is a balance of rm11.84.

6. So what happens to my rm89.03 that I paid for this month BEFORE the switch? It gets refunded to me much later (and the bill don't actually mention this!).

7. It takes a rocket scientist to figure out the Maxis bill, and even then, there are still some parts of the bill better left to Fox Mulder. Maxis bill is bl00dy confusing and mind boggling.

8. You lose your Advantage Savings (I have rm30 rebate for my loyalty) when you switch to this plan. Can someone explain to me how this can still mean "everything remains the same"? Their reasoning is because they are already providing free calls and free sms to the family member... Hello?!? That's my wife! I see her everyday. Do you think I still need 200hours of talk time with her each month ON THE PHONE (especially in exchange for the rm30)?!

9. Maxis Customer Service is still one of the better Customer Service I have encountered (must also use the right tone, though). They are able to help me solve the problem.

So, what was the outcome? I told them to reverse everything and put us back on our original plan which was P75 for my wife and P138 for myself. And I want back my rm30 Advantage Savings! After I spoke to their manager and highlighted all the problems they seem to have with this plan (stupid billing system and not really a wonderful plan... h3ck, I personally think this plan sucks for me), he was very nice enough to allow us to go back to our original plans with no 'administration' charges.

I have dealt with Customer Service from many organisations and usually, I don't get such professional service and attitude from them... Even when I was being very polite. The Customer Service always seem to imply I'm stupid and it's my fault (try calling Streamyx hotline). Not so with Maxis. They admitted their weakness and said they will look into it. And they were very polite even when I was at the point of screaming at them!

This brings me to the Taman Tun Dr. Ismail (TTDI) Customer Service Centre. This is NOT the first time I'm having issues with them. It is bad enough that we had to wait for an hour for my turn that day when we wanted to switch over to the Family Plan. They didn't inform us about the billing 'issues' like not really having talk time for the month, losing the Advantage Savings, etc... I guess saying "everything remains the same" is easier.

I also remember about a year ago when my wife switched to P75 plan from her pre-paid plan. I had called their hotline to explain about wife's plan to switch to post paid and was told it can only be done at their Customer Service Centre. The nearest would be TTDI so I ask what time the TTDI Customer Service Centre closing time. I remember that we managed to arrive with at least an hour to spare. I dropped my wife off while I looked for a place to park my car (stupid place... always difficult to find parking). After I found a place to park my car, I went to the Service Centre and was surprised to see my wife waiting for me outside saying she was told that they cannot do the switch for her as they cannot entertain the request one hour before closing.

WTF?!? I had to search for a bl00dy car park to find out their hotline gave me the wrong answer?!? I was NOT in a good mood. I called the hotline and was about to yell at someone... Again, they were still very professional on the phone. They asked me to pass the phone to the person at TTDI office. At the same time, I also spoke to the branch supervisor... Issue settled. The 'operator' just wanted to call it a day much earlier and had tried to give my wife the BS.

My wife was upset coz it made her look like she was so easily bullied... heh heh...

Labels:




Please leave your comments. There are 4 comment(s).

On 1/17/2007 11:05:00 AM Blogger Shin-Yee said:
i screamed at streamyx hotline stupido and told them to stop reading from their caller SOP and they refunded me 3/4 month worth of access fee..
try it. you'll like it!
On 1/18/2007 09:20:00 AM Blogger adriantai said:
like that also can?!?

wah... i'm going to yell at someone tonight and get a refund! :)
On 1/18/2007 07:18:00 PM Anonymous Fida said:
Good GOd! I better start scanning thru my bills properly from now on!!
On 1/18/2007 07:35:00 PM Blogger adriantai said:
to be fair to Maxis, this probably happens only when you switch plan. but yes, it is a good practice to go thru the bill each month. i do that.

this is one reason why i never like to do direct-debit. in cases like this, it is too late to dispute the charges coz they already billed your credit card company.

if you do manual payment, you can opt NOT to pay until the 'dispute' is settled. :)
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