Friday, 29 July 2011

Bell Canada - Could this be the worst experience?

My oh my Bell Canada, what have you done... is this how you treat an existing customer of 30 years?

As I don't have internet and TV with Bell, I got an unsolicited call from Bell Canada and they insisted they could save me lots of money; although intriguing I was skeptical so I said I wasn't interested. The customer service representative quickly transferred me to a manager and we got talking.

I took notes as I had a feeling they would say many things and deliver on none, boy was I right (so far). To summarize, after a couple weeks of going back and forth, we finally agreed on a package and price. The installation date was yesterday and neither of the promises have been fulfilled. No Fibe 12 internet package, and no TV with the theme packs we discussed and agreed upon (I'm an existing Bell home phone customer). I got every excuse so far... "Oh no, the price we gave you doesn't include this or that". "Sorry, I didn't know the promo was over". "I understand we agreed on services and a price, but I can't give you those even though I said you could have them."

Now I can understand mistakes are made, it's all in how you correct them that sets you apart from others. Although I'm furious spending many many (summer) evenings on the phone with these guys, all I want is to get what I was promised... 3 bundled services at my bundled price, is that really too much to ask for? I'm not going to bash Bell just yet, the manager I spoke to is going to go back and review the recordings I had with another CSR and we'll see what happens. Suffice to say, I will not be happy if they come up with any excuse not to honour the agreement. I hope this is not a case of deliberate mis-leading and outright lies from Bell Canada. I'll follow-up with things as they continue to unfold, good or bad the truth is coming out. Hopefully others won't have to go through what seems like a nightmare to me. Additional details below...

FYI, my Bell internet is way slower than Rogers...

For those of you interested, the notes I took are as follows;


·         Received a cold call from a Bell Canada representative, was transferred to a manager (name & tel. withheld, let’s call her CK). Discussed and agreed on the following package, installation and activation dates TBD.
o   Telephone (no contract)
§  Same as current features.
o   Internet (no contract)
§  Fibe 12 service (12/2 Mbps, 65GB), later changed to Fibe 6 (6/1 Mbps, 65GB)
o   TV (2yr contract)
§  HD PVR (Free to keep, due to bundled service)
§  HD Receiver $0/mth ($5 monthly rental before $5 monthly credit)
§  3 Digital theme packs, 1 HD theme pack
·         Total monthly price for 3 bundled services = $86.28
·         No activation fee’s or any other charges above and beyond $86.28 monthly charge.
·         Reference #: witheld


·         Called Bell and spoke to name withheld to confirm possibility of cancellation. He said there are no cancellation charges if cancelled before service activation.
·         DSL service synched at 6.5/1Mbps, wasn’t able to tell me how fast the Fibe service would sync.


·         (name withheld, let’s call him RC) called to follow-up on previous call with CK. I told him I was having second thoughts with the bundle and I might want to cancel. He increased the services to the following;
o   Telephone
§  Same as current features.
o   Internet
§  Fibe 12 w/ optional upload service. Asked him what real world speeds I would get and he said 12/7Mbps.
o   TV
§  HD PVR (Free to keep, due to bundled service)
§  HD Receiver $0/mth ($5 monthly rental before $5 monthly credit)
§  6 Digital theme packs.
§  1 HD theme pack.
·         Advised RC I would review services/channels required with family and he is to call me back to confirm service acceptance. (Requested call for 7/16, but didn’t receive call).

7/19/2011 @8:40pm

·         Received call from RC to follow-up with previous call. We agreed on the following bundle package;
o   Telephone:
§  Same as current service.
o   Internet:
§  Fibe 12 – 12/5Mbps with inc. bandwidth cap. (or 50+80 = 130GB)
o   TV:
§  HD PVR (Free to keep, due to bundled service)
§  HD Receiver $0/mth ($5 monthly rental before $5 monthly credit)
§  7 Digital theme packs.
§  2 HD theme packs.
§  South Asian Combo (ATN, Sony, & ZTV).
§  Premium Movie Pack, free for 6 months.
·         Confirmed all services (exc. Premium Movie Pack) are not promotional or one-time limited deals, (eg. Internet price is only good for 1 yr, and then bundle price goes up). Services and bundle price are for a 24 month term (TV).
·         Total monthly price of $86.28+HST. No activation fee’s, service fee’s, CRTC fee’s, rental fee’s etc.
·         Advised RC that the above bundle met my needs and I would like to go ahead. We scheduled an installation date of July 28th (5-9pm) for the services.

·         Bell technician (TJ) calls 4 times, comes to house for TV satellite installation.
·         Bell technician (IM) calls 2 times to come and install internet service.

·         Called RC to ask the purpose of tech’s visit. Left a voicemail but no call back received.
·         Call back TJ (tel.) and advise him my scheduled installation date is 7/28.
·         Call back IM (tel.) and advise him my scheduled installation date is 7/28.

7/21/2011 @5:30pm
·         Called 310-Bell per IM’s advice to verify why tech’s were dispatched before the agreement was made. Spoke to them and asked what services they planned on installing on the 19th.
o   Telephone:         As-is.
o   Internet:              Downgraded “Performance” package.
o   TV:                         “Basic” subscription.
·         The order number given was “withheld
·         They were confused as to what services should be provided, no record of my conversations with CK or RC. I told them what I was promised and they noted it down, advised I should speak to RC.

7/21/2011 @~6:15pm

·         Called RC’s number but somebody else picked up as RC was in a meeting. Asked to confirm the subscription and everything was okay as per my last conversation with RC. Requested a reference number but was told the order is being processed and the confirmation will be given to me tomorrow (7/22). Asked to have RC call me back (he was expected out of the meeting in 30mins), but no call received.

7/23/11 @ 12:30pm

·         Received a call from a Bell technician, wanted to come today to install internet. Asked what service level and was told Fibe 6. Told him I signed up for Fibe 12 and the installation date was scheduled for July 28th. He made the necessary changes and will come on July 28th to install TV and internet.

7/25/2011 @ 8:30pm

·         Called RC to confirm everything would be okay for installation on July 28th.
·         RC was not in, spoke to RS instead, he advised the following;
o   Premium Movie Pack was only included for 3 months.
o   Bandwidth cap was only 90GB (50+40GB).
·         Requested a confirmation # and email but was told they’re only provided after the services have already been installed? How do I confirm which services are to be installed when things change every time I speak to Bell?

7/27/2011 @ 6:15pm
·         Called RC to have confirmation email sent to me, (in case of discrepancy between the services I agreed upon and those being offered during/after service activation). He said he will send it either today or tomorrow. Technician will likely install basic TV and RC will call me after 5pm to activate the additional channel packages agreed upon (see 7/19/2011). Confirmed internet package is Fibe 12 and that will be active at the time of installation.

7/28/2011 @8:30pm

  • As usual, RC never calls when he says he will.
  • The Internet technician is going to speak to Bell and find out why I’m getting a 6Mbps service when I was offered a 12 Mbps Fibe 12 service. He is to call me tomorrow.
  • TV tech’s install satellite and receivers, call Bell to activate channels.
  • Bell rep (Ax) has no idea about my conversations with RC and gives me a ridiculous price for the channels we agreed on.
  •  I ask Bell to contact RC with the number provided, they do and there seems to be a “discrepancy”.
  • Called RC to find out what’s going on. Now I know why they didn’t want to send me anything in writing, as they would just weasel out of it. He came up with a couple excuses, one being he didn’t know the promotion was over and he couldn’t offer the deal anymore.
  • Transferred the call to CK, she said her original deal (7/11) was only for TV and internet. Why give me a bundle deal and not a bundle price? Nonetheless, my conversations with RC did clarify on more than one occasion the $86.28 price was indeed for all three services (TV, int, tel).
  • CK offers the original deal again. But upon review it’s ridiculous compared to what Rogers and others are offering.
  • CK is to review my telephone conversation recording with RC and let me know what can be done. I advised her to specifically check the 7/15 and 7/19 recordings. As usual, she never did call, I’ve tried to reach her but she’s “busy”.


  • Since Cathy didn’t call I called her. She said the recordings haven’t come in yet. She also said that regardless of what was agreed on, she wouldn’t honour  the deal we had made. She said she’ll call back on Monday but I know she won’t, and what’s the point if she won’t stand by what was agreed on?


  • Had enough of Bell and sent a letter to the executive office of Bell. Attached these notes.


  • Got a call from someone at the executive office.
  • She gave her offer but a deal isn’t a great deal if you cut the services AND raise the rates.
  • I’m not sure why Bell offers a 2 year contract yet only offers pricing for 1 year. Basically we’ll rope you in and take back all the money by having a significant increase the 2nd year… and there’s nothing you can do since you’re still locked into the contract.


  • Called 310-Bell to figure out how I can end this mess. Spoke to someone who actually tried to help.
  • Similar bundle to what I was previously offered, but he broke down the pricing. The TV portion of the pricing was good; however they charged me MORE than the regular rate for telephone and internet! I guess that’s their way of offsetting the TV savings. He included the movie pack but I told him I’d rather not have that expensive


  • Finally had enough and called to cancel the TV and internet services recently installed.
  • Got another offer but surprise surprise, I now found out that some of the packages weren’t even for the full term, but only for 6 months. After a month of talking to Bell nobody mentioned that?


  • I’m so sick of Bell that I’m writing to the executive office to come away with either of two options.
    • Give me the bundle I was promised.
    • Cancel the TV and internet.
  • Since the new services aren’t being used (all the equipment is unplugged), there better not be any attempt to charge me for those.
  • I will likely cancel my Bell telephone within a month or so. Just talking to Rogers and TekSavvy getting their offers and finding out if my number can be ported over.