Thursday, February 20, 2014

Renewing the dreaded cell phone contract.

I've been dreading this for some time.  It was cell phone renewal time.  The current contract was rolling, but needed updated and whatnot.  We share a family plan with my in-law's, so my FIL went price shopping for all of us.  The cheapest price he found was with our current carrier, AT&T.

Last night, we convened, discussed what we wanted and pressed on to the store.  While I was busy trying to find a parking space that wasn't filled with parking lot snow overruns, Hubs and his parentals went in to prep the sales person.

I come in, she was crunching numbers and talking about how our bill was going to be a little bit more, there is data . . .

"But we don't want data.  We don't want smart phones.  We just want what we have."

"But they are only $5 more a piece.  You are paying $20 for the basic phone and frankly, we only have 2 that you could chose from to purchase anyhow.  You could do smart phones. . . "

"We don't want smart phones. I wasn't a fan of the touch screen on the LG that I had and I'm just not looking forward to it."

"Oh, the basic phone vs. smart phone is so much different.  Look!"  :insert phone demo:

FIL says, "How can we make our bill less?"

"Oh, you can't.  The bill would be $143.50."

My response is, "Does that include tax and any other fees?"

"Well, no."

"Then basically, I can go to Verizon and for $160, I can get far better coverage for the same price."

"I have to disagree."

"Can you tell me that you have coverage in, let's say, Amish Country?  I have to be honest, I've never found that we have coverage down there or many places south of here."

"Well, that is true.  Our towers are taller and can accommodate more callers, but Verizon has more towers, but they are shorter, don't accommodate as many callers and they drop calls all of the time."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a signal is a signal and if there is an actual emergency, I would rather have the option to call back than not to call at all.  I didn't tell her this, but every Verizon customer I've spoken to after this has never had a problem with dropped calls.  We just can't afford Verizon, which is why we don't have them.

After confirming that $143.50 is the lowest, I looked to Hubs and said loud enough for her to hear, "What happened to the $100 quote?"

"Yeah," says Hubs, "What happened to the $100 quote we talked about?"

"Um, yes, well-- it is for just unlimited calls and unlimited text."  Almost simultaneously we all exclaimed, "THAT'S ALL WE WANT!"


So it took a half hour to get it through the salesperson's head that we wanted as we said- just what we had.  We were able to walk out of there with a contract for 4 phones for $96 including tax and whatnot.  Hubs is a public employee and as such, he gets a discount.  Fine with me.  I'll believe it when I see it when the bill comes.  It still doesn't make sense when she said it would only cost $5 more per smart phone that if we wanted as basic as we were saying, the bill should have only been $120 for 4 smart phones plus taxes and whatnot.

Until then, Hubs laughs and every now and then says, "You know, she was trying to bamboozle us."  "Yes, yes she was."  "She was determined we were to get smart phones."  "Yes, yes she was."  I was not impressed.

None of us got new phones, despite my need to replace mine sooner than later.  No one really understands my push against smart phones.  It is one more distraction that I do not need.  Truly.  Would I use it?  Yes.  That's the problem.


Rach said...

What? My darling ADD Amy doesn't want the distraction of a smart phone?!? :oP

We were with AT&T for YEARS. Our first phones were with them when they were SunCom. We stayed with them, loyal, even when our service stunk and we couldn't get cell service in the boonies, which is maybe not such a good thing when you like to go hiking. We finally had enough after 13 years of service with them, when we had dropped call after dropped call and couldn't get cell service in our house.

We switched to Verizon (at a rather large cost) and have never been happier. We're paying roughly $25 more per month, but it's absolutely worth it. We've NEVER had a dropped call with them and it's been two years now. AND, we get service in the boonies.

I'm not trying to get you to switch, just saying the AT&T chick is full of it. :oP Obviously she is if she was trying to bait and switch you. Yeesh.

ChupieandJ'smama (Janeen) said...

I do like Verizon's coverage but they bamboozled me last time I was there. I got M a phone because I'm not always there with him at practices, games, etc and I wanted him to be able to contact me. My Verizon told me that they don't make phones that only call and text. So now he has a phone with data. I've come to find out that what I was told isn't actually the case.

I should have just gotten him a trac phone :( My bill is enormous.