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To pay my mobile (3) final bill with £1 post dated checks?

(24 Posts)
Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 12:53:25

As brief as possible. 3 mobile network.
Over a year ago phoned up out of the blue and offered new phone, more minutes, data. Bla bla bla. Sounded a good deal despite me already halfway through a 2 year contract hmm. Just though it was some new deal they cooked up.

No mention anywhere in this endless convo of a new contract.

By the time I realised it was a new contract it was out of the returns period. So I have paid a year and got nothing except the price I got for the original phone.

I complained, emailed, spoke to Outer Mongolia and got nowhere.

I kept checking for the end period and forgot the 30 day so had to pay the extra month.

This rubbed salt in the wound and when I spoke to someone they said they would take £5 and close the account.

This morning a bill for the balance (supposedly cancelled) arrived.

Should I
A. Send a dozen £1 post dated cheques which will cost more to cash (for them) than their face value
B. Phone them up and say your agent said it would be cancelled.
C. Never, ever go with 3 again.
The last one I will do anyway .....

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 12:54:47

cant even blame autocorrect for the 'checks' mistake. blush

Lweji Sat 09-Apr-16 12:59:44

I'm just surprised you still have cheques.
Yes, go for it. And phone them up too.

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 13:06:45

I've only got cheques because my bank sent them. They sit unused!

I'll do that. They can't say I've not paid if I do grin. Probably won't phone as you are there for hours and the poor sod on the other end isn't responsible for their employers shit attitude to their customers.

£130 for an unused contract. Thank you 3

No one should ever use 3.... Did I mention how crap their customer service and complaints team are?

wasonthelist Sat 09-Apr-16 13:15:10

Are any providers any use? They all seem to treat customers with total and utter contempt.

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 13:24:29

You are right. Gas, electric, council tax, insurances etc all seem reasonable but mobile phone companies are like something out of the Wild West

notamummy10 Sat 09-Apr-16 13:28:12

If it was me, A. But B seems more of a sensible option... EE are great as a network, I recommend them! Definitely not O2 as they are being bought out by the owners of 3!

Blink1982 Sat 09-Apr-16 13:31:18

O2 has always been good for me. They do a live chat thing which I've only had a problem with once. Also virgin who usually get a crap review pleased me today by giving me a month free.

Sallyingforth Sat 09-Apr-16 13:35:10

How many times do we have to give the same advice?

Do not buy a phone on a contract. It costs you more and ties you to a network.
Buy an unlocked phone from Amazon. Get a monthly airtime SIM from your choice of networks. If you don't like the service, chuck it and get a SIM from another provider. No ties, no commitment.
Even if you can't afford the outlay, get a bank loan. It will be cheaper that a phone company's HP.

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 13:35:21

Looks like 02 will go down the tubes too.

I'm going with A. The cheques. I don't want to be sensible after all the crap I've had. I want to cause them a bit on inconvenience.

I'll check all the reviews even if I have to pay more each month what does it matter as I've been paying for an unused service for a year. angry

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 13:38:14

Sally. I think I will probably do that if I can pay the monthly top up by direct debit. Years ago all top ups used to involve actually GOING TO THE SHOP <shock, horror>

Never even thought of that. I've already got a phone so it's not an issue. Just gritting my teath and paying to the end of the contract.

Kaddy Sat 09-Apr-16 13:47:15

I don't get why you would think they would offer you a new phone and increased minutes and data withoutit being a new contract. confused. That sounds a bit bit, umm, naive.

I've four contracts with 3 and have found them to be clear on what's what when I'm on the phone with them. I recently had to renegotiate all four contracts as 3 have stopped offering their amazing all-in-one deal that was costing me £15 per contract. It was time consuming organizing the new contracts but I couldn't fault THREE on being clear. They send you a letter with the details of each contract once you have signed up. It's your responsibility to read it.

Sorry but YABU

(THREE are being unreasonable over other things though, it's wrong that they allow some some customers to negotiate brilliant deals while refusing to do so for others. SKY does the same thing. It's irritating)

Sallyingforth Sat 09-Apr-16 13:52:21

Sally. I think I will probably do that if I can pay the monthly top up by direct debit

It's the preferred method now.

notamummy10 Sat 09-Apr-16 14:03:47

Is topping up via direct debit even a thing?

I've never seen it as an option on EE!

butteredmuffin Sat 09-Apr-16 14:15:40

I've always liked 3. But I travel abroad a lot and their Feel At Home package saves a lot of money. (Vodafone's Eurotraveller, on the other hand, was a complete rip off.)

I think you just have to be quite savvy with phone companies because they are all trying to trick you into committing to a new contract or paying more than you need to. You used to be able to get a cheap handset and then just PAYG or get a sim only contract which didn't tie you down. But now everyone wants a smartphone, most of us can't afford to pay out hundreds of pounds when we want a new phone, so we take out expensive contracts.

At the end of the day, phone companies are businesses and this is how they make money. I don't think any one phone company is any worse or more devious than the others.

If you can take out a credit card with a long interest free period and use that to buy the handset you want, you can then go sim only and not rid yourself into a contract, whilst still paying off the cost of the handset monthly. If not, you could always save £20 a month into a separate savings account and then next time you need a new phone, use that to buy the handset (and keep going so you have enough to buy another handset 2 years later etc.)

Otherwise, just stick with a contract and try to negotiate the best deal you can and watch out for any tricks they might try to pull on you.

For now, I will stick with 3 because of the Feel At Home package. But once the EU abolish roaming charges (assuming we stay in the EU) they might not have much of an advantage over the other companies.

butteredmuffin Sat 09-Apr-16 14:16:59

By the way, I also have a PAYG phone and the easiest way to top up is either calling the top up number (I used to do this when travelling abroad) or by topping up at a cash point. I think all Natwest cash points offer the phone top up service.

Ginmakesitallok Sat 09-Apr-16 14:21:22

Same thing happened to me a coupleasure of years ago. Got a call from 3 offering a new phone, I queried it as I already had a contract, they assured me that I would be able to cancel my existing contract as I wouldn't be getting the offer if I was still in my contract period- and that it would be no problem to change new phone number to my existing one. Got my new phone and called them to exchange numbers etc to be told that I'd have to wait 3 months, had to pay 2 contracts for that time. Pissed me off - but being typically British I stayed with them.

GlitteryShoes Sat 09-Apr-16 14:29:47

Do phones not lock to the new provider when you put a SIM card in? Is it easy to top up now? I remember spending 20 mins trying to input a 16 digit code on my old Nokia when I was desperate to call someone, I swore never to do PAYG again, but it might be time to review that after10 years!

I am a virgin customer for home phone and broadband so get offered good deals for mobiles. I got my ds's old i phone when he got a new contract and now pay virgin mobile £5 a month for a sim only contract. cheap as chips for me and i get enough for my needs.

MrsHathaway Sat 09-Apr-16 15:30:59

Don't do A. Post dating a cheque doesn't delay their being able to cash it. It extends how long they have to do so.

Write out several small cheques dated five and a half months ago. They'll have a matter of days to process them.

Boomingmarvellous Sat 09-Apr-16 15:40:55

They may have been reasonable with you Kaddy, but they haven't with me.

I asked repeatedly through this phone conversation, will I have to pay extra (no) will it be a new number (no) is this an upgrade on my phone (yes). It was a really hard sell and an unsolicited call and yes, I should have realised it was a new contract, but a friend recently was given a new phone mid contract for a couple of pounds extra, (not 3) so not that unusual to have good offers to loyal customers.

I also offered to return everything but they wouldn't take it back and told me to let a family member take it over and pay the bill. Like my family don't have a mobile phones?

Butter. I am thinking I will get a payg phone because I agree, all the companies seem to have rip off merchant in their DNA.

Ginmaker. I think it was the fashion to do this and rip their customers off a year or more ago. 'Apparently' not any I believe that after lying through their teeth a couple of days ago.

I've got a Sony smartphone anyway for the next year, but then it's sim only. I use my iPad anyway for most things so don't need a fancy new phone for roaming.

OneMagnumisneverenough Sat 09-Apr-16 15:46:27

EE are shit
Vodafone are shit
Tesco are shit

need I go on?

Sallyingforth Sat 09-Apr-16 16:12:32

Do phones not lock to the new provider when you put a SIM card in?
Certainly Android phones don't. You can swap SIMs all day.
I can't speak for the other lot.

Abed Sat 09-Apr-16 16:47:42

If you buy a network unlocked phone then it won't lock to any network, I've done this with various iPhones and Android devices.

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