Vodafone Woes!

When Graham Bell called out to his manservant over the first telephone ever built, he didn’t realize that one day, the world of telephony would reach today’s heights. We have phones that flip open and fit snugly in the palm of our hands, and without any wires attached, we can call someone on the other side of the world with the touch of a button. He’d be proud of himself, I’m sure. But if he had any inkling that there’d be something called “Vodafone” in India in the year 2008, he’d never have called his manservant and he would have promptly destroyed his invention and told his sponsors to leave him alone! :D

Ok, so why do I hate Vodafone so much? Well, it all started when I returned to India from New York in April this year, and realized that I didn’t have a cell phone connection that worked here. So, I stole borrowed my mom’s BSNL sim card and started using it. Pretty soon I came to know that the BSNL connection was little more than a piece of plastic with some metal pasted on it with QuickFix, and that it rarely worked! No STD calls were possible and every time someone called me, I’d begin the conversation with, “The line may get disconnected any second…” :D

I guess that’s why BSNL is allegedly an acronym for “Bhai Saab, Nahi Lagega!” :D (Sir, it won’t work!)

So anyway, I switched to a Vodafone connection, against all advice to go for Airtel (I was a Hutch user a long time ago, before I went to NY, so I thought I’d be loyal) and signed up for a corporate connection exactly 10 days ago. The plan looked good and it gave me all that I was looking for in a connection – STD, ISD, text, local calls, everything. And it was quite economical too! So, I took the plunge and switched to Vodafone. :D

Three days later, my woes began.

I got a message when I was in Chennai for the weekend that I had used up 80% of my credit limit and that I had to make a payment of 600-odd bucks immediately. I ignored the message, because it was ridiculous. A day later, my outgoing calls and messages were barred! I called up the customer care and made the girl on the other end cry because of the kind of language I used, and through her tears, she told me that I had actually used up so much for international calling and national roaming charges. I realized that Chennai was in another state altogether and that national roaming would be activated. Sheepishly, I apologized and hung up.

I paid the required amount after two days (it was tough surviving for 2 days without making a call from my phone, but I managed) and got my lines cleared up. Three hours after I had paid, the outgoing lines were barred again! :D

This time the customer care executive who answered my call was a guy and while I was wondering what happened to that other girl (she had kind of a sweet voice) he apologized for the inconvenience and said that he’d clear up the lines immediately. Apparently the payment I’d made wasn’t “reflected” on their servers.

I have had it with these weird things in life! These Vodafone people came to my office to verify my office address and then did the same at my home address! I mean, for fuck’s sake, I’d given them my office ID and my address proof when I took the connection! Bah! Morons! :D

Anyway, if anyone has any suggestions of how to make a Vodafone guy’s life miserable, please let me know! :D

Image Courtesy: Me!

68 thoughts on “Vodafone Woes!

  1. The title should be ‘Cell Phone Woes’ !
    Coz every company is a pain in the A**….Vodafone, Airtel or BSNL……hardly makes any difference.

    Btwn: BSNL= ‘Bhai Saab, Nahi Lagega!’ ! Genius!

  2. I have a difference in opinion. My experience with Vodafone/Hutch has so far been the best amongst the people that I know. Never had any problems with any bureaucratic procedures. Similarly roaming etc has been a breeze. The only problems are the network-coverage issues network-crowding and I have always thought that it is one of the better ones.

    Besides, I love the dog.

  3. did you ever get a call playing a pre recorded voice saying : “Yellrugu namaskaara…. ” (Greetings, everybody…) and some shitty plan will be offered. the most annoying part is that the call is made to one person and the addressing is done to everybody! Did i ever tell Vodafone that i’ll use the speaker in my phone always?

  4. Agree with Rahul…”Cell phone woes” it should be. I was with Hutch, just when it became vodafone. Got it last year when I came from NY, cos my dad had hutch too. Then shifted to Airtel. Went through the same experience as yours just last week!! This was because I had made one too many STD calls, have not even left good old Chennai! The number of times I had to repeat the same queries to the CSA. She actually put me on to her superior with whom I had the same problem. I was like, am I talking in a different language here?!
    Like KB, my son adores the pug..in fact, he has been asking me to get one of those!
    BSNL – good one! hahaha :)

  5. Down South Vodofone has a very bad connectivity and customer care. I also had that in Chennai and I was really irritated. Better switch to Airtel.

  6. Oh yeah Su! I had those calls on plans by Vodafone…I had it in tamil though :) Annoying to say the least!

  7. LOL, you have dismissed vodafone too soon and without enough reasons, besides you have also made one fellow indian lady cry :)

    In my opinion, amongst all the service providers, BSNL is at one end of the spectrum (the worst end) and all other service providers are just a notch above, none at the other end of the spectrum.

  8. They need to verify their customers thoroughly due to all these blasts taking place in Bangalore. Infact I’m happy to know they are taking it seriously. who knows u may be a terroist? didnt u see the news? an ex Wipro guy is suspected of causing blasts in Ahmedabad. As for telecom company Airtel is best and Reliance worst in customer care and connection. BSNL is sarkari and shows that.

  9. K, i get to enjoy some random music now and then. plus point for me.
    But the spamming that fills my inbox is just unbearable. minus point for me.
    Oh, i rarely use my cell. good for me good for others too :p

    A necessary evil. Try to control it before it takes you in.

  10. @Rahul
    I guess you’re right!

    @Kris Bass
    I guess the city we live in also matters… And yes, the pug’s cute!

    @Su
    Ayyo Raama!! That is the worst thing about this Vodafone!! Middle of a meeting the song plays!! Aaargh!

    @Apar
    LOL… Yeah, its probably something to do with Chennai!
    and the pug’s cute, but bloody expensive! It’s around 14 k for a 2-month old pup…

    @Amit
    Yeah man.. Looks like it! Bah!

    @ R G
    Welcome to MirrorCracked!
    I felt sorry for making that girl cry, man! But still, I was pissed off…
    And yeah, BSNL is just crap!

    @Reema
    I may be a terrorist!???? WTF..!!
    Reliance is the worst, I agree… Few of my friends have reliance and they struggle daily!

  11. My experience with Vodafone has been good actually.. except the last month. Their customer service was really good when compared to any of the others.

    But, recently, and by that I mean yesterday. I haven’t paid my bill in some kinda rebellious attitude. So, I got a call from them yesterday, and this dude asked me, “Maam, have you paid you bill yet?” Irritated by the no of times I’ve been asked that question that week, I said ‘No’ sounding a lot more stern than I thought. Then, the bugger turned around and asked me, “Why? Why haven’t you paid you bill?” I said, “I don’t think its any of your business, and if you want me to pay, ask me nicely” and then hung up. Then a lady called and rephrased her question, “Maam, when do you think you can pay?” I said, “Maybe tomorrow.. or the day after.. I don’t know”.. Anyway, one thing lead to another..

    To sum it up : I think one is worse than the other!!! :)

  12. Hehe….Vodafone, ICICI, Reliance…its all the same!

    My dad has a Reliance connection….once in a fit of anger, he told the girl at the other end “I’ll complain to Ambani” and she said “Sorry Sir, you cant do that. He’s dead!”, as if my dad was asking her for some different mode of bill payment or somethin!! :D :D :D

  13. Hey I thought Airtel was good with their customer. I used to have hutch too back then but dont know how Vodafone has turned out after they bought out Hutch. Nice expansion for BSNL.

  14. @Nikhil: buddy, I really don’t understand why I don’t receive ur messages… Anyway, I just wanted ask u a thing: would u want leave me ur number in a comment in my blog? If u don’t want, don’t worry. Ok? Let me know, before you do it, so I could be ready to delete it. Thanx. :)

    *HUG*

  15. @ Scorpia: she did not say that! did she? hahahahha…..

    @ Nikhil: All the time I was in India, i thought Hutch was best of all… vodafone dint exist then, so i dont know! but oh well, next time they call you for them ‘surreal’ collections, you may want to say: ‘ iss number ki sabhi sevaye thode samay k liye sthagit kar di gai hai, kripaya thode samay baad phone kare!”

  16. My changes i noticed since i went to potpaid (from a hutch prepaid to hutch postpaid to VODAFONE)

    1> i can reach the customer care in seconds, from the earlier minutes..
    2> i was able to make calls (not instant, but within 2-3Dial for some, instant to a few numbers) on times like 00:00hrs Jan-1 ..

    I dont kno if Vodafone just loves me, but i have no clue… My phone just works fine…. even when somebody’s who is sitting right next to me wont

    my phone works i am happy .. he he eh

  17. I have been using Celsuvidha/Hutch/Voafone since May 2000 and I have been a loyal customer to them .. Frankly speaking, till date, I have no faced a single problem from Vodafone .. When I moved to Mumbai, I also signed up for Vodafone Corporate Connection and it’s working as smoothly as a mercedes S-class running on a vacant road .. So I am happy ..

  18. @Aparna
    LOL… Yeah, those people only call when we don’t pay! Has anyone ever called when we have paid our bills properly on time just to ask us how the service is? :D

    @Scorpria
    Hahahahahahaha!!!! Funniest thing I’ve read! :D

    @Dinesh Babu
    Well, right now, airtel’s the best! Vodafone is the second best and all the others are way behind! :D

    @Kris Bass
    WOW! Thanks dude! I’m honored! :D

    @Smallstar
    Yeah, I sent you like 3 messages, I dunno why they’re not going… Anyway, I don’t wanna leave my number on an open forum so i’ll figure out a way to send you my number, don’t worry! :)
    I’ll msg it to you through yahoo or something to your phone! :)

    @Shiwuz
    LOL… I wonder if I could put that as my callertune, so that whenever anyone calls, they get that msg and hang up! :D

    @Sukla M C
    Welcome to MirrorCracked! :D
    I envy you, man! I really do! I hate these double-standards by Vodafone! :D

    @Che
    LOL… Yeah! I’m sure the ransom will be quite substantial! Enough to buy us a lifetime supply of the green fairy! ;)

    @Soham
    LOL… I really am jealous now! Looks like I’m the only one who’s facing these stupid problems! :D

  19. haha…..
    all the companies are the same. I am using vodafone aka hutch aka bpl for the past 4 years…..

    I am sticking to it not because I like them, but I dont want to change my number.

  20. wtf coincidence !! I just finished my dealings with voda post paid … it was a terrifying experience .. almost legal now . .. most probably I will go legal against them too …….. u will see a post from me also .. soon

  21. @ Nikhil:

    Every customer service issue has a business challenge and a regulatory problem underlying.

    I think the silly system of circles etc means there is really no competition in the true sense of the word. The number portability thing I hear also works with great difficulty (read: not at all) so people continue to suffer. One could argue whether the flexibility of number portability will make more customers consider post-paid contracts which is where there is a reasonable chance of raising ARPU while ensuring a minimum sum each month from the customers. They may even get better service as someone mentions above (not Dinu). I also think the one-nation-one-number type initiative will put paid to the awful roaming charges.

    But yes, reading these posts is very informative for me. When I first got a mobile in 1995, it was with Airtel. They had only a handful of customers and we got very good service by and large. The bills were also substantially bigger than what you may get now. (My monthly bills ran to a few 10s of 1000s every quarter and it was my own phone, not an employer’s).

  22. I hate Hutch, now Vodafone… They are the worst at customer service. No mention to BSNL because you cant expect anything from them because its a PSU…
    But ya, Vodafone sucks bif time and after a long battle, i finaly changed my number and switched to Airtel… Mr. Mittal is one my favourite entrepreuners too.

  23. Ahhh, i faced the same problem when i switched from Aircel(then RPG0 to Airtel, and got a CUG… outgoing was cut, sms’s barred till i paid a ridiculous amt and then i requested them to increase my credit limit as my usage was bound to be high… since then smooth sailing…

    also had to go thru the same shit when i took on the reliance datacard….. the morons cut the connection saying i had gone beyond limit.. and i DINT event know of this limit thingy….

  24. Irritation..That’s what you seem to have experienced from Vodafone!BTW,i’ve heard Vodafone not good in service in bangalore/chennai or overall south.
    My experience has been very good with Vodafone.But,yeah they spam inbox with some or the other offer,and their website never works.Tried paying there so many times…finally they’ve offered a service to charge bill directly on CC,and that too,with a discount!!
    But,sure BSNL is the worst!

  25. Switch to Airtel!! always worked for me :P i used to have Hutch durin my PU days but switched a year later to Airtel ’cause bad network in a new area I’d moved out too. Been using Airtel since then, even for my landlind and broadband. Ive heard broadbands been giving some problems lately, but besides that it’s been good to me. I use it even know when i go down to India for hols.

    I remember how in my PU days we used to call up Hutch care just to flirt around with guys. I remember there used to be this particular guy we used always get who sounded super hot! :D

    How to annoy them? call them and make them listen to “Rain drops keep falling on my head” !!!! Do they still play that? Was super annoying !

  26. Gawdddddddddd!!! I switched to prepaid because of this credit tension!!! too much of a hassle for a lazy person like me….

  27. you wrote a post on vodafone and i think dats enough for them………………….atleast a small proprtion of people visiting ur blog will now switch to other connections……

  28. You have a problem with What-a-phone?
    Rilly? I tho love their connection but hey mine is pre-paid.. the only issue I had with them was regarding those “namaskara…” calls
    But ya that stopped after I registered at National Do Not Call Registry
    Check this post for more details regarding that

    http://crapbook.wordpress.com/2008/01/22/dnd-do-not-disturb/

    I prefer to stick on to my vodafone connection co of the call rates.. BSNL network is not as good as it used to be and Airtel is kinda expensive.. and yeah Spice that is the worst connection available in Karnataka

  29. You can’t! They are shameless, useless, worthless, spineless, brainless..GAHHH..I am building up a steam simply thinking o’ those..those shameless, useless, worthless….GAAAAAH

    Buy yourself a pigeon :D

  30. I’ve had 3 prepaid connections till date. Vodafone was the first, 3 years ago. It was a nightmare, trust me. I cursed myself for buying hutch all the time. I had airtel, until a month ago. Call rates and texting rates were a hole in the pocket. so, now, BSNL it is! It sucks too, yes! But I think its better than Hutch. Afterall, who speaks with a kannada accent these days if not for BSNL’s customer care execs? :D
    http://www.swattalk.wordpress.com

  31. My sister’s Vodafone connection conked just a week before she left for Texas!
    She was cursing it all the way.. :P

    But you must agree… the advertisements are really good!!

  32. Che: Good idea! would do that and give my son the pug….at the rate that Nikhil says pugs go…I probably could never afford one! :)

    Mystiquedew: pigeons!?!?! lol!!! good one :)

  33. @Nikhil:

    Ha well a bottle of green fairy set me back by over 4k :(

    @Apar: oh yea it used to be cheap till hutch happened. Now costs more than its weight in gold. Ok maybe not but still too much for a dog.

  34. I really don’t see what you are complaining about.

    AT&T SOBS don’t have network coverage in my area and I still have to pay them f-ing 60$ a month.

    The only pro on the damn thing is that I get to use it in the city :|

    Thank your stars. There’s worse.

  35. Nikhil, I suppose. Its not humans, even they make the dogs suffre, better dognap the dog and let it free, would be more happy if you handover the dog to me as ur b’day gift

  36. Aah, thats same with any provider. But, Airtel is somewhat better in B’lore… (but it isn’t so in Pune n Mumbai) , So har jagah ka alag funda hai..

    And for the verification thing I say the same.. ‘For Fuck’s sake go first do verification for those who just get the SIM somehow, use it for blasts n chuck it..’

  37. The latest news is that internet telephony is allowed so you might try that Nikhil, at least for your call to the United States!
    And about payments not reflecting, that’s a problem I have faced too.

  38. This happens with every connection man! But being GOds yo-yo, u mite experience it a lill more than us :D

    I have used possibly every connection in India and I would rate BSNL as the worst, in customer service and also in the signals. I use to have issues with airtel before, but now I guess, its better than the rest. For me, the most irritating situation, is when I have to repeat my issues to a lot of execs. on the same customer service call.

  39. @Xylene
    Oh yeah, the change of number is one reason I resisted changing my number! Sending out msgs to everyone telling “hey, nikhil here! new number! blah blah blah!” is so boring!

    @Smallstar
    It’s not your problem! It’s our problem!
    I’ll call you soon! :)

    @Raji
    Hehehe! You can say that again! :)

    @Dinu
    Yeah! Let’s sue them!

    @Shefaly
    Well, I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather prefer paying a bit more to have a tension-free service!

    @Chethan
    Welcome to MirrorCracked!
    LOL… Yeah, I dunno, I think I should’ve gone with Airtel!

    @Aaarti
    Oh yeah, imagine my shock when I got the msg telling me I had crossed the credit limit! I mean, WTF… Credit limit on a cell phone??

    @Ameya
    HEhehe… I prefer the age old method of paying by cash! No hassles there!

    @Karmalove
    Hahahaha!!! I’ve never tried flirting with these customer care executives! But sounds interesting!
    They play “you and i, in this beautiful world” now… over and over again!

    @Nova
    LOL… yeah, i never knew something like this existed!

    @Aravind
    Yeah, anything to help my fellow readers!

    @Balu
    Yeah man, those irritating songs! Bah! I think I’ll register myself to that DND service!

    @Mystiquedew
    LOL!! A pigeon!! Lovely idea!

    @Chakoli
    I guess not! Sigh! :(

    @Swat
    Welcome to MIrrorCracked!
    Oh, not a kannada accent, they speak in kannada!

    @Prarthana
    Hehe! The silver lining, i guess!

    @Vishesh
    LOL… its ok, tell me anyway!

    @Che
    That’s ok, bro! Let’s dutch and buy some crates!

    @Deepu
    LOL… The grass is always greener on the other side of the Pacific, isn’t it? ;)

    @Barath
    Lemme get this straight: You want me to gift you the dog as MY birthday gift????

    @Oxy
    Don’t let the internet police see your msg!!

    @Nita
    Yeah, I’m sticking to VOIP now.. Gtalk is the best!

    @Vimal
    Yeah man! Life’s just one big maze!

  40. no way… now you should try airtel! the service and the connecivity is hopeless. I had vodafone connection and had to change to corporate airtel connection… do i hate it man! Vodafone was so much better!

    @ Scorpriya

    ROFL that was too good, buddy! :D :D

  41. @ Nikhil:

    “Well, I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather prefer paying a bit more to have a tension-free service!”

    I have always been a contract/ post-paid customer (read: paying vile sums of money usually). Customer service is much better than it is for pre-paid connections.

    But on that assertion, I am not sure a majority of the Indian market is with you. :-) Besides some aspects of ‘service’ can be affected by how much you spend/ pay, but others cannot.

    Service as in coverage, low call-drop ratio and clarity of call etc is a function of the infrastructure which cannot be changed much after installation even as subscriber numbers and traffic grows – you can only hope they have planned enough capacity or the growth is rapid enough for the operator to consider expanding it. The size of your bill will make little, if any, difference to it.

    Service as in customer service is more about attitude and resource availability. One of the most common laments I hear from my desi contacts is the lack of trained and trainable manpower in retail and consumer businesses. No amount of training can make a donkey into a prize horse. And if the aggression and incapability to comprehend basic questions is what we get _after_ training, well the consumer has a long way to go with the service providers. But then who knows how many people they face who hurl abuse at them and make them cry, like you self-admittedly did? :-)

    The size of the bills in India has dropped – due to competition whose other positive effects are yet to be felt I guess. So if you want to pay more, may be go post-paid? It won’t make a blind jot of difference to the ‘attitude to service’ bit…

  42. @Shefaly – I’ve been a loyal Vodafone customer. I started off with a pre-paid, and then moved to a Corporate Post Paid, and now I just have a plain old Post-Paid.. When I had a Corporate Post Paid, I had a bigger credit limit, nil checking of address, got to choose fancy pants numbers, they happily collected my payment every month at my office(service with a smile), I got extra credit limit when I recommended my friends to join the service, oh! the luxury of paying such huge bills, and it being collected at my office step.. Those were the times..

    Now.. Post Paid, you do all the running around.. & they laugh silently. Added advantage definitely with post paid though is, ummm… umm…. I’m sure there is something more to it..

  43. @ Aparna:

    The last bit in my comment says: “So if you want to pay more, may be go post-paid? It won’t make a blind jot of difference to the ‘attitude to service’ bit…”

    Which should explain the difference between your corporate post-paid and plain-old-post-paid experiences.

  44. Nikhil, they’re all the same, believe me. The only certainty is that, relatively speaking, Reliance is definitely at the bottom of the pile. I have never used BSNL, so no comments there.

    I tend to agree with Shefaly – the infrastructure’s not kept pace, and the manpower quality is truly appalling. And it is customer service which gets affected the most. And it’s not restricted to the telecom sector. I have had similar experiences with nearly every sector you can think of.

    Mystiquedew’s idea of a pigeon is the best solution! Kabootar ja ja ja and all that……. :-)

    Cheers,

    Quirky Indian

    http://quirkyindian.wordpress.com

  45. @Shefaly – point noted.

    @Nikhil – Take a Corporate Connection.. Go to any of the service providers standing outside an IT park.. (ensure you have a friend who can take you in there after the scam has been initiated in phase 1).. then, act cool & confident.. get a connection without much pain.. only gain!!! :-)

  46. welll. I would easily cry that AIRTEL sucks!
    I have had a Reliance phone earlier and I found their network as the best… esp during the times when we need them… like during the flood of 26th July in Mumbai, all networks went plonk while only RIMs worked!

  47. @Sakhi
    Oh really?? That’s interesting! I always thought airtel was much better… Hmmm.. :D

    @Shefaly
    Food for thought, indeed… Attitude to service is of course, no way directly proportional to the amount we pay… Wish it were, though… Imagine if there’d be packages like “Good Customer Service + 100 Mins Talktime For Just Rs. 500″…!! :D

    @Quirky Indian
    LOL… yeah, definitely Reliance sucks! :D
    And I somehow love that pigeon idea!! :D

    @Ani
    Welcome to MirrorCracked!! :D
    Tata Indicom? You sure? :D

    @Arvind
    Oh absolutely… The latest ads too, the song… All are quite good… :D

    @Barath
    LOL..!!! Sure, man! I’ll do it… Hehehehe! So, what do you want for my b’day? ;)

    @Aparna
    It is a corporate post paid connection with a lousy 400 bucks credit limit, which was recently increased to 2000 bucks one day after I posted this article!! :D

    @Smallstar
    It’ll happen soon! Within this week!! :D

    @Whatsinaname
    Oh wow! I didn’t know that… It’s true… During the blasts here in b’lore, all networks were jammed and i think only RIM worked… :)

  48. So many people have commented already. :( I am not going to say a word now!!!!

    Ok I will say something at least.
    Hmmm, that vodafone wala doggy bhai is very cute :D Bhai and cute…. data type mismatch!!! Rephrase: Vodaphone wala doggi bhai rocksss :D
    Now thats better.
    hushshsh

  49. Well I too had gone through similar stuff while I was in Tirupathi, but after settling the excess usage charges I was able to use it without much troubles.

    I still prefer Vodafone as against to Airtel. I personally feel that Airtel helpdesk (Customer Care) is worst of all and they damn care about the customers wherein the Vodafone is at least courteous to “We the Customers”

  50. What all of us need is a lawyer who will fight a case against these Vodafone (yedaphone), Airtel ( they tell and go back on their words) and other cellular companies.

    I dont know about others but if any lawyer is ready to fight cases against these companies and earn handsome damages …ready to give these damages received to the lawyer as his fees (whatever the amount maybe).

  51. It would be one of your most ridiculous grievances that I have expressed here. But please note it is crucial for keeping up a good customer service and I assume it would be a learning for your team too.

    My problem (if I may call it that!) was that I needed to disconnect my Bangalore based connection on my return to Mumbai. Being a loyalist of Max Touch/Orange/Hutch & now Vodafone customer for 8 years, I came back to Mumbai and immediately acquired a new Mumbai based no. However hadn’t cancelled the Bangalore one for business convenience, which I dutifully checked with a Vodafone care centre official, who gladly told me it can done even from Mumbai.

    Now, on getting the new Vodafone no. at a centre in Mumbai, (which the team was most obliged to provide me with; and enthusiastically carried out the procedures quickly) and when I told them about the Bangalore no. it was ignored in all the bigger tasks .But when it had to be dealt with, they initially said they couldn’t help ,but seeing that I wouldn’t budge, they provided me with the customer care no. in Bangalore.

    Now coming to points which you must definitely note are;

    The signal in a Vodafone care centre is POOR,I do not know if it is only in the case of outstation connections. But it is no excuse for a Vodafone centre!!

    I go through to the Bangalore customer care no. But then guess what?

    The voice recorded ad kept playing in English first,( I waited patiently for them to give further instructions for me to follow)Then the ad plays in Kannada. And me being a part of the 85% population of the Non Kannada speaking Bangaloreans… I was lost as usual.

    Now after the ad (I assumed) in Kannada,there was still no indication to go to the English or instructions.

    On checking with the care centre execs, who had given me this no., they gave me another no. a SO CALLED easy way i.e. is to call 111 toll-free no.

    I happily came home assuming the task could be done from home.

    After calling and listening to the Bangalore voice recorded ads in Kannda for the millionth time, since I knew i could not penetrate this system anymore. I called up 111, the supposedly ALL INDIA HELPLINE!!

    The exec picks up ,I rattle my problem to him ,which I am sure he hasn’t heard completely , but has caught a word or two otherwise he wouldn’t have given me the same Bangalore customer care no. which I did tell him a couple of times that I had, in my conversation with him.

    Then he gives me the e mail ID for customer care, for which repeated again that I did get on checking the site however it would not give me a status on the cancellation

    I kept probing him for an alternate customer care no.s as I repeatedly told him that I cannot travel back to Bangalore for cancelling my connection, which he kept suggesting.

    Am I being a disregardful customer , all I had to do was take out the SIM card and throw it to mark the cancellation of my former phone no.?

    Anyways our man, the customer care exec gives me a brilliant idea-he tells me to ‘call up my FRIENDS in Bangalore and ask them to call up a customer care person in Bangalore and check.’ I was stunned; I could hardly digest the logic he gave me.

    Basically I assume he meant to get in touch with another customer care exec because he had no solution. But analyse his suggestion! Even if I were to do what he suggested which meant I call up someone in Bangalore (please note I too am calling from a Bangalore no., as if the hassle was because he assumed I was not calling from a local no !!)Then ask my friend to call up the customer care, which meant call up the same no. I had just called and was speaking to! And then ask them what procedure is!!

    Hope you understand my sentiments when I slammed down the phone.

    However I called back on the Bangalore customer care no. This time I prayed for sense and sensibility! I couldn’t take in Kannada voice recorded ad anymore. I quickly pressed some random buttons, miraculously English instructions were being spoken, and I was glad .Now I could get through to some services. Finally I got through a customer care executive. Told him the ‘problem’. He suggested the same, of coming in person to disconnect. But I explained the situation to him. And when he did not understand that meant me travelling from Mumbai to Bangalore to disconnect the line, which is ridiculous. I suggested to him (which I assume he is supposed to) to take down all the security details, which can then be sent to request for cancellation. He budged. He finally fell bait when I had to give a harsh dialogue, that ‘if cancellation meant – me throwing of the SIM card off and getting a new one to get on with life as I don’t understand why this procedure is so rigid complicated.’ He finally processed the request and gave me procedure and a timeline for it.

    I achieved victory.

    Being a communication manager myself I have always faced difficulties in operations and knowledge management . With newer technology and specialised communication tools life isn’t really getting easier. Technology and processes are redundant without human sensibilities and application.

  52. Call 111 after 12am,especially vodafone live and its fun,They play some nice pranks on you and if you are lucky enough then maybe could hear some nice abuses.
    Call centre guys having fun eh??Nothing wrong with some clean fun i suppose,after all why was i caling at 12 in the night to get internet on my mobile,i guess this is vodafone’s new strategy to keep traffic to a minimum,very ingenious.
    that apart they have a nice network :)

  53. Hei people, Happy Fool’s Day!

    A crusty old man walks into a bank and says to the teller at the window, “I want to open a damn checking account.”
    The astonished woman replies, “I beg your pardon, sir. I must have misunderstood you. What did you say?”
    “Listen up, damn it. I said I want to open a damn checking account now!”
    “I’m very sorry sir, but that kind of language is not tolerated in this bank.” The teller leaves the window and goes over to the bank manager to inform him of her situation. The manager agrees that the teller does not have to listen to foul language.
    They both return to the window and the manager asks the old geezer, “Sir, what seems to be the problem here?”
    “There is no damn problem,” the man says. “I just won 50 million bucks in the damn lottery and I want to open a damn checking account in this damn bank, okay?”
    “I see,” says the manager, “and this bitch is giving you a hard time?”

    Happy April Fool’s Day!

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