TalkTalk raised my call charges
I believe I have been a victim of sharp practice by TalkTalk, my mobile phone provider. The dispute relates to charges incurred while we were in our holiday home in France. TalkTalk said it would reply to my complaint within three working days but 11 working days have now elapsed and I still have not received the promised response.
On the basis that the price will always stay the same right through the contract I had my French landline removed. This I certainly would not have done if I had known that my French telephone rates were to be raised without prior notification from 4p per minute to 40p per minute. DAVID THOMAS, SOUTH GLAMORGAN
You had received a text from TalkTalk confirming that calls cost 4p per minute. The following day there was a further text saying calls would be taken from your UK allowance.
You assumed you would continue to be charged at 4p per minute. Then TalkTalk texted to say your account was in debit by £54.32. It now transpires that the texts, calls and data that you used while in France initially came out of your inclusive package. Then you went over this so “out of bundle” charges were applied. This increased the cost from 4p to 40p per minute in the same way, TalkTalk says, as if you had exceeded your package provisions in the UK.
You tried to log into your account online, as the text had suggested, but you cannot do this from France. As the mobile was your only means of communication with your elderly relatives in the UK and heeding a warning from TalkTalk that you might be cut off, you called the helpline.
You have already been targeted by a scammer purporting to be from TalkTalk so when you were told you could only pay by credit or debit card you began to wonder if something dubious was happening now. You checked your bank account twice daily to ensure that it had not been compromised. Fortunately it had not been.
TalkTalk then said that the mobile phone charges, now totalling £62.30, are valid but that it has waived them as a gesture of goodwill in recognition of the problems you had checking out the costs. A TalkTalk spokesman said: “We’re so sorry for the delay in resolving Mr Thomas’s complaint.”
Because of the problems you are moving your mobile away from TalkTalk. would be straightforward but that it would take 90 days for the changeover to happen. Meanwhile, I would have to keep an eye on payments. I asked for a Sim-only contract.
A month after the contract ended and during a chat that lasted 65 minutes, I was told I owed £37 despite the direct debit being in place. PH, WORCS
Later you were assured you did not owe this money. You were to be put on a “Red Value Bundle” price plan at £10 a month.
However, three weeks after the previous conversation you were informed you owed £42 and had to set up security that you thought you had already done in the shop. A month later you received 15 text messages from Vodafone all on one day saying the direct debit had been cancelled. You rang and were assured it would all be OK.
Still the new account was not set up and then you were informed that a mistake with security had caused a delay. Your second name was being used instead of your first one. You cannot even recall giving your second name and never use it and so were understandably perplexed.
Problems continued. Only my involvement led to Vodafone saying that it was sorry that what should have been a simple transfer of ownership had caused all this trouble.
It has now been completed and a not very generous £20 that had previously been promised paid for goodwill. I asked for more and it has now increased the goodwill payment to £50.
This sort of runaround is the last thing people need following a recent bereavement. Even now some questions remain unanswered.