Lately, I’ve been commenting in my blog about Sprint‘s phone service not being all that it is cracked up to be. It was really just one of those things we can’t do much about, but last night, when I saw Sprint’s CEO come on national TV doing a commercial about their new, “unlimited everything” plan for about $69 dollars I nearly fell over.
A few weeks ago I got a call on a Saturday from a Sprint Phone representative informing me that I was in danger of having my service canceled due to using too many roaming minutes.
In my contract I opted for the “unlimited” roaming minutes due to how much time I spend traveling. I suppose I didn’t read the fine print, or maybe when I signed my initial contract, it wasn’t in the contract. I don’t know, but “unlimited” roaming does not actually mean “unlimited”. Depending on how many minutes you are paying for, in my case it was 1500 per month, your roaming minutes cannot make up the majority of your minutes used. For me I could not go over 800 roaming minutes.
I have rarely been under 800 roaming minutes.
Let me step back a little.
A couple of years ago, living in a different area than we live now, I suddenly stopped getting service at my home or within about 10 miles of it. I did not have a house phone. I called Sprint many, many times to try and figure out what was happening, and they just continued to tell me that I was not in an area that got good service….when only a week before my service had been fine and I had NOT been roaming.
They could not do anything about it, and I had just gotten a new phone, which extended my contract another TWO years and they would NOT cancel me without charging those ridiculous early termination fees.
They did not care that suddenly I could not get service at my own home. They would not help me at all.
But now that I have moved to a new area, I get great service! I’m constantly roaming on Verizon towers and get most all of my calls. Nearly everywhere I travel to I’m also roaming and get pretty good service. I wasn’t complaining.But, we had strangely high bills some months. While living at the old house, my youngest son lost his cell phone privileges and so I took back the phone he had that I was paying for. They would NOT take it off my account for TWO MORE YEARS! I would have to pay the extra money for a line I was not using, and couldn’t even get service on either phone when I was anywhere close to home.
We decided at that point that CG would use my extra phone and we would cancel his account, that way we could talk to each other anytime we wanted without using any of our anytime minutes.
Friday night a Sprint rep. finally explained it to me in English I could understand. If we make calls to each other, and one of us is roaming, (mostly always me) it pulls minutes from our anytime minutes, and our free mobile to mobile was no longer free. So, I was using over 1000 anytime minutes a month…and not really talking to anybody for any length of time except CG.
Talking to the Sprint people, this was never explained to me in a way that made any sense, so we just kept paying the bill. It was usually just $20 or $30 dollars over a month…not that big of a deal I guess.
Well, when Sprint called me a couple of weeks ago they offered to let me out of my contract with NO early termination fees, plus pay a portion of one months bill. Now, at this point, living in this new area, I’ve been fairly happy with the coverage I’m getting…I’m at least getting to make and receive calls from my home. A week later they sent me a follow up letter stating that I was in violation of their terms and subject to cancellation if I did not voluntarily limit my roaming minutes to under 800 per month. Basically, I could no longer use my phone as I was constantly in violation of their terms or using too many anytime minutes while talking to someone on my own line of service!
They didn’t offer me their new “unlimited everything” plan. They could not offer me anything, except to pay more money per month or risk getting canceled and having no phone service at all.
The story ends happily for me though…I’m no longer with Sprint, and I do have a new phone with the same phone number with another carrier. I’ll post on that a bit later.
Has anyone had this same problem with Sprint? Why would they want to get rid of customers they’ve had for years? Why does the term “unlimited” have a limit? Isn’t that a contradiction?