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Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

This was at the Glendale Galleria location from 6/2 - 6/4/14. The 2 salesman I met with were Chris and Nasir.

I went in to upgrade my phone for a newer model and along with that I got offered a "free" Verizon tablet as a promotion. I didn't want it but Chris the salesman kept pushing it, telling me its free, I could try it out and if I don't like it return it within 14 days, full refund.

Now here is where my complaints starts. This tablet is advertised as "free" but actually you pay an activation fee and tax which for me ended up around $60. Also to keep the tablet you have to pay $10 a month, for as long as you keep it, and this is not even for the data plan, its just for the device. So you're actually just renting it for life from Verizon. To me this is a very shady business practice of false advertising, and thats not the end of it.

Two days later I went back to return the tablet. The salesman Nasir immediately went into salesman mode and tried hard to sell me on the tablet I was telling him I did not want. I could see it must be company policy to aggressively move as many of these tablets as possible.

When he gave up trying to convince me he told me it would be a $70 restocking fee. I told him I never heard that part from Chris the previous salesman. Nasir told me I should've been verbally informed about the restocking fee, which I for sure was not. He pointed to my receipt showing a copy of my signature and return policy underneath, trying to make this the proof that I did see the return policy. I tried to get him to talk with his manager about waiving the restocking fee since I felt I was deliberately uninformed about it. But after a lot of back and forth they would not budge.


My options were to just keep the tablet and over pay for it in the long run, or just pay the restocking fee. I agreed to their terms seeing there was nothing I could do. In the end I did get a credit from the tax and activation fee I initially payed, so the total out of pocket was $15, a little vaseline for the shaft. That might not seem like a big deal, but when you think about all the customers across the country going through the same ordeal, that adds up big time.

So maybe this just another case of not reading the fine print, but this really is a deceptive trap to pinch more money out of customers. I would advise all to really, really pay attention when dealing with Verizon salesmen and be aware they're trying to get as much out of you as they can. They can only get away with this kinda thing if we let them. Please don't be a mindless consumer. Verizon is not on your side.

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Novice

Sounds like you had different expectations.  I already have a tablet on my line for $10 a month and I just ordered this Free tablet yesterday.  I had to pay $30 for the activation fee. 

Do you like the tablet?  I am concerned that I won't like it when it arrives.  The reviews are not good.  They said it is very cheap.  But if I don't like it, I can sell it on ebay for $80 to recoup my $30 and make a little profit. 

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Not applicable

This is not a new gimmick. At present Sprint is giving "free" tablets if you sign up for a framily plan I think it's called.

You must set up service for it and sign a two year contract. So it is not free. Verizon is not the only company doing this free thing.

What you have to remember is these gotchas are in place to generate revenue.

Just returning the tablet costs $70 restocking fee because it cannot be sold as new. But is that really a loss of $70?

If unopened then no restocking fee could be accessed. It is solely a money maker

So just walk up to a stranger (even me) and hand me $70

But remember you will spend more money over two years with device fees $240 plus data charges.

Customers have to read everything today!

Good Luck

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Miembro

I had a very similar experience, only worse.  I needed to upgrade my phone and my son needed a phone, so I upgraded to the iPhone 5s with a new 2 year contract.  They told me about the "free tablet" and I said I didn't want it.  They said, "But it's free."  They did tell me about the return policy, but didn't tell me about the $10/month charge.  They also told me that since my son's phone is an old one that I would only have to pay $15/month for it instead of the usual $40.  I didn't care about the restocking fee on the tablet because I was not planning on returning it.  After all, it was free and if I didn't like it, I figured I could sell it on eBay or give it to a friend. 

When I got the bill, I was surprised by the $10/month jump in my cell phone plan and went to complain about it and they said that I was locked into it for 2 years and that they would let me return it this one time since it was past the 14 day return policy.  I told them that I didn't know about the $10/month access fee until my bill came which was why I didn't bring it back in less than 14 days and they felt like they were accommodating me by letting me return it.... for a $70+tax restocking fee.  They also said that the $15/month fee for my son's phone was only if I had the 10 gig data plan and I only had the 4 gig plan, so I have to pay $30/month.  I told them that it was totally unacceptable and left.

I went home and called corporate and gave them the full story, filed a complaint against the store and they gave me a whopping $15 off my bill for one time only.  I asked how much it was to cancel my entire contract and they said $850.  I packed up the tablet and took it back to the store and had to sign the "I agree to the terms of this return".  I verbally told them that I was signing it only because I had to, but that I did not agree to the terms, but was forced to by Verizon's return policy.  It was either return it for $70 or pay $240 over the next 2 years in monthly charges for the "free tablet".

I have been with Verizon since before Verizon was Verizon.  I have been with the same cell company for 20 years and they repay my loyalty by screwing me over.  At this point I am contemplating giving them $850 to buy out my contract and taking my business elsewhere.  At least they won't get the $5,520 that I would spend with them over the next 2 years while waiting for my iPhone 5s contract to run out.

I am waiting to see if customer service calls me back to make things right.  I spoke with them yesterday to lodge the complaint.  If they don't fix it, I'm gone.

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Leader

The thing is, even though the rep didn't disclose everything, the OP still accepted the tablet. No matter how much pressure a salesman puts on me, if I don't want it I don't buy it. I have even walked away. As the customer, you are in charge of the sale. It is very easy to walk away or say no. I understand feeling pressured and it is their job to sell as many as they can. After all that's how the make a paycheck. It is just that I don't take something home that I don't want. I just don't understand how people can blame the sales person when they can just walk away.

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Not applicable

Some people are passive type b personality and can take the low road even when set upon by pushy sales people.

My wife is very passive in that she stops for people who go up a supermarket aisle on the wrong side, or who block the whole aisle. However being I am very type A and I don't yield to anyone I simply push the cart out of the way or tell the person to get out of the way.

In stores the hard sell works for these types of persons. They don't want to hurt the sales persons feelings or think if they don't buy something that person loses their job. My take however is I don't care, I like you purchase what I want and not something I don't need from sales people

My wife is amazed at how I tell them to get lost until or if I need their assistance. Shopping is much more pleasant that way Smiley Happy

The other aspect is in many of these Verizon situations it is lying to the customers. They tell them you need a screen protector, you need a case, you need a car adapter, you need a Bluetooth ear piece. Some will lie and go as far as telling a consumer that they cannot sell or won't sell the device unless you have the package.

It does not stop there. The sales people also place insurance on the device, or tell you that you need visual voice mail, or that you should change your plan to a higher tier plan. It is dishonest pure and simple.

I feel no sorrow for lying sales people. They make the legitimate sales people look bad.

Good Luck

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Leader

I agree with you about the shady sales people. I am also in sales but I have learned when a customer says no I shouldn't push. I will ask 3 times. After that, it's too much. I would rather the customer have a good experience than be a pushy sales person.

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Miembro

I too got scammed into a so called FREE tablet. I went to up grade my sons phone and was given a free tablet for $10 a month nothing was said about a 35 activation charge or that I couldn't cancel it with out paying $170. Verizon got me again. This should be illegal. I cant wait for another company to come out that is cheaper with better customer service so this (removed) can go under or get bought out.


Profanity removed as required by the Verizon Wireless Terms of Service.

Message was edited by: Admin Moderator

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Miembro

I got caught by the notebook scam, too.  In July, I went in to the Verizon store in Greenwood, SC to put my daughter's phone on the Edge program.  At the end of the sale, the sales clerk started pushing the tablet.  I told her several times I wasn't interested.  She went on and on about it.  The notebook was on sale for $50.  She asked me what my hesitation was and I told her it's the money.  She said she'd reduce the notebook by 1/2.  Then, she begins to lie to me.  She said that there was not a month-to-month charge nor was there an activation fee.  She said that it would only go against my data usage, but I could use it on my wireless network at home.  So, I agreed.  She had me sign her tablet a couple of times and THEN, she stated that there was a $70 restocking fee on the tablet if I returned it. A few days later, I received my bill with a new phone line ($10 per month) and an activation fee ($35).  So, I went back to the Verizon store with the notebook and my bill in hand.  I had not even opened the notebook.  It was still sitting in the bag that they gave me.  The outcome was: It was still in the 14 return window, so they took the notebook back.  It was outside the 3 day termination window, so I had to eat the $35 activation fee.  I argued and argued about the $70 restocking fee (since, you know - I was LIED to about the terms AND I had a witness with me).  The manager eventually dropped it to down to $35 restock fee.  Verizon is becoming the used car sales people of the wireless provider world and they really do not care about anything other than making money.

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Re: Complaint about Verizon "Free Tablet" promotion

Leader

It is not Verizon. The sales reps are essentially "running their own business". They work on commission and you know that OTHER PEOPLE are shady and will lie. There is a word called no. No matter how good it seems to be if you don't want it you don't have to take it. I tell sales people no all the time and I will walk away if they keep pushing.

I am not calling you a liar because I know that there are shady sales people out there. I work in sales and I have worked next to people who have blatantly lied to customers.

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