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"Switch to Verizon" Promotion is Misleading; Nearly Impossible to Redeem


I recently switched to Verizon from AT&T as a result of their "Switch to Verizon" promotion, which promised to pay the balance of the phone I had with AT&T.

This is an extremely confusing, misleading promotion that, from my perspective, is designed to make it so difficult for you to receive any reimbursement that you simply give up. Let me elaborate on my situation:

After setting up an account with Verizon over the phone, I never received any information about how to take advantage of this promotion. I had to call Verizon again to figure out how to do this when I realized it wasn't coming to me.

Call #1:

I was told I needed to go to a specific website ( to upload documentation in order to get my reimbursement. But this website asked me for "trade-in confirmation," which I did not have.

Call #2:

I was told that in order to get this "trade-in confirmation," I needed to register and submit information about my phone; however, this website clearly stated that I would only be reimbursed a fraction of what this balance payment to AT&T needed to be. This customer service representative assured me that I could simply "ignore that."

Call #3:

After submitting this reimbursement request, I received an email stating that my request was "invalid" because my final bill did not show the balance owed. It, in fact, did. I call again, and this time the representative pulls up my submission and confirms that the bill does show this balance. He assures me that this will be taken care of.

Call #4:

I receive another email stating my request is once again "invalid". After approximately one hour of hold time and answering questions, the customer service representative informs that that in speaking with her supervisors, the only way I can remedy this is to walk into a Verizon corporate store with my old phone and documentation. She assures me this will take care of everything. I ask that she call the store closest to me so that I can be sure this will happen.

The store manager gets on the phone and explains that, in fact, the store cannot do anything because the account was initiated over the phone. The customer service representative and the store manager start arguing in front of me about what the right procedure should be.

Call #5:

The customer service representative then forwards me to a telesales support individual who explains to her-- in front of me -- that she made a mistake in sending me to her and that she "shouldn't be having this discussion in front of" me.

I have now spent more than 5 hours on the phone with various Verizon support people who do not seem to be able to understand a situation that I'm unable to rectify on my own. Beyond that, they don't seem to understand what each other does in their respective departments, let alone how to handle customer questions or concerns. They have argued in front me with one another about what to do, and no one has any answers.

To be quite honest, I'm shocked at this level of customer service from a company like Verizon. I'm stunned Verizon could treat its customers this way, make them jump through this many hoops and still not have a single question answered about their own promotion.

I'm considering my next best steps in how to resolve this. I hope others don't have to waste as many hours of their lives endlessly chasing "ghost" promotions like this.

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