I became a Virgin Mobile pay monthly contract customer around a decade ago, if not more, and was accustomed to renewing every two years and getting a new handset as part of the package. Several weeks ago my phone was crushed, totally ruining the screen, and I thought it was a good time to renew again and thereby replace my handset. What used to be a very quick and simple process became a nightmare of lengthy calls, buck passing and poor communication (which I blame largely on the outsourcing of call centre support to non-English speaking nations, where the staff, understandably, have difficulty understanding and therefore resolving matters). The end result was that - after TEN PLUS YEARS of being a paying customer I was told that I had failed a credit check and therefore would get no new handset. I was astonished. I was made redundant several years ago and fell somewhat into debt as a result but always maintained the relatively small expense of my Virgin mobile account and yet now seem to have fallen victim to some stupid and inflexible new policy that treats me like I just wandered in off the street and tried to pay with chocolate buttons; I have been able to renew my account and upgrade my handset several times since up until now, without causing Virgin or myself any problems, so why is the process suddenly so hostile? To compound matters, my repeated and politely emphatic requests for the matter to be raised as a complaint have apparently been completely ignored, as I have heard nothing more from any Virgin department since. This is a pitiful and contemptuous way to reward long-term customer loyalty, and I have now paid for at least two months of mobile service despite having NO PHONE. At this point I am making this one final plea for reason and accountability before I terminate my contract and you lose a supposedly 'valued' customer of many years. As a ridiculous addendum to this saga I now see that the phone listed on my account appears to be the one I asked for when I tried to renew, YET NEVER RECEIVED due to the aforementioned credit check fiasco- which feels just a bit like adding insult to injury.