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Bibbiba
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Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Not sure if anyone from Virgin will read this here, but it's pretty tricky to communicate by other means – so I'll give it a try.

I cancelled my contract in Feb (and when I did, I made it clear I don't want any "better deals" or any other sort of "keep me as a customer" phone calls. Of course, I still received 3 calls within a matter of days.

I then filled out an online form, to send the broadband router return kit to my new address. 2 weeks later, I received an e-mail telling me someone could come and pick up the kit... at my old address, which of course won't work really...

So I filled out ANOTHER online form, to book a pick up appointment for my NEW address. (This will be in 10 days).

Today, I receive yet ANOTHER e-mail and text from Virgin, telling me they've sent me the return kit and that if I don't return it, a charge of £40 would be added to my account.

Several "contact us" links on the Virgin Website don't work:
https://www.virginmedia.com/contact
https://my.virginmedia.com/my-cases/make-a-complaint

 

Seriously, Virgin... is it really that hard to for you to understand that my address has changed? Surely, I'm not the first person to cancel a contract and then move houses?

And why is it so difficult to communicate with you? It's 2022, and you're an internet provider. Providing a straight-forward way to contact you (and double-checking your site-map and http links) should be one of the things you're good at....

2 years ago, a friend of mine was in the exact same situation, after he moved in with his missus.
"We've sent you a return kit" – "I've moved houses"
"We've sent you a return kit" – "Too bad – as I said, I live at a new address"
"We've sent you a return kit" – "I really, honestly live at a new address. No kidding!"

... to then have the cheek to ask for £40 for a 5-year-old router that's most likely going to end up on the skip anyway.

Virgin? NEVER ever again.

Bibbiba
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Forgot to say:

Big question now is:
Is the pick-up appointment I booked for in 10 days still valid?
Or am I going to stay at home for nothing all day, because the driver was told that they've send a return kit by mail?

Luckily, I take screenshots and keep all e-mails.
Will certainly instruct my bank not to pay out those £40, as this is clearly down to Virgin's incompetence.

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Andrew-G
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Alessandro Volta
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Don't cancel the direct debit, VM will report it to credit agencies as a defaulted payment, spoiling your credit history.  That can eventually be sorted out, but the onus is on you, it's tedious, stressful, and being in the right doesn't make the considerable inconvenience any less.  You've got the evidence about the returns fiasco, let them take the money if they are stupid enough.  Maybe they won't.

If they do, you then write a formal complaint, demanding your £40 back, plus £50 for the painful experience trying to return the kit, and a further £50 for their unreasonable and inept behaviour in taking the £40.  The complaint will be fobbed off, you write back and demand a "deadlock letter" in order to take the matter to adjudication with the industry complaints scheme CISAS.  Send both letters special delivery or other recorded option, add those costs to the sums requested as an acceptable resolution.  Slow, but you could be £100 up if they keep messing around!

Bibbiba
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Sounds like you've been there? WIth Virgin?

What surprises me most is their utter incompetence – which brings up the question if maybe they're doing this on purpose?
I mean – why isn't leaving Virgin as easy as joining them? People move houses all the time, so... nice little side-income for Virgin I guess, if people can't be bothered to take it up with them over £40.

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Beth_G
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Hi Bibbiba,

Thanks for posting on the Community Forums. I'm sorry to hear you've now left us and there's been some issues with your equipment return. It sounds like your forwarding address wasn't updated when you spoke with us and put in your disconnection request, and so we'd just have your old address on the system. I am sorry about that.

Were you able to request the pre paid returns pack to your new address in the end and send back the equipment? Let us know if you do need any further help.

Thanks

Beth
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Andrew-G
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?


@Bibbiba wrote:

Sounds like you've been there? WIth Virgin?

What surprises me most is their utter incompetence – which brings up the question if maybe they're doing this on purpose?
I mean – why isn't leaving Virgin as easy as joining them? People move houses all the time, so... nice little side-income for Virgin I guess, if people can't be bothered to take it up with them over £40.


Well, I know from my own experience that VM's complaint handling is exceptionally disappointing.  The rest of it comes from contributing to these forums and seeing the same problems over and over, plus a long standing personal interest in consumer rights.

In terms of why isn't is as easy to leave as it is to join?  Only Virgin Media can answer that accurately.  It is easy to form an impression from reports here that VM have chosen to make it difficult, but whether intentional or not, it is a flagrant and ongoing breach of clause C1.8 of the regulator's "General Conditions of Entitlement", thus far with apparently no consequences.  Read in particular paragraphs 1.13, 1.14 and 1.15.  Feel free to complain to Ofcom.

I can understand the company might not like forum users commenting that VM are in breach of the regulatory requirements, but I always seek to be helpful and constructive, and I can offer a simple, cheap, and quick fix:  Virgin Media could avoid all of this by simply adding a "cancel my contract" button into My Virgin Media.  The necessary logic trees and processes already exist and have been system coded for customer service agents, and the company is always tinkering with the web site for their purposes, so the marginal cost would be negligible.  Plenty of unused space in My Virgin Media, it'd fit a treat on the right hand side underneath the "Something extra upgrades and offers", between that and "Virgin Mobile Login".  Why don't they do that?  Obviously they've just not thought about it, because they do really want to comply with condition C1.8.

If the forum staff can let me know the address of accounts payable to send my consultancy invoice for continuous improvement advisory services and regulatory compliance advice that'd be fab, thanks.

Bibbiba
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

@Beth_G

To answer your question:
No, of course I wasn't able to send back the equipment within the 24h period of my last post and your answer. What exactly makes you think that after several weeks of trying to tell Virgin the address for the returns pack, that this would all of a sudden be resolved within a day???

Quote @Beth_G
"It sounds like your forwarding address wasn't updated when you spoke with us and put in your disconnection request"
yeah.... no kidding!
And the three times I contacted Virgin therafter, the forwarding address wasn't updated either.

Instead, I have (today) received yet another E-Mail from Virgin (from a "no-reply" E-Mail Address), demanding the equipment back – with a 9-day ultimatum. Or lose £40.

When actually, the pre-booked date to have it collected by collectplus is in 2 days.

I wonder if...
a) the reminder E-Mail Virgin promised will appear in my inbox tomorrow, and
b) the collection guys will actually turn up on my doorstep...

@Andrew-G
Thank you for all your input. It confirms what I've been thinking and experiencing with this lot. I will indeed complain to Ofcom.

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Hayley_S
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Message 8 of 8
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Re: Returning broadband kit – worst possible (ex)-customer experience?

Hello @Bibbiba,

Thanks for the response.

Please do let us know if the equipment does get collected or not.

Many thanks,

Hayley
Forum Team



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