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Installation delayed 5 times (and counting), 3+ months so far

brandonski
Tuning in
I made the initial call to the Virgin Sales team on December 16th, had a direct debit set up, and an installation date scheduled for the 6th January. 
 
The original scheduled date of installation was cancelled on 5th (less than 24-hr notice), I was sent an email that the installation was delayed. This has happened 5 times (see attached): 
 
5th Jan 
25th Jan
18th Feb
6th Mar
29th Mar
28th April - Moved to 6th after phone call
The explanation each time has been that the contractors are waiting for permits from the local council to do external works. No such application can be found on the RBKC website.
I have been assured each and every time that the delay (at the time) will be the last as the "works" have been completed. This has caused me a huge amount of trouble and grief - I need home internet in order to work from home as I have a hybrid job, I have been paying exorbitant amounts of money for short term fixes in order to accommodate.
 
How do I get an honest ETA as to when the installation will happen?
I also see many people on this forum haver suggested escalating these kinds of issues to Ofcom - how does one go about doing this?

Any help would be much appreciated.
 
 
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions

Andrew-G
Alessandro Volta

Longest known wait reported in these forums (and confirmed to me by private message) was one year, one month and two weeks, so don't feel you're anywhere near the back of the queue!

1) Complaining to Virgin Media - easy but pointless.  If anybody cared, if anybody knew anything you'd already have the answers (and VM's complaint process is to the same high standard of their installations and customer communications).

2) Complaining to Ofcom - easy but pointless, they don't intervene in customer complaints, they don't hold VM to account.

3) Complaining to Ombudsman Services - overall a very slow process (and only starts after you've complained to VM an they've no resolved things) and whilst good for getting compensation or customer service issues fixed, they can't don't seem able to force VM to actually "do stuff".   You'll probably need to go to the Ombudsman when VM refuse to pay you the correct amount of delayed installation compensation, they have a shameful history of making excuses to try and wriggle out of their obligations. 

So, what can you do?  Well, you've got to be pretty desperate to want VM badly enough to tolerate being treated like a fool for so long.  Only you know whether this is a company you wish to do business with, and whether there's alternative options you'd consider with other ISPs.  If you did cancel, VM are still obliged to pay compensation from 6 Jan until you cancel, although you'll almost certainly need to take the matter to the Ombudsman and check whether the routinely mis-used council permits excuse is true as it sounds you have (but it is worth fighting for this, since they already owe you around £460 or so).  

See where this Helpful Answer was posted

5 REPLIES 5

Andrew-G
Alessandro Volta

Longest known wait reported in these forums (and confirmed to me by private message) was one year, one month and two weeks, so don't feel you're anywhere near the back of the queue!

1) Complaining to Virgin Media - easy but pointless.  If anybody cared, if anybody knew anything you'd already have the answers (and VM's complaint process is to the same high standard of their installations and customer communications).

2) Complaining to Ofcom - easy but pointless, they don't intervene in customer complaints, they don't hold VM to account.

3) Complaining to Ombudsman Services - overall a very slow process (and only starts after you've complained to VM an they've no resolved things) and whilst good for getting compensation or customer service issues fixed, they can't don't seem able to force VM to actually "do stuff".   You'll probably need to go to the Ombudsman when VM refuse to pay you the correct amount of delayed installation compensation, they have a shameful history of making excuses to try and wriggle out of their obligations. 

So, what can you do?  Well, you've got to be pretty desperate to want VM badly enough to tolerate being treated like a fool for so long.  Only you know whether this is a company you wish to do business with, and whether there's alternative options you'd consider with other ISPs.  If you did cancel, VM are still obliged to pay compensation from 6 Jan until you cancel, although you'll almost certainly need to take the matter to the Ombudsman and check whether the routinely mis-used council permits excuse is true as it sounds you have (but it is worth fighting for this, since they already owe you around £460 or so).  

Thanks for the insight - bleak as it may look xD 

How do I raise a formal complaint with VM in order to escalate to Ombudsman and Ofcom? 
I cant seem to find a complaints email anywhere.

There is no email (VM are the communications company who don't like to communicate).  To make a complaint there's a web form in My Virgin Media, but potentially you can't use that if your account isn't active yet.  There's the laughable telephone customer service.  Or it's good old fashioned donkey post.

You don't need to complain to VM before contacting Ofcom, but I wouldn't bother, Ofcom don't do anything other than count the topics raised in complaints.  

So in order to raise a complaint via web form I need an active account - I have verified my email, but can't finalise my details, receiving the following error: (Code: DEF01).

From what I understand: without the activated account I can't raise a complaint - without a complaint, I can't raise Ombudsman (or Ofcom for that matter). Do I have to write a letter and post it to VM?

Yes.  Donkey post works and works reliably.  Possibly that's because VM have no involvement in it.

Just don't get your hopes up for a quick installation - the complaint will be fobbed off, the installation will happen when it happens.  Possibly may happen shortly after you complain, but that would simply be coincidence rather than causation.