Thursday, September 18, 2008

What Happened to Wednesday?

Um, I fell asleep. Again.

I woke up about 2 am, turned the computer off and moved it off the bed, then fell back asleep. I was thinking about how I should have posted but decided that it just wasn't worth it. I knew I wouldn't be likely to get back to sleep again if I started typing so I just went back to sleep.

But I did do something for It Won't Wait Wednesday. I finally managed to take care of my Bell cell bill. It only took 2 1/2 months. And the bill was pretty ugly. But it's paid.

So, what happened? Well, when I first got my beloved free BlackBerry the girl I dealt with signed me up for ebilling. I got a message about my first bill being ready and tried to sign up. And tried, and tried. I had a variety of problems in doing so and discovered that Bell's weak spot is their customer service. It's not that they weren't nice. They were all very nice and tried to be helpful but they're only open business hours instead of 24/7 (as I expect a telephone provider to be) and they don't have access to external email and aren't allowed to send faxes.

About 6 weeks ago I went back to the Bell store where I bought my phone and they called customer service for me. We agreed that I'd like a paper bill but it never arrived and I never received another notice for an ebill. After further futile attempts to link to my account I let it slide for a while in my busy round of work and child care.

Then, on my birthday weekend, while we were away Bell started redirecting my outbound calls to their accounting office. The problem with that is that it was a long weekend and their office is only open regular Monday to Friday office hours. Luckily all the other features of the phone still worked. I could receive calls, send texts, receive and send email, etc. which was pretty decent.

I tried again to link the account but eventually I ended up talking to accounting, then customer service, then accounting again. The girl in customer service agreed to send me the 3 bills I'd never seen and the accounting folks agreed to wait until yesterday for me to make a payment.

That was September 8th. The bills arrived on Tuesday afternoon. I checked out the bills and paid almost the full amount yesterday. I just took off the 2 late payment fees because I feel very strongly that I cannot be expected to pay a bill I have not been able to see.

So, how ugly was it? Well, 3 bills totalling $374.10. Yeah. That's a little high but I learned something important. The first bill of $127.67 was totally expected. There was a connection fee and some adjustments based on the billing period plus a few extra days. The 2nd bill was $83.36, bang on where it should be. Then there's the 3rd bill.

Do you all remember that I went down to Seattle a few weeks ago? I used my phone several times while I was there. I called my friend, my daughter (who was there working a trade show), my hubby at home and I received 3 or 4 calls. My roaming and long distance charges for those 2 days was a stunning $76.05.

Note to self: Use the phone as little as possible in the US. Luckily, I only go down to Seattle between 1 and 4 times per year.

Anyway, it's paid. I'm current and I'm not going to be doing any roaming for a while! And, yes, I still love my Blackberry!

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