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Why I am never touching British Telecom again

Why I am never touching British Telecom again

For the last 8 months or so, I was a customer with BT Broadband, and was very happy with their service and recommended it to other people, including my tenant in my London flat.

When it came for me to move back into my London flat, on 23 March, I told BT I was going to move into my London flat on 19 April.

Since then, BT seem totally unable to provide a service that was available to my tenant the day before I moved in. I have had three weeks of endless going back and forth between tech support staff who claim that everything on the exchange is fine, so it must be a local problem (although how they can tell that since they’re based in India, I don’t know!). There has been someone from customer service “following” my query, but that person seems utterly unable to do anything except make countless apologies.

On 2 May, I was promised that an engineer would come out to my flat and examine the set-up. I took the afternoon off to await the engineer – he NEVER arrived. I called the Faults service, only to be told that he was never meant to come to my flat, and was instead checking it out at the exchange. Where everything is, apparently, fine. So I called the “specialist” customer service manager who’s meant to be supervising my case – I was on hold for two hours before I gave up.

On 7 May, an engineer FINALLY came out to my place. Except he was a line faults engineer, not a broadband engineer. He couldn’t find a fault, so he called in his broadband engineer colleague. He made a few tests, muttered under his breath something about a code 716 again, and agreed that the fault was with the exchange. He promised that the fault would be rectified tonight. Needless to say, it hasn’t.

To add insult to injury, I have apparently been charged £39.51 for stopping my BT Broadband service before the minimum contract was up – when the only reason it was stopped was because I was moving, and was fully intending to use BT Broadband’s services in my new place.

So I wrote to various customer complaint areas within BT, including the email address for their CEO (allegedly- I very much doubt it is, but they do keep up the pretence to the point of having an auto-responder, and someone calling me back saying he was from the CEO’s office) and “high-level customer complaints“.

The next day, I was told by one of the customer complaints teams that the engineers had reported the fault was with my equipment – which was totally not what the engineers told me. Then they said that a “transaction engineer” was coming to the exchange, and it should all work tonight. Which, patently, it hasn’t. 🙁

Now BT are saying that the problem *must* be something to do with my home equipment, and want to send out another engineer. Despite the fact I’ve plugged in two seperate routers, and of course two engineers came out the day before to fix it. Plus, I’ve been charged £70.09 for a broadband service they still haven’t provided yet.

British Telecom must be the only company where you can have three people from an elevated customer services team “looking” over my problem, and still be unable to come up with any resolution!

My BT battles…

My BT battles…

The move down from Manchester to London went off relatively smoothly thanks to help from a lot of friends of mine (THANK YOU!), and two men from Zimbabwe with a van. Although being trapped for two hours in a white Transit van navigating the motorways of this great nation listening to African gospel music is a tad surreal. Although it definitely beats listening to American gospel music for an hour afterwards.

The only major hitch and hurdle so far has been with my broadband supply. A week after I’ve moved in, and three weeks after I told BT that I wanted broadband in my new place, they have singularly failed to supply it, citing all sorts of daft problems, including:
– telling me that I was a business customer and would have to call a totally different helpline
– sending me an email to announce that I was now connected to broadband. Except, how would I be able to check my email without broadband access?

Until recently, I’d always recommended BT to anyone who asked, simply because the service seemed rocket-proof. Not any more.

You’d think it wouldn’t be hard to supply a broadband service to a flat that had had it the week before from the previous tenant, but apparently it’s beyond the realms of science to begin with. Not to mention they’d also managed to switch my phone off at some point! For this reason alone, BT make THE LIST.

So, alas, blog/email semi-silence will have to carry on until I get my broadband back. Not that I’m addicted or anything, oh no. I could give up any time… anytime…

BT's ineptitude (part 257)

BT's ineptitude (part 257)

Of course, everyone *expects* British Telecom to be slightly inept – it’s the very definition of a UK broadband provider – but to be fair, I’ve had reasonable service from them. Even now, my paid-for net access doesn’t seem to work – yet I can access the Internet through the BT/Fon Wi-Fi community I set up, using my .. erm… paid-for Internet access. Strange…

But that’s not the inept part. When accessing BT’s broadband help service, you’re advised to:

check the broadband service status line on Freephone 0800 169 0199 to see if your area is listed as having a problem.

Call that number – and it gives you the last update for … November 2007. Not exactly up to date!

However, because I can still use the Net via the BT Fon Wi-Fi link, BT do not make THE LIST. I’m sure they’re gutted.

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