Case Studies

Old and new package confusion

When signing a contract for a new package, which included increased broadband, a customer assumed his old package’s overseas calling offer would still be included.

A customer contacted his provider to ask about increasing his broadband allowance.

During the discussion, the provider’s representative offered the customer a new package deal that included a higher broadband allowance, plus a free modem if he signed up to a 24-month contract. However, the package didn’t provide the unlimited calling to a designated overseas country that was included in the customer’s original plan.

According to the customer, he made it clear that, because he wanted to keep the unlimited calling feature, he wasn’t prepared to change plans. He was left with the impression that he’d extended his broadband allowance for a few extra dollars a month and that this entitled him to the free modem. He did not believe that he’d changed his plan or agreed to a 24-month contract. He later complained to TDR because his provider advised him that he had agreed to the new plan and contract, and because of this had been sent the free modem.

During the conciliation process, the provider acknowledged that there had been a misunderstanding and offered to cancel the contract as long as the modem was returned. The customer was keen to cancel but believed that as the modem had been offered free, he should be able to keep it. The parties eventually agreed to a workable compromise: the customer would keep the modem on a reduced 12-month contract.