In summary, this piece is about my extreme dissatisfaction with DiGi (mobile service provider), who has been keeping almost RM500 of my money since January this year (more than 9 months). Until today, after twice visiting their center and calling several times, I have not seen that money. Here’s what happened…
I had been using Celcom as service provider since forever (1999) until 2005 when I left for Japan. When I got back to Malaysia in 2008, I didn’t have a phone so I borrowed my wife’s Nokia 3210. That phone is legendary! She had had that phone since it was first launched, but around 2008 she got a new Nokia E66 and shelved the 3210. When I got back in 2008, I reapplied a new Celcom number and used her 3210. I had been using the phone until December 2011.
After getting a lot of “friendly” criticism from my colleagues in the office about my not-so-smart 3210 phone, I caved in. On 23rd December 2011, I went to the DiGi service center in SS2, Petaling Jaya to register for a new service. I decided against Celcom because of my unsatisfactory experience using Celcom broadband in our condo in TTDI.
I guess Celcom were a victim of their own success. Too many users use it in the condo and the nearby highly populated area causing the network to be congested especially during the peak time, 7pm – 12am. I’m just guessing the time period, but really the network was and still is not so good at night. So that was the main reason I chose DiGi as my first provider with data plan.
In addition, DiGi also offered a very good package (price wise, but not so good on network coverage), the so-called DG Smart Plan 68. RM48 per month for a 3GB data package plus voice call at RM0.15 per minute and SMS at RM0.10 per SMS. It was a very attractive package. The 3G service turned out to be much better than Celcom in my TTDI condo, even at night. I was very pleased.
I was also very happy with the Samsung Galaxy SII that came with the package. I had to pay RM1199 for the phone + RM500 deposit which will be used as prepaid amount for my next several months’ bills. The phone was retailed at RM1899, so it was a very good deal. Just one caveat; I had to sign a two-year contract.
The problem started the the following Monday when I went to my workplace in Tronoh, Perak. Before getting the contract, I had asked a colleague (you know who you are) about DiGi’s 3G coverage. He confidently informed me that 3G coverage was good in the office, but to my disappointment I found out later that he was using a Blackberry and didn’t care for the 3G service. Damned BB! For my Android phone, without 3G it’s practically useless. I can read emails, but pretty much everything else is impossible to do. I wouldn’t be able to benefit from the 3G/month data plan either because I spend 5 days a week in Tronoh, and only weekends in TTDI.
After almost one month “suffering”, I decided that it’s better off to cancel the 3G contract and register for Celcom. Celcom has better 3G coverage in Tronoh. After reading the DiGi contract, I decided to pay the price different for the phone and whatever penalty that will be incurred. I went to the SS2 DiGi service center on 27 January 2012 to cancel the service. I was serviced by a guy with ID: GORDONSC. He was friendly.
He explained that the cancellation penalty was calculated as follows:
Total penalty = phone price difference * number of months left in contract / total number of contract months + RM100 penalty = ((RM1899-RM1199)*(23/24) + RM100 = RM770.83.
I explained that they still own me the RM500 deposit less one month bill, which is still almost RM500 because my first month’s bill was very minimal. GORDONSC explained to me that it’s the company’s policy that the deposit will be refunded later (best case 1 month, worst case 6 months) and I had to pay the RM770.83 penalty to cancel. I complied and paid in full. The copy of receipt below is evidence of that.
After a few months (almost forgetting about it, if not for my wife who reminded me), I tried to call their 24-hour phone assistance at 016 2211 800. After several attempts, I never got to talk to anyone. There was no service selection that I could make on the automated system for “where’s my refund?” problem. I tried a few times but was never connected to a human being. Being only in TTDI on weekends, my opportunities to visit the service center is also limited.
On November 3rd (more than 9 months after cancellation), I visited the SS2 DiGi service center again to query about my refund. After almost 40 minutes waiting, I was finally served by a lady who at the end of the session told me her name as “Rashmi”.
I started showing all the documents (including one below) and asked about the status of my refund. She went to the back room to find out more about the case, and re-emerged after more than 20 minutes. She said that her manager did receive an email from HQ about the cancellation but her boss was not in the office at the moment. I went on a Saturday. She said the manager will be back on Monday. There is nothing she could do at that time, she pressed.
I then voiced my dissatisfaction that the money has not been returned to me after so long. I even reiterated that the person who helped with my cancellation (GORDONSC according to the cancellation receipt) said that the refund will be paid within six months at most and that it was unfair to me. Being a nice person that I am, I refrained from raising my voice. Now I wish I had.
She then said that she will talk to her manager on Monday and she will personally handle my case and will call me on Monday. I asked why she couldn’t just call the manager and ask. She refused to do so with all sorts of excuses. She kept saying that she promised to call me on Monday. Realizing that I was not going to get anything out of that situation, I accepted. However, I specifically asked her to keep calling me until I answer, I even gave her both my mobile numbers. just in case I were to be indisposed or anything like that. She obliged.
I asked her to give me a direct number that I can call. She gave me the general customer service number that I never was able to use. I informed her of that experience too using the phone service so I reminded her to call me on Monday. I believe I made it very clear that I expected her call.
Well, I’m the sucker I guess. The Rashmi never called that Monday or any day until now. It’s more than 6 weeks to today. And I’m not expecting to get her/their call anytime soon. I also never have the chance to go to the service center yet. I’m planning…but very difficult to find time.
So, I’m really pissed. Damned you Rashmi! Damned you DiGi!