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@Verizon Customer Service Is Horrendously Wretched!

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Image via CrunchBase

Now, before you think I’m just in a bad mood (though @Verizon certainly has put me in one!), I think Verizon’s cell service and Fios service are completely awesome.  But their customer service is the worst of the worst.  In my opinion, the senior level executive in charge of customer service and retail should be fired immediately!

Today I completely wasted about 4 hours dealing with Verizon.  I had a simple objective:  replace the two cable cards in my old Series 3 TiVo with one multi-stream card in my new TiVo Premier XL.  The new TiVo will only accept one cable card, and it must be multi-stream.  Easy.


I thought all I needed to do was go to the nearest Verizon store and swap the old two for the new one.  When I arrived at the store near my house, I learned that most of the wireless stores have nothing to do with the cable stuff.  I needed to call an 800 number, and they would tell me where the nearest store is that could solve my problem.  How is one supposed to know which stores are which?!

I sort of remembered the location of the Verizon store where I picked up the first cable box when I moved here.  So off I headed in that direction while calling the number.  I waited on hold, to get to an agent, for about 10 – 15 minutes (after wading through their insufferable phone menus—every time I called).  She then asked in what city the store was where I had gone before.  I told her:  Venice Beach.  She said she would “get them on the line.”  The ringing began.  After another 15 minutes or so of ringing, AT&T, in its inimitable way, dropped the call.  I called Verizon back and was dropped, after waiting about 10 minutes, before I even got an agent.  At this point I passed the place where the Verizon store had been.

It was gone!  The security guard didn’t know where they went.  I called Verizon again.  (Menus, Wait, Wait, Wait…) We talked forever.  The agent told me the nearest store that would have the cable card I needed was in San Fernando.  What?!  I would have to go there to exchange the wrong cards for the correct card.  Good grief!  Well, ok, off I went.

When I arrived at the San Fernando Verizon store, you have no idea where to go once inside the store.  It looks worse than security at Southwest Airlines in LAX, literally!  Ropes and barricades everywhere.  But, unlike LAX, not many people.  You have no idea at all where to go in this maze!  Finally, I just walked around the maze of barricades and up to a person that appeared to fain being busy but had no one standing near her.

When I told her what the Verizon guy on the phone had said, she was flabbergasted.  She looked up my record.  Why would they send you here?  We don’t have any cards at all of any kind!

What????!!!  You’re kidding me!  I drove an hour for nothing?!!!!  She gave me a different 800 number to call saying they would order the card for me.

I went home.  Called.  (Menus, Wait, Wait, Wait…) Was sent to support.  (Wait, Wait, Wait…)  Support only replaces what you have, if it is broken, with what you have.  Support sent me back to customer service.  (Wait, Wait, Wait…)  Customer service then said they didn’t understand what I wanted and HUNG UP ON ME!

I called back.  To this point I had been patient, but I was now furious.  This person told me immediately that they didn’t have multi-stream cards.  They don’t use them.  Their service is incompatible with them.  Instead, I could get one of their DVRs.  I told her that TiVo said, before I ordered the new TiVo, that Verizon Fios did have them.  She said she had had this issue before, had researched it, and that Verizon did not have nor support multi-stream cards.  She didn’t know if they ever would.  Verizon only had the old cards that I already have that will not work in the new TiVos.  I asked her why any of the other people I had talked to today at Verizon had not told me this to begin with!

I then called @TiVo support to see if there was a work-around or if I was going to have to return the TiVo.

TiVo customer support rocks my world!!!  They are awesome!

The TiVo dude said Verizon absolutely does have them.  They are required by the FCC to have them.  He said we would have a three-way phone call with Verizon and resolve this.  Suddenly this new Verizon agent couldn’t begin to understand why anyone at Verizon would have told me they do not have the multi-stream card.  She set up a day/time when they would come out to the house and take care of it for me.  The TiVo dude documented the Verizon case number and agent’s arrangements.

What crap!  Verizon probably wanted me to rent one of their boxes.  This reminds me of back in the day when the cell phone companies would suddenly switch your service without you knowing until you got a bill from another company.  If I knew how to contact the head of Verizon’s customer service and the head of their retail stores, I would tell them what a horrible job they are doing.

3 thoughts on “@Verizon Customer Service Is Horrendously Wretched!”

  1. You know, I think their products are best in market. Their service may well be worst in market. What to do!

  2. Verizon is the ONLY option in our area–I was a VERY unhappy camper when we moved to VA and discovered there were no alternatives. Somehow life goes on . . . . : )

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