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I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Member

I don't understand why such a simple and ridiculous problem has to be so complicated and as much as I have tried to get customer service to resolve this, I can't get anywhere.  I've been a loyal customer of Verizon Wireless with my prepaid plan for almost four years now.  Whenever I refill my minutes, I use my flip phone and enter the commands for refilling my minutes using a debit card.  I would always use my debit card and select "credit" so that it gets processed as a credit transaction on my bank statement and that's exactly what happens when I do that for transactions with other businesses.

In the past four years, it has gone through as a credit but for the last two times I have refilled my minutes, I used my debit card the exact same way by selecting credit and what happens instead?  It goes through on my bank statement as a "debit" transaction which I don't want.  Now why should that be?  The customer service reps keep saying I should work with my bank to resolve this but my bank has nothing to do with physically processing any of these transactions, as confirmed by a banking service agent who I just spoke to.  They keep saying that nothing has changed with their procedure for processing debit card transactions but that's not the point.  Somebody is doing this wrong and they seem to refuse to look into that to get it resolved.  I keep telling customer service that it has to be something on their end and whoever is processing my transactions is doing them wrong.  It doesn't make any sense and now they're telling me that they think they have done extensive research and went above and beyond to resolve this and consider the matter closed.  But I'm the customer and this matter is not resolved at all. 

I can switch over to my credit card but this is poor customer service and I should be able to use my debit card with a "credit" charge without this coming through as a "debit" charge on my bank statements.  How hard does this need to be?  This isn't rocket science. 

I'm debating whether I should take my business elsewhere once I've used up my minutes.  I have never heard of anything so ridiculous and it seems like every time, these customer service reps dismiss what I say about this and the way this is being written off is not logical. 

Can somebody please help me?  I'm not asking hard questions. 

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Sr. Leader

I guess I would be curious how you can be positive the problem is on Verizon's end rather than your bank's end.

Regardless, as you said, this can simply be resolved by using a CC instead of your bank card. Another option would be to simply pay with a bank transaction directly out of your checking account. I assume the problem comes with the fees associated with debit transactions as opposed to credit transactions. You would not incur these fees with a direct payment from your checking acct.

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Member

Here were go again.  I shouldn't have to do any of that and I should be able to continue paying any way I want.  I shouldn't have to settle for switching to my credit card or paying directly out my checking account just to remain a customer.  I don't have time for all these other "options" like paying from a Verizon Wireless store or paying directly from my checking account.  That is not the point.  I'm paying for a service and when my minutes are about to run out, I expect to be able to pay by refilling my minutes using the phone with my debit card.  This is the nonsense that I'm spending my money on?  My time is valuable and I don't always remember when I'm about to run out of my minutes and especially if I have to make an important call and I need minutes that I have to refill, I need to do this on the phone and I want it on my debit card. 

Whenever I use my debit card anywhere else and I choose "credit", the transaction goes through as "credit" as I specify.  Why is this going through as a "debit" only with Verizon Wireless?  Explain that to me.  And if this is only with Verizon Wireless, what would my bank have to do with that?  And why on earth are these transactions suddenly going through as "debit" when I specify "credit" when this has never happened before?

This is just another unhelpful answer and another sign of lousy customer service.  Suggesting these "alternatives" is just Verizon's way of avoiding the issue.  My bank is looking into this but I really doubt my bank is going to come up with anything.  I am finished with saying anything more about this. 

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Member

I have to say something else:  What makes you so sure that this is my bank's problem in light of what I just explained?

Here we have a big company thinking they can overlook processing "credit" transactions on a debit card as a "debit" and then just saying anything and suggesting these less practical alternatives only to keep my business because in the end, it's all about the profits and a company like this already has millions of customers.  It's not right.  This is nothing more than a diffusion of responsibility which doesn't surprise me with a lot of large organizations like that.

It's really ironic that I'm having all this nonsense with a pre-paid cell phone service that I use so infrequently as it is and yet for something more important like Verizon Fios, I've had very reliable service with resolutions to all of my issues.

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Sr. Member

If you have a reason to care whether your card is run as credit or debit, you should be more worried about finding a new bank than about how VzW is processing your card transactions...

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Sr. Member

There's no "extra time" involved with processing a payment directly from your checking account - you just use your checking and routing numbers instead of your card number, expiration date, security code and zipcode.  It's ultimately about the same amount of numbers needed - will the give or take 5-10 seconds throw off your entire schedule?

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Member

Then explain to me what my bank would have to do with this.  No matter how many times I ask this question, nobody answers it.  You guys keep saying it's my bank without giving any kind of explanation for this.  That's poor.

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Sr. Member

Why do you know or CARE how the transaction is processed?

When I use my debit card with my bank, I do not notice or care whether the retailer processes it as a debit or credit transaction: the only difference to me is a signature or a PIN, and both take 2 seconds to input.

My statement was that if your bank gives you a tangible reason to care whether your transactions are run as credit or debit, they are a bad bank.

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Member

Some banks charge a fee for processing the charge as a debit, which is quite common.  That doesn't make the bank bad and if you think that's a sign of a bad bank, then that's a matter of opinion.  And with a debit charge, the money comes right out of your account and to some of us, that matters.  None of that demands an explanation.

It's bad ethics and it's the whole principle that's wrong.  When I do business with any vendor, I expect the vendor to honor my method of payment, not switch my method of payment on me without my knowledge and against what I specified and any vendor which does that without any effort to even rectify the situation doesn't deserve any more of my hard earned cash.  When I specify "credit", I have every right to expect my charge to go through as a "credit".  If I go to a restaurant and order a sandwich on whole wheat bread, I'm sending the order back if my sandwich is on white bread and if the waiter refuses to switch my bread, then I'm taking my business elsewhere.

Goodbye Verizon Wireless.  T-Mobile will be my next carrier.

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Re: I need help. I don't understand this at all.

Sr. Member

I've banked with two actual banks and a credit union, and have never been charged a fee for processing a credit OR debit transaction.

T-Mobile will probably run it as debit too, as transactions over some dollar amount (depending on the processor, $15-$25) cost the MERCHANT less to process as debit than they do as credit. you need a new bank, not a new carrier.

There is no ethical issue with them processing a debit card as a debit card, that is ludicrous.