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    $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

    steelystan

      I recently upgraded my device, over the phone, using the 2 year discount price of $199. I was completely unaware and never told by the VZW agent that I would be paying an extra $30 to help VZW offset the cost of Wireless Workshops and their Backup Assistant+ crap. The agent on the phone told me to expect a $199 + tax charge on my next bill but failed to mention the extra $30 and, to be quite honest, I'm pretty upset about this. I called the customer support line and was told the $30 free is there to support the cost of the Backup Assistant Plus service (which I do not use and have completely removed it from my phone because it's trash) as well as the Wireless Workshops they offer in their stores. This is complete ** and if I had been made aware of this nickle and dime scheme by VZW when I was upgrading, I would have canceled my upgrade and gone with another carrier instead of signing another 2 year contract. I will NEVER go to a workshop for a device, service, whatever that I know how to use or could spend an hour researching online so why am I having to pay for this? I use Titanium Backup Pro and the Android SDK environment to backup my phone and data instead of the clunky Backup Assistant Plus trash. In fact, I've completely removed all traces of BA+ on my phone...

       

      So why am I "donating" $30 to Verizon for services that I, and I'm willing to bet most people, don't use? Why wasn't I made aware of this by the VZW agent I spoke to on the phone?

       

      /rant

        • 1. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

          The upgrade fee has been around sine April 2012. It is listeded on the price of the phone so you were notified BEFORE purchase. At&t charges $36 to upgrade and Sprint charges $38. T-mobile no longer has discount upgrades and requires people to pay full price for a phone. So good luck with another carrier.

           

          The $230 you paid for the phone is much cheaper than what the phone would cost at full price and you're complaining about a minimum 60% discount?

          • 2. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?
            steelystan

            The final price of the phone was $260. I was told by the VZW agent to expect a ~$199 + tax ($215) charge on my next bill. There was no mention of a $30 upgrade fee. I was not notified BEFORE the purchase, and if it's listed on the discount upgrade page it's not very clear.

             

            I did not see the articles in the news about this fee in the past and VZW did not make it clear to me that I would be charged this fee. I expect the VZW phone agent to make me aware of the fee's associated with any service I use, like this upgrade, but the agent failed to mention it.

             

            Yes, I am complaining about the discount. I'm already unhappy that I was forced to lose my unlimited data plan when upgrading (unless I paid for the phone in full), but being charged an extra $30 for "services" like BA+ and workshops is absurd. Regardless of how much of a discount it was I don't like having surprise fee's come up on my cell phone bill. Why don't they include that free in the displayed upgrade price? Why not show $229.99 instead of $199.99?

             

            And it's 57% discount, not 60%+

            • 3. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?
              Elector

              Unfortunately today we have to be constantly aware. If you paid the $600 to $750 for your cell phone you would not have paid that upgrade fee, you would not be in any contract today and you still would have been a happy customer. But you went with the subsidized phone at a really reduced cost, got that extra two years added on, paid a $30 upgrade fee, and you are locked in now or pay a huge hefty Early Termination Fee. But the choices were yours.

               

              Unfortunately I find that Verizon neglects to tell a customer about certain fees, plan changes that adversely affect the consumer and very rarely have I ever seen any contract given to a customer at time of sale or service.

               

              The items are available on line, and referenced on your receipt as well as the 14 day time limit to back out of your deal.

              Your associated costs for the device and plan is on your receipt and on the letter Verizon sends either via online PDF or postal mail. On your receipt is the $30 upgrade fee. You must have signed it? But did you read it?

               

              I feel for you, but some mistakes are just avoidable if we as customers read everything, ask more detailed questions and then use those 14 days to get out of the contract if we have buyers remorse. But of course there is a $35 Restocking fee if you do return the device and cancel.

              • 4. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

                steelystan wrote:

                 

                The final price of the phone was $260. I was told by the VZW agent to expect a ~$199 + tax ($215) charge on my next bill. There was no mention of a $30 upgrade fee. I was not notified BEFORE the purchase, and if it's listed on the discount upgrade page it's not very clear.

                 

                I did not see the articles in the news about this fee in the past and VZW did not make it clear to me that I would be charged this fee. I expect the VZW phone agent to make me aware of the fee's associated with any service I use, like this upgrade, but the agent failed to mention it.

                 

                Yes, I am complaining about the discount. I'm already unhappy that I was forced to lose my unlimited data plan when upgrading (unless I paid for the phone in full), but being charged an extra $30 for "services" like BA+ and workshops is absurd. Regardless of how much of a discount it was I don't like having surprise fee's come up on my cell phone bill. Why don't they include that free in the displayed upgrade price? Why not show $229.99 instead of $199.99?

                 

                And it's 57% discount, not 60%+

                Well according to the stats you just posted sales tax is 8% so since you insist on including that, then at full price a $600 phone plus 8% is $648. $260/$648 is 40% thus you received a 60% discount. Also even at 57%, you are complaining about a 57% discount? Really? If you went to a car dealer and got a 57% discount you'd be ecstatic. If you got a TV for 57% you'd be ecstatic.

                 

                This fee was announced April 11th 2012 It made ALL the major news sources.

                 

                http://www.engadget.com/2012/04/11/verizon-upgrade-fees/

                 

                http://money.cnn.com/2012/04/11/technology/verizon-upgrade-fee/index.htm

                 

                http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/04/11/verizonwireless-upgradefee-idUSL2E8FBGQ820120411

                 

                http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/04/verizon-upgrade-fee/

                 

                http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/04/verizon-to-start-charging-30-upgrade-fees-on-april-22/

                 

                http://www.zdnet.com/blog/gadgetreviews/verizon-wireless-to-add-30-upgrade-fee-for-all-existing-customers/29184

                 

                http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/11/verizon-wireless-phone-upgrade_n_1417959.html

                 

                http://www.dslreports.com/shownews/Verizon-Starts-Charging-30-Phone-Upgrade-Fee-119201

                 

                http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-57412428-1/verizon-to-start-charging-for-phone-upgrades/

                 

                http://news.yahoo.com/verizon-jumps-board-upgrade-fee-train-230900778.html

                 

                http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/tech/news/story/2012-04-11/verizon-wireless-upgrade-fee/54173448/1

                 

                Just to name a few sources.

                 

                 

                There is no way you were not told in some fashion. You say VZW agent. So you ordered this over the phone? Ok so where did you see the phone you wanted? Um at this site? Well the fee is listed VERY clearly on the price of the phone. if youw ent into a VZW store it;s CLEARLY listed on the price tags.

                • 5. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

                  The $30 upgrade fee has been in place for about a year and was very well publicized.  All the major providers now charge this fee, except most are more than Verizon and most were implemented before Verizon.  It's just part of the expense associated with owning and using a cell phone now days.  If you don't want to pay it, don't upgrade your phone.  You could switch providers every two years and pay an activation fee instead.

                  • 6. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?
                    rcschnoor

                    Elector wrote:

                    Unfortunately I find that Verizon neglects to tell a customer about certain fees, plan changes that adversely affect the consumer and very rarely have I ever seen any contract given to a customer at time of sale or service.

                     

                    The items are available on line, and referenced on your receipt as well as the 14 day time limit to back out of your deal.

                    Your associated costs for the device and plan is on your receipt and on the letter Verizon sends either via online PDF or postal mail. On your receipt is the $30 upgrade fee. You must have signed it? But did you read it?

                    I have had the opposite experience. I have NEVER been in a Verizon store where a CS agent is not explaining about ETF, upgrade fees, contract terms whenever I have been in there.

                     

                    Additionally, I always receive a receipt about 36" to 48" long spelling out the terms and conditions along with a web address stating where I can ALSO find them. I believe last time I upgraded, though, I was given the option of ALSO receiving this information via email.

                    • 7. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

                      I get that long receipt for my phone even though I pay full price. It states the return period, and on accessory purchases it states I can exchange it once. No contract per se on the receipt but a reference to the web site and a qualifier that I agree to the terms etc. Verizon does send me an email with a plan run down a few weeks later in My Verizon Documents and Receipts. But I have never been given a contract. Maybe because I am not ever under a contract. who knows?

                      • 8. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?
                        Marissa2013

                        I had no idea how long this charge has been in affect, but it was put everywhere for me to see, however, it never explained why I was being charged that amount. I would much rather pay a $30 fee with a discounted phone then to pay full price every two to three years when a person feels the need to get the newest thing. Just saying there are worse things to worry about then a $30 fee.

                        • 9. Re: $30 upgrade fee is for Wireless Workshops and Backup Assistant Plus?

                          Marissa2013 wrote:

                           

                          I had no idea how long this charge has been in affect,

                           

                          however, it never explained why I was being charged that amount.

                           

                          I would much rather pay a $30 fee with a discounted phone then to pay full price every two to three years

                          A) April 2012

                           

                          B) it's stated as an upgrade fee which is kind of self-explanatory. Now if you mean WHY they decided to charge an upgrade fee to begin with they don't really HAVE to explain that at all if they don't want to. Their stated reason being for "training" and whatnot smells of baloney and I wish they just come out and say "we did because we felt like it and we don't need to explain or justify it to anyone". Which is much closer to the truth.

                           

                          C) Yep. Most reasonable people still see it as getting a huge discount. And the fact is at&t and Sprint charge larger upgrade fees. That doesn't "justify" Verizon doing it, just simply stating that one is not going to escape an upgrade fee with another carrier except if they go to t-mobile which will makes you pay full price for a phone.

                           

                          I don't get people that complain that their "free" phone upgrade now cost $30. A Lucid 2( which is the cheapest smartphone Verizon sells ) retails or $350. $30/$350 is a 91.5% discount. And yet some people still complain about that.

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