So I am caught between a rock and a hard place. I can't get DirecTV (too many trees interfere with the dish signal), and Cablevision is the Devil. So I have Verizon FIOS and internet.
So today I called up with a twofold problem, one internet related, and one TV related. So after trying to defeat the phone robot system, I get customer service, under the auspices of "all services" as opposed to one specific.
Problem #1 - I recently got an email saying I had subscribed to Verizon's broadband essentials for $5.99 a month. I hadn't. Could he please correct that? No. That was an issue for the billing department. They are only open from 9-5 M-F. I explained that I too work from 9-5 M-F, and cannot conduct personal business at work. Sorry, not his problem, he cannot help me. But if I don't download the file they sent (which I hadn't) they wont bill me. But if they do, I can give billing a call. So, right, thanks for nothing.
Okay, on to question #2. I currently thought I had all the channels Verizon offers, but I noticed that I don't get MAVTV (channel 598). I am told that I have the Premium plan, and to get it I have to order the Extreme HD plan, at an additional $5 a month, and since I am changing plans I would have to agree to a one-year contract. I inquire as to what other channels I would get that I don't get already. He doesn't know. If I want to find out, I can check it out myself on the web. Okay, Fail #2. Thank you, is there anything else I can do for you today (besides not be able to provide any help whatsoever?) and I hang up.
Go to the web, find my Premium plan, MAVTV is on there. Check ExtremeHD plan, MAVTV is not on there. Huh? Okay, time to fight the robot again.
Get another customer service rep, who deals with TV only. I don't have the Premium plan, that's not a real plan. I have the (now retired) Premiere Plan. But for an extra $5 I can subscribe to the Extreme HD plan. I inform the rep that MAVTV is not on there, he tells me I am wrong. I explain that I am looking at the Verizon webpage of channel lineups, and it does not show it. Please hold.
While I am on hold, I am looking at the channel lineups for the now defunct Premiere plan from Nov 08. I know I get more channels than these.
Rep comes back on, tells me he is transferring me over to an programming expert or specialist, or something like that. Okay, great, thanks. The expert tells me MAVTV is part of the extremeHD plan....you get the idea.
After me convincing him of what I see, he puts me on hold. I take the time to go to my TV, and compare what I am getting to what they show on the channel lineup for ExtremeHD. My defunct, cheaper Premiere plan gets ALL of those channels, plus one more.
Back on, he still is investigating, back on hold. A few more minutes, he tells me that MAVTV is under the "sports package for $7.99 per month. Here's the MAVTV description:
MAV TV HD MavTV is a 24-hour cable television network targeting the male demographic. Our variety of original programming includes series like AMA Motorcycle Racing, American Tailgater, Bikini AllStars, Ultimate Combat Experience & Lucas Oil Motorsports Events
I am looking forward to explaining to my wife how Bikini All Stars is actually a sport, just like tailgating. So I ask what else do I get for my $7.99. The Channel expert/specialist tells me I will get 19 additional channels! Like what? Like...he doesn't know. He will transfer me over to sales though - they can help me. Okay, great, fine. Thanks for being slightly more helpful than the first two reps.
Hello sales. Can you please tell me what additional HD channels I will get for my $7.99 vs. what I have now? They rattle off Blackbelt TV and Horseracing TV, neither of which are HD. But they are going to put me on hold, and get the whole list.
But wait, why is there no music on this hold? There was always music before...now just some clicks...and its ringing, and telling me if I would like to make a call, please hang up and try again.
Hello morganr...sorry to read about your carousel of non-progress, if you could please send me a private message with your billing act # so I can pull up program info & packages specifically related to you. Thank you and I apologize for your inconvenience.
Constance Verizon Telecom Fiber Solution Center
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hi. i can totally feel your pain. i have switched to fios as soon as it was available in my area. i have had so many problems that always ended up with me having to contact billing(ie m-sat 9-5). as it turns out some billing problems can only be dealt with by specialists or collections or many of the numerous departments that do link to each other. i have literally spent hours on the phone with different people at different times. the next time you need to call say agent over and over to the robot. that should get you straight to a human. then ask to speak to a supervisor. get the supervisors name and office location and often a direct number. the supwervisors have more access than a general billing agent. the only reason i have not dimped fios and switched is also the lack of other options besides cable.