Are customer support lines designed to deter callers?

@Asylum (46318)
Manchester, England
November 11, 2006 6:16pm CST
My internet connection was recently disrupted, and despite checking all the equipment and configuration I could find no problem, so I called the support line of my ISP to confirm that the problem was at their end. My call was answered immediately by a machine so I began to pay for the call before anyone answered, which is very frustrating and unreasonable, before asking me to select from a numbered choice several times. The voice then gave me a 2 minute appraisal of how busy the lines were and how important my call was before putting me on hold with a boring background music track. Every couple of minutes the system cut in to remind me how important my call was and that I could report my internet problem via their website. (very amusing) After 25 minutes I was informed that if I pressed 1 they would take a message and get someone to call me back. Foolishly I pressed 1 and the call was terminated. Are support lines really trying to deter us from using them.
1 person likes this
6 responses
@isasice (2015)
• Iceland
12 Nov 06
Most of those lines in Iceland don't start charging you until you are actually connected with someone, hope it's the same in your case. I know that many of the call centers that are really just there to get your money, not to give you service, charge outrageous amounts from the time their machine picks up your call and then if you ever get a life person, they are trained to babble about nothing to keep you there. They are trained in answering simple questions with long and complicated speaches that you couldn't possible understand and often you are more confused after the call than before you made it. I hope you have fixed your problem.
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@Asylum (46318)
• Manchester, England
12 Nov 06
We pay from the moment that the system starts to operate, so it probably cost me about £8 since I was using my mobile. That would not have been so bad if I actually managed to speak to someone. My connection is still unstable and was off for a while earlier today.
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@isasice (2015)
• Iceland
12 Nov 06
I would be broke if I had to pay for calls to my ISP. Fortunately phone asstance is included in my monthly fee.
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@juicemilk (2291)
• Australia
13 Nov 06
most ISPs in Australia have a toll free number. The company I work for has a system where if all the technicians were on calls then it would go straight to message and the customer would get a call back :)
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@Asylum (46318)
• Manchester, England
15 Nov 06
Now that seems like a responsible attitude. I can wait several hours if the staff are busy, I just do not want to keep paying for the priviledge of waiting.
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@nannacroc (4049)
12 Nov 06
I've had the same problem and recently my internet provider has started to charge for these calls so I'm paying them for sitting listening to that awful music. I've had a problem this week and have decided to write instead of telephoning, it takes longer but is not so frustrating. I think you're right that it's a ploy to stop people calling.
@Asylum (46318)
• Manchester, England
13 Nov 06
Writing a letter would not be any good to me, they would receive it the day after and then pass it another department.
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@kokopelli (4843)
• United States
13 Nov 06
not only about ISP but banks as well, sigh. these customer supports aren't supporting anyone but themselves.
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@KrauseHome (32833)
• United States
31 Dec 06
I guess I am Lucky as in I have a Cell phone, and do not really pay when I call someone, or even when I am put on hold with someone, but it can be annoying when they have the message you can check online with them to report your problem, and it is an outage you are wanting to report. Just makes you want to Scream does it not. Well, better Luck to you next time.
@Asylum (46318)
• Manchester, England
31 Dec 06
I also have a mobile phone, but the system is very different in the United Kingdom. All the call centre numbers begin 0845, which is a national number that is charged at local rate. For some reason the mobile phone companies do not allow 0845 numbers as part of the monthly calls allowance. Therefore I could call a friend 200 miles away or call another mobile phone without paying any more, but if I call an 0845 number then I will have to pay.
• United States
28 Dec 06
i really dont know.. what do you think?