Ok, so I'm just doing a few last minute finishing off things before a trip to the Continent1 and I'm on the phone to Vodafone (UK) and trying to complete some registration process so I can add cash to my Pay As You Go phone account without having to buy a voucher. As you'd expect it gives me five options. This doesn't bother me much, especially since I want option number one. So I choose option one and then...nothing. A long period of nothing. Like five minutes of nothing, no hold music or anything. Nothing. Get the picture?
So I hang up and try again. This time, I get through to Kate the automated customer service representative ("one of the team"), who I can speak to (oh, this'll be fun). Even though she seems a little hard of hearing, we're getting through things so it's all ok. Then, just as I seem to be getting somewhere, she says, "Ok, I see you tried to call earlier and got cut off for some reason. I'll just put you through to a customer service representative to complete your enquiry." Now, I'm assuming she meant a real live customer service representative, and if so, this is a genuinely good idea. It's a real pity that it was executed so poorly.
Aside from the fact that it really wouldn't have been very difficult (I assume) to complete the request with Kate, I'm now in a queue of some kind. Well, at least I think I am. Again, there's almost nothing coming down the line, no hold music, but what I think might be a fumbling sound on occasion. Finally someone says something along the lines of "What's your mobile number?" Reluctantly I gave my number (despite the fact that Kate knew my number without even asking, it's nice to be talking to a real live human.) Then I have to tell the person (who's name I still don't know) whether I'm on a plan or a Pay As You Go customer (which Kate also knew the answer to). After I, again reluctantly, tell him I'm a PAYG customer I am informed that he is part of the team that looks after customers on plans and he can't help me any further.
I'm now on my third attempt, seven minutes into the silence...before Kate. I'd say I'm going to ditch Vodafone at the first available opportunity, but I know the others aren't any better.
- Like that sneaky bit of European slang? [↩]