Thursday, February 7, 2013

Ugh. We still have cable... but I got a good deal!

To have cable/phone/internet, or not?  That is the question.  At least it has been in our house the past few weeks.  As the time of our 'introductory deal' Verizon Fios contract drew nigh, we knew the decision was looming. We had pretty much decided on ditching everything but the Internet.  After all, prices be crazy, and who needs all that?  I mean really?  And most of what we need (a term I use very loosely) every day is Internet driven.... like streaming free TV shoes on websites, or using Netflix.
Then I actually called Verizon Fios after learning that all of Roy's attempts had been through online chats.

Now, this is not a blog post to sing Verizon Fios' praises. If you show me a phone/cable company with clear pricing and excellent customer relations, you can have a turn riding my new unicorn.   It is a blog post that I could have otherwise labeled "It ain't over until you get on the phone for at least an hour and initiate the actual service cancellation process."  By calling and being patient and persistent, I reduced our monthly cable bill by $50 in a single phone call.  Here's how:

1) Know what you're willing to pay for your new car for your services.  Be 100% willing to walk away.  You don't NEED it.
2) Don't be rude.  Remain calm.  "Our contract is expiring and we cannot afford the price increase.  We'd like to get the best deal possible, otherwise we'll have to cancel services."
3) The first guy you talk to.... let's call him the "front desk."  He barely works for the company and has no authority to change prices. He'll tell you the lowest *he* can offer which is just what shows up on his screen.  It will not meet your price point.  You - very truthfully - say "Ok we'd like to cancel our service please."
4) You get transferred to the next person... let's call her "the muscle."  She says "I'm going to do everything I can so you won't cancel.  I am on the Elite Team and can make prices drop like bottles in a bar fight."  Make her do her job and work for you.
5) Re-explain your position to her.  Tell her what a great customer you are.  Whatever bottom price she tells you, ask for an additional $10 off.  You have a good chance to get it if you say you'll agree to another 2-year contract at that price.  Make the voodoo work for yoo.
6) Kiss that introductory price you had for the last 2 years goodbye.  You are hostage to their wiley pricing ways.  But if you want a happy husband who gets to watch sports, and happy children who love the Disney channel, and you can still save for retirement, give to charity, and not go broke having cable, then by all means.... bask in the fact that you just saved $50 a month.


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