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I think I can save money on my phone bill with a new tariff/provider. but it's so confusing, I don't really know. Look, I had to make a table with my terrible handwriting and do maths and everything. I'm still not sure what's going on.

it's pretty clear that Orange are WELL PRICEY though. Probably going elsewhere. Vodafone maybe, or Three.

29th Jul 2006, 17:10   | tags:,

teflon says:

Orange Value Promise?
Or is it one of these situations where the promos elsewhere are rather good?

I'm due an upgrade in a fortnight and need to have a good look at price plans.

29th Jul 2006, 17:37

mat says:

that's all part of the problem - working through all the promos/non-promos and different offers and plans and all the other crap to try and find a common metric to compare them all with.

I think I've got one (total line rental cost over 18 months), but still a load of it depends on usage and free minutes/sms/mms/data/etc - option A could be great until I go out of plan, then it could cost a fortune. And vice-versa and so on.

as I said, gah.

29th Jul 2006, 17:51

teflon says:

trying to compare price plans has never been simple - but Orange's daft animal naming scheme isn't helping much.

I want a Platypus plan.

29th Jul 2006, 19:25

mat says:

Vodafone's tariffs look pretty good, tbh. Their bundled texts are actually just usage allowances - your 500 (for example) sms a month can be spent on 166 mms or 25Mb of data or any combination of the three.. Not that they mention that on the website, but hey.

Three look OK too, although are a bit more expensive and a bit less flexible. T-mobile and O2 are out of the running, becuase they don't do sensible data tariffs.

29th Jul 2006, 20:07

Dhamaka says:

don't know if it helps (or even if it's good compared to what others get) but I got 1000 SMSs & 350 minutes talktime per month �£50 cashback, 1Gb mem card, bluetooth ear thingie (think you're meant to get either the cashback or the ear thingie) and one of those speaker sets that you plug your phone into to make it a music centre as a result of negotiation - although the speakers, bluetooth and mem card haven't arrived yet.. But I'm paying for a second mem card so that might have been incorporated into their calculations

29th Jul 2006, 20:10

mat says:

see, that's just another variable - every salesperson I spoke to today managed to offer me something better than I'd seen online. doesn't make it any easier to decide.. Monday is phoning back and collecting best offers fromthe top contenders, then taking that to Orange and saying "beat this and I'll stay"

Although the guy at Orange's "so you want to leave Orange" dept threatened to cut me off because he "didn't like my tone". Which was out of line, becuase I was being nice. I wasn't even angry, although after spending over 3 hours on the phone to get two very simple things done with Orange this week (one of which failed anyway), I think I had every right to be.

gah. It's becuase of all this hassle changing things that I'm still on a seven year old tariff.

29th Jul 2006, 20:18

Dhamaka says:

that's what I did - Orange gave me a best offer and Vodafone topped it..

Oh, I also got that tariff that enables you to send texts and data at the same price in various selected European countries

good luck Mat

29th Jul 2006, 20:19

Steve says:

I just went through this and it is a nightmare.

3 mobile had the best plans but their coverage is rubbish and they often lose calls, I think that they don't do proper data calls via laptops which was a bind for me.

T mobile had good tarriffs as did O2 but they also had odd data problems, one of them said that I had to rent a seperate line to use my laptop!

Vodaphone....... well I used to be with vodaphone about 8 years ago and I left because their customer service centre was only open between 9 and 6 monday to friday which was just annoying. I thought "hey that was 8 years ago, I should see what they are like now" So I called them:

"Press one if you are a new customer"

I press 1... it hangs up.

I repeat the process 4 times, it does the same. So I press 2 and get put through to a call centre in India (I think) and explain that I want to join Vodaphone. They tell me I can't, the system is down!

So I stuck it out with Orange, who's customer service has been rather rubbish over the past year and it looks like it won't be improving soon. but the data stuff works fine and I am able to get my calls.

I also tried calling Vodaphone about a week later, it still hung up.

I also found out that Orange will only price match on written tarriffs, if it is a web deal then that doesn't count..... rubbish!

Sorry for my beer fueled rant, it wasn't this disjointed in my head

29th Jul 2006, 23:35

mat says:

Orange customer service used to be ace, but it's been absymal lately, yes. I've just spent another hour on the phone getting bounced around departments, having to explain the problem again and again and again and again to people who don't even understand most of what I'm talking about yet don't tell me that and just give me a load of bullshit in an attempt to make me go away. I hate that the most. Just say "I'm sorry, I don't know - I'll find out for you", and do so, or "I'm sorry, I didn't understand what you said, can you explain again". I have no problem with people not knowing stuff or not understanding me, but I really don't take well to being fobbed off.

I am so. very. angry with Orange right now. They're going to have to come up with something exceedingly special to stop me defecting.

30th Jul 2006, 16:02

spongevid says:

I hate looking for mobile phone tariffs, so i leave that job to my dad coz he actually ENJOYS searching every means possible when needed to purchase anything new at good value!

30th Jul 2006, 19:09

swamprose says:

trying to get my first camphone here in Canada, third in the household, so we have history, if not mine. North America has yet another way of figuring things out, and it is just as ridiculous, and difficult to make comparisons, or talk to anyone who actually knows what you are talking about. it has become sort of a daily job, getting on the phone trying to talk to someone. and cheap, dependable service seems too much to ask.

31st Jul 2006, 12:00

seaneeboy says:

Yeah, what has happened to Orange?

It's very difficult to be a proud orange user these days - that smug sense of superiority is rather swiftly changing to an embarrased grin-and-bear-it. sigh.

31st Jul 2006, 12:03

mat says:

"Orange, what's happened to you man, you used to be cool..."

31st Jul 2006, 12:05

mat says:

CSR: Hello, this is Orange customer services
Me: Hi, I'd like to talk to you about price matching (offerX from Vodafone)
CSR: Sure. We can't price match on the tariff you're on, sorry.
Me: No problem, I expected that. How about if I change tariffs?
CSR: Sorry, I can't tell you what might happen if you do that.
Me: WTF?
CSR: Our system won't let us
Me: So, you can't beat that offer then?
CSR: Probably, What plan did you want to change to?
Me: One that means you can beat that offer.
CSR: Which one is that?
Me: I don't know, you're the CSR. Can you advise me?
CSR: What did you want?
Me: *explains again about matching Anytime 200*
CSR: Oh, we have a tariff like that. But it's inactive.
Me: Inactive? Will it become active soon?
CSR: No, it's inactive - that means we don't offer it.
Me: *stabs self in eye with telephone*

I hate them all*. Vodafone here I come. They can't be worse, can they?

* just like to stress here - NOT the people answering the phones. Usually they are trying their best within a system that doesn't let them actually help.

31st Jul 2006, 15:51

Joe says:

I sincerely hope that was a rhetorical question.

31st Jul 2006, 15:53

mat says:

Well, I'm going to find out, having just ordered a new handset/contract with Vodafone. Orange have pissed me off one time too often. I can always go back in 18 months (the nice girl in Orange Retention said new customers get better deals anyway)

31st Jul 2006, 16:16

Steve says:

Could luck, I both hope and don't hope that it is better over there. Keep us posted!

31st Jul 2006, 16:28

mat says:

I don't really think the service will be any better or worse, I'd imagine Vodafone CSRs have to work within an equally restrictive system, but my phone bills should be cheaper, and that's what I was really aiming for.

that and a K800 for nowt. :)

31st Jul 2006, 16:30

Steve says:

Yay! maybe it is like credit cards and you just have to keep moving

31st Jul 2006, 16:41

mat says:

Credit cards I sorted out years ago. Smile are one of the best companies I have ever dealt with. Their customer service is impeccable, and their rates are really good too. I doubt I'll ever bank elsewhere. End advert. :)

31st Jul 2006, 16:52

seaneeboy says:

*Dittoes Mat's smile praise*

AND they have sent me some sunflowers which are growing in my conservatory right now :)

31st Jul 2006, 16:55

James says:

Sorry to hear you've had so much grief Mat!

I've been with Orange 7 or 8 years now and had no trouble at all...I upgraded on Friday wanting 500 mins and 500 texts and ended up with 900 mins and 1100 texts plus free phone insurance for £55 a month....I guess it depends on who you get on the phone, but I've never had anyone who couldn't help me out.

The guy on got on Friday was brilliant - not just a script reading moneky, had a good laugh on the phone with him and he gave me the handest (N80) for £30 instead of £50.

1st Aug 2006, 12:34

mat says:

I've been with Orange about that long too. They used to be really good, but they have treated me like a complete mug for the last two years, and I'm f*ckin cross about it.

1st Aug 2006, 12:45

OJ says:

Okay, this is not in any way helpful, but I need to vent about Orange too. I've been with them about 8 years, ever since getting a prepaid contract for a year for my (22nd/23rd?) birthday. I was the only person I knew with a mobile for ages....

Anyway. Their customer services are lying bastards. I usually mince my words and am quite professional about such issues, but in this case stone-cold-sober I'm happy to describe them as utter crooks.

Last summer I took out a special offer 18-month tie-in when I upgraded to my K750i. The deal was that for the first 6 months I got double free talktime. I'm quite a heavy talker, so I really needed this.

It was never applied to my account. After a couple of months I realised that I was being charged a huge amount because I was using my phone as if I had double talk time and I contacted them. They said they could only rectify it if I faxed their complaints department a copy of my agreement, because I'd signed up in the Orange Shop and that's a different company.

To cut a long story short, they ignored all my faxes, sent over a period of September- January, despite escalating strong wording and the fact that I started to copy Ofcom (toothless, they don't act on individual cases) in. I started making weekly calls to Customer Services. Each time a manager agreed it was terrible that complaints wouldn't respond and promised to call me back. They never did.

I stopped doing this in about Feb from sheer exhaustion but the bastards still owe me money and still refuse to respond to my faxes to their complaints department. I'm thinking of writing to their head office and copying in the consumer press now.

Sorry for the rant - this whole issue makes me physically angry, if you know what I mean. I would advise anyone to steer clear of Orange for the above reasons.

1st Aug 2006, 12:58

mat says:

I know what you mean. Rant away, I don't mind. Sorry to hear you're having more problems than I.

I don't think Orange have ever called me back when they said they would.

If I were a customer service manager, I would actually fire people, on the spot, for saying they'll call someone back and not doing so. It's just about the single worst thing you can do to a customer - I spent several hours last week not going anywhere (I needed to go out) in case Orange tech support phoned back within the hour they'd promised. They didn't, but I lost the best part of an entire afternoon.

1st Aug 2006, 13:06

OJ says:

Ahem, I get the impression that "we'll call you back" is a standard strategy for getting rid of complainers and they have no intention of calling. Tech support not calling is another issue altogether, just as frustrating though...

1st Aug 2006, 13:07

Viv says:

so that's why they offered me a free handset and a 10% reduction in costs if I stay with them for another 18 months - phone call out of the blue from India
as I only spend about £5 a month on my calls - pay sa you go direct debit - which I don't think they do anymore then I was quite happy to agree as my handset must be 4 years old!

1st Aug 2006, 18:47

Steve says:

REPRINT from here

I had many conversations today.... a day that I could have been working, earning, I turned down £200 to wait in for these muppets. I am less than impressed.

The first told me that it was on the van at 0830 so it should be with me.

The next said that Parcel line had mucked up everyones orders today.

I rang Parcel line, they said "if Orange can't give you a consignment number then it has not been taken from Orange.

I ring Orange, they say "oh yeah it hasn't left" "but it can take up to 3 days" then why tell me to be in between 9am and 5pm on tuesday???

We then spoke about them making it up to me... they couldn't give a toss.

I then tried ringing Vodaphone to see what they could offer, they said "Press one to be connectted to an operator"... it then hung up just like it did last week... they are all rubbish.

Rant over!


1st Aug 2006, 22:19

laurie sicard-askey(laurie-dot-sicard-askey-at-tiscali-dot-co-dot-uk) says:

The future's not bright, the future's not Orange.

12th Oct 2007, 16:22