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Orange - reluctance to handle complaint over data charges allegedly incurred overseas

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Dear all,

 

Any advice gratefully received.

 

I went to Barbados earlier this year with work. I incurred some call charges and was surprised to also receive £130 worth of DATA charges.

 

I have a smartphone which is capable of Wifi and 3g connectivity. Whilst I am at home I am careful to use wifi access where possible, even more so whilst in Barbados knowing the costs of overseas data.

 

The hotel had provided us with free access to their wifi network and I promptly logged on and used my phone to collect data and info relating to my business in the country.

 

So forward wind a few months and needless to say I'm shocked to have received a bill for £130 for "16mb" of data apparently downloaded in the country. I rang Orange customer services who said:

 

"If you use data over wifi you will still be charged through our network."

 

So... if this is true... Why does it not happen when I am in the UK? Are they deliberately overriding my choice of data provider in order to fleece me? Can they do this? surely if I make a concious decision to choose a cheaper provider of data access it is immoral and possibly unlawful for them to override this decision and then charge me extortionate amounts for being forced to use their connectivity?

 

I said to the customer services person that I would like a list of all the items I have allegedly downloaded as the bill merely says 16mb of data - no clarification as to what has been downloaded - no evidence that I've even done that. She said such information is not available.

 

So they've charged me £130 for something they cannot prove I've used??!

 

I have paid the balance of the outstanding bill APART from the charges I dispute and I've made my dispute clear. I have also requested a call back from someone more senior - to date I have had no contact.

 

My phone is now barred from making outgoing calls and texts which is a major inconvenience and particularly galling considered I made the effort to pay the non-disputed amount of the bill immediately.

 

 

So... what can I do now? Quite frankly I want to leave orange as they seem to have no concept of disputes, nor any respect towards their clients particularly those with a legitimate complaint.

 

Can I argue breach of contract given they've prevented my phone from functioning correctly despite the fact I've raised a dispute?

 

Bton Badger

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BTONBADGER vs

 

HSBC Current Account - Settled £400 and closed acccount.

Egg Loan - Settled £106.32

 

Nat West Current Account - full resolution thanks to BCOB's. Refund of £5k unfair charges and interest plus £80 compensation.

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1st thing is 1st... I'm a huge fan of your youtube pages!

 

Right, now that's out of the way :p Orange have a complaints team that work with CAG, so maybe they'll be of assistance. Here is a quote from a different page

Hi varley16

 

 

I was sorry to read about your recent experiences and may be able to help. If you can drop me a mail to customer.services@orange.co.uk, I'll look into this for you. So I can pick up your mail quickly, please add ‘Darren Orange Response' in the first line.

 

Please also include the reference ORT1007 and your username from this site, as without them, I will not be able to pick the case up.

 

Hope this helps

 

Darren

Orange Response Team

 

Maybe he can get to the bottom of the problems?

 

The Customer Service Adviser is wrong, data over wifi you should not incur any charge. My suspicion is this a Blackberry or Iphone. I know they have specific data needs that comes over the mobile network only, which is what you may have been charged for.

 

I have to say, £130 for 16 meg sounds far too expensive!

 

Talking brass tacks, if a complaint reached an ADR it would probably cost Orange more than £130, so following their complaints procedure set out in their "Code of practice" may yield results if the Orange Response team don't sort you out 1st!


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

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1st thing is 1st... I'm a huge fan of your youtube pages!

 

 

Thank you! I've not done anything new for ages as I've been mostly left alone by the banking idiots now. probably flagged up in some central database as a troublemaker perhaps?! ;)

 

 

Right, now that's out of the way :p Orange have a complaints team that work with CAG, so maybe they'll be of assistance. Here is a quote from a different page

 

 

Maybe he can get to the bottom of the problems?

 

The Customer Service Adviser is wrong, data over wifi you should not incur any charge. My suspicion is this a Blackberry or Iphone. I know they have specific data needs that comes over the mobile network only, which is what you may have been charged for.

 

I have to say, £130 for 16 meg sounds far too expensive!

 

Talking brass tacks, if a complaint reached an ADR it would probably cost Orange more than £130, so following their complaints procedure set out in their "Code of practice" may yield results if the Orange Response team don't sort you out 1st!

 

Cheers for the advice will give them both a go and report back.


BTONBADGER vs

 

HSBC Current Account - Settled £400 and closed acccount.

Egg Loan - Settled £106.32

 

Nat West Current Account - full resolution thanks to BCOB's. Refund of £5k unfair charges and interest plus £80 compensation.

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Guest Orange Response

Hi btonbadger

I'd be happy to look into this for you. You can contact me at customer.services@orange. co.uk by including "Darren Orange Response" in the first line.

 

Please include your username from this site and reference ORT1011, rather than the reference quoted from my previous post, otherwise your email may not reach me.

Hope this helps.

Darren

Orange Response Team

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Thanks, email sent. Look forward to your response.

 

BB


BTONBADGER vs

 

HSBC Current Account - Settled £400 and closed acccount.

Egg Loan - Settled £106.32

 

Nat West Current Account - full resolution thanks to BCOB's. Refund of £5k unfair charges and interest plus £80 compensation.

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Hi btonbadger

 

I'd be happy to look into this for you. You can contact me at customer.services@orange. co.uk by including "Darren Orange Response" in the first line.

 

Please include your username from this site and reference ORT1011, rather than the reference quoted from my previous post, otherwise your email may not reach me.

 

Hope this helps.

Darren

Orange Response Team

Hi Darren,

 

Could you please look into my complaint also?

 

I recently got back from a trip abroad to find my phone barred and a bill for £300. Rather than go into details on the forum, could you please provide me with a reference number with which I could contact you.

 

Thanks.

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Hi Darren,

 

Could you please look into my complaint also?

 

I recently got back from a trip abroad to find my phone barred and a bill for £300. Rather than go into details on the forum, could you please provide me with a reference number with which I could contact you.

 

Thanks.

....Or anyone for the Orange response team for that matter.

 

Thanks.

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Yes that sounds like orange. Charging for data through Wi Fi (Rubbish). They started charging me data for orange maps which is free. But they sorted it by cutting me off orange maps perminently (Clever) Think some of them make it up as they go along.

Good Luck.

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I've been hit with these ridiculous data charges too, I went to the South Africa for the world cup and it seems my phone was logged into certain apps ie.facebook etc and has helped me rack up in total over 3 bills £594. When i called they wont do anything about it, instead my account has been suspended and I can no longer use my phone correctly which is a pain as I use it for some work purposes too.

 

I think its something like over £8 per 1MB which is absolutely crazy, if i hadnt just taken out a 2year iphone contract with them I most certainly would be cancelling my mobile and home broadband contract with them.

 

anybody have any suggestions how i can go forward and maybe try to avoid this charge or at least claim it back at a later date?

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Well, to go forward and prevent your credit file being fried, you need to pay the bill. Complaining that 'it was the apps' really do not cut it - as it was your phone, and your apps and you took it abroad, who else could be responsible?

 

If, what you mean is "I didn't know my phone would do all this without my intervention" then coming at the problem as one of user-error, can sometimes lead to the network making an ex-gracia credit and an arrangement to pay off in stages as a measure of goodwill is at least a resolution. This and many other forums have issues like these, where it is the user who was not disabled their data settings when abroad, and they discover to their cost once the bill hits gigantic proportions. However, it is only in the EU you will have limited protection from this (a block at €50). If you were genuinely using your handset for business in SA, you would be really hacked off to find your service disrupted, simply because they thought you didn't know the charges. The networks are dammed if they do and dammed if they don't.

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Data charges are generally available through your tariff. I don't think there is a lot can be done about that.

 

Is there any update to the original post btonbadger? (ps the spellchacker tries to change your name to "bondage"... thaught you may get a laugh from that fact :p)


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

C.A.G. Toolbar

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Sorry, can't help but know how you feel. Wish someone from Orange whow knows would finaly put us straight as being charged for data through wi-fi. cause i've never heard of this in my life. If they do charge for this they're at it cause you're not using there signal. I think it's another case of making up the rules as they go along. If they do charge wi-fi data I definately would not be paying it. Good luck.

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my experience was strange. I went to Egypt ran up a massive bill without knowing it. contacted Orange and they credited it off, very pleased but was a bit strange

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We have just come back from Egypt for a week to a £2,400 bill for 287 Megabytes useage. We called Orange twice to buy bundles and both operators sold us enough to cover our usage which was completely mis-sold to us. We also left wif-fi on pemantely and had hotel access but assumed that in "dead" spots data was being charged.

We have spoken with Orange and a senior manager who insists that the charges stand. we are faberglasted by this given the fact that had we not been mis-informed re the bundles we would have bought 6 x 50mb at £61.75 each which would total £368 and not over £2300! We offered to buy teh bunldes retrospectively but they still said no - how can they do this?

 

Can someone please help as we have to keep our credit rating for our new mortgage and the money will shrink our deposit.

 

Thanks

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If you want to keep your credit rating, you'll have to pay and dispute it later. Sorry. :(


By day, computer and mobile phone technical support... by night home mechanic and Rover / MG enthusiast!

 

Cars: 1998 Rover 620ti

Computers: HP nc8430 Business Notebook, Apple iPhone 3GS 16GB

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We have just come back from Egypt for a week to a £2,400 bill for 287 Megabytes useage. We called Orange twice to buy bundles and both operators sold us enough to cover our usage which was completely mis-sold to us. We also left wif-fi on pemantely and had hotel access but assumed that in "dead" spots data was being charged.

We have spoken with Orange and a senior manager who insists that the charges stand. we are faberglasted by this given the fact that had we not been mis-informed re the bundles we would have bought 6 x 50mb at £61.75 each which would total £368 and not over £2300! We offered to buy teh bunldes retrospectively but they still said no - how can they do this?

 

Can someone please help as we have to keep our credit rating for our new mortgage and the money will shrink our deposit.

 

Thanks

 

Tricky one. Like Matt says pay in now but also write to them stating that you're only paying to prevent issues with your credit file in regard to your mortgage application and add that you dispute the charges in light of the advice you were given.

 

It may be best to pay on a Credit Card if you have one and then spread the payments over a longer period to make it more affordable if this a concern for you too.

 

 

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Its the same situation Orange is charging £264 for the data usage which occurred while travelling abroad. My mobiles data connectivity while roaming was switched off still I do not understand after 23 days of being in roaming all of a sudden I start receiving data/emails. The customer service person says you must have used the data or accessed the internet. why the hell will I do it on the 24th day. I was aware of the package but never wanted to use the data services while on roaming thats why I switched off the data connectivity feature while on roaming. I have complained to the customer service but they failed to give me a reason and say its my fault. what the hell do they think its is not always they can cheat the customer.

Somebody please advise what to do next should I ask my bank to stop the direct debit or pay for it now and fight for the refund.

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The advice to pay the bills and argue / complain later to avoid adverse details being registered on your credit file would imply that telecoms operators use the threat of registering a default to blackmail customers into paying.

 

I always feel that witholding payment whilst in dispute is generally to be encouraged. If you have paid there is no incentive for the operator to sort things out. There is always in imbalance of power in the relationship, this shifts it even further.

 

Unlike financial institutions that are regulated in the way that they apply defaults, telecoms (and energy) companies are unregulated in this respect.

 

Time for a change ... but how do we achieve that?

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The flip side is if you don't pay and it turns out the charges and bills are all correct, then your credit report says how payments were made and how timely they were. If you don't pay for 3 months whilst the issue is getting sorted and then pay up once you realize they are correct, that blot will show on your credit file for 6 years. Complain using the complaints procedure in the "Code of practice" and things generally get sorted very fast.

 

IMO the key is to be vigilant and if things do go wrong, be assertive with what you find acceptable as an outcome


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

C.A.G. Toolbar

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The flip side is if you don't pay and it turns out the charges and bills are all correct, then your credit report says how payments were made and how timely they were. If you don't pay for 3 months whilst the issue is getting sorted and then pay up once you realize they are correct, that blot will show on your credit file for 6 years. Complain using the complaints procedure in the "Code of practice" and things generally get sorted very fast.

 

IMO the key is to be vigilant and if things do go wrong, be assertive with what you find acceptable as an outcome

 

Thank you for your advise and which means that the Telecoms can play with your credit report and threat you to disrupt a clean credit report sheet????? what a shame? but even after following the code of practise they fail to reply soon.

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Thank you for your views much appreciate it. Yes it is time for change and not to be bullied by these money making companies.

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Unfortunatly that is all party of the contract you agreed to. They have 8 weeks to reply to you. If they fail to reply, you can escalate the complaint.


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

C.A.G. Toolbar

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SPOT ON. Contracts Out Common Sense IN I Pay For A Service, I don't get it, I don't Pay. SIMPLES What's wrong with that??? PS I Hear T-Mobile Now Using Orange Network,So That Sim Shall Be Binned. CHEERS SHIFAM

Edited by opti_kar
Missing Words

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T-Mobile and Orange have mearged


If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

C.A.G. Toolbar

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Hi guys,

Same here.... hired a £20 bundle and was charged £2,200 for 4 days in SPAIN......Spain is in the EU and someone mentioned £50 is the cap for the EU, can someone direct me to this legislation/rule or whatever it is? Thx.

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