Get me out of plan

I signed up for the etisalat Family Pack with 5GB of shared data, back in October 2014. The service was good up until January 1, 2015.

In the morning of January 1, I received a message, stating that I had fully consumed my 5GB data package and that I will be charged outside my data bundle. I felt something was off since the data allowance should reset at the first of every month and there is no way I can consume 5GB of data in the morning, considering that I was connected to the home Wifi the whole day.

I called 101 and filed a complaint, but I had no resolution. I kept getting billed for the family pack, Dh29 for each of the three numbers signed up, and Dh299 for the 5GB data. To get out of data charges, I had to sign up for another plan for myself and my family, while I waited for them to sort out their “technical issues”.

The issue persisted month after month, with no resolution and no update for weeks. In March, I filed a complaint with the Telecommunication Regulatory Authority (TRA) for the same issue with etisalat. Etisalat finally responded saying that the issue had been resolved, the data had been reset and that I would be refunded Dh598 for the two months when I was not able to enjoy 5GB data. They also said that they would not refund me for the Dh29 x three mobile numbers that I paid for, for two months, citing that I have enjoyed the other benefits of the family pack. This is not the case. I get free call time for the numbers because I applied for another plan for the numbers to avoid out-of-data charges. In any case, out of frustration, I did not bother claiming the contested amount and just asked for a guarantee that the issue would not happen again. I was told that everything is sorted out and it wouldn’t happen again.

However, on April 1, the same thing happened. My data did not reset. I filed a complaint immediately with etisalat. This time, I was very specific with my request: cancel the entire Family Pack service and make sure I do not get billed for the same in April. A day after filing the complaint, I got a message saying that the complaint was being closed, because it was not correct and that another complaint was being raised. Then, I received another message, saying that the newly created complaint was also closed. However, when I checked my account, the family pack was still active and the data was still fully consumed. So I called 101 and they told me they could not cancel the service. I had to send an SMS request to cancel it, which I did. Again, even for the SMS request, I had no acknowledgement of receipt and no confirmation whatsoever that the service was or will be cancelled. I have been constantly working with 101, spending so many hours since January, for the same reason, and I just want out of the useless family plan.

I have exhausted all possible channels to no effect. I am hoping this will make a difference. Hopefully, this will also raise awareness for those who are considering to opt in for this service from etisalat. Please help.

From Mr Adrian Dizon


The management of etisalat responds:

Kindly note that the customer’s issue was resolved.

Complaint description: The customer claimed that he didn’t get the benefits of the family package from January to April 2015, and that he was getting charged regularly.

Final outcome:

1. Dh897 has been refunded for January, February and April.

2. For March, the customer was using the service partially.

The customer has been contacted, updated and is extremely satisfied.

Mr Dizon responds:

Thank you very much Gulf News, for the assistance. Yes, I confirm that the issue has finally been sorted out. The problematic package has finally been cancelled. Yes, I did get the refund amount as stated for the months of January, February and April. However, for March, where I was able to use the package partially, approximately for the past 10 days, there was no compensation whatsoever. I was contacted by the service representative from etisalat regarding the partial service, and they said that I would be compensated by 100 free international minutes and 50 free international text messages for the next three months, and the service would be activated in 48 hours. It has been weeks now and it has not happened yet. However, I just cannot accept their statement that I am ‘extremely satisfied’. I am more relieved that the issue is closed and I no longer have the recurring problematic package in my account. Gulf News has been a great help! Thank you very much.

(Process initiation: April 28. Response from organisation: May 7. Reader confirmation: May 16.)

Editor’s note: Do you have similar issues that you would like to raise with us? You can write to us at