Upgrade woes

I would like to raise the issue I have been facing with my e-life connection from etisalat.

The matter has become extremely frustrating for me due to a lack of concrete action on the part of etisalat to resolve my issue.

I was happily enjoying an e-life double play connection from etisalat until mid-July when I received a call from an etisalat sales representative about upgrading my connection from double play to triple play for an additional Dh40 per month. I agreed on the condition that I would be getting certain specific Asian channels, which the sales agent confirmed.

The connection was installed on July 24, 2011 at my residence by their technician and I was informed that slowly I would be receiving all the channels within the package.

However, on July 28, to my utter disgust I found that some of the channels, which the sales agent had confirmed would be part of the upgrade, were not available. I immediately called up the etisalat call centre and was advised by the agent that those channels were not part of the upgrade, but a part of a different package altogether for which I would have to pay an additional Dh79 per month over and above the Dh40 which I am paying for triple play.

I felt completely misled by the etisalat staff.

I requested the agent to downgrade my connection back to double play, to which I was informed that he was helpless and that I would be required to visit a business centre to put in my request.

As I was leaving for my annual vacation on July 29 I submitted my downgrade request at their service outlet at terminal 3 of Dubai airport.

I returned from my leave on August 29, but to my utter surprise, I was not receiving any of the channels, but had been charged by etisalat for the service since the inception.

I called up the call centre to enquire on the status of my request to downgrade and was informed that no action had been taken and that the service request to downgrade was still open on etisalat’s system. I was advised to visit a customer service centre and cancel my request to downgrade before they could proceed with any other request from me.

As advised, I went to the Arabian Centre Mall service centre to request the cancellation of the pending service request on September 1. I was once again frustrated by the etisalat staff as he mentioned that they could not process my request and that I would have to visit a business centre to resolve my issue.

I once again set out to visit their Al Twar business centre in Dubai to request the cancellation of the pending service order and request an upgrade to a different package.
I was informed by the support staff that due to a pending service request, they were unable to process any request and that it would take two days to resolve the issue from the IT department’s end.

In the meantime, etisalat technicians came and took back my set top box on September 5 and the technicians confirmed to me that they would close my service request on the same day and that I would be able to request an upgrade to my desired package within 24 hours.

Since then, my numerous calls to the call centre and the customer service staff at the Al Twar centre have not led to a resolution and on each occasion I continue to be informed by the etisalat staff that the service request is still open on their system and that a reminder had been sent to the IT department to take action.

To make matters worse, during my visit to the same business centre on September 17, I was informed by the support staff that etisalat’s IT department does not work on Friday and Saturday; hence no one could process my request before Sunday.

I was shocked to hear that a technology company such as etisalat does not have a 24/7 technology support function to address customer issues. When I requested to speak to any customer service manager, I was informed that no one was available on a Saturday. So, I called up again on Sunday and was given the customer service manager’s number.

No one responded on that number even after trying on several occasions over a three-day period.

I am writing to Gulf News to take this matter up with etisalat on my behalf. I have lost complete hope that the etisalat call centre, business centres and support staff will resolve my issue. I have been an etisalat customer for more than six years from the day I landed in Dubai and feel completely frustrated at the lack of any urgency and helplessness on part of the business centre and call centre staff in addressing customer issues in an efficient and timely manner. Etisalat has lost all the goodwill built over the years in one frustrating experience.

From Mr Anuj Bhatia

Mr Bhatia responds:
Etisalat has resolved my complaint. Thank you Gulf News for your help.