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4 posts

Wannabe Geek


Topic # 119717 11-Jun-2013 10:57
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Hi all,

I thought I'd post a warning to existing customers of Orcon as there is a very sneaky hidden bill you can get charged for when moving house.

Background:
I am an existing customer of Orcon since 2005. I am on the $99 / 200GB Orcon Genius plan.  When I recently moved house, I called up Orcon to get set up in the new place.  I was directed to the help-desk in the Philippines (what happened to the great local help-desk?!!) and the guy sorted it all out for me and we got connected within about a week.  

All was well until I received my bill for $200 for the last month.  I checked the statement and it had a charge for excess of 50GB charged at $2 per GB.  I checked my usage over the past 30 days - I had done 11GB for the current data cycle in the old house, and 189GB in the new house - right on 200GB.

I called up credit services and got redirected to the Philippines again - and the girl explained to me that because I moved house and there was 1 week without internet access, Orcon doesn't bill for the full month - they bill PER DAY.  Also, your data cap is calculated PER DAY and adjusted accordingly.  So in effect, I ended up with only 150GB data allowance for the last 30 days, even though Orcon did charge me the full $99 for the last billing period.  

On top of this, the online system Orcon provides the customer to check their monthly allowance - i.e.. the homepage, and the txt notifications, did not exceed 200GB - and it actually showed my plan was still eligible for 200GB. 

I queried this with the help-desk and the lady said the change in billing should have been explained to me over the phone when we moved house.  I said it was not, and a request was logged to retrieve the phone conversation recording.  She advised it would take 10 - 14 working days.  I called back the next day and asked to speak to a supervisor as 14 days is too long to resolve a dispute.  I was told someone would call me in 2 days.  I then logged a billing dispute via the Orcon website - which I haven't heard from since.

2 days later I've had no call back so I called again and was told that the supervisor listened to my call and I was told to read the term and conditions on the Orcon website, so I am responsible for these charges.  After about an hour back and forth on the phone, I decided I am not getting anywhere and wanted to speak to someone in NZ.  All home based phone numbers listed on the Orcon website, even for disputes, went to the same help-desk in the Philippines.

This morning - about 10 days later, I finally get a call from Orcons credit services and the gentleman tells me Orcon has decided to reverse the charge on the excess data on a goodwill, one-off only basis. 

To conclude, when you move house, or have another billing dispute, expect that:
- There are no more local people you can talk to if you have a problem
- Be prepared to make multiple calls and spend literally hours on the phone
- As a customer, you have no access to a more senior person other than the helpdesk in Philippines.  I only mention this, as when I used to work at the Wave ISP helpdesk, we could easily transfer a customer to the Boss at the time and he would happily help out.

That all said and done - Orcon does deliver good service on a technical level.  I am happy with the actual internet service and will remain a customer for now!

Cheers, 
A.


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304 posts

Ultimate Geek
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Vocus

  Reply # 834119 11-Jun-2013 12:44
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Hi Legere,
Firstly apologies for all the hassles you have had. Your experience highlights an issue we were actually discussing here yesterday. We are looking for fairer ways to do partial monthly billing (including moving address). Nothing to report ATM, but it's on our radar. Do let me know if you need a hand with anything else.
Best,




Head of Brand and Communications
Vocus NZ
[Slingshot, Orcon and Flip]


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 834601 12-Jun-2013 08:59
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Be aware also that the per day calculation of data cap applies when increasing your cap, which can result in overusage charges despite a theoretically larger cap. Attempting to dispute this failed for us, i'm glad you got a good result.

 
 
 
 


BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 834609 12-Jun-2013 09:22
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This is not different from how other ISPs work.

An example: if you are on Vodafone cable 100GB and swap to 150GB cable on the 27 day of your cycle you do not have an extra 50GB to use in three days. You actually have 15GB to use based on 150GB / 30 days * 3 days. If you go ahead thinking "Yay, 50GB!" you will end up paying an excess of 35GB.




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 834614 12-Jun-2013 09:38
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The problem as I see it is that Orcon charged the full $99 for the part-month while pro-rata'ing the cap with respect to the days of active service. At least that was what I read has happened.

While I'm sure this is in the Terms and Conditions, as well as the Terms and Conditions of other ISP's, and you were told to read the Terms and Conditions on the website, it doesn't seem like a very nice way of doing things to me.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 834616 12-Jun-2013 09:47
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When the new cap is applied part way through a month it's a surprise to have it billed day by day and not against the total month.

Eg 7GB usage in the first 5 days of a 30GB cap was 2 GB over. When shifting to 60GB the total cap for the month was 57.6GB prorated. As the total usage for the month was less than the total cap it was surprising to see the over-usage applied against the few days at the start as the total for the month fell well below 57GB.

Edit: Sorry for going O/T here, it seems like the same billing problem surrounding a different usage case.


BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 834618 12-Jun-2013 09:48
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I read again but didn't see if there was a full month charge.

Remember though, most ISPs charge monthly in advance and excess in arrears. They usually charge a full month for the new connection or plan, then credit the unused part of the old plan.

Sometimes changing plans come with a surprisingly bigger bill than normal if you don't plan it right.




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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 834631 12-Jun-2013 10:03
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Could something be done to the way these caps are advertised - that they are daily rather than monthly allowances that are averaged over a billing cycle. I wouldn't blame someone being confused, given they are advertised as monthly and the billing cycle is monthly therefore any day to day breakdown is perceived as irrelevant  and confusing by the customer.



4 posts

Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 834640 12-Jun-2013 10:17
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Hi all,
Thanks for your replies and suggestions to ISP's to make the charging more transparent.

I think also on a technical level, the data usage meters should be linked up to their system in a way that it accurately displays a customers data allowance for the remainder of the billing cycle.

In my case, the IT system told me I had 200GB, which does not match up with their accounting system allowing me only 150GB.

Cheers


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