Skip to main content

Telco C credits customers who received high bills after using a ‘pre-paid’ service

The complaint
Telco C credits customers who received high bills after using a ‘pre-paid’ service
The outcome
We worked with Telco C to help it improve the information it gave customers about possible data charges

The issue

Telco C advertised a roaming service so customers could use their mobile service while travelling overseas. Customers could select the date range they wanted and then pre-pay a daily rate for all mobile calls and texts and a small amount of data each day for that period.

Some customers who signed up to this service contacted us after receiving unexpectedly high bills for excess data. They said they understood once they used up their daily data allowance the service would stop working and then reset the following day.

The investigation

When we investigated, we found the total data was pooled into one allowance, rather than becoming available each day. , Telco C charged for excess usage at often high rates. While Telco C sent data usage alerts to customers, the small amount of data meant the alerts often arrived together – and after the consumer had already used more data. The terms and conditions for the roaming service were not available on Telco C’s app where customers would most commonly buy the service.

The outcome

We worked with Telco C to help it improve the information it gave customers about possible data charges. During our investigation, Telco C credited some of the excess charges to affected customers who met certain criteria. It updated its terms and conditions and the description of the service on its website and app. And it also added a clearer explanation about how data was allocated and the cost of excess data.

Since these changes, the number of complaints to us about Telco C’s roaming service has significantly decreased.

How we've helped other customers

Complaint
Telco E sells technical support to customers who do not understand or need it
Outcome
Telco E retrained its staff about the service. It also gave customers who were signed up to the service the option to cancel without a cancellation fee
Complaint
Telco D’s advertising does not include possible costs of ‘free’ trial
Outcome
Some customers were entitled to a remedy such as ending the contract or receiving a refund