The folks from Rogers Wireless have been calling me incessantly for the past week or two. They always call twice, from an unlisted Toronto number, and never leave a voice mail.
To get them to stop, I finally answered today. As I expected, they were trying to get me to sign on to a fixed-term contract by “offering” me a brand new phone.
Except my phone works fine. Sure, the plug for the charger needs to be jiggled a bit before it works, and the exterior buttons turn the ringer off when it’s in my pocket. But I can still make and receive calls and text messages.
So I told the guy I wasn’t interested. Then he decides he wants to sell me on cool new features, but I’m happy with what I have.
I ask him if there’s anything he can offer me that would reduce my bill and keep the same features. Then he pulls out this “exclusive offer” where I get 100 daytime and 1000 evening/weekend minutes for $15 a month, $10 cheaper than my current plan (which also includes unlimited incoming calls). Knowing that I only use about 100 minutes a month anyway, I figure it’s worth it (evenings also start earlier, 6pm instead of 8pm). I tell him to go ahead.
He also gets me to change my features package for another one at the same price which gives me more text messages and has caller name ID.
But when he told me I’d have to sign on for 36 months, I hestitated. I don’t know where I’ll be in 36 months, and I don’t know if I’m ready to commit that much. No problem, he says, he can do it for 24 months instead (that’s apparently the minimum).
So in exchange for a 24-month commitment, my already cheap cellphone bill is now $10 cheaper per month, and I have more features.
So if Rogers is calling you to get you to sign a new contract, consider the following:
- If you’re happy with your phone, tell them that and see what kind of plan features you can get instead
- Ask them what they can offer you to reduce your bill instead of adding new features
- Don’t readily accept a 36-month contract. See if they’ll reduce the commitment to 24 months. (After those 24 months, you can bet they’ll be calling again to repeat the process.)
- Do a quick calculation in your head to see if it’s worth it. If they’re not offering a significant discount, don’t accept a new contract. Either get a new phone or tell them you’re thinking of switching to a new, cheaper provider.