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Abysmal CenturyLink / PrismTV customer service

I’ve been with Sprint / Embarq / CenturyLink for over 12 years. Every time I alter my service, it’s an absolute nightmare. Only Comcast could do worse.

In early March, I decided to dump Dish Network satellite for CenturyLink’s new fiber optic based PrismTV with high speed internet bundle (referred to as their Double Play bundle). This deal was $95/mo for Premium Package TV, free DVR, free HD, 10Mb high speed internet – all with a 2-year price lock guarantee.

I previously had CenturyLink “naked” DSL with only internet service and no landline phone. This older DSL line was a 1.5Mb line. This ran me $54.80/month after my original promo ran out.

On March 20th the CenturyLink tech was supposed to arrive between 1pm & 5pm to install my new PrismTV service and 10mb Internet. At 3:30pm, I called customer support who assured me that the techs worked until 6pm and that someone would arrive shortly. Well, that didn’t happen. A phone call the next day was “Uh….. yeah, this is [name] from CenturyLink. I see we had a ticket to install Prism YESTERDAY…. Uh, yeah…. Can you meet us at the house in 30 minutes? Or did you want to cancel?”……

Really? No show the day before after I spent all day at home? I called in and someone guaranteed me a tech would show up. All they had to do was call and say they had to reschedule…. But not even a phone call. Really? Not even a simple phone call?

Fast forward to today, April 15th. I got my 1st bill. Its $240. I know that can’t be right. ½ month of Prism + 1 full month Prism + ½ month of 1.5Mb can’t be that much….. So I start examining the bill. They’re attempting to charge me a full month for the old 1.5Mb service that was disconnected 15 days into the billing cycle!
I call the 800 number and get “Daniel” who says (after 30 minutes on hold) that “they never disconnected the 1.5Mb DSL so you’re getting billed for a full month”. Well I explain, that isn’t correct – CenturyLink should have terminated the 1.5Mb service when the tech upgraded it to 10Mb. You can’t bill me a full month for DSL that was only live for 15 days. I ask if he’s going to fix this… and then there’s awkward silence on the other end for 20 seconds….


I ask to be transferred to someone with authority to address my problem. He says I need the “escalation” team / Dept. and transfers me.

But, Oops, I arrive at the “cancellation” department who apparently can’t do anything except terminate my entire account. She looks at the account and confirms the old 1.5Mb DSL is still being charged – and she says “you should pay the full month”. What!???? On what planet do you live? No. Your company failed to stop the 1.5Mb service when I was upgraded to the 10Mb service. You can’t charge me for both 1.5Mb AND 10Mb for the same billing cycle.

This service rep. read me the “notes” Daniel typed into their system for my account. The “notes” read something to the effect of “assisted customer with account”. Really, is that what you did Daniel? You “assisted” me? No reference to my being double-billed and nothing about the 1.5Mb DSL account that was still open and live when it should have been terminated? Great work “Daniel”.

So, she says “You didn’t pay your March 7th bill”. No, I reply, because I knew the original bill would have to be prorated and corrected on the April bill since my DSL service would be cut off halfway thru the March billing cycle. So, apparently now they want a $10 late fee.

She says I’ll have to hang up and START OVER to get back to the Customer Service desk…… So, I hang up and call the 800 number again….. and what message do I get….. “Sorry, we’re closed, call back tomorrow.” Seems like Daniel’s shift was about to end and he got a little crafty by transferring me to a dead end knowing that I couldn’t call back. Lucky for Daniel, I’m sure he clocked out and went home after transferring me to “cancellations”!

So, let’s review my bill.
Regular 1.5Mb DSL. March 7th bill = $54.80. This would be for an ENTIRE month’s service from March 7 – April 6.

PrismTV installed on March 21st. (It should have been March 20th but the tech. never showed up). So this would be 14 days of the March billing cycle.

Prorated PrismTV & 10Mb Internet for March 21st – April 6 (17 days), plus next month’s service from April 7 – May 6th = $176.14. This seems correct.

I should only owe $25.69 for 1.5Mb DSL from Mar. 7 – Mar. 20th, not $54.80!!!!!!!!

Mar 7 – Apr 6 = 32 day billing cycle.
$54.80 / 32 = $1.712 per day
Mar 5 – Mar 20 = 14 days; 14 x $1.712 = $25.69 (note that this is NOT $54.80)

So, essentially, CenturyLink is pissing off a 12+ year customer by telling me I should have called in to cancel a 1.5Mb DSL link when I placed my order to have this same Internet line upgraded to 10Mb. So, under CenturyLink’s thinking, I should keep paying for both a 1.5Mb line AND a 10Mb line……… And then trying to extort another $10 “late fee” for a bill that was incorrect.

I sure hope someone at CenturyLink gets this fixed before my 30 day guarantee period expires. If I’m still getting the run-around on April 18th, CenturyLink is getting booted to the curb.

Apparently a 12-year customer isn’t worth the effort. Or maybe they're competing with Comcast for a worst customer service award.