Well, Lee, I apologise. I went off the deep end a bit. I will refrain from any personal remarks, but can you – or any others who know -- please simply explain why the change to charging any call less than 60 seconds for a whole minute was made, and how they could justify it?
If there was a debate about this somewhere or if it was covered in the media, I’d be interested to read up on it.
Thanks, Paul, for your advice. Point was that beforehand, I didn't need to worry about how much I used the phone. Now I have to watch it, call up for the balance, remember to use texts instead of calls, etc. etc. etc. which is a royal pain.
Yes, pardon my maths failure. I had 350 in my head instead of 300 for some reason.
As for not reading the T&Cs, the point is that they changed without me being informed and had I known the impact, I would have gone for another kind of contract.
Thanks to all.
ReubenR - slightly off the deep end. There is a Vodafone forum you can access from the Vodafone site where you can talk to Vodafone CS agents - they will (presumably) be more than happy to answer any contract queries. Lee is here on a personal basis and offered his advice when he didn't have to - your rant was aimed at the wrong person on the wrong forum.
Lee - your answer and follow up emails were more than helpful and I again thank you for taking the time to answer my initial query.
It is no wonder Lee has fallen silent. I have spoken to CS now, found out a little more and done some sums on my itemised bill and am frankly disgusted by the stunt that Vodafone is pulling on charging a full minute for any call of less than one minute.
I called CS and they were very helpful and got my bill reduced down to what the monthly tariff I signed up for instead of the very high bill I had received. It turns out that what I said in my first post about why I had been charged so much was incorrect. What actually happened was that someone in the billing department had miscalculated what I should pay in the period before the first full calendar month applied on the new contract, so I just been refunded about £70 all told. Result.
Much placated and grateful, I then asked the CS all about the charge-for-a-full-minute-for-calls-of-less-than-a-minute rates, and he said that when they brought in new tariffs earlier this year, there were a lot of complaints. Back then, which I didn't know because my older contract was not affected, V tried to charge the seconds over any whole minute as a whole minute, e.g. a 5 min 10 sec call would be charged as 6 mins (as Confchtr incorrectly believed the current situation to be in the original first post). Apparently, the complaints caused V to withdraw that tariff and retreat to the current position, of charging all calls of less than a minute as a whole minute.
This is pretty clever and pretty sneaky, IMO. I have just looked at my last itemised bill and of about 100 calls in a month about half were less than a minute long. (Obviously, how badly hit you will be depends on how many short calls you make -- naturally, if you never make a call of less than one minute you won't be affected).
I had 50 calls of less than a minute and each one averaged about 17 seconds. That means that for me -- and a lot of other people too, I expect -- I pay for each less-than-one-minute call for 43 seconds I didn't use.
Let's look at it the other way. I used 838 seconds in these 50 short calls, or a total of 14 minutes out of my monthly allowance. Under the new tariff, I would have used 50 minutes from my allowance, i.e. 36 more minutes off the allowance for absolutely no extra time on the phone.
If this isn't a royal rip-off, can someone come up with a better description?
Footnote: Although the new charges for calls of less than a minute came in several months ago, no current contracts were affected, only new ones from then onwards. However, from 1 October, according to the guy in my local Vodafone shop, all contracts will go to the new charging method.
sorry posted twice by accident