Look out for a parting gift if you ever leave DirecTV! - DIRECTV

I had been a customer of DirecTV for over 15 years from 2001 – 2016. During that time, I didn’t have all of the channels that they offer, but my bill usually ranged from $90 – 125 per month. Now, during that time, I have generally been happy with DTV. I knew their service was on the high price side, and I don’t like when the satellite and services go down during storms, even many mild ones. However, I was generally happy. However, on another related service, Internet service, I have been unhappy for years with my service from Verizon DSL. My hands have been tied with few good options. Verizon FIOS is not available after 4-5 years, satellite Internet has not been available in a major suburb just outside Washington, DC, etc. Finally, I have been told twice by the cable company in my area that they couldn’t provide service. So, I was stuck with Verizon DSL and slow Internet.

Recently, a cable installer came to a neighbor, and I explained that I had been told that cable could not be installed at my house unless the line was taken underground. That seemed stupid when I heard it last year, so I didn’t pursue it further until this year. He said that was ridiculous, and that the installer last year was just “too lazy to install it.” Now, with high speed Internet available, I could finally solve this horrible Internet issue by getting Internet cable and phone. As we all know, all of the companies try to bundle services, well, Xfinity had by far the best bundle packages, including cable TV. I made the decision that I had to have better Internet. This was a tough call since I really liked DirecTV. However, they had nothing to offer with Internet.

So, I called DirecTV to cancel my service yesterday. They tried to make a deal for a lower price with fewer channels, but as I stated, the issue was high speed Internet, and they couldn’t help with that. As I went through their process, they informed me of a $160 charge for early termination of their contract. Apparently, they say that the new installation of a DVR after several years of having an outdated one represented a new contract. I don’t recall being told that, but I am sure DTV will find something that says I agreed to it. I asked if they could waive the fee and the customer service person and his supervisor said they couldn’t.

Now, let’s consider how they have treated a loyal customer of 15+ years? If you add the fees that I have paid to DTV over the years (average of $100/month X 15+ years), I paid them over $18,000. That’s nearly enough to pay for a new car! Don’t you think they have done well on my account over the years? I was probably in the top 5% of their customers in customer loyalty. However, they need to take another pound of flesh from me before I get out the door. I don’t recall being informed of their early termination fee, but considering I was entitled to a new DVR years before that and didn’t get it, I would think waiving a fee like this would be the right thing to do. I had not been on a contract for most of my time with DirecTV. Now, they pull this out and nail me with it! Nice way of saying thanks for the $18K I have given you over the past 15 years plus!

So, my advice to you if you have or are considering DTV, read all of the fine print to every doc, including all commitments to anything they want to “give you” as a new or existing customer. Give serious thought to cable. I know it’s had a bad reputation for service, but the packages they can offer are tough to beat. So far, the picture is as good as DTV. I had a thunderstorm last night and didn’t “lose” service. The high speed Internet is wicked fast! And I have the local phone to boot! They even have home security which I can’t use right now. The DTV television is strong, but if high speed Internet is as important to you as it is to me, Xfinity, Cox, etc. looked like the best option. I even advised DTV that they need to solve this problem and offer this service in more markets. Even for those markets with satellite high speed Internet, the Internet will go down when the TV does during a storm or high wind. That is also unacceptable.

As I said, I was a loyal customer for over 15 years, and when I leave DTV, this is how they treat me? Give us another $160 and don’t let the door hit you in the a#* on the way out! Thanks but due to this experience, if this isn’t resolved fairly, I may never consider DirecTV again in the future. Thank you!

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