Friday, October 17, 2008

Getting Rid of My Asurion Cell Phone Warranty Through TMobile

I was looking at my cell phone bill when I noticed something a little odd - instead of the $3.99 extended warranty charge I expected, there were two charges, one for $2.13 and one for $2.80, for a total of $4.98. That just didn't make sense, so I called customer service.

After a lot of going round and round and the customer service person having to do a lot of checking since he wasn't quite sure what was going on either, it turns out that Asurion had recently had a price increase for some parts of the country. Apparently here in Michigan we destroy a lot of cell phones because it went from $3.99 to $5.99. This change happened in the middle of my billing cycle, hence the two charges.

Now, normally I am not a big fan of extended warranties, but I did the math - $3.99 a month would run me $47.88. My cell phone is more than that and currently my only phone - I gave up my land line. It still probably wasn't my wisest choice, but I was feeling a bit nervous and they got me - score one for them. Anyway, $5.99 is not such an easy pill to swallow. Now we are looking at $71.88 a year. Are you kidding me? You don't think I could replace a cell phone for less than that???

I'm sure they made the change thinking that few people would even notice - I mean what is another $2.00 on their bill, right? And hey - prices go up all the time! But I have to be honest, I hate that kind of thing. I don't often get angry, but this just gets under my skin. While I remained polite to the young man helping me, I was very firm - remove the warranty - NOW. He agreed to do so, so we will see what will happen on my next bill.

I used to work in the insurance biz and while I am not an accountant I understand how it all works. It makes sense to have insurance if you cannot cover the cost yourself. Take life insurance, car or health - no one wants to write those kinds of checks if something happens. To me extended warranties usually are a scam, but occasionally they do make sense. I currently have one on my furnace and hot water heater because as a landlord, I cannot afford to have those go out.

I'll be sure and report next month whether the warranty was actually removed. I don't have a whole lot of faith, to be honest. Maybe I am just jaded because my experience with customer service folks over the phone has been a bit shoddy over the years - however, I have to say that TMobile has always been good to me in the past so I really hope this will be another example of why they were the right company to choose.

Now... just watch my cell phone break tonight....

Poor broken phone photo (Bet he wished he had a warranty) by: shazam791


Anonymous said...

Hey Dawn!

I don't blame you, you can get free cell phones all the time by extending your contract or signing on with a new provider. Most of the time we don't go for the extended warranty on things. Good job checking up on it :)

Catie said...

It makes me irate when charges like that get added without notification. It's the shady cousin to "bait-and-switch" and it tends to turn me off the provider for good. Good for you, catching that.

And ya know, if you put that $5.99 aside every month, you can afford a new cell phone if needed and if not you keep your money.

Budgets are Sexy said...

now, *normally* i would be like way to go! but, you see that picture you just posted on this post? well, that's literally what happened to my phone this weekend - it broke in half...

not sure if you're like me, but this is the second time i've broken my phone in 8 months (all being my fault). and was i happy that i have that Asurion plan!

both times i got a brand new phone, and it cost me $0.00!

that being said:
a) i am more clumsy than others
and b) i don't pay for my phone plan (word does).

So, everyone's different :)

Dawn said...

Mare - Thanks! I was glad I did - every little dollar helps after all!

Catie - I was thinking the same thing, and frankly there are so many inexpensive phones that will suit me just fine that I am not particularly worried about it.

Budgets - Oh no! I've actually not had many cell phone problems. I am pretty nice to mine. (knock on wood!!) If work was paying for it, I would be more tempted for the warranty, but since it is coming out of my tight fist, I think I'll skip it and just cross my fingers!