PORTLAND, OREGON -- There is absolutely nothing wrong with the product, but the corporation's employees; that's another story. I am a senior citizen and I would occasionally dial 411 if I were traveling and needed directions. I did not have an iPhone. In July, this company tacked 28 bogus 411 calls onto my invoice. Thinking that there must have been a mistake, I paid only half of the invoice and called for clarification before sending in the remaining portion.
Choosing not to suffer a stroke by arguing with people who stated "Yo phone iz too old fashioned" or "we don't service dem phones anymoe", I sent in more than the amount that I owed. Consumer Cellular refused to acknowledge the check, and demanded a screen shot of my bank account "off dee internet." Each time I called, I was chided for not speaking Spanish, or, the call would be dropped, which resulted in me sending quite a few resentful emails in context. It was resolved that my service would be terminated.
A week later, it was conveyed to me that they received the second check, and then, they sent me a $3.00 credit in the mail. This month, they have sent me a bill with bogus charges from a phone, of which, its services have been terminated, and, of which, I tossed in the trash. I was told that I would be billed and obligated to them for the rest of my life and they would do "what they needed to do" to obtain the funds even if I did not owe them. These nephilim are from the pit, and I am not speaking from a pit on earth. Not everyone is a dumbed down politically correct robot.
BARKHAMSTED, CONNECTICUT -- OMG this is a good one. Ordered 2 phones and a service with Consumer Cellular. My husband didn't like his phone... called them, "Ya sure send it back and order a new one." Sent old phone back (had it for about 4 days), ordered the new one. Got it. No problem. Then out of the blues a package came in the mail. It was the old phone in a box. No package or support around the phone and a letter saying there was heavy scratches on the phone. I called them was told the shipping dept had pictures of the damaged phone. Asked them to send picture. Refused. Just received monthly bill charged me 31.95 fee to send it back to me. What is wrong with you people???
OREGON -- Beware! If you use over 5gb of data in one month which is very easy to do, they can cut off your data without warning. On the website, it warns if you use over 12gb on the website they will cut you off. I checked and myself and daughter had used only 7gb and they cut off our data right before the weekend. I work and need data for my phone to charge clients.
It was very frustrating. If you use lots of data, go with ANYONE else, choose a different provider than Consumer Cellular. They offer unlimited data anywhere else for less money. And if you try to speak with a supervisor at Consumer Cellular, you have to speak with a new one each time. Really frustrating. Long hold times recently as well.
CLAKAMAS -- Consumer Cellular shut mine and my daughter's phones off stating they were saving us from excessive charges because of many phone calls. We contacted them and they said they just wanted $10 to upgrade our data service but that there were no calls. In the mean time I was experiencing a medical emergency and could not open my security gate to let in medical help because the gates are controlled by my cellphone. I am now shopping for a new company.
OREGON -- A phone company was the best Customer service has become the worst. My husband's phone stopped working, 5 different calls, at an average of almost hour each. Finally decided to send replacement. Replacement not working, same thing. Now replacement coming. Horrible. One call, diagnostics, and then send another phone would have been a much better way to handle.
Consumer Cellular has a lot attractive features and is more flexible than some plans. Fine as long as you have no need to contact them for anything which requires actually talking to them - such as using an electronic check payment rather than credit card. For that you have to find a representative to write down the same information you have given their folks multiple times before. Credit cards can be used online - if you use electronic checks, prepare for a major undertaking.
Time required for echeck mortgage payment - under 5 minutes - phone wait included. Time required for credit card echeck payment - under 5 minutes - phone wait included. Time required for Consumer Cellular echeck payment. 5-10 minutes to get through their robo menu to get transferred to "customer service". 30 minutes of waiting through endless repetitions of 'please continue to hold the line' and robo ads, to which there is never any response or pickup.
Depending on your luck or lack thereof, then a email to these bozos asking them to call you if they want to be paid right away - add 2 days for an answer. If the request is not acknowledged, go back to 'start' and repeat this process. Consumer Cellular is a company that has an attractive product - I have recommended them early in my dealings with them - would NEVER do so again, and most especially would NEVER, EVER recommend them to an older person or someone looking after the needs of an older person.
Until Consumer Cellular my favorite 'hideous customer service' was the company which had its customer service outsourced not just to a woman for which English was not a native tongue but which had in the background
what was obviously a significant size flock of chickens. Consumer Cellular is worse - lacking, I suppose, the humor of the chicken woman working out of her place of abode. And to the person who feels negative reviews are "fakes" - you've apparently been lucky - but this kind of behavior by "our friendly [albeit non-existent]" customer service representatives is all too real.
CLARKSTON, WASHINGTON -- I have had virtually none of the issues with my Consumer Cellular account described in these bad reviews of the company. I've noticed they DO charge for weekend calls, but you get so much so cheap. I get 1500 minutes shared by 3 lines and 1.5 Gigs of Data plus unlimited texting for about $85 a month. Can't beat it with a stick. When I purchased their wonderful Huawei Ascend mate 2 phone, they automatically switched me to a carrier that didn't work well where I am, but when I called about it, they switched me back again and my phone has had great connectivity since.
I've had no problems at all with their customer service, much better than a few other companies I could mention. Makes me wonder if those bad reviews are fake, left by other companies and not real people. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND CONSUMER CELLULAR FOR A GREAT DEAL ON A CELL PHONE and their Ascend Mate 2 phone is fabulous at a really reasonable cost. Super fast and big.
PORTLAND, OREGON -- UPDATE: Some of the BAD has been corrected. See comments. I have recently subscribed to Consumer Cellular wireless phone service. This replaces my previous 6 year relationship with Nextel (Sprint). With Nextel I was paying about $77 a month for 2 phones sharing 400 minutes. I saw a Consumer Cellular ad on TV and thought I would check them out. I found few complaints against them on a quick Google search. Some of those complaints were baseless as those individuals obviously did not understand wireless billing practices.
The GOOD: I called Consumer Cellular and ordered two phones, accessories, and activation fees for $171. I received the phones two days later. I called them for activation and they ported my numbers from Nextel and I was up and running within an hour. So I now have 500 minutes shared between 2 phones for about $47 per month. And, the best part, NO CONTRACT! Their telephone customer service is located in the USA. Wait times are usually less than 5 minutes. Customer service representatives are friendly and patient. Coverage and call reliability have been good (See AT&T coverage map).
The BAD: Their online call log information is about 1-3 days behind your actual usage. It is helpful but don't rely on it to avoid going over your minutes. Their call log detail only shows phone numbers for outgoing calls. They do not show phone numbers for incoming calls. They indicate "Not Available" for ALL incoming calls. This is NOT a "Private" or "Blocked" call issue. You cannot verify any incoming calls that you may be billed for. Not a good thing.
The phones receive the caller ID as they should. When questioned about this they claim the carriers are not providing this information. Nextel (Sprint) provided both incoming and outgoing numbers without a problem. Other carriers I checked, including AT&T (which is what they use), provide both.
Another annoying characteristic is they only allow your cell phone to ring for 15 seconds before displaying a missed call message and informing the caller that you have not set up your voice mailbox. I did not want or request voice mail and told them during activation I did not want it. They did fix this but only after being called three times about it. This problem re-occurred approximately a month later.
Occasionally I get a "Call forwarding is active" message when placing a call. I have never activated call forwarding. Canceling call forwarding has no effect on this. It happens with both of the phones I have. Customer service either cannot or will not explain this but will only repeatedly parrot a script about call forwarding.
Their email support is in the toilet. They are slow in responding (if they respond at all) and are of little help when they do. They don't appear to pay attention to the details of an inquiry. Responses are generic in nature and don't acknowledge the actual issue at hand. It appears as more of a pacifier type response in hopes you will just go away.
In summary: Price is very reasonable and no contract. Customer service, while courteous and friendly, is only slightly better than other cellular carriers. They appear to help but either do not or cannot actually correct anything. Consumer Cellular is extremely poor at resolving technical issues.
DISCLAIMER: These statements are based on the results of my own personal experiences with Consumer Cellular to date. The statements may or may not hold true for any other individual or specific instance.
*** U P D A T E *** September 18, 2009. In the initial review I stated their online call log could be 1-3 days behind. Well, they have now demonstrated this information can be over 10 days old. This is also true of the information they will give you through the automated phone inquiries. Your minutes used during a billing cycle is NOT reliable. What's worse their customer service representatives are not aware of this unless you lead them by the nose to see it.
WEST BEND, WISCONSIN -- I do not like how you are REQUIRED to login to G-mail every time you want to use data. Google then has access to ALL of your contacts, usernames, passwords, who you call, private texts, doctors, and the like. Basically everything you do on your phone, Google has access to and states in the User Agreement that they sell your information to 3rd parties. We are already getting junk mail just within the week we had CC phones as explained below.
WE tried the Moto E for about a week and attempted to disable Google but then the phone didn't work properly. My husband & I both switched to an AT&T phone and do not use the data. As far as AARP discount, WE will not support such a liberal company just to save $11.00 /yr. We do not agree with AARP's political liberal choices and backing.
It is snowing today and I am not able to use my phone. There is no reception. This is the first snowstorm since we activated our service. Now it is 1 1/2 months later and we cannot get a refund. We are now looking for another company.