Hawaii Department of the Attorney General

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Unfair Business Practice
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PAHOA, HAWAII -- As a consumer from your state, I felt it was my responsibility to bring to your attention the following incident.

I signed up for Vonage service 9/13/07, on the internet. This was the agreement I made with the salesperson. Service $24.99 a month, all long distance free, 1st month free, $52 one time set-up fee, $15.55 S/H. 60 day money back guarantee. There was one main dealer breaker for me, that was, I was told, there was no 808 area code for Hawaii, but I could choose any area code, because all long distance was free. My main concern , which I reiterated several times,throughout our conversation, what about calls on this island. I was assured, there would be no effect or difference, all calls on this island would remain the same as with my current local service. I even explained how it works here, because Vonage is outsourced to the Philippines. When he closed the deal, he tried to slip in extra charges, so I went over each detail before I agreed to service. I got set up, sales rep called, to verify service was working, told me to call people on this island, It didn't work, that's when I realized, everyone on this island would have to call long distance. I immediately said, I'm cancelling, this is ridiculous, and you lied to me. He then told me, he couldn't help me any further, call another number to cancel, at that point I felt I had no other choice, I had been duped. I called the other number, they were closed, only a recording. I disconnected equipment immediately, so I could use my Hawaiian Tel service, which thankfully, I hadn't cancelled yet.

I had to be able to receive calls, , we had a family funeral going on the next day. Once I disconnected, I could no longer get on line. It took my internet service 2 hours to undo, the changes Vonage had made on my computer. On 9/18,I finally reached customer service and cancelled, the rep told me, no problem, gave me a confirmation #, to mail along with the equipment, and told me I would get a full refund. 9/19, I receive an E-Mail, telling me they are deducting a $39.99 cancellation fee, for having to disconnect service(They didn't disconnect, I did, that same day I started.)

And that there would be a penalty, if I didn't return the equipment in the same box it came in, along with any manuals, that were included. I threw the box, when I received it, the whole thing, didn't weigh a pound, and I had to pay $15.55 for shipping parcel post, when it's free on the mainland. The point is, none of this was stated in the info I received.

As a resolution, I would like the following:

Because they out right lied to me, I definitely, think they owe me a full refund, including my shipping. And the public should be made aware of how Vonage works in Hawaii, so no one else has to go through this. I would not have taken the service, if I had been told the truth by the sales people.

Please contact me if you need more details regarding this incident.
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User Replies:
Teri B on 09/23/2007:
This is the first time I ever tried anything like this. I'm a senior, and I'm not very computer literate, so I hope you'll forgive my ignorance. I'm just fed up, with all of these companies, that take absolutely no moral responsibility, in how their employees represent them or sell their products.
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