BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA -- The customer service I received through Vonage has been a nightmare. I am a generally calm and friendly person, but the reps at Vonage pushed my blood pressure up and they really almost got a good ol' cussin. I was blown away at how the reps treated me like I didn't have any common sense, made canceling a nightmare, and added extra fees wherever they could.
I would definitely NOT recommend them to anyone. The service was fine, but if you ever plan on canceling or moving or anything else that requires customer service, FORGET IT! It is also a principle issue: If I am spending my hard earned money with your company, I deserve to be treated with respect and not robbed by extra "fees" that were previously never mentioned. RIP OFF!!!
After reading the horror stories on the web, I admit I was ready to go toe to toe with Vonage to get my account cancelled. However, a little upfront work on your end and it is as easy as pie. I thought I would share my cancellation story and provide you with some steps to take to make sure you don't get screwed out of your hard earned money.
So, I signed up for Vonage in Jan 2009. Honestly, I can't complain about the service, never really had any issues. However, because there are much cheaper services out there, I decided to cancel Vonage today. What I thought was going to be an uphill battle, literally took my 10 minutes to do and have the email confirmation proving I am no longer a customer. Anyone looking to cancel, this is what I advise you to do.
Get into your on-line Vonage account and change your billing and shipping address to something fictitious. Also, I would advise that if you are using a debit card, you also change the billing to a credit card so you can dispute the charges if need be in the future. Once this is done, save your changes. Call 888-288-7435 (this is the # you need). After 4 rings, no hold time I got a live person. I informed the person that I am moving out of the country and the service is no longer needed. They will go through their pitch to try to retain you, I simply told them that I was transferred overseas and my company picks up my phone bill for free.
I am then hit with the $39.99 cancellation fee and then a $79.99 rebate return fee for their equipment. While I told the representative that I will agree to the $39.99 cancellation fee, I do not agree to the $79.99 return rebate fee. I simply stated that when I called Vonage to sign up for the service, I RECORDED the initial call and have a copy of it. I emphasized that I verified not once, but twice, that there would be no charge other than the $39.99 cancellation fee, the $79.99 fee is unacceptable and I am not trying to be difficult, but I have a recorded phone conversation and again, verified twice that this was the only fee. I was then put on hold and told that they needed to speak with a supervisor...
After holding for a few minutes, the representative came back on the phone, apologized for any inconvenience and then stated that I will not be charged the $79.99. I then asked how much my account would be billed and when that billing would take place. He confirmed the $39.99 and said that the charges would occur today. Now, I mentioned to change your debit card info to a credit card # through their Account Management system, this is so you can dispute the charges SHOULD they try to charge you more than what was just discussed (in this case $39.99)...
Before the call was finished, I asked for the reps name and employee ID # that handled my call. He gave both to me without any issues. I then asked for him to confirm the email address I have on file and send me an email confirming this has been cancelled. I also stated I would like another email confirming the final charge of $39.99 on my Visa. Within minutes, I had both sent to me.
So, for those of you who are having trouble or thinking of cancelling, I would certainly try this approach. I probably wouldn't recommend Vonage to anyone, not because their service is bad but between the Class Action Lawsuits and extreme difficulties many have had cancelling (with the exception of myself), I don't know if I would really like to put anyone through that. Besides, this company is losing money left and right and there are cheaper, better alternatives IMO... Best of Luck!
HOLMDEL, NEW JERSEY -- A Vonage sales representative w/o a business card or pamphlets regarding the free phones for "Vonage Whole House Phone Kit". It's a BAIT & SWITCH scam. ** the Vonage representative stated the phone kit was free and did not require Internet service for Vonage phone service, as required before.
He scribbled the phone numbers of Vonage's Customer Service to set up service and Vonage's Internet phone numbers inside the box lid, if I wanted to consider setting up Internet service. He assured that no Internet service was needed for Vonage's new digital phone service.
He also wrote a pin number on the inside lid of the box to activate my phone at home. I was skeptical as there were no written brochures explaining this "new" Vonage digital phone service which did not require existing Internet service. He stated the monthly service fee as $9.99, if I allowed monthly billing using my ATM card.
Reluctantly handing my card, I then changed my mind and asked he not swipe the card as I was not ready to decide. ** said he would not swipe my card, but held it long enough to memorize my ATM card information! He said this was a free phone kit offer and that there would be no charges made until after my phone was activated.
Although I never called Vonage to activate the account, ** later activated the account without my knowledge or consent. This prompted an unexpected ATM charge of $33.64 30 days later. After spending hours attempting to cancel the account as the service was not "used" and box unopened within the 30 days, Vonage partially refunded $29.16 and told I should be "happy" I was not charged the additional early termination fee of $120!
However, given the circumstances that the Vonage representative misrepresentations regarding the Internet, his unscrupulous use of the ATM card, (after stating he would "not" swipe my card) was a slick BAIT AND SWITCH fraudulent sales pitch to a disabled consumer unfamiliar with the world of digital technology, without access to Vonage brochures to explain the details, in writing.
The lack of a business card was the first tip that ** the Vonage sales representative was handing out "free phones" at a gas station and unwittingly deceiving the consumer despite promises of not swiping the ATM after he memorizes the ATM data after informing him of changing my mind of doing business with Vonage and the "free phone kit" offer.
Thirty days later and after spending hours with "outsourced" customer service representatives (at least four), having been transferred 3 times, conveniently losing the phone connection, a fourth call was necessary to cancel my activated phone order, and finally to obtain a partial refund of $29.16 and account disconnection without charging me an early termination fee of $120, while learning from all four customer service Vonage agents that the Internet IS required for service -- (someone at Vonage should send the memo to **).
Be sure to receive a confirmation number and an e-mail of a pre-paid postage mail label to return the Vonage phone kit. After the refund posts on your ATM, get a new ATM card ordered to protect against another unsuspecting transaction from **, the con artist, disguised as a Vonage sales rep.
HOLMDEL, NEW JERSEY -- My name is Helene ** my previous account number with your company is **. I order your services online on 7-15-08. The service arrived and the 1st box did not work. I have spent numerous amount of time troubleshooting with your technical support department. We finally go the box to work, however this was not consistent. The box then started to go into rapid error codes 3, 2, 5, 6. After about 2 weeks your technical support department determines that the box was no good and would need to send me a new one.
Well I did receive another box; and another box, please let the record show the boxes arrived the 2nd one did not work at all. The third box worked; however, it would still have to complete your reset process periodically. Well about two weeks ago the third box started to go into rapid error codes 5, 6, 2, after trying to reset and this process became unsuccessful again I called to cancel your services.
The representative that answered the phone told me that he would give me a month's credit and would I give Vonage another changes. I told the representative the service is good when it works the problem was the service did not work continuously and the fax service I order in August has never worked yet I was paying Vonage 52.94 cents a month. I explained that I would rather pay SBC or AT&T $100 for a service that I can use than to pay less for a service that never worked and I was basically wasting my money.
I have paid your company 476.46 since July for nothing. Your representative offered me a month's credit and told me to call back to speak with the advance technical support department when I made it home. I told your representative that a month's credit was not doing me a favor because I have paid you all (476.46) since July for a phone service that did not work properly or consistently and from August for a fax service that has never worked.
However, the representative promised that your level 1 technical support would not waste my time when I call back. They would give me the level 4 advance technical support department. Well when I called back on March 15th the level 1 technical support person wanted to tell me how they would need to troubleshoot with me before they could send me to the technical support department. I tried explaining my conversation with your cancellations department and the representative basically ignored me. However, as soon as I threaten to cancel again, the representative transferred the call.
On March 17th I was able to speak to your advance technical support department again. I told him if this did not work I had explained to the cancellation department that I would be canceling the service. He asked me to give him a chance to trouble shoot the equipment. We walked through every process for over 2 hours. After this point he had me to take the data cord and place one in yellow Vonage port and one end in the blue. The then asked what type of lights was on the Vonage. I told him and him then said the third device was defective and the blue port was no good.
Now he is requesting that I let him send me a new device, please note this would be the forth device that I have received from you company since July. I agreed to let him send the 4th box. When the technical support person got ready to order the box it said my account was in grace status. I became very upset about this and restated all the information you will find in the 1st part of this email.
I also was appalled that the cancellation representative did not give me the 1 month credit that he promised I would get for giving you all another chance. The advance technical support guy felt my pain and made the adjustments to send the new box. I received the new box on March 18th and called the advance technical support department. Again I was on my cell phone with your technical support department. I would like to pause and say all of these calls have been made on my cell phone. (Costing me more money) although I am paying your company for phone services.
Well, back to the matter at hand the advance technical support guy troubleshooting the new device for 1 hour and 25 min., before he told me that he was not sure and he would need to trouble shoot with Comcast. Well I am not that advance in technical support department when it comes to Comcast equipment so I told him I would need to let my son's father contact them when it got in.
He said that would be fine and would call me back after my phone charged because he wanted to do one more step. He calls back about 1 hour later and wanted me to walk through another step. I told him I was tired and he would need to speak to ** he told me okay just have him call.
** came in on Saturday and called. He spoke to the advance tech with Comcast on the phone, they troubleshooted on his cell phone for at least 2 hours, and was unable to get the box to work. ** informed the guy that I would be canceling due to none service. The technician said "Okay." I called to cancel the service on this afternoon at about 5:00 pm CST time.
I had already mailed your boxes back along with your cords and manuals under your return label with UPS. The return label was given to me because I refused to pay any more money out of my pocket Vonage. (Although your representative had the audacity to ask me again).
Anyway, I called and spoke to your cancellation representative name Ms. **. She informed me that I would have to pay for the boxes until they were returned. As you may already know I did not take this very well and she said she would speak to her supervisor to see what she could do. I asked on several occasion to get a supervisor. She kept telling me one was not available. When I refused to hang up and demanded the supervisor and the account is cancelled.
She decided she would view UPS tracking information to verify that the package was dropped off and would be in transit to your location. She kept putting me on hold and then came back and said she need to credit the charges and I would have to pay $39.99 for the cancellation fee. I was already upset and this did not help. Again, I requested to speak to a supervisor for the 5-6 times within our phone conversation. She kept telling me that the supervisor would tell me the same thing and I would have to write a letter disputing the charges.
After she completed the cancellation the charge came across as 55.94 instead of 39.99, she then said this was some form of tax on the cancellation. I informed her again I would need to speak to a supervisor, after 1 hour 20 in 05 sections, a supervisor name ** gets on the phone and tell me that he was the supervisor and how could he help me. I asked for his name and then shared my concerns.
This person should not be a supervisor. He did not say one word, he never apologized, he never acknowledge my concerns. I literally had to ask him did he not even care to speak to me because he was so quiet. He then commented he was documenting my concerns and what more did I want him to do. I told him nothing and to have a good night.
As you will see, I have duly noted all of my experience with your company. I am beyond offended that a company could be so unappreciative of its customers. Also, that you can consistently take my money since July for the phone and August for the Fax (which you will note never worked) and feel no remorse.
I would like to see my charges reverse and so some form of discipline for the lack of customer serve received. Please note phoning for less is nice when it comes with workable service and excellent customer service. Again, I believe now my Grandmother was right you get what you pay for.
Also, I asked the representative for your phone numbers, but she told me she could only give me an address. However, I Google the local office and received the following information and found other customers with similar complaints. Therefore, it appears your comment has a practice for mistreating faithful and true employees.
My experience with Vonage has been mirrored by the comments I read below and the complaints I have since found on the internet. I desperately wish I had done my homework before starting service with this company. They hands down have the worst customer service I have ever had the displeasure of being in contact with. After establishing service with this company I had numerous phone calls with their technical department due to my connection never working correctly. I repeatedly had disconnected calls.
I also found that the phone system interfered with my internet connection, causing my internet to constantly disconnect. Vonage was unable to resolve the issue, but they absolutely refused to disconnect my service without charging me a high fee to disconnect. I was told if I waited out my “contract period” (oh yes they have a contract, despite the fact they advertise no contracts!) then I would not be charged a fee.
This I did, for 6 months I kept my connection to Vonage but had to get another phone service that actually worked. So while I was not using Vonage, I was being charged for it. At the end of my contract period I again called them to disconnect my service.
That was the hardest task imaginable. They tried to refuse. They gave me such a run around that I was literally on the phone with them for 45 minutes. After finally disconnecting my service I too was charged the disconnection fee stated in other complaints, although I had been told by the customer service in my previous attempts to disconnect that I would not be charged if I waited through my contract! Vonage is a fraud in my opinion; please do your research before ever signing up with this company… I imagine it's easier to get out of jail than get out of there “service web”.
Service cancellation Vonage requires customers to cancel service by calling a toll-free number, as service cancellation is not available on-line. The direct number for cancellation is 1-888-879-1978. Customer descriptions of the cancellation process frequently involve hold times of approximately twenty-five (25) minutes, depending on call volume.
Difficulties faced by customers when attempting to cancel Vonage were detailed in a May 2006 Wall Street Journal article which related one customer's experience with a Vonage representative who refused to cancel an account unless a repair attempt was allowed by the customer.
In the last 12 month reporting period, the Better Business Bureau has closed 3687 complaints (as of Oct 2007). The balance of complaints centered on service, billing and refund issues. Despite marketing their service as having no contracts or long-term commitments, Vonage charges customers a fee for cancellation within the two years of service, changed from one year February 1st, 2007.
This fee is noted in the provider's Terms of Service when a customer signs up or attempts to access his Web Account. The fee is $39.99 per physical voice line which is disconnected. This fee does not apply to dedicated fax lines, virtual telephone numbers, or the computer-based "SoftPhone" lines. A "Rebate Recovery" fee is also assessed if the account is canceled after the 30-day, money-back guarantee, but before 180 days of service.
Different for each device, this fee is the "instant rebate" offered on the Web site during sign-up; this protects the company from having bogus accounts created and canceled shortly thereafter by scammers seeking free or discounted routers that may then be sold for profit. Vonage charges $39.99 to every customer who discontinues service—for any reason. [Citation needed]
The customer may avoid these fees if he cancels service before the end of the money-back-guarantee period, which sometimes varies between 30 days to 60 days, depending on the sign up terms and frequency of communication with Vonage Customer Service. Often, representatives attempt to retain a customer by extending the money-back-guarantee period. Upon cancellation of the account, the customer is responsible for the cost of return shipping to Vonage.
As of March 2007, the FCC maintains that Local Number Portability rules do not apply to VoIP service providers such as Vonage; however, Vonage states that subscriber numbers may be transferred to other companies per its Terms of Service (section 6.6). Vonage states that LNP transfers are handled by Focal Communications, but Focal was acquired  by Broadwing Corporation which itself was acquired by Level 3 Communications. 
Service Issues VOIP service is dependent on consistent broadband-ISP uptime and VOIP-equipment compatibility with the ISP's modem. There have been widespread reports of difficulty in operating Fax machines on Vonage lines, either dedicated Fax lines, or regular Vonage lines. Difficulties have also been reported with residential alarm systems and TiVo. [Citation needed]
When using a fax machine, it is suggested that users connect their fax directly into the VoIP adapter, regardless of the provider. This ensures the fewest variables in a specific network setup. In addition, users should ensure that an "Error Correction Mode" or "ECM Mode" is disabled on their fax machines as this compounds problems and distortion regarding the compression, decompression, and transmission of data communications through a VoIP provider.
Also the "Baud Rate" should be lowered to no more than "9600". When faxing the fax should be set to "Standard" instead of "Photo or Fine." It is important to note with faxing that your internet connection more than Vonage really dictates if you are going to be able to fax consistently. There are also settings on the device such as codecs, jitter buffer and rx tx gains that can be adjusted to improve Vonage faxing. All these things combined make faxing with Vonage close to faxing over a landline.
Vonage suggests that customers contact their local home alarm system operator to determine whether their existing home alarm solution is compatible with any VoIP provider. Vonage does not make specific recommendations about security systems.  However, Vonage does specifically mention alarm.com as being compatible because it uses wireless technology rather than depending on a phone line. 
TiVo's Series 1 units contain only telephone ports to connect to a wall jack. Series 2 and Series 3 hardware contains an ethernet jack, and optionally supports USB-based WiFi adapters, which typically do work properly with VoIP providers. At one point, the initial connection made by the TV unit required the use of a regular telephone landline prior to use with a broadband connection, but this limitation was removed in 2005 with TV version 7.2.
Vonage's Technical Support states that their phone system does not work with alarm systems. They did state that it is sometimes possible to get a Brink alarm system to work with their system. It is most important to make sure your alarm system will be able to call out to fire or police before switching over. Additionally, Vonage installs under a two-year contract, wherein cancellation within that time period results in $150 or more in fees.
ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO -- Today 8/5/2015 at 3:46 PM MST I was finally called by VONAGE 732-332-2100 AFTER I had already tried to work with Vonage on these issues since 7-30-2015 and I finally had to tell Vonage that all contact MUST go through IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov since they would not work with me - just sending the exact same information over and over again. I was not home but message left on vm.
Why is it that the only way that Vonage will want to work with anyone is only after the customer has been forced to file complaint with IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov? Why will Vonage not work with someone before it becomes necessary to file complaints with IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC. gov? Why is it that Vonage will call to work with someone once they have filed with IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov but not until? I feel that is not only offensive, but planned by Vonage! How much is ignored so that the customer becomes frustrated and gives up? How many people has this been done too? What kind of profit can be made that way by any company?
Vonage would not work with me each time I asked them too, only giving me a BS explanation for ABUSE, so I finally told them that all contact on these issues MUST go through IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov... NOW Vonage wants to talk with me. NOW Vonage wants to work with me BUT NOT UNTIL I have had to file with IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov! Now Vonage wants to work with me BUT NOT UNTIL I have finally given up with all the BS and told them that all contact must go through IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov! I feel that too is abuse of customer since the only way to get help is to file with ic3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov!
I had wanted Vonage to work with me on the call issue problem, THEN I also wanted Vonage to work with me on the abuse by member of Executive Response Team stating "We don't" which in all my years of customer service has meant "We done bro - don't bother us no more" and the BS response I got was that an apostrophe in the middle of the message caused a glitch in the email system. In my 3 years as Professional Technical Support I never saw that happen to date! It as a BS excuse PURELY to get away with customer abuse!
First Vonage advertised for service 9.99/mo with phones! Vonage advertised, "call or go online". I went online! The service was set up but the phone was not sent. When I tried to call Vonage the 3 calls were answered by 3 different people whose English was so bad and broken they could not understand me. Those 3 people just shut me down and told me "Too bad!" Vonage would not help until I filed with IC3.gov, FCC.gov and FTC.gov for FALSE ADVERTISING. ONLY then when I filed with IC3.gov, FCC.gov, FTC.gov did Vonage want to work with me, but not until!!! response Vonage.com #**.
When I first signed on with Vonage they mailed 2 modems to my business. When I tried to install the system through their instructional CD it would not operate. When I called Vonage for help I told the representative I had 2 modems. She responded saying "no ma'am you have 1 modem per their records." I assured her I did have 2 modems and needed 2 modems as I have 4 lines and 2 business phones. I was told I am mistaken and apparently need a tech to come over and set up my system.
I was also informed that Vonage offers the first service call free and if I needed anything that required an on site tech in the future I would be billed $100.00. I stated there is confusion on their end and it would be validated when their tech came to my business. The first tech arrives and is absolutely clueless. He actually asks ME the customer why I have 2 modems. After staying 30 minutes or so he states he will request another tech come to my business because he cannot understand why both my phones will not operate and why I have 2 modems. He leaves the Vonage wiring looking like a spider web and leaves.
Another week passes and a second tech comes out that states I must have 2 modems to run 4 lines and implies I am the one that made a terrible mess of the wiring to my computer. He does make the phones operate and leaves. I call Vonage stating they need to record that I still have a free service call because I only needed a tech due to the confusion on their side.
Through the month of December 08 and January 09 my phone system is out most of the time. People would call. The phone would ring on their end but not mine. There were 3 weeks I had no service at all. Phone's dead. I call for an on site tech because every time I called the phone techs would state my system was working because their computer said so...
I took a week to get an appointment. They told me the tech would be there between 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM. The day arrives and as my luck would have it my Comcast Internet goes out at 6:30 that morning due to construction in my area. I call Vonage after speaking with Comcast at 7:00 am to cancel my appointment. I was told by a tech that due to circumstances beyond my control (they cannot work on the lines without Internet duh) they would not charge a cancellation fee of $50.00 for not giving 24 hour notice on an appointment that is free...
I also included that I could provide verification from Comcast if needed. Fast forward to March 13th. I see my online banking account has been charged by Vonage $50.00 2 months after the fact. The bill also has no explanation for the charge. I write to CS (we all know what calling in entails) and explain the situation. They repeat over and over that it is a charge for no 24 hour cancellation.
I would ask questions like (why did you wait 2 months to bill my account after you told me you would not charge my account?). They would ignore the question and repeat themselves over and over. My response from their CS Rep had many misspelled elementary level words as well as bad English.
PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA -- I signed up for Vonage back in December of 2006 I researched them for a little while and thought it was a better deal than Comcast at the time. So I went on the Vonage site and signed up. During the signup there is an authorization you had to authorize Vonage to roll the number from Comcast to Vonage. Standard practice between phone companies; what the authorization says is me the verified owner of the number authorizes the new company to take the number. This is an FCC law which allows me the consumer to move to which ever phone company provides better service and/or pricing without losing my number.
Vonage told us not to contact the current carrier because it could delay things and that the transfer will go through without a hitch. I did not have to contact Comcast and terminate because they wear already informed of the transfer. The number took about 7 days to become active on the Vonage service. After a couple of months my wife decided that she liked Comcast better and to avoid an argument I agreed to switch the number back. Since I wanted my own phone number and I liked the idea of Vonage VOIP service for my office I decided to add an additional number to my Vonage account before she switched our primary number.
So we did everything in reverse, we contacted Comcast and authorized the move of the number back and waited. They told us not to contact the other carrier because it could delay things. The number switched in about 10 days and everything seemed fine. Here is where it gets weird. I wasn't paying attention to the email about the Vonage invoices and just assumed everything worked as smoothly as when we switched to Vonage. Well about 2 days ago I looked at one of the Vonage bills and noticed that they were still billing me for both numbers.
I thought it was a simple clerical error and that they would rectify it. So now they admitted they know it's ported, they don't run it and yet they still billed me for it. So at this time I'm a bit angry because the logic is escaping them. They are charging me for a number they don't own and are aware they don't run. What's so hard to understand? Simple right? Wrong! I called them and got on the phone with their rep, and she said she needed to verify who I was to cancel. I kept my cool and answered her questions. She then came to the big question "Why are you canceling?"
Trying to be mature about this I explained to her the entire situation that although the number has been ported, they know it's ported, they were notified it was being ported, they did the porting, what's the point of calling you if I already authorized the porting? Crying out loud they already received my authorization through my new carrier. It's not like I'm still waiting for them to move it, nor have to authorize Vonage to let it go. It's already moved by my authorization that I gave Comcast.
She then paused, and said "well what I can do is credit you 50.00 or half the amount of the incorrect billing if you stay." I responded with, "why should I lose 50.00 of the 100.00 you robbed from me for? You incorrectly kept billing me for 4 months and now you want to keep 50.00 of the 100.00 that you should not have taken?" I said "no I want it all and if you cannot credit the correct amount terminate the account and I will deal with this legally."
She puts me on hold for 10 minutes and returned to say "are you sure you want to cancel?" I said "unless you credit me the entire amount that you incorrectly billed me for, yes terminate the account." To my amazement and utter shock she said that "there will be a 39.99 early termination fee for each phone number." One of which the they don't own and haven't owned for 4 months now. I responded with "this is going be the best legal and news story ever. Have a nice day."
So I am now in the process of filing paperwork with my attorney, credit card company, FCC, and every news outlet that will hear me. I think they have scammed thousands of customers on bogus policy that says you have to contact us for a roll over, when you have already contacted and authorized the new carrier to speak in your behalf. It's absurd and I bet if you look further into this I bet there will be a lot of 24.99 over billings they have over charged people for. This is not about the money with me.
At first my internet company did not offer bundled phone service, so I signed up for Vonage. I believed the funny ads -- well, the fun stops with the ads. I was given one month during which I could cancel. I called a couple of days too late, and explained that I was out of work and my wife's unemployment insurance had ended, and I just didn't have the money. I worked my way up to a supervisor, but not one bit of compassion. They stuck to the contract.
I was stuck for a one year contract at $12.95 per month which somehow ends up being $18 per month. I asked what if I canceled, and they said that the cancellation fee was such-and-such. It ended up being exactly as much as paying for the entire contract year. So, I could refuse to pay, and get my credit dinged; or I could pay the cancellation fee and not get phone service; or I could complete the contract and have phone service for a year. I opted for the last option.
During this time I was able to receive calls OK, but the people could not understand me. I had to repeat and repeat and repeat myself, because they could not hear all of the words I said. My favorite part of Vonage was that about half of the voice mails I received (I don't know why it wouldn't do it with all of them) were transcribed and sent to me as emails. This is a wonderful service, and it did a fair job of transcribing, even of people with foreign accents who left messages.
But that wasn't enough, and now my one year has ended, and I'm terminating the service. So, I asked Vonage if they will place a hold on my Vonage phone number, or if I can transfer the phone number to my cable TV provider without a penalty. No penalty. I figure, I'm good to go. I call my cable TV company, I get set up for the tech to come out and set up the hard-line phone (another big disadvantage of Vonage is that if the internet service goes out, so does the Vonage phone, and I want to be able to make phone calls even when the Internet isn't working).
And I ask if they will transfer the Vonage phone number. No problem. Then later in the call the customer service representative says, "Whoops, the phone number Vonage gave you is not a phone number from your community. So you need to get a whole new number." So that, I figure, is the last low-life effort of Vonage to keep my Vonage account -- I will lose all those callers who have my Vonage phone number.
If Vonage (1) didn't have a mandatory one year contract -- that doubles in price after the first year, by the way, and if you don't cancel in time, you're stuck with each successive year, or a cancellation penalty equal to a whole year's service (2) had better clarity on outgoing phone calls and (3) had better transcription of voice mail messages, 100% of the time instead of 50% of the time, I'd stay. But I'm bailing.