Alltel Complaint - Cell Phone Return Policies
MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA -- I recently got a new phone from Alltel and a new 2 year contract. Unfortunately, I went through two phones looking for one that met my needs before I found one I could use. Alltel only allows one return but made what amounts to a once in my lifetime exception in my case due to my years of service and stated intention of paying $200 to cancel my contract and going down the street. This all turned out fine after a lot of hand wringing and begging on my part and being less than happy about the situation.
My complaint is this: In any other consumer product from tissue paper to large appliances, consumers can return a product that doesn't meet their needs without excessive penalties. What makes cell phones so intrinsically valuable and unique that once the sacred plastic is ripped from the packaging, they are forever soiled and unworthy of use by any other human being unless a huge discount is made? Curiously, this only extends to the consumer side of the business. On the corporate side, cell phones are free or sold at steep discounts and contracts attach to the company, not the phone. The company can also changes their lines around as necessary. I would be much happier if phones could be returned subject to a restocking fee of 10% - 25%. Anything would be better than the 100% we have now.
Oh, if you do have problems, sometimes the $200 cancellation fee is money well spent.