x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

Du phone package left me unable to make calls for several weeks in UK

Dubai resident upgraded his phone package to international, but on arriving in the UK his phone stopped making outgoing calls, while SMS and BBM also stopped. A bill for Dh2,400 worth of data roaming then arrived. Keren Bobker has the answer.

On June 30, I flew to London from Dubai. Before I left I spoke to du customer care and upgraded my phone package to international. I was told this was confirmed. After a few days in the United Kingdom my phone stopped making outgoing calls and I had no SMS or BBM service. I then found that I had been billed Dh2,400 for roaming data charges. From July 10, I was not able to make any calls, send an SMS or use BBM. I have followed up this issue with du on many occasions. Despite this I have been billed every month for their “service” and have had to pay so I could at least receive calls. In mid-September I was told by du that they had a recording of my conversation with customer service, but they had not upgraded me to the correct service as I had apparently asked for international roaming and not international BBM. I had used the same term on earlier occasions and all had been fine and I wasn’t told there was another option. I asked to hear a recording of the initial conversation but was told this wasn’t possible. In essence I had no service from July 10 until September 7. Du have not fixed this problem or given me any apology. After my last call asking for evidence of having asked for a different service in the past I heard nothing further apart from an SMS asking me to pay over Dh2,600. This was the bill of Dh2,400 plus another Dh200 for some service I couldn’t use as they had blocked all outgoing calls. SB, Dubai

I referred the problem to my contact at du, and two weeks later a spokesman for the operator advised: “In response to Mr B’s email, we are pleased to say we have investigated the matter. We have explained the details of the error to Mr B and taken immediate steps to ensure quick refund of the excess roaming fees charged. In parallel we are taking corrective steps to avoid a recurrence of such a situation in future. We would like to apologise to Mr B for the inconvenience caused.” Mr B has been given a credit amount of Dh2,040, which was issued on October 24 and this will be set against future bills. He is happy with the outcome and with the assistance provided by this column.

Keren Bobker is an independent financial adviser with Holborn Assets in Dubai. Contact her at keren@holbornassets.com