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Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’

So having a mobile phone on a plan has never been so financially draining and difficult before I signed this contract with Optus.

I don’t feel like I have been taken seriously at all through customer service, wether it was me calling up to complain or going to a Optus branch myself.

I rented an iPhone 8, over a period of 2yrs paying off the phone while paying for the service at the same time, ($60 a month) and sadly I’ve probably only paid $60 a month maybe 3-4 times, every other time has been over $60.

I contacted Optus to l tell them to stop adding an extra 1GB for $10 after I run out of my plans data (5GB) about a YEAR ago, I found it problematic in the first place because every time a warning message was sent to me from Optus saying that I was low on data, I was already out of data and the messages were so badly delayed that it was useless, most of the time I’d get 2-4 messages IN A ROW with the first one saying that I was low and the last one saying that another $10 had been added to your monthly bill. It was bizarre to me because it would happen to me Every. Single . Month. And the worst part was that I usually did not use my phones internet outside my home which meant that not only has changing to an iPhone 8 through Optus had been so out of control I was paying for data I didn’t even realise I was using, ive called up about this too and I’ve been told “as things develop more and more data is being used in your phone on a daily basis” and yet I still did not understand how I was using up 5GB every month PLUS a few $10s and $20s on top, it just did not make any sense, even till this day I am confused.

So about halfway through the first year I contacted Optus to stop adding $$$$$$ on to my data Every time I “run out” and they told me “after the call it would be turned off”

A year later it’s still happening, I’ve called another additional 2 times to tell you guys to turn it off, and this morning I saw a bill for $99.

But it gets worse!!! 🙂
I dropped my phone at work about a few months ago and it completely died, nothing I can do to recover or fix, I told Optus that I had broken the phone but since I had already paid waaaaaaaay more than I should’ve (probably about $2000 over the year from “using up my data”, paying way more than $60 a month obviously if you do the math) so I should maybe have to not pay off the phone.

They told me that the fee was $700 and the cancellation fee was like $150 on top or something along those lines. And I just walked out not knowing how this could be possible.

I’ll be calling up for the final time today about my account to see if anything can be done, but as soon as I either pay it off (I won’t by choice) or they actually help me with my situation I’m out for sure! Gonna go buy a cheap plan Sim with probably twice the amount of data and a naked phone so I won’t be shackled on to a DREADFUL experience!

Thanks Optus!!
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Moderator
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Re: Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’

Hi Gmori3,

Thanks for reaching out to us here and for sharing a detailed description of what's happened. 

We do apologise for the runaround you've had when looking for assistance with your excess data usage and damaged device.

We'd recommend checking your data usage. You can also track your data usage via the Data Breakdown that's available on the My Optus App. You can also check out our tips for managing data usage

With regards to your Leased device, our Leasing plans (My Plan Flex) offered a way for customers to pay around $10 less per month when comparing it to a regular plan (My Plan Plus). It also offered an option to upgrade your handset and plan after completing 12 months of your Lease by paying a $99 Flex Upgrade fee and returning the handset back to us in good working order.

If the phone is damaged, damage fees are applicable should you wish to return the phone in this condition and would have been started on your contract or CIS when it was signed.

If you’re still needing a hand, we recommend messaging us via the My Optus App. The team is available 24/7 and are ready to assist customers as quickly as possible.
If for some reason you’re unable to, if you have a social media account, please then send a PM to Optus on Facebook or a DM on Twitter with the details for further assistance mentioning you’re unable to use the My Optus app.

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New Contributor
New Contributor

Re: Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’

Well thanks for the recommendation on checking on my data usage! Will be contacting telephone obensmen today to share my experience! 🙂
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Re: Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’

We're sorry we left you feeling this way, @Gmori3. In regards to lodging a complaint with the Ombudsman, I can raise this on your behalf. From there, your case will be referred to our Customer Relations Group (CRG). 


Please note that we’re unable to look into account details on Yes Crowd. Please send a Private Message to the official Optus Facebook or Twitter page for further assistance.

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Re: Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’

The ombudsman will be of little assistance Gmori3. They are concerned in cases where the contract you entered into has not been properly followed. In your case Optus has fully fulfilled its obligations.

Its telling though that the experience you've had is actually exactly the way Optus has designed its plans to work. You unfortunately sighed up to one of the most inflexible and punishing plans any Telco has released (ironically called the FlexiPlan)

I've long advocated Optus drop its $10 excess data usage fee or at the very least provide a way to opt out or turn it off etc. Optus usage notifications are very unreliable and there's no reason for Optus to make them more reliable given they get paid $10 every time they stuff up. There's also no technical excuse why customers should't be able to limit data - Optus manage to track and cut off prepaid users data to the kilobyte.

Bottom line is there has never been any way to stop Optus topping up your data (the agent who said otherwise was just lying to get you off the phone)

As for the leasing plan you signed up to, yes it was a very bad deal. For about a $240 discount ($10 a month) you gave away all rights to owning the phone. You were obligated to pay for it (and the plan) fully for the entire 240 months with no exit option. The phone must be kept in excellent order and handed back as such after 24 months. Optus would be the sole arbiter of its worth and condition.

Optus discontinued these plans almost overnight last year when it became apparent just how many people hadn't understood what they were signing up for (they thought it was just a phone plan). There was a concern sales staff had possibly mislead a few customers and Optus themselves had quietly switched the default "Buy a phone & plan" to an almost identical "Lease a phone and plan" web page.

So you may have some luck with the TIO if you believe you were mislead or not properly informed. I would first start with a written complaint to Optus (to get a official complaint number). Tell them you will hand the phone back as is but do not want any further charges of any kind. They should respond and then take that to the TIO to see what they can do.

Good Luck. I can say that there are a lot of good 1yr prepaid plans out there that offer things like an average 20Gb a month for less than $25.

NB Unfortunately Apple don't believe in helping customers limit data usage either. There is a single usage counter you can manually check and reset (I do suggest you do that at the start of any period of data usage, e.g. once a month). Android phones have a built in option to set warnings and cuttoffs at user defined limits as well as auto reset the count each month. I wouldn't use an Optus plan without have that in place.

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Respected Contributor

Re: Hey Optus, Thought I’d complain about my scaring experience with you guys’


@Gmori3 wrote:
So about halfway through the first year I contacted Optus to stop adding $$$$$$ on to my data Every time I “run out” and they told me “after the call it would be turned off”

This is the only ray of hope in your situation. The fact that they told your that they would turn off the extra data charges should give you a great chance of getting all (or at the least most) of your data charges since that time refunded. Hopefully there will be enough credit there to pay off the phone and even return some money to you.

Please let us know how it all turns out.

 

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