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Airtel — Charging for Roaming Pack Without Delivering Promised Services
I had taken the "International Roaming World Pass" for 10 days, costing Rs 4, 999 (+ taxes). The pack was to be activated on the 26th of August, after latching on to the foreign network, and included:
1. Unlimited incoming calls
2. 500 minutes of outgoing calls (India + Local)
3. 100 SMS (India + Local)
4. 1 GB of mobile data per day
However, when I landed in Dubai for my transit and turned my phone on, the Airtel app indicated that my pack was already active for over 9 hours, which makes no sense, because I took off from India only 3.5 hours prior. When I reached San Francisco, the problem had not been resolved, and it remained that way till the pack was eventually deactivated many hours before I took off from San Francisco. I raised this issue multiple times on the My Airtel App, but never got a resolution/response. But this was only an issue of timing, and not the service itself.
The much bigger issue was was I was not able to make or receive a single call throughout my trip. I had interviewed for a few jobs before I left, and was expecting calls from them during my travel. Which was the primary reason for taking an international roaming pack from my existing provider, so that my phone would continue to be reachable. However, throughout my 10 days abroad (even if the calculation was wrong on Airtel's part by nearly half a day), I couldn't make or receive a single call (Indian or locally in the US)
My wife, parents, friends and several recruiters had tried contacting me during that period. I even tried making/receiving calls with people who were standing next to me in the US, to be able to give each other missed calls. But even that didn't work throughout the 10 days! Even the data plan worked very poorly, and there were extended periods when I was struggling to use even basic features like Google Maps or Google search, because of how unreliable the service was!
I raised the concern soon after my return, and was promised a call back within 48 hours. This complaint was made to the Airtel Customer Care (121) on the 8th of September. And since then, I have followed up with them 5 times. From 19th to 24th of September, I have been calling them and reopening tickets (that they are closing as resolved, without any resolution or even attempt to contact me) each morning between 9 and 11 AM. Each of those times, I was promised a call back within 24 hours on priority basis. I even spoke to a supervisor (Ms. Archana), and was promised a follow up call within 4-6 hours. This was 5 days ago! I am yet to get any sort of a call back from Airtel.
In the meanwhile, I received a message stating that they have provided a waiver of Rs 589.88. Considering that none of the promised services worked as intended, and I was not able to make or receive a single call during the period, it is only fair that the charge for the entire roaming pack be waived off. It is not the responsibility of the customer to keep following up with Airtel over 10 times for each issue, when not a single attempt is made by Airtel to resolve the problem! And each time we lodge complaints, they keep closing the complaints, claiming that the issue is resolved. There is no way for us to even get informed about it unless we try contacting them again!
I am terribly disappointed in this service, and would like to lodge this complaint as a serious lapse in Airtel's service.
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