Dear T Mobile,
My name is Jaime, I am a Virtualization/Cloud Solutions Architect and have worked with telecommunications technologies for 20 years. Recently, I decided to switch to T-Mobile. Unfortunately, my experience has been a nightmare. I hereby request compensation for my time and inconvenience, as explained below.
On Tuesday, February 13, 2018, I spoke to a nice CSR named Trevon. He was helpful transferring my service to T-Mobile and overnighting four SIM cards. I told Trevon that I was going to activate 4 devices: 2 unlocked iPhones, another iPhone that I did not know if it was locked or unlocked, and a Galaxy Note 8 under contract with Verizon. Trevon said that it would be no problem and explained how to proceed with the Verizon device.
On Thursday, February 15, I called T-Mobile to activate the phones with the new SIM cards to my new network. My call was directed to the Philippines. I tried to explain what I had discussed with Trevon to the Filipino CSR, who became confused and told me that I needed to go to a physical store.
Inconvenienced, I went to T-Mobile store 5387 (Pentagon City Mall, Arlington, VA) and was very unhappy with the poor customer service. I initially spoke with Julio, who stated that the SIM cards were no good and needed to be replaced. Incredulous, I asked to speak with the manager, James, who concurred and said the activation process would take 30-45 minutes.
Neither Julio nor James was very knowledgeable; therefore, I stepped out to call T-Mobile to confirm. Within 30 minutes, I spoke with eight CSRs, none of whom could help. The CSRs requested a PIN, which I never received. Desperate, I went back into the store and agreed to the activation. However, I became concerned when James used the same SIM cards he had told me were no good. I initially entered the store at 12:27 pm and left at 3:50 pm—after almost 4 hours of poor, humiliating customer service.
When James reassigned the numbers that came with the SIM cards to my export phone numbers from AT&T, he carelessly wrote them all WRONG! He said it could take up to two hours for the numbers to be ported to the new network. He told me about the BOGO promotion that supposedly ended on February 15, stating that if I returned the next day it would no longer be good. Therefore, I stupidly decided to trade in my device for an iPhone 6s 128 GB. I wanted to do the iPhone X BOGO, but he said that it had to be an iPhone X and iPhone 8. I thought this was weird because the promotion did not specify the type of device.
After two-and-a-half hours in the store, I had to return to work, so I told James that I would trade in my new iPhone 6s 128 GB. He did not bother to ask me the type of phone I needed; he just grabbed an iPhone X and an iPhone 8, taking advantage of the fact that I was late.
Over the years, I have purchased several phones from the Apple store. Every time they have opened a new package, the phone has been charged. Strangely, when James opened the first phone for me, it was drained. I told James did not want either device, but he said that he could not put them back. Having wasted three hours, I decided to take his word that the phones were new. James told me that the number transport was would be completed within two hours. However, four hours passed and nothing. I worked late that night and went home. I still had the 240 area code number on the new device. I noticed that the iPhone X was 64 GB. I already traded in an iPhone 6s 128 GB, but there is no way that 128GB will fit in 64GB.
I skipped dinner and returned to T-Mobile store 4481. The CSR, Nicole, was helpful. She reviewed my account and showed me the wrong numbers that James had assigned to the SIM cards. Nicole matched the numbers from the SIM cards to the correct ported phone numbers.
I wanted to return the 64GB iPhone X and the iPhone 8, but Nicole’s boss stated that I could not. I replied that in the previous store they told me I had 14 days to return the devices. She then said that she would take them but charge a restocking fee. I felt like I had been penalized!
Frustrated, I told the manager that I wanted to return the devices and close the T-Mobile account. However, after thinking it over, I decided not to do so since it was late. I returned the iPhone X, but the manager had issues returning the iPhone 8. I do not know what happened, but I think that she jammed the system and the credit card that I used to purchase the phones. I needed to buy a phone because I had traded in mine, returned the iPhone X, and left the 8 in that store. Because of the jam, I left without a phone with the unfriendly manager’s recommendation to “use your old phone until you resolve your situation.” On Friday, February 16, I was forced to work without a phone, which I rely on to do my job as a government contractor.
I have proof of purchase to show that the phone I traded in was an iPhone 6s 128GB and the phone they listed was an iPhone 6s 64GB. The trade-in value of my phone is $160, but the value of the device T-Mobile gave me was $92. Clearly, the store personnel are dishonest.
The same day, I called T-Mobile to resolve the problem. A CSR named Makuanda W. went above and beyond to help by researching all the area stores. Unfortunately, I learned that the stores I had visited were third-parties businesses with a lots of complaints.
Makuanda attempted many times to contact the 5387 store, but calls went to a personal voice mail. We were on the phone approximately two hours. One option she gave me was to return to the store and ask to trade in device. I replied that I did not want to go back into that store due to my horrific earlier experience. Finally, Makuanda found a corporate store willing to get me the BOGO on iPhone X 256; however, I needed to bring my trade-in device, which I did not have due to the earlier problem. Makuanda told me to go to store 5387, ask for my trade-in back, and if they have any issues, call the 877 to be transferred to the loyalty customer department. I decided to try but at this point was kicking myself for transferring carriers.
I went back to store 5387 and spoke with Julio, who remembered me, and recounted all that had transpired. Julio said he needed to check if the device was still there because they ship them out. My phone was still there, but Julio informed me that he could not give it back because it was already being processed. I asked him to call Makuanda W. in the T-Mobile loyalty department and ask for Makuanda W. They talked for over an hour, supervisors were involved, but Julio did not want to release the device because James, the store manager, was not there and he was the only one who could authorize the release.
After a heated back and forth, Julio attempted to contact the James while Makuanda waited on the land line but did not reach him. I did not know what Makuanda told Julio, but Julio just hanged the phone and asked me what I wanted to do. I reiterated that I wanted my phone back, that I had not had a phone since yesterday when I walked in this store, and that he had tried to offer whatever device he had in stock—not what I needed. The visit ended up being a waste of my time, and I told Julio I would never again set foot back into his store.
I went to work resigned to spend the weekend with no communication. Also, I was reprimanded by my boss for having been absent during a critical situation (due to T-Mobile’s poor service).
After the situation stabilized, I decided try again. I called the T-Mobile 877 number and requested a US-based supervisor (Makuanda was unavailable). The supervisor with whom I spoke was helpful, but I had to repeat my story multiple times. She was able to take my trade in, do BOGO on iPh(U) one X 256GB for which I paid 997.98 dollars, but stated that I wouldn’t receive the devices until Tuesday, February 20.
I spent Thursday through Tuesday with no phone access before receiving the devices.
I had high hopes when I switched to T-Mobile and hope that you will do right by compensating me for the time and inconvenience it took to rectify the situation. I am looking forward to hear from you at your earliest convenience.
*edited to remove personal info - Marissa