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Tutor

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2 Messages

Sat, Apr 22, 2017 3:09 AM

Upgrade fee waiver

I am a loyal AT&T for over 15 years. I have a u-verse account as well as wireless and I also had a home phone for years. I recently upgraded and was charged upgrade fee $25 per line for 4 phone. I called AT&T and nicely asked for those fees to be waived or credited to my account and representative from customer loyalty team refused to do it ,so did her manager. Is this how AT&T reward their long time and loyal customers?

Responses

sandblaster

ACE - Expert

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43.3K Messages

4 years ago

Yep, pretty much. Waiving upgrade fees used to be common, not any more. There is an easy way to avoid upgrade fees, though. By a sim free phone from other than ATT. Then just move your SIM card and if for some reason you need a new sim, a corporate store will provide one free.

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*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

4 years ago

You may also want to check if your employer or any affiliated organizations have discounts through AT&T. Some business agreements with AT&T provide for waived activation and upgrade fees.

 

Unfortunately, the norm for cell phone companies now that we're in a much more saturated market and phones really aren't luxuries anymore is to not waive them. AT&T is actually the only one I know of that has options available like the FAN discount to certain customers to automatically waive activation and upgrade fees.

Justin

If this solved your problem, please consider accepting this as the solution so that it can help others in the future. Please remember that this is a customer forum and all of the answers we provide are through our own research, experience, or personal knowledge.
lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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78.6K Messages

4 years ago

This and the high cost of carrier phones is why I don't buy from the carrier anymore.   Not even indirectly through Best Buy and absolutely not with installments. 

If the principal means that much to you, this is the way to go.

I have no problem with the idea of paying full retail for my phones.  I don't need the handholding that ATT does for $25 per phone.  

I have purchased non branded phones, or ATT phones on eBay for half the original retail cost 6-12 months after release.  Shopping smarter really makes me feel good about upgrading.  

 

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Tutor

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2 Messages

4 years ago

I do have a FAN discount, but unfortunately that didn't work either. Not just that upgrade fee wasn't automatically taken off, but not even when I called AT&T and asked for it. ☹️
jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

4 years ago

@Lala36 Not all FAN discounts qualify for activation or upgrade fee waivers. Some do. For me for example, I actually switched back to my college one (still have access to my college email) because even though it only has a discount of 17% compared to one that has 24% through employment I had before, I'm on the Unlimited Plus plan, which doesn't have a discount except for military and veterans, so switching to the college FAN made more sense for me as I now don't have to worry about upgrade or activation fees, except in rare instances.

Justin

If this solved your problem, please consider accepting this as the solution so that it can help others in the future. Please remember that this is a customer forum and all of the answers we provide are through our own research, experience, or personal knowledge.

Teacher

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6 Messages

3 years ago

i am experiencing the same issue.  the sales rep i spoke to when i ordered new service yesterday 9/8/17 told me the activation fee would be waived, and never told me how much it would be otherwise, just that it would be waived.  i had asked what fees i would be charged for because i wanted to know what my bill would look like.

 

i noticed my order summary shows a $35 activation fee so i called the number listed to get it corrected and was told i could not.

 

ironically enough, when i talked to a billing specialist yesterday (after sales) i asked what if there were any fees associated and he told me that legally they have to disclose fees. 

 

so basically i am feeling like AT&T is again, not being honest, direct and forthcoming.

Teacher

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3 Messages

3 years ago

They are absolutely horrible to deal with. I don't think they care at all about keeping customers happy.  I have been a customer for over 20 years and they kept screwing up my bill when I added my iPad to the phone bill instead of paying them separately.  They kept charging my credit card for the iPad despite repeated phone calls and I kept getting wrong answers.  It took months to straighten out and they kept adding fees.  I finally got them to waive the "upgrade" fee but they were nasty about other charges and wouldn't give me any more credit. 

 

Trying to get through their voicemail prompts is maddening enough without having to deal with ignorant/indifferent/nasty customer support people.  I just bought a new phone and the clerk was rude and unhelpful and I just got the bill with a $25 upgrade fee!!  I googled a question about that and learned that they charge a fee for setting up a contract - but they won't let you pay cash - you have to wait at least 14 days.  So this is AT&T's way of getting an extra $25 from tens of thousands of customers.

 

I wonder if it's even legal to add fees without advising the client.  I think I will try to contact the FCC about this.  We should all contact them!

 

 

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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78.6K Messages

3 years ago

@LOATHETHEM

The upgrade fee is charged even even if you pay full price.   The fee is listed in the sales information on every phone sold on the website.  It is sent in the terms and conditions if you buy online, or on the purchase agreement if you buy in person.  You cannot claim to be uninformed just because you didn’t read it. 

If you ask to pay full price in an ATT store or retailer and they refuse, walk out.  You have EVERY right to pay full price.  It will not avoid the upgrade fee.  

     When I switched to ATT I purchased 3 phones and an iPad at full price.  Every phone since then has been purchased somewhere else and I set up my own phone and swap my own SIM card.  

 

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Teacher

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3 Messages

3 years ago

I walked in to an ATT store and told them I needed to replace my phone. They didn’t even make it easy to buy it - had to insist and the salesperson just flashed a tablet at me. At NO time was I told about or saw anything about an upgrade fee. My question: upgrading FROM what TO what?

But, good to know that you can purchase from other places that 1) allow you to pay in full and 2) don’t charge an upgrade fee. Where/who can you purchase this way?
lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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78.6K Messages

3 years ago

@LOATHETHEM

Any non ATT source. Not financed.  

I purchased branded phones off eBay, a few months old, mint.

unlocked, non ATT from Best Buy, or anywhere else you chose.  Google. Oneplus, Razer, 

Just know you give up advanced calling features with non branded phones. 

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
dsdaughtry

Teacher

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13 Messages

3 years ago

It was time to upgrade our iPhones from the six-plus to the eight-plus. I made the purchase and moved the SIM card from one phone to the other. Out of nowhere, I received an additional one-time charge of $30 plus taxes for Upgrade Fee. When I contacted AT&T customer service by phone, the agent (foreign accent) could not remove the fee. When I walked into an AT&T corporate store (Garner, NC), I was told by the store manager that the fee was intended for server equipment and other behind the scenes requirements? This fee makes absolutely no logical sense!  I don't mind a reasonable fee if the fee is justifiable. However, there is nothing within the AT&T Upgrade Fee to explain what the $30 plus taxes is used for or applicable to. If the fees are to cover potential 4G networks then AT&T should revisit its data to show where its customers are actually able to use such networks. Currently, our area has many dead spots or fails to provide, if any, consistent 4G LTE service. This is apparent with notifications sent via the AT&T Mark The Spot app. 

 

I did ask for the fee to be waived and was told AT&T corporate stores (Garner, NC) are not allowed to waive fees. Overall, this is a poor representation of customer service and price creep of additional fees without clear and transparent explanation. I have a FAN discount and am a Directv subcriber. I guess loyalty and basic rationale is no longer applicable? 

 

I would still like the upgrade fee (with tax charge) removed from my account. Otherwise, what is the purpose of scheduled upgrades such as AT&T Next or iPhone Upgrade Programs?

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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78.6K Messages

3 years ago

@dsdaughtry

All carriers charge an upgrade fee.   The fee covers the time and paperwork involved in your Next installments.   While I agree it should be a cost of business, carriers don’t.  

I have paid only on 2 devices; a tablet I got “free” and my recent half price with trade in to upgrade.  

🐾 I don’t work for AT&T or any carrier. Never have, never will. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
MicCheck

ACE - Expert

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9.1K Messages

3 years ago


@dsdaughtry wrote:

It was time to upgrade our iPhones from the six-plus to the eight-plus. I made the purchase and moved the SIM card from one phone to the other. Out of nowhere, I received an additional one-time charge of $30 plus taxes for Upgrade Fee. When I contacted AT&T customer service by phone, the agent (foreign accent) could not remove the fee. When I walked into an AT&T corporate store (Garner, NC), I was told by the store manager that the fee was intended for server equipment and other behind the scenes requirements? This fee makes absolutely no logical sense!  I don't mind a reasonable fee if the fee is justifiable. However, there is nothing within the AT&T Upgrade Fee to explain what the $30 plus taxes is used for or applicable to. If the fees are to cover potential 4G networks then AT&T should revisit its data to show where its customers are actually able to use such networks. Currently, our area has many dead spots or fails to provide, if any, consistent 4G LTE service. This is apparent with notifications sent via the AT&T Mark The Spot app. 

 

I did ask for the fee to be waived and was told AT&T corporate stores (Garner, NC) are not allowed to waive fees. Overall, this is a poor representation of customer service and price creep of additional fees without clear and transparent explanation. I have a FAN discount and am a Directv subcriber. I guess loyalty and basic rationale is no longer applicable? 

 

I would still like the upgrade fee (with tax charge) removed from my account. Otherwise, what is the purpose of scheduled upgrades such as AT&T Next or iPhone Upgrade Programs?


The upgrade and activation fees are what AT&T says you have to pay when you buy a new phone. They could be used as a bonus for Randall Stephenson for all we know or care. But they are what they are. You can choose to pay them or not, but if you choose not, then you have to find a different provider, and all of the major carriers charge a fee. 

 

The scheduled upgrade on the Next plans allow you to upgrade to a new phone on a new installment plan and have the remaining installments on the old plan waived. 

Award for Community Excellence 2020 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
dsdaughtry

Teacher

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13 Messages

3 years ago

Okay, let's assume, for the sake of argument, AT&T charges $30 per upgrade. That would suggest (based on the number of wireless customers under the AT&T umbrella) a potential additional income of $84Million. Does that sound like a fee applicable to the Digital Goods and Services Tax Fairness Act?  AT&T,  as a utility provider, should provide transparency about what the $30 actually covers. 

 

It is not about finding another provider. The issue centers on why the fee exists?

Teacher

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3 Messages

3 years ago

I made the mistake of going to the ATT store instead of Apple and was treated to their usual unfriendly and unhelpful “customer service.” (Note to self - buy from Apple store next time.) I was furious that they wouldn’t let me buy the new phone outright and I had to wait for a month to pay for it. I was further outraged when I saw the $30 charge. I loathe and despise calling them for anything, but I got a rare nice customer service rep and he removed the fee.

They appear to be totally indifferent to their customer base - let’s hope the merger doesn’t go through or we are all well and truly screwed.

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