26 Mar 2012 - Update Highest Rated Pain Stories Highest Rated Gain Stories Vodafail Local Facebook Page
Dear visitor,

Since its inception Vodafail.com has made a significant contribution towards raising awareness of the problems and issues faced by Vodafone customers.

Vodafone Australia customers have had the opportunity to voice their concerns, their fears and their troubles from every corner of Australia and beyond our borders. You have gathered the courage to stand up for your rights as consumers and to make your voice heard.

Each and every person who shared their story should have a sense of pride in this achievement and the changes that have occurred since the start of Vodafail.com.

More recently, traffic to Vodafail.com has declined significantly. Having achieved the goal of raising awareness and promoting concrete action in early 2011, we have now reached the point of closing Vodafail to new complaints. The site will remain online for as long as possible as a reminder and an example of what is possible when we share our experiences.

It has been a privilege to run this initiative and I'm am forever grateful for the help and support I've received. In particular I would like to thank Melissa, David and Travis for their continued efforts over the past 15 months. I'm also thankful and humbled by the support of ACCAN, Choice magazine and a wide range of media outlets, blogs and websites.

You can still browse existing stories and find out how to file a complaint if you are experiencing problems.

Until next time,

Adam Brimo

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16803 Someone from NSW thinks their gain is I ESCAPED!!!! at 15 Apr 2011 04:12:57 PM

My Outcome:
I was 7months into a 24month IPhone $69/month Postpaid Contract.
After learning from other people's experiences I was able to cancel my contract immediately against great odds, and only pay out the remaining handset cost (not the unused service fee).

Conventional wisdom is you can't get out of a mobile contract, and they clearly have a process designed to delay and discourage people.
This is BS..Vodafail should just let people off immediately if they don't want to be with them anymore. So I've written this guide sharing my experience and some tips to navigate their process.
One thing I'll also add is that I was simply firm and direct, but not rude or aggressive. However I think they knew that if my reasonable demands weren't met, they were in for war.

In hindsight, the first thing I would do is work out of your total contract, how much is for the handset, and how much for the service, and where you are with that. i.e. how much of your fees so far has gone to the phone, and how much to the service. You could ask Accounts that as a first step as an enquiry, and confirm the amounts offline, before you go on your cancellation mission.

Hurdle #1 - "Troubleshooting"
You're speaking to accounts. I asked to be put through to cancellations. They asked why I wanted to cancel. I said complete failure of service and they say coverage?
Their process is to then put you through a BS troubleshooting process with a coverage team etc etc delay delay delay and hope you get sick of it and give up.
I refused to go through troubleshooting. I said that I live/work in the Sydney CBD, so coverage shouldn't be an issue. The service is unacceptable. There is a known issue with the network which the CEO has publicly apologised for. There is nothing wrong with my phone, you've wasted enough of my time, I am not going through troubleshooting, I want to be put through to cancellations. They put me through.

Hurdle #2 - Cancellations
They try all kinds of things to say first to stop you cancelling, especially if you haven't done troubleshooting. They said all the network problems were past tense, and it's all better now.
I said:-
That I consider Vodafone in breach of contract, in failing to provide an acceptable service. There is a failure to provide their side of the contract.
That they are costing me money and embarassment, that I am losing money on my business. Legally their breach of contract is causing me legal damages.

You need to be very firm and clear as to what you want. I said that I am absolutely clear that:
I wish to terminate my contract immediately.
I no longer wish to do business with them.
I am only paying for the outstanding amount on my handset, not for any unused "service" especially as I consider that they are in breach of contract for failure to provide service.
I will not accept any other response.

Hurdle #3 - Offer of waive fees
Their process seems to be to be that they are authorised to offer 2-3 months waiver on your contract where you can potentially use a prepaid sim with another provider.
In 2-3 months "the network will be better". I stuck to my guns, see above.

Hurdle #4 - Cancellation Fee
They will tell you your cancellation fee is to payout the remainder of your contract. i.e. pay for months of "service" that you never use.
This is complete BS..you always had the right to do this even if their network worked!
I stuck to my guns.
I am not paying any fees or for unused service, especially when I've already paid for service I didn't receive.
I am only paying for whatever amount is owing on my handset. (See above, you should probably work this out before you get to cancellations).

Hurdle #5 - If they refused:
As it turned out, I didn't need to pull this out as they agreed. However if they had declined my requests, based on everything else I've ready, I would have said:
I am only accepting an immediate termination of my account.
If you decline my request I need you to understand that I am filing a complaint with the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman.
I will need your contact details and have you send me your response in writing for the purposes of the complaint, and as evidence in the PiperAlderman class action that I am joining.
At this stage, can you escalate this to a manager who can accept my request?

If they declined, then I would have:
Had them listen to a summary of the statements/requests above and had them verbally agree that they had heard these arguments.
Tell them that this had been noted in a file note for evidence, and that I needed their refusal emailed to me in writing for the complaint/lawsuit.
Asked them again to be escalated.

If they had refused:
Then I would have told them that was also noted, and asked again. Actually I probably would have kept asking like a broken record.
If they had still refused:
Then I would have gone to the TIO, and joined the lawsuit, and you need to be prepared to as well. Then I would have called them again after doing that with reference numbers and gone through the process again.

Hurdle #6 - Keep your number
It is important that you don't actually cancel your account on the spot, because you will lose your number. The guy explained that he should give me my account number, then I go and port my number to another carrier. When the next carrier ports, is when your account is technically automatically cancelled. At this stage, the agreement to cancel is noted on the account, and the fee for the amount on my handset will appear on my next bill.

AND I'M FREE! FREE AT LAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

19 Apr 2011 04:23:20 PM: Congratulations!!!!!! Thanks for posting how you did it as well, I'm sure many people will benefit from your experience.

Vodafail.com Moderation Team
20 Apr 2011 09:42:55 PM: I'm now with Telstra.

I really think the issue here is that in my view Vodafail is in fundamental breach of contract (a legal term which means they've failed to keep their end of the bargain, which gives you the right to terminate). People should be able to get out immediately with no hurdles. Instead all these hurdles are still in the way.