5 On Your Side

Vonage Delay Causes Internet Phone Problems For Cary Couple

Posted June 22, 2006
Updated November 10, 2006

— A ringing phone is a big deal for the Easons. That's because they waited months for it to happen.

In December, Cathy and L.F. Eason signed up for Vonage Internet phone service to save money. The company uses cable lines to provide phone services and promises local service, unlimited long distance and other calling features for just $25 a month.

They wanted the same phone number they had with their previous telephone provider, Bellsouth. But until the number transfer was complete, they had to keep their BellSouth service.

A month later, when the switch had not occurred, the Easons called Vonage.

"Customer service promised me they would expedite it," L.F. Eason said. "They said they couldn't see any reason that it hadn't gone through."

By the third month, Cathy Eason said, she was aggravated because they had made the switch to Vonage to save money.

"And now, we're spending $25 extra a month. Plus, our BellSouth bill hasn't gone away," she said.

Then, in May, the Easons received an e-mail saying the number transfer was canceled and that they would not be able to keep their BellSouth phone number.

"I wanted to cancel," Cathy Eason said. "I was done … It had been -- what -- four, four-and-a-half, almost five months, and you know, we're back at square one, and they don't know how to help us."

So, the Easons called Five on Your Side, which then contacted Vonage.

The company blamed the problem on a calling feature on the Easons' BellSouth service that prevented the number from being transferred and also on an apparent miscommunication about whether the Easons had the feature removed.

The Easons said they are annoyed because no one in customer service ever mentioned the feature when they called.

But now -- finally -- after almost five months, the issue is fixed, and their Vonage phone is ringing.

Vonage also credited the Easons for four months of service charges because of the problems.

Five On Your Side has received 29 other complaints against Vonage, 12 of which involve number-transfer issues.

But the Easons said other than their one issue, they like the service.


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