Written on: 02/02/2008
Low cost international calls
Lack of communication for rate changes
I was a huge rebtel fan, operative word being WAS there. Here is my story, I will try to be factual and leave the emotion out as hard as that may be.
My in laws are from Russia, my wife like talking to her family. It is very important to me that she be able to communicate with them on a regular basis since it helps with her overall sence of well being.
Many months ago I saw CNN do a story on the top 10 next big companies and one was rebtel, they even show you how to make free international calls. So I looked into. I went to their website and looked at the posted rates, which were 1.9 for Russia. I thought wow this is great. So I signed up and told my wife the great news, she could call even more often now because these rates are awesome. Fast forward approximately 4 months. First thing I notice is that all my contacts went from being labelled Russia to Kazakhstan, now my in-laws do not live in Kazakhstan they live in Russia, on of the older cities in Russia. At first I thought well computers are not perfect so maybe it was just a glitch, until my wife made a call and we were charged quadruple (a new rate of 7.9 cents a minute) what we had been on previous calls. Apparently Rebtel now designated my Russian in-laws as living in Kazakhstan even though they live in Russia, neat trick. So I did what any one would do I contacted them and asked what happen and why were my in laws being listed as Kazakhstan when they live in Russia. I didn't get an answer to my Kazakhstan question but the politely told me that they are constantly buying time from different vendors and sometimes the rates change, when this happens it is just too monumental to try and notify every user. The customer service rep also pointed out that the TOS state that rates can change with no advanced warning.
Now I thought OK I don't like it but yes they can change any time without advance notice and their TOS state this. So I look into this a bit further and find that the advertised rate for Kazakhstan is 4.8 cents a minute and Russia is still listed as 1.9 cents a minute yet my in-laws who are listed as Kazakhstan's have a rate of 7.8 cents a minute. WOW is this what you call a bait and switch, where I come from this gets your business license pulled and everyone filling law suits.
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