Why Etisalat’s PTCL Brand is Suffering From a Defective Product

PTCL

Dear Mr. Salman,
It’s been a long time since we last spoke. Trust you’re doing well. 
Before we delve into the nitty gritty, let me share my account details with you for a better understanding:

1. THE DECEPTION

PTCL has been a strange vendor for me. Sometimes it’s nice. Sometimes it’s naughty. You can read about my sentiments in detail at https://lnkd.in/eqz-Sb8q

But lately it has been more rude than not, and in my last encounter, it was nothing short of a monster. Perhaps a Komodo dragon. 


And it has got more to do with the fact that PTCL delegates the sales pitch part to downtrodden boys and gals who’ll do anything to secure that additional sale. Including lying to him just to achieve one’s sales target and get the commission. 
In my case it was this poor gal called Aamna [or so she called herself]. Cell# 0336-3716214.


She called. And called. And called. Cajoled me. Enticed me.


That I was already incurring Rs.1700 per month [ I wasn’t, I checked later], and that this new package with the basic starter internet package would cost me just Rs.1700 inclusive of all taxes. And what’s more, there’s a special promotion going on because there would be no installation charges!


It was a lie. I found out the hard way when the bill came.

2. THE BILLING

Back in July 2021. If you check my July bill, it was a mere Rs.1068. And what Aamna was enticing me to do was to choose a package that she lied would cost me Rs.1700 only, inclusive of taxes. I’m sure you save telephone conversations of your sales agents as well. Listen to that convo. You’ll get what I mean. 


The next bill I got was for a whopping Rs.3,920! 


Now wait a minute? Aamna said that there would be no hidden charges, no installation charges. It would just cost me Rs.1,700?


It didn’t. 


And do you know how I felt? Deceived. 


It’s not that I can’t afford to pay Rs,3,920. I’m sure you must have checked my profile by now. I’m one of the top brand strategists out there. 


The question is, why would I pay for something whose price wasn’t explicitly shared with me? You wouldn’t either. 
And yet I paid that. Hoping that would be the end of the story.


I was wrong. Dead wrong.


PTCL continued its mischief of a billing with really creative charges. Which brings us to the third section.

PTCL

3. PTCL AND ITS unscrupulous CHARGES

If I was head of billing at PTCL, I would consider myself the most lucky man on earth. Because I can come up with the most creative of headers, concoct imaginary numbers to fill those headers. And get away with it!
Ambulance walon ko to saath khoon maaf hotay hain. Yahan to kill all you want ka buffet deal chal rahi hai.
And I won’t have to justify anything to anyone. It’s a Beautiful Life.
There are all kinds of taxes I can come up with. For instance there’s a service tax added in my account whose figures randomly fluctuate each month at the whims of the billing creator.
I do wonder, services for what? Is PTCL sending escorts to my home? I wonder how I missed receiving them.
Or is that the make-up allowance of all their curvaceous vixens that cajole us to upgrade our package? It’s a mystery even Agatha Christie would find it hard to unravel.
Have a look at how this elusive service charge has been all over the place with no correlation whatsoever to the bill:

MonthActual BillService Charges
January1,179
February956
March1,134
April1027167
May1720270
June1,318.95257
July1068257
August3456.37333
September2027395
October1757.40343
November2252.32439

And something else you need to seriously address is the fact that your call agents offer packages that aren’t listed anywhere on the PTCL website, and when you ask them to email the offer to you so that you can check out the specs, they get cold feet. Which proves that PTCL itself is promoting such behavior.  
Now we come to the internet part of this story, which is an interesting tale in it itself.

4. THE INTERNET

My line of work requires me to be connected, 24/7. As such I already had four different internet connections, lest if one is disrupted, I’ve got ample backups. There’s this whopping 17Mbps cable internet. Then there’s the zong and the Jazz dongle. And then I’ve got Telenor’s mobile data as the last resort.
So yeah, I had no real need for PTCL’s internet solution. It goes to PTCL Aamna’s credit that she was able to persuade me to go for a fifth solution. And here it gets more interesting.
I told PTCL Aamna just get me the router. I know enough tech to install it myself. She insisted that a ‘lineman’ with ‘expertise’ is a must. So I say okay go ahead. So this PTCL guy arrives, sneezing all over the place. I thought his primary motive was to spread Covid rather than install the damn router.
And he wasn’t wearing any mask. Go figure.
He installs it. Asks me to choose a password without revealing it to him. And then asks me to test it. The package was supposed to deliver 4mbps. Speed test revealed a measly 0.62mbps.
He then asks for my password to test the network, admits there’s something wrong. Goes out. Comes back again. And viola! The speed is now somewhere like 3.69mbps. Not exactly 4mbps. But close enough.
I thought that was the end of it. And since it was just a backup device for me. I hardly used it, especially since PTCL was the slowest connection of all the five connections I now had. Now have a look at the internet usage shown in the bill. Remember that I’m a lone wolf and there’s no one around to use the internet except me.

MonthUsageMonthly Bill [Rs]
June
July
August3 Gb1,095.97
September67 Gb1,359
October2.05 Gb1,359
November26 Gb1,313.70

How did PTCL come up with this freak number 67GB? or 26GB? Who else did the lineman share the password with?

5. BALL IN PTCL COURT

Now as things stand, I’m in no mood to pay for something which I was duped into.  I never wanted this package. I only opted for it because the PTCL con girl said I’ll get it for free. She lied. I was charged for the installation.
I’ve been using PTCL for the last six years, and if you check my record, I’ve paid my bills on time, so it’s not that I’m an errant consumer. But charging me exorbitantly through deception is not something I’ll tolerate.
So for all intents and purposes, I’m calling it quits for PTCL. 
However, if you want me to come back into your fold, we’ll have to start with a clean slate. Think zero.
If that’s acceptable to you. Good. 
If not. It’s goodbye from my end. It’s not that PTCL is adding any value to my life anyway. My service has been suspended for the last three months and I’m doing just fine. 
Now Mr. Salman, I look forward to what you have to say about this matter.

Regards,

Saqib Khan

p.s. I’ll continue to quote this unique customer experience in my brand case studies. I’m sure you won’t mind it. 

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