Verizon drops $2 'convenience' fee
The carrier proposed charging a $2 fee each time a customer pays a wireless bill online with plastic. The backlash was immediate and intense.
This post comes from Alex Sherman at partner site Bloomberg Businessweek.
Verizon Wireless, the largest U.S. mobile carrier, canceled a planned $2 "convenience fee" for online and phone bill payments after a backlash from consumers and scrutiny from the Federal Communications Commission.
The company made the decision in response to customer feedback, according to a statement today on the carrier's website. The company on Thursday said it planned to impose the fee on users who make single bill payments on a month-to-month basis online or by phone. Post continues below.
Customers began criticizing Verizon Wireless on Twitter and online-discussion forums after the Basking Ridge, N.J.-based company disclosed the fee, with some setting up online petitions and calling for consumers to boycott the carrier. The FCC today said it was "concerned" about the plan and that it would investigate.
"The best path forward is to encourage customers to take advantage of the best and most efficient options, eliminating the need to institute the fee at this time," Dan Mead, chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless, said in the company's statement.
Verizon Wireless said earlier it would add the fee to address costs it incurs for processing the single payments. The charge wouldn't have applied to customers who enroll in automatic payment plans, use electronic checks, pay at a Verizon Wireless store, send in checks or pay through their online banking website.
Verizon Communications Inc., which co-owns the wireless business with Vodafone Group Plc, rose 0.3% to $40.18 at 3:37 p.m. EST. The stock had advanced 12% this year before today.
Last month, a consumer backlash led to Bank of America Corp. canceling a $5-per-month fee for debit card users.
Verizon Wireless is driving up profit at parent Verizon Communications as it gains users for Apple Inc.'s iPhone and Google Inc. Android devices, which let users browse the Web, watch video and stream music. Third-quarter net income at New York-based Verizon Communications doubled to $1.38 billion from $659 million a year earlier.
More on Bloomberg Businessweek and MSN Money:
Let this be a lesson to all businesses in the world. At some point consumers will retaliate over what you may perceive as a little change.
I'm tired of paying such high monthly fees. Verizon has the worst plans ever for family plans.
You can't tell me the cell phone companies can't charge less for plans, data, texting. They make millions in profit. Just like the gas companies they make billions in profit but keep raising gas prices. And, they expect us to pay more..... It's crazy.
Okay, we have shown what we can do when outraged against big corporations. Let's see what we can do against politicians who do not have our well-being on their minds, but just the interests of Corporate America.
Come on people, stop listening to the nonsense broadcasted on TV! Start voting with your checkbooks in mind, and focus on your financial advantage instead of promoting the wealth of CEOs and COOs. Trust me they won't create more jobs unless they are forced to .
The "Convience Fee" was insane. Everytime Verizon or a company recieves a payment from a customers credit card, Verizon/company has to pay the credit card companies a small fee, this is one way the credit card companies make money and IT IS VERIZON/THE COMPANY WHO IS RESPONSIBLE for paying that fee because it is a product that Verizon is purchasing from the credit card companies. However, Verizon and many other corporations decided "hmm, lets make our customer pay one of our bills for us." It is a VERY UNETHICAL business practice for Verizon to do. But there not the only ones either, many other corporations and companies out there are doing the same thing.
To put it another way for people who dont understand this concept, ask Verizon to pay your electric bill this month.
I wouldn't pay them a thing that isn't covered in their infernal service contract...i.e that document which serves as a record of you selling your soul to the devil er uh I mean Verizon.
As others have stated, I hope they suffer similar to Bank of America and Net Flix.
The nerve of them charging a fee to accept payment. What a seemingly stupid concept.
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