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michael_
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Joined: Jan 25, 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 11:11 am    Post subject: Assigned Telephone Number Customer Care Issue Reply with quote Back to top

First: I know that Vonage is unable to "assign" a telephone number to an account except when addressing LNP.

Signing up for Vonage last night (over the phone) I was assured that the area code 717 was available. I stated that I only wanted service if I could get a prefix of 23x (23-something), since I need my telephone number to reflect living in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. I was told I would receive a prefix of 230 (717-230-xxxx). Slightly incredulous I asked what to do in case my telephone number did not end up being 717-230-xxxx. The salesperson informed me that all I need do is call the 866 customer service telephone number and talk with billing, that they would fix my region if that was a problem. Great.

I get a 717-214-xxxx telephone number. I call customer service, select to talk to billing, etc. I explain my situation to the representative on the phone. They explain to me that "advanced billing" handles that sort of a call, would I like to be transferred? Sure.

Silence. For 10 minutes. I hang up, assuming I was improperly transferred.

I get another rep on the phone, ask if they work in advanced billing. What luck! They do! They explain that they are unable to guarantee a 717-230-xxxx telephone number, but would be happy to try to change it for me, at no charge "this time." I say sure, I just want a 717-23x-xxxx telephone number. Just my luck, it is 717-823-xxxx. Okay, now I need to speak with a manager.

Silence. I only wait 5 minutes this time.

I call back and again request someone in "advanced billing"; I get transferred, I explain my story, they inform me they cannot guarantee, they would be happy to change my number, but I will have to pay to have it changed. I am not willing to pay, since I was promised a 717-230-xxxx telephone number when signing up, of course I am not paying to correct their issue. The rep (Tameka, she works nights in the NJ call center, "the only one there is") informs me that she cannot help me then. Fine, I would like to speak with a manager. "The 2 managers are in a meeting." It is midnight on the east coast, I've never heard of being in a meeting at midnight when you are taking care of a 24/7 call center. Fine, I will call back tomorrow. I ask the rep to explicitly type what I am saying into her notes. She agrees. I finish reciting my case and concerns and ask her to read it back. "What? No, I am going to write it in later." No, that doesn't work for me, I've worked in call centers before, I know how to blow off a customer and make them do 10 times as much work next time. I give up and inform her I will call tomorrow.

Calling the next day (today) I get transferred to silence again ("advanced billing" must be a euphemism for the "send the caller to silence" queue). I call back and ask to speak with a manager, after the same "we cannot guarantee the phone number, you will have to pay" pre-written response. I just want to speak with a manager. "They are all unavailable." Fine, can I have a direct line to a manager's extension, or something like that. Sure, let me place you on hold and get that.

Silence. 5 minutes.

Somewhere in all of the calls I have made to Vonage I have come to understand the following:

The region option “Harrisburg City Zone 1” contains the prefixes 214 and 441. 214 is a Camp Hill, PA prefix. 441 is an Enola, PA prefix.

The region option “Harrisburg City Zone 2” contains the prefixes 914 and 740. 914 is a wireless telephone prefix. 740 is a York, PA prefix.

The region option “Harrisburg” is available from the Vonage.com website, yet no customer service representative has been able to tell me what prefixes that contains. In fact their "database isn't synced" so they "don't have that region option."

I just want a Harrisburg prefix (221 through 239). That is all.

So, now I am asking your help; what do I do to speak with someone semi-literate (preferrably smart) at Vonage who will handle my concern? Is there some master list of Vonage telephone number prefixes associated with their apparently arbitrary mapping of prefix regions (there is no such thing as Harrisburg City Zone 1, 2, and Harrisburg proper for telephone service, especially when the prefixes given are for outlying areas)?

Thank you in advance for anything you have to say. If someone at Corporate is reading this, please be informed that your customer service representatives are an awful information source and resort to some of the lowest "tricks" of the phone support trade in transferring people to silence, hanging up when they are frustrated, and illegally denying a customer access to speak with a manager.
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NateHoy
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Joined: Nov 01, 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

IMHO, the next step would be to call Customer Service and follow the prompts for cancelation of service.

The customer retention rep may be able to help you, and if not you're at least talking to the correct person to cancel your account and get your money back under the 30-day guarantee.

_________________
Comcast Cable (3m down / 256k up) -> Linksys BEFCMU10 v2 (DOCSIS 1.0) -> WRT54G v4 ("Tomato" firmware) -> the rest of my network including a WRTP54G (Firmware: 5.01.04)
My Vonage Self-Help Guides: http://vonage.nmhoy.net
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trekologer
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Joined: Dec 04, 2005
Posts: 350

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Following the breakup of AT&T ("Ma Bell") in 1984, geographic locations called "Rate Centers" and "Local Access Transport Areas" were created to assist with deregulation of the phone momopoly. Basicy, not every town/city has its own "Rate Center" and some larger cities have more than one.

There are 119 NAAs (prefixes) in the Harrisburg City-Zone 1 rate center. This rate center covers Harrisburg, Camp Hill, Enola, Fishing Creek, New Cumberland, Paxtang, and Paxtonia. The towns that this rate center covers other than Harrisburg do not have their own rate center.

Here are the prefixes in the Harrisburg City-Zone 1 rate center:

206 213 214 215 221 230 231 232 233 234 236 237 238 255 257 260 265 302 303 307 315 319 329 343 346 350 364 379 395 410 412 418 421 433 439 441 443 460 497 503 512 514 518 526 540 541 545 554 557 558 561 564 565 571 574 576 579 580 592 599 602 608 612 623 635 645 648 649 651 652 657 671 703 705 712 720 724 727 728 730 731 732 737 754 756 760 761 763 770 772 773 774 777 780 782 783 787 798 805 810 828 829 850 856 877 886 901 903 909 912 913 919 920 943 972 975 979 981 991

There is another rate center that covers Harrisburg, Harrisburg City-Zone 2. This also covers Steelton (again, this town does not have its own rate center). The prefixes for Harrisburg City-Zone 2 are:

370 704 745 831 910 914 939 982 985 986

You got a Harrisburg number. You got a Harrisburg number the second time. And you got a Harrisburg number yet again the third time. All of them are local to your area and calls from your area would be a local call to them.
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michael_
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2006 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Trekloger,

Ignoring the atrocious customer service (which I am trying to do, I understand that a company's customer service isn't necessarily the same as the company's product), yes, I understand the layout mandated by the Number Assignment Administration and the federally mandated breakout of Local Access Transport Areas.

For the general customer signing up for Vonage, the tools to understand what prefixes are in Harrisburg City-Zone 1 or 2 are not available. The website has no help on the subject, neither does customer care. I don't know where you received your information from, but assuming it is current and valid, when I received an 823 prefix, I am completely outside of the City-Zone 1 and 2 prefixes. According to your information 823 is not a City Zone 1 or 2 prefix, and the 2 times I have tried to have it changed, it has been 823, therefore, you are incorrect in stating I have a telephone number inside of the NAA stated Harrisburg area. Where did you get your data?

What I want is a prefix in City-Zone 1 of 221, 230, 231, 232, 233, 234, 236, 237, or 238. I was promised a prefix of 230 when signing up for service and certainly would not expect to have to pay to correct a mistake that Vonage made when signing up my account.

trekologer wrote:
Following the breakup of AT&T ("Ma Bell") in 1984, geographic locations called "Rate Centers" and "Local Access Transport Areas" were created to assist with deregulation of the phone momopoly. Basicy, not every town/city has its own "Rate Center" and some larger cities have more than one.

There are 119 NAAs (prefixes) in the Harrisburg City-Zone 1 rate center. This rate center covers Harrisburg, Camp Hill, Enola, Fishing Creek, New Cumberland, Paxtang, and Paxtonia. The towns that this rate center covers other than Harrisburg do not have their own rate center.

Here are the prefixes in the Harrisburg City-Zone 1 rate center:

206 213 214 215 221 230 231 232 233 234 236 237 238 255 257 260 265 302 303 307 315 319 329 343 346 350 364 379 395 410 412 418 421 433 439 441 443 460 497 503 512 514 518 526 540 541 545 554 557 558 561 564 565 571 574 576 579 580 592 599 602 608 612 623 635 645 648 649 651 652 657 671 703 705 712 720 724 727 728 730 731 732 737 754 756 760 761 763 770 772 773 774 777 780 782 783 787 798 805 810 828 829 850 856 877 886 901 903 909 912 913 919 920 943 972 975 979 981 991

There is another rate center that covers Harrisburg, Harrisburg City-Zone 2. This also covers Steelton (again, this town does not have its own rate center). The prefixes for Harrisburg City-Zone 2 are:

370 704 745 831 910 914 939 982 985 986

You got a Harrisburg number. You got a Harrisburg number the second time. And you got a Harrisburg number yet again the third time. All of them are local to your area and calls from your area would be a local call to them.
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FatKao
Vonage Forum Associate
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Joined: Jan 20, 2006
Posts: 21

PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 2:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

All of the 717-23x numbers are owned by Verizon. Vonage won't be able to give you a number with that extension. However what was said before is correct. Every number you have been given is local to 717-23x.

And you are also correct about the 717-823, that number isn't even local to 717-23x numbers.
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mundy5
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Joined: Feb 28, 2005
Posts: 1179

PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

michael,

I remember seeing the local prefixes listed in the yellow pages. Why don't you try that? Or call you local phone company and ask them. I'm sure this information is also available on the web somewhere so try a search on the web.

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Vonage Customer from February 2005 to May 2010
ISP: Charter
Router: Linksys RT31P2 (blew up during electrical storm)
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michael_
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Joined: Jan 25, 2006
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

If a local yellow pages were handy, that is an excellent idea.

I actually got a hold of Vonage's tier 3 support and they are fantastic! They are looking into exchange availability based on a the local prefixes.

fonefinder.net is a good web resource, however it isn't easy to sort through all of their data.

mundy5 wrote:
michael,

I remember seeing the local prefixes listed in the yellow pages. Why don't you try that? Or call you local phone company and ask them. I'm sure this information is also available on the web somewhere so try a search on the web.
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mundy5
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Joined: Feb 28, 2005
Posts: 1179

PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

michael,

I found this website that seems to have the information posted by trekologer. See it for yourself.

http://members.dandy.net/~czg/lca_index.html

_________________
St. Louis, MO
Vonage Customer from February 2005 to May 2010
ISP: Charter
Router: Linksys RT31P2 (blew up during electrical storm)
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