I’m put off.
I was primed for a new snazzy cellphone upgrade to my outdated model via a promo deal I had worked out with a mobile phone company rep on the phone. We verbally agreed to the terms and the cost, I wrote it all down and even asked: Now, there’s nothing hidden here? No fees I’m gonna get hit with later? Naturally, she reassured that there weren’t.
So the cellphone company rep showed up this evening and pulled out the new model and displayed its bells and whistles. While I’m playing with the functions and he’s preparing to box my older model he pulls out the paperwork. And the grand total shown on their typed up invoice is double the amount I had agreed to less than twenty-four hours prior. I protested.
“Oh this happens about 70-80% of the time,” chuckles the delivery person. “But if you sign here and here, it says in the small print you have 48 hours to think things over. Don’t worry. The company will come around to the price you agreed on.“
And I’m thinking: Do you live on ‘Asinine Alley’? Surely you don’t expect me to sign the inflated priced contract and then just hop on down to the Cellcom store to spend hours of my time and pounds of frustration and stress on getting my $ back. Nossiree Bob.
I sent Mr. Cellcom a’packin’. Take it and leave. You’re wasting my time. When you can show me paperwork that reflects what I agreed to, I’ll sign.
This style of “doing business” (sic) is not new in these parts nor is the mentality. And it is trying, wearing and probably THE least attractive aspect of living in this country. The “I’ll try and get one over on you and see if you notice” attitude.
The problem is that yes, people notice. They notice when Israelis travel and try this stuff out on foreign terraine, they notice when they come to the country to visit as tourists and get ripped off by the locals and they notice when they live here and haven’t grown up with this kind of outright misrepresentation and scandal on a broad and blatant scale.
But as the Cellcom people are banking on, probably 30-40% don’t balk. And that’s a whole ‘lotta profit to be made. Yessiree Bob.