I have been a Pay-Lo plan user for many years, as the low cost fit my usage fairly well. I hardly used the phone, and gradually built up a prepaid account balance of $150. Figured some time in the future, the balance would come in handy for some big need. I am using a flip phone.
Suddenly, my service stopped working. The answer I received from VM is:
"We have used the address provided in your e-mail and confirmed that you
are in a good coverage area and there are no outages that can be
affecting your service.
However, as part of the continued Network evolution Sprint is retuning
the primary 1900 MHz Voice and EVDO channels in targeted area. Swaps
began in July and will last through the end of 2017. Unfortunately, due
to the limitations of your phone, it cannot receive the Preferred
Roaming List updates. This means that you will need to upgrade your
phone to an LTE device in order for the service to be restored.
Modern phones have faster connection speeds because they use LTE and
have more memory and can hold more pictures, videos, and applications.
Keep in mind that your current retired plan will not compatible with
those phones and you will need to choose from one of the three plans
listed below when activating your new device.
- $35 per month (Unlimited Minutes, Text and Data, includes 5GB of high
speed 3G/4G LTE data)
- $45 per month (Unlimited Minutes, Text and Data, includes 10GB of high
speed 3G/4G LTE data)
- $60 per month (Unlimited Everything)"
I asked for a refund of my prepaid minutes, since I don't even have service to be able to use the minutes, and I received no notification of the change at all. As a matter of fact, the website states as follows:
Are payLo plans available for purchase for new customers?
payLo by Virgin Mobile plans have been discontinued. However, if you are an existing payLo customer, you can continue your payLo service, so long as you keep your account active and do not cancel/discontinue service."
I kept my account active and did not cancel/discontinue service. Is it fair that I was not given any notice, just dropped my service. Now I have to buy another phone, and upgrade to a much more expensive plan, that I don't need. What a way to treat a long-time customer! Just a warning to others.
We understand your concern, Wkey, and we apologize for this situation.Our main goal is to provide our customers with an excellent service experience. Upgrading to an LTE device will give you great benefits like faster data connection and better call quality.
So, let me understand your response.
You effectively cancel my service without telling me, and with no type of warning. I can't even use my banked minutes, because I have no service.
You are forcing me to buy a new phone, even when my phone did exactly what I needed and my call quality was just fine.
You want me to buy a much more expensive plan (5 times as much per month, at a minimum), because the new LTE phone you want me to buy, you won't let it work with my existing plan.
As I mentioned, I posted this as a warning to other Pay-Lo customers, since you were not notifying them. Other users in my area are starting to experience the same "improvement". I guess we"ll see whether Pay-Lo customers agree with your assessment of the great benefits to me.
In the meantime, customers on other plans might want to watch out too.
Dear Fernanda T: No answer to this e-mail has been received as of this date 9/4/2017, we had to buy a new service and phone from Consummer Cellular.
As of 8/25 have not had a reply from you as to what Virgin intends to do, we still do not have service, which has been out since 8/15/2017 on both of our Samsung flip phones. I have been told by Technical staff that I would be e-mailed a number to return the phones sent to me by Virgin and charged against my PayLo account that do not work, no number has been received by me. Also advised that Virgin would send shipping box for return of the new cell phones which I have not seen as yet. Other Virgin customers with the same problem have been told their is only one phone that will work with PayLo, so we can use our balance in PayLo to have shipped to us the Alcetal One Touch Speakeasy. What does Virgin intend to do about the money we have paid into PayLo and cannot use?
Interesting. How about we take a closer look at this? To research further, can you send us in a private message the cross streets and ZIP codes where this occurs?
Thanks for the info, wkey. My flip phone still works, but I recently upgraded to a Smartphone and wanted to stay with VM, but the Inner Circle plan is way beyond what I need a cell phone for, and since there does not appear to be a lower-cost/amenities plan, I will be looking elsewhere. I'm kind of sad about that as I also have been a VM Pay-Lo customer for many years.
Thanks for posting. My Mom thought that her phone quit on her and now we find out that the service was dropped without any notice leaving her without a cell phone for emergencies.
She cannot use a smart phone as this is too complicated. She only makes a few calls a month. The phone is also a way for the family to get in touch with her in case her home phone is out. Glad that I found out. She had tons of minutes on this plan. Virgin Mobile needs to wake up. I will be looking at the Jitterbug phone.