It has been long and I have been very patient. I need to rant about this and tell it as it is. It sucks and sucks big time. Ok!! This is where the problem is and this is how it started.

I bought a business phone on offer with Safaricom post paid services. The offer was enticing and so I couldn’t resist it. And the phone was going to help me do some serious work. I bought the phone and took the Safaricom Ksh 2,500 postpaid package with the phone. I changed my usual line 0726 xxx530 to postpaid and so my usual phone, a Nokia E55 was free. I have had this phone for the longest time. Thought Nokia hates me for telling them off, I think I know Nokia phones like no other person. I have owned from Nokia N71, 2110, E50, E52, E55, E61i and some others I cant remember.

Let me continue with my story. I decided that since my Nokia E55 was free, this might just be the first time that I own a second line. I have never believed in running away from a problem so I have stayed and corrected the problems with Safaricom in many instances. But this time I decided to try a second provider. On data, I have owned Orange, Airtel and Safaricom both on postpaid and pre-paid. But on voice, I have been on Safaricom.

So today Friday 8th April, 2011, I decided to buy an Airtel line number 0737 944 375. I bought the line from my shopkeeper and bought a Ksh 100 airtime. I loaded the airtime and it went through. I read the instructtions which comes with the line and it told me that I had to dial 222 from my new Airtel line to activate the line. I did dial that and activated the line and chose the language. Then I sent myself, 0726 xxx530, a message so that I can remember the number later in case I needed to give it to someone. Then is where my problems started. I checked my balance and it read Ksh 68.87. I tried caling some two guys and it didn’t go through.

I checked on how to get internet connections through the 111 customer care number and managed to dial *232# and even sent WAP to 232, and even sent ALL to 232 as instructed in the website, brochure and the voice prompt without me getting the web settings. I use snaptu alot and Nokia E55 has a compact Keyboard unlike my new phone which is a touchscreen phone. I am still loving my Compact QWERTY Nokia E55. The internet setting were not coming through.

At 21.06 I decided to call 111 and be patient enough to find how to get to speak to a customer care rep. I dialed 111 was prompted to dial 7 to go to the next page and then I was told to dial star (*) to get to speak to the CC rep. I told the lady to help and she promised to help. First she told me that my line 0737 944 375 is registered in the name of a Mr Paul. How the hell does a brand new line be registered on someone’s name? It means that someone bought a line and demanded the number and Zain or is it Airtel did not kill this other SIM card. So Zain terminates lines it has already sent out to retail shops? This is evil and amounts to theft. So it means a Mr Paul is having line 0737 944 375 and is using it and used part of my airtime. That is very sick.

I told the lady my mind and insisted that she register the concern which she did and gave the reference number 90442. I then asked her that I needed to have internet activated on the line and she asked if I have tried the methods and I told her YES. She then asked iff my Safaricom line used to have internet working on the handset and I said YES. She told me that I can use Airtel line with Safaricom settings and it work fine. I told her that when I removed Safaricom line, I synchronised my contacts, calender and files onto the new phone and restored the old phone to factory settings and upgraded the software and so no setting is on it. She then told me that for my phone to get net settings, I must have the phone working on the network for 24 hours for the phone model to be detected by Airtel settings.

I told her that my problem was not detection but she can even send me the settings or read them to me manually and I would accept them and would get a way to load them on. She hang up on me. Just like that. Now that is very sick for a Customer Care rep to do. How can you hang up on a client? Now that is the most stupid thing for any CC rep to do to a client. I am decided that until Airtel calls me and explain why I should not permanently blacklist it, I will never try to get onto that network again. I am going for Orange now and they better not treat me like a dog or I will just show them the middle finger.

And Alfie, tell that lady to personally call me and apologise, otherwise know that I would not spare Airtel on this. I am king. The services Airtel were to give me are not free.

  • theonlinekenyan

    Seriously, it’s like they are all trained for maximum inefficiency:

    @SAFARICOM… they couldn’t care less to pick up the phone
    @YU… they can’t answer the simplest questions (am serious, it’s like the Yu lot is just fished off the street, no offense)
    @AIRTEL… never used it, but from what you’re saying…smh

    • Hushman0

      I can support you all here but ask yourself what that person on the other end is struggling hard to help you with yet they are working for a company with a lot of bureaucracy as part of the kenyan culture.

    • Vivacioushy

      I was first with Safaricom. I was out of the country for sometime and hadnt used my sim card. When I got back i didnt remember my password(?), I call safaricom, they ask me when did you last use your mpesa? (i dont know) and how much is your mpesa balance(i dont know)…so they recommend I go to CC in town (the queue) so I left the shop and bought myself a yu line. Yu has been great, I call CC and they call me by name except that one time when they wanted to know whether my Blackberry is chinese or orginal…SMH. WHen i told them it’s original, they told me they dont support those(LOL) and now I’m on Airtel for BB services. Airtel took almost 2 months to configure my phone. According to them when they say 48 hours you have to wait for a week, and when I call in to check up on them they forward the issue to IT. 2 months later I still don’t have internet. I wish I could go back to yu(I really miss yu)

    • Vivacioushy

      I was first with Safaricom. I was out of the country for sometime and hadnt used my sim card. When I got back i didnt remember my password(?), I call safaricom, they ask me when did you last use your mpesa? (i dont know) and how much is your mpesa balance(i dont know)…so they recommend I go to CC in town (the queue) so I left the shop and bought myself a yu line. Yu has been great, I call CC and they call me by name except that one time when they wanted to know whether my Blackberry is chinese or orginal…SMH. WHen i told them it’s original, they told me they dont support those(LOL) and now I’m on Airtel for BB services. Airtel took almost 2 months to configure my phone. According to them when they say 48 hours you have to wait for a week, and when I call in to check up on them they forward the issue to IT. 2 months later I still don’t have internet. I wish I could go back to yu(I really miss yu)

  • Lol, i was tempted to criticize you on the high affinity you have on picking beefs but i think you deserve to be angry. Thats the failure on the MSP side, and the CC rep displayed nonprofessional. I hope you were not loud while at it to prompt the CC to act like they did.

    • To me there is nothing like “high affinity on picking beefs”. That’s a childish statement. You treat me bad 3million times, I would take you on 3million times. Spectators don’t pay my bills for me and so I will fight for the kind of treatment I deserve.

      And Holy Lord you dare stand between me and my right. Ask anyone who knows me. I will run over you with a bullddozer. Yaani literally.

      • Morris

        I’m abit concerned Robert as to how bitter you are. Yes she hung up on you but now that she did so is that reason for you to scream? no wonder we all africans have problems and that is the same things that led to the PEV in 2008. have you ever thought that even if you are paying you bills for yourself that anger is not the solution? screaming or being irate makes even harder for the person serving you as you both wont understand each other.

  • Kashnayalyrge

    I can feel your pain, this telecommunications providers treat us like we come to them for charity!!!!!! Frankly I just hate em all.

    • Morris

      To be honest we as the clients expect heaven to open up when we are being served. Kenyan companies dont have the resources to handle clients. we dont go to them for charity but we still do need the services. screaming isnt helping you at all when u go to them as it makes it even harder to get assisted………..think about it.

  • Kashnayalyrge

    I can feel your pain, this telecommunications providers treat us like we come to them for charity!!!!!! Frankly I just hate em all.

  • Onyibon

    Peleka huyo msichana Hague.Anakuchezea

  • Got the same treatment from Airtel, i requested a custom number and they forced me to load ksh 500 to ‘activate it’. Immedtiately i got texts that i had repaid the my 30 bob ‘kopa credo’ and that my club 20 had been renewed, i called customer care only to be told that the number i had been issued was already assigned to someone else and that i had just loaded the money to their account. Later on they did issue me with a SIM card for the number i had requested but i never got a full refund for the credit.
    I thought it was all over until i realized i could make calls but i couldnt receive calls, called customer care severally and every time they cgave me a case number and the ‘tech’ guys claimed the issue had been resolved, however they never did try calling to confirm that calls went through. 3 different customer care personnel and more than a month later i still cant receive calls!!!!

    Airtel Kenya: i hope you sink faster than the titanic!!!!

    • Morris

      I hear you brother……………I work in an environment where i have to deal with Asians and boy do they brag abt Airtel……………..to be honest Airtel is in for a fight of their life esp now that they plan to launch tv services and zuku is advancing with fibre…………..and dth………..asians believe that Airtell will bring down every telecom company in kenya but lets wait and see………….biggest prob with Kenyan companies is they want to employ less pple to do more work and pay less……….Airtell is for Asians so what do you expect?

      • Storm

         I got to hand it to some people ! ! The racism coming out blatantly because of personal choice ? ? The issue is about the rep at Airtel and there training, what has an asian got to do with that ? Airtel brought the prices down for your asses to call cheaply – Was it safcom exploiting us or airtel ?

        Come on guys – Look at the bigger picture ! ! ! And Morris ! ! stop generalising, not all asians are the same

  • Juliet

    robert,
    as a CC rep for a mobile company i will tell you this, there are a lot of things that as a CC rep I have no actual control over. if that lady could have sent you the settings she would have done so but like with any company there are escalation procedures. also I feel you have left out a lot of the actual conversation with her. CC reps are trained to be patient but judging from your response you don’t sound nice. you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. if you want actual assistance from a CC rep always ask politely. it isnt her fault that airtel settings were not coming to your line and believe it or not there isnt much she could have done to forward you the settings and believe me if she could have it, she would have done so just to get your ungrateful a## off the line. and the fact that you gave your number and details just to try and get her in trouble says a lot more about you that it does about airtel CC Reps. the customer may be king but that doesnt give you the right to treat CC reps like sh*t.

    • Morris

      Big ups Juliet………..I work in an environment where I have to deal with Asians everyday and by God they think that because they are paying they have to scream at everyone……….asking for things they know very well its written in the contract they signed and wanting things that are not possible. Robert, being a CC rep for the past 7 years has taught me the hard to be extremely patient esp with clients who expect cc reps to bend over just cos the client is breating.

  • as sme1 who works for safcom customer i knw what u r talkin bout. Firstly that rep u talked to doesnt knw what she is saying (concerning settings) with nokia handsets there r three things u configure; 1. APN
    2. USERNAME 3. Pword. That is all. The kind of training and evaluation we go thru at safcom will not make a customer care rep do that. I knw becoz everyday we get calls dozens 4rm people saying they forgot their facebuk pwds and want us to help. Trust me we do what we can. The issue of two lines with the same number co-existing is impossible coz of the system we use. Robert i could get fired if i hang up on someöne for asking me to unlock his fb a/c. Another thing i have been a nokia user for 6yr and the nokias öf today hve a tool for retrieving settings automatically, under phone settings wizard. Fyi for those who think we ignore ur calls do ur math their 1300 agents. 14 different shifts each being 9hour long, each agent gets 130calls and 1hr break only.

  • Kenfish

    they have never sent me internet settings for my Idiot! You just sound like its me, these airtel chase customers and cry alot at Safaricom. Biz means u deliver the bargain not keep promising. Had to sell my Idiot for a profit though after three weeks of waiting.

  • Af_oak

    Ryt on Bwana Editor!! I’ve been DYING to rant on this issue. AIRTEL! Yaani no matter how much I understand that CC are human, LAKINI aishhhhhh! These guys are THE most arrogant, hard-headed mortal beings to pick up a phone!!! Walala! I have received sooooo damn much bullsh*** from these guys even for the smallest request for assistance, moved back to Safaricom…..na SIHAMI NG’O!!

    So hio mambo ya woiye woiye for ’em is unwarranted. Call a spade a spade, Airtel CC are the worst of them all! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used all the others:

    Orange – Though at times asking silly ‘procedural’ questions, they honestly try hard

    Safaricom – Hata kama they get bashing, but being brutally honest, beside the difficulty in getting through, Saf has exceptional CC reps. Be honest guys

    Yu – Ma-blondie ni wengi though they are patient enough to repeat severally on even basic, simple issues plus they polite

    Airtel – ’nuff said (Sihami na sihami)

  • Otsham

    Stick to safaricom you know and stop wasting your time. one day you will hang urself. one of these reps will abuse so badly. i hav had the experience. cheaply are they paid, that they dont care of their jobs.