Verizon plans $30 upgrade fee for existing customers

April 11, 2012
19

Planning on buying a new Verizon phone after April 22nd? Then plan to spend a little more money: Verizon announced that they're adding a $30 "upgrade fee" for existing customers who want to get a new phone and renew their two-year contract. The fee will be enacted on all returning customers in two weeks, though you apparently won't have to pay it... if you pony up for an unsubsidized phone. For several hundred dollars more, on phones that are already considerably more expensive than their counterparts on other networks. Hooray.

Verizon claims that the fee will be put in place to "continue to provide customers with the level of service and support they have come to expect which includes Wireless Workshops, online educational tools, and consultations with experts who provide advice and guidance on devices that are more sophisticated than ever." Apparently these services, which Verizon has provided for years without the aid of an extraneous fee, simply can't continue without getting some extra cash out of their users. This comes after a failed attempt to add a $2 "convenience fee" to customers who had the audacity of paying with a debit or credit card.

I don't want to go off on a rant here, but as a Verizon customer (whose location doesn't give any other options) this seems like pretty straightforward profiteering. It's not enough that Verizon and manufacturers price phones in such a way that most people can't afford a smartphone without egregious subsidies. It's not enough that after two years of service, that while certainly among the best in the nation is also its most expensive, they have to get another two year contract to get a phone that will be out of date in one. No, they've got to tack $30 on to the privilege of continuing to be a Verizon customer, giving services that they already offer as an excuse. This isn't going to be enough to make me to switch - Verizon's coverage just cant' be beaten - but it doesn't make me a happy user. These nickel-and-dime fees are really getting out of hand.


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  • BrettKoster

    Well good news, places like Best Buy and Amazon not only have better pricing, but also don’t charge these ridiculous fees. Carriers aren’t really inspiring me to buy from their stores.

    • Quincey79

      You will still get charged the upgrade fee, just not at the check out. You will be charged on the bill. Also, it wont be something that can be credited or waived at a Verizon store. It will have to be done at the place of purchase.

      • Vmoton

        I think the new charge is over the top….they have stopped every customer oriented program that actually made me choose Verizon. My disappointment with Verizon grow with each passing year. I may have to consider pay as you go options.

    • Blp810

      The fee will be charged no matter where you sign a new 2yr agreement. If you get a discount on the phone then you will be charged the $30, period!

  • Seanv112

    @BrettKoster …. The fee won’t be charged by Best Buy or Amazon but directly on your Verizon bill…

  • Seanv112

    This comes after a failed attempt to add a $2 “convenience fee” to customers who had the audacity of paying with a debit or credit card.

    Just a heads up do you know there is a 2 -3 % transaction fee and a per transaction fee when you use credit cards. I am not siding with Verizon but a lot of consumers do not know that.

    • http://www.androidcommunity.com Michael Crider

      I’m aware of credit card transaction fees. The vast majority of retailers either deal with it build it into their prices. Passing it directly to customers in yet another fee, just so they don’t have to make it up elsewhere, is not consumer-friendly. 

  • Nightlight

    These fees help pay salaries. As an employee for a wireless company, fees suck but allow me to continue to get raises and my commission

    • http://www.facebook.com/vince.sczepanski Vince Sczepanski

      No one really cares about your salary or commision and the fee’s are a load of crap so the company can pocket more money. The economy sucks people are making less money so lets increase fee’s taxes and charge more for the phones…so less people can buy them ultimately killing the entire stupid idea of the company making more money. Then changing all the phone plans and cancelling the unlimited data on top of that makes even more sense. Why is anyone still with verizon?

  • http://digg.com/users/OmegaWolf Silver Fang

    Sign my Change.org petition to stop this outrageous fee! http://www.change.org/petitions/hey-verizon-wireless-no-upgrade-fees

  • Seanv112

    @silverfang:disqus Vote with your dollar not with your petition…

  • http://twitter.com/mikedonatello Mike Donatello

    #Fees for renewing contracts? Does @VerizonWireless:twitter  have a crack team at HQ that does nothing except dream up ways to increase subscriber #churn? I’d fire the geniuses that come up with this junk.

  • JJJRJR4284

    For some reason what im reading doesn’t sound like makes sense. how will Verizon know if you purchased the phone or not? if their gonna charge it to your bill during activation the might be charging you for hand me down. it seems like thair system has a flaw

  • http://www.facebook.com/howard.thomas.10 Howard Thomas

    Here we go again, 1st, Current Verizon customers pay more for their phones than new customers. Why is that? When we upgrade our phones we have to renew a 2 year contract, just like a new customer. 

    2nd, Now they are adding a $30 upgrade cost per phone upgraded for existing customers but not on new or corp. accounts. Does being a current customer mean anything? I guess not to Verizon.

    This is getting ridiculous. Why is a current customer expected to take a hit for being a loyal customer.

  • Shop around

    Been a Verizon customer, well, since before verizon.  Walmart sells phones and service for less.  Will be shopping around for a new provider.  Let the free market decide, they have to see more people are will to leave, before they stop with the extra charges.  Call them bitch alittle.  If all current verizon customers do, they will change.

  • 1USPatriot

    I just found out about this when I went to upgrade my phone.  I just told them to KISS MY @$$ because with a new data plan, detailed billing, etc; they were increasing my monthly by $34 anyway; then they want another $30?   SCREW YOU — I’m no longer a long term verizon customer.  BOOM just shot your extra monthly income in the foot!

  • Pete

    My Android Razr card fryed twice and i lost valuable pic’s. Then the phone had to be reset by factory. When I called for a new phone, (willing to pay the price) they had the audacity to charge $30 upgrade fee. I’m done with Verizon. Am currently looking at any other altervatives. Any suggestions out there?

  • http://twitter.com/WhittakerRobert Robert Whittaker

    Being a loyal customer sure pays off… no wait it doesn’t

  • CryBabies

    If you dont like it, leave. Oh wait, every other major network charges upgrade and activation fees too. Its an industry standard, like tipping. Don’t like it? Go prepaid. And get 50% less coverage. No one is forcing you to do anything