Rogers Extreme Discount

August 8th, 2006 by Potato

Part of the reason my IP has been changing is that there’s a bit of a shake-up happening at Rogers. For a long time now I’ve been on the “grandfathered Extreme” plan — the $44, 5 Mbps plan that was introduced about 2 years ago by Rogers. Since that time, they’ve upgraded the Extreme plan to a $46, 6 Mbps for new customers, but many of us old ones were still getting the cheaper, marginally slower one. As I said earlier, Rogers is trying to get rid of its power users by increasing the price of the Extreme plan and getting rid of anyone who was “grandfathered”. So, I said that the new price was not worth it (especially as the standard Express plan had been upgraded to 5 Mbps), and asked to be downgraded (via the website referenced in the letter I got notifying me of the price increase). The transaction went through, I got a reference number, and was told that my downgrade should take effect in about 48 hours. A few days later I noticed that I was upgraded to the new version of Extreme, the 6 Mbps download (and an aside: this summer has been fantastic for my connection, all the students in my neighbourhood going away for the summer has made it the first time I’ve actually gotten the full listed speed from my modem, so I could actually detect this kind of change). Since I didn’t want to be paying more for it (not even $2/month more while they processed my downgrade request), I called in and asked about it. I got transferred between 3 people (2 of whom didn’t even know I was on the 5 Mbps Extreme plan, not knowing it existed), and found out that my request on the webpage never registered, despite the tracking number. So, I asked the final person to downgrade me, and much to my surprise, she offered to leave me on Extreme and not apply the upcoming price increase for a year! It completely boggled me, as I’ve always had to fight with Rogers to do anything, yet here they were offering me a deal for no reason (I didn’t even have to ask — I was going to continue paying them the same amount for slightly less service anyway).

Amazing luck, as usually getting Rogers to do much of anything is a minor miracle, so I’ve been pretty high about it. When I hung up the phone I was in shock, not believing it had happened. It was a bit of a pain when earlier today I got an email that the automated system had finally registered my downgrade request (with a different tracking number too), a week and a half later. As I feared, that had wiped out my “negotiated” discount. I called Rogers and spent 45 minutes on the phone bounced between 3 agents, but they finally gave me nearly the same deal (it’ll be $2 more per month since I’m starting from the new Extreme now, there being no $45, 5 Mbps plan to put me on anymore). I didn’t even have to beg or threaten to go down there, I just simply had to wait while each sucessive agent checked on something (presumably with a supervisor) and bumped me up the ladder. If I was amazed and shocked the first time I got the deal, I felt like bloody Heracules for keeping it after the second set of calls.

There are some caveats, of course: this now locks me into a 12-month contract with Extreme, but with the phone lines in my place I wasn’t really planning on going anywhere. They didn’t mention anything about not telling people, but I should warn you that Rogers is really weird and random about cutting deals: calling and telling them that your friend got a deal, or that practically everyone else in Ontario got a DOCSIS compatable modem, or that Bell’s willing to offer you a lower price, will virtually guarantee that you won’t get a deal. I also have no idea how they determine who is and is not a “good” customer and thus eligible for a discount or more timely repairs. I’ve had reasonably good luck here in London (it took a few tries when the node was overloaded, but things are quite a bit better now, though I’ll have to wait until September to be sure), but they won’t do anything for me on my parents’ account in Toronto. I’d consider both accounts to be good customers: I’ve been with them for over 3 years, have the most expensive internet plan, and own my modem (so they got the money before the rental charges came back, and it makes me less likely to leave — though that cuts both ways: why entice someone who has more corporate inertia?). My parents have had Rogers TV since before we moved there in 1987, upgraded early on to multiple digital terminal outlets with all kinds of channel packages, and we’ve had cable internet since around 1998 (just after it moved from the Wave to @Home). Plus my brother’s cell phone plan is with Rogers at the same address (and he upgrades his handset every year or so, paying a hefty premium for it, too). Yet despite having less than 1/10th the advertised speed for over 4 years (I only really noticed just how bad it was when I moved out here and saw how much faster things were in London — and this was an overloaded node at the time!), I’ve never been able to get them to admit to any problem with the modem or neighbourhood (although posts from indicate that that area of Willowdale has terrible congestion, with everyone getting low speeds like that). I call and complain every month or so in the hopes that a long enough call history will finally point the way to a problem, but often they just tell me to call back again later in case the problem is temporary. I have to ask Netbug if the call history comes up for them or not. Last time after having the tech try to sell me on a new $100 modem (without admitting anything was wrong with the current one for a replacement), and then telling me to reformat my computer (after telling him it was brand new out of the box and that the old one didn’t go any better) I finally gave up and asked to be downgraded to the Light plan so I would at least pay less for the crappy speeds… and the tech said he couldn’t do that and hung up on me! I don’t know if there are different call centres in London and Toronto, or if my parents somehow have some sort of tech support red flag, but you can see why this call history would lead me to enter a nearly comatose state of disbelief when they offered to save me money out of the blue…

One Response to “Rogers Extreme Discount”

  1. Netbug Says:

    As I’ve said before, call in. Let them check it. Ask for a new modem. If they refuse, just request to cancel. They will transfer you to retention. These are the deal-makers. Just tell them at that point that you like Rogers, don’t want to leave, but really need a new modem. They’ll hook you up.