I had recently changed my service plan from 1200 to 500 [last April] because I had a SUN 350 line and I wanted to lower my monthly expenses. When I was getting this done I expressly asked the service rep about roaming. Fact of the matter is I was only keeping SMART because SUN had weak to zero coverage outside Metro Manila and because I assumed SMART [being bigger and older] had more roaming partners over SUN. When I went on my 4 day trip to China last week, roaming was not working. Good thing I had brought my SUN SIM card which did roam successfully take note my SUN plan is only 350/month. That is even lower than my SMART plan. So I decided to call SMART and have roaming activated on my SIM. I was surprised when the rep on the phone said that activating roaming now required a 2500PhP roaming deposit and that this deposit can only be credited to your account as bills payment when you decide to deactivate roaming. I asked if this deposit would be used if I roamed and she said no. I argued that I wanted roaming all the time and had no intention of deactivating it in the future and all she could do was say sorry for the inconvenience and that this was the new company policy. So in effect I would be forking over 2500PhP and I would never get it back. What really irks me is that I always pay my bills on time and in full amount no matter how much it is.
I feel this shows a great deal of distrust from the carrier to the user.I don’t want to increase my monthly plan up to 1800PhP again [I had started at this plan 2 years ago] so it’s either I rely on SUN for roaming or give 2500PhP to SMART. I think I will check SUN’s roaming partners list and I will also check Globe’s roaming policy might be time to switch carriers again… SMART’s services have been deteriorating and treating their customers this way just doesn’t sit well with me.