Cellular Agony

Dealing with Phone Companies

Our Story

Our story with Orange/Partner began with a simple phone call in which Orange assured us that they could easily improve on the bad service and the practice of overcharging that we were experiencing with our current cellular phone company. We’d been with Cellcom for almost 15 years. It was time for a change.

Orange sent two representatives – Gal and Liron – to meet us. They were young, they were respectful, they were charming. They were also among the most accomplished liars we have ever had the misfortune to meet. The result was a contract that vastly differed with what we verbally agreed to; forged papers (my signature was literally forged on one document; my husband’s electronic signature applied to 40+ pages he did not agree to).

Perks that were given to us for free for moving our phones to Orange…suddenly weren’t perks any more. For example, before the iPhone came to Israel, Gal gave us some promotional SIM cards. He told us that it was a give-away to valued customers. We don’t have an iPhone, we told him. Gal smiled and explained that when they come to Israel, it may be hard to get them; this will help us. Then we found out Orange was billing us for 10 NIS per SIM card…who agreed to that? Not us. Never mind. What Orange takes…God help you.

Later, in addition to our phones, he gave us two iPhones. Yes, now it sounds naive to believe it was free…but at the time, we accepted that we were bringing Orange 16 business lines and a promise of years of services required. We didn’t have to sign to receive the iPhones – Gal took care of that technicality…along with changing the prices we agreed to – prices above what a normal person would pay for a single phone, never mind a company with 16 lines.

The head of Jerusalem’s Business division admitted to us in a meeting that were he to implement all that Gal had promised us, his company would lose money. Somehow, Gal managed to open 66 phone lines on our name. Now, some 10 months later, we are still struggling to get Orange to reconcile what we ordered, with what they say they delivered, with what we really got, with what we owe.

It is a mess, complicated by Orange’s ongoing refusal to deal with the issue. They offered us 10,000 NIS to accept a compromise offer…they can’t figure it out themselves.

At one point, the SIM cards got all mixed up – Gal gave us new ones…and continued charging for both. We’ve so far managed to get them to cancel 16 lines. We still have no clue about the others. No further meetings until we pay them what we owe. What do we owe you, we ask? We’ll tell you after you pay.

Are we the only ones who think this insane? Do you have a similar story of cellular agony? If you do, please write to us and tell us. You can reach me at cellularagony@gmail.com.



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