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Vodafone offers disgruntled former customers cut-price deals

Vodafone called our reporter to admit that it had been guilty of poor customer service in the past and that it was very sorry. Here are his thoughts...

It's not every day a large company calls me to admit that its customer service was rubbish, but that's what Vodafone did today.

The representative's opening gambit was to ask if there was any way I'd consider going back to Vodafone. He admitted that the company's customer service had been woeful in the period I left -- and he also let slip that a great many people had switched providers at the same time.

As we were speaking, I found myself wondering if the trouble I had with Vodafone was really all that bad. Time heals all wounds, so I checked my blog posts from the time and was able to remember what had gone so badly wrong. Looking back though, I had less trouble with Vodafone than I did with O2, a company that manages to have virtually no redeeming qualities at all.

So would it be worth going back? Well, it seems Vodafone is very keen to regain some of the disgruntled customers. The rep offered me a £10.21 per month deal which included 600 minutes, unlimited texts and 750MB of data. This is technically better than my current, same-price T-Mobile deal -- though there's a situation I'm currently re-considering -- but there are plenty of reasons I wasn't immediately tempted to go back.

I only left Vodafone because it wouldn't give me a SIM deal as good as its competitors. Now I'm elsewhere, it seems to have realised that it should have tried harder to retain customers who had legitimate complaints. All I ever wanted was Vodafone to match a price -- its phone service was never the issue for me -- and I'd have stayed. Instead I had to go through customer-service hell to get a PAC and leave the damn company.

Apparently, if I want a reduced-rate deal, all I have to do is call customer service and tell them about this phone call. The company told me that I could have 30 per cent off most of its deals -- excluding the iPhone, of course -- if I decided to come back. I'm not ready to go back yet, but it's always good to hear a company admit it was in the wrong. I wonder when I'll get a similar call from O2. I won't hold my breath.