DTAC extortion?

I am a disgruntled DTAC mobile phone customer. I am upset because I believe that DTAC is extorting money from me and all its other customers through their “Happy” credit validity period policy. Apparently, independent of the amount of credit a customer has in his/her account, he/she must spend a certain amount of money each month to keep his/her account active.

On May 14 my account balance was 142.68 baht. That same day DTAC sent me a “Happy” message informing me that my credit was going to expire on May 14. My credit did expire and I was not able to make any phone calls even though I had more than enough credit in my account to make a local phone call.

I subsequently discovered that the only way I could spend the credit that was already in my account was to give DTAC more money. Maybe I am off base, but in my opinion DTAC’s credit validity period policy is simply wrong.

I respectfully suggest that DTAC rethink its credit validity period policy. At the very least, as long as there is sufficient credit in a customer’s account to cover the cost of the intended phone call, a customer should have the right to be free from “credit seizure” for a minimum period of 90 days from the time the account was last “topped up”.

Jopal Merob, Bangkok.

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We have two ways of using our network. The first is prepaid – you must pay before you make a call. There are a variety of denominations for the cards: 50 baht for 3 days, 90 baht for 6 days, 200 baht for 20 days, and so on.

The second is postpaid, whereby you pay a monthly payment plan as a registered DTAC customer. A DTAC officer will send you an invoice informing you of the deadline and the amount outstanding. You can pay at a DTAC shop, DTAC center and at any bank or ATM.

When you top up your prepaid account, the automatic reply lets you know how much you have in your account and the expiration date. The expiration date will count from the day you add credit to your account and if it expires you cannot make a call, but your account does not expire.

When you top up your account again, the expiration day will be reset according to the most recent card you have bought, and your previous balance will be added to your new balance – it has not disappeared, nor is DTAC extorting you.

Please understand that you could not make a call because your date had expired but your account has not disappeared.

An officer at the DTAC Call Center.

Answered on February 15, 2007.
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