Never Ending Long Distance Saga

Remember my long distance problems? My service was broken, then fixed and now… now I’m in a real pickle. How could things deteriorate so quickly, so totally? And yet they have.

I have plenty of time to tell you the story because I am on hold, again, waiting for the next available agent at GTC Telecom. My call is important – though not important enough to hire people to answer all the calls.

Recapping, a few weeks back I lost all in-state long distance service. A call to GTC told me how to fix that by calling my local phone company and whispering the magic letters. It worked OK, just not in the direction I wanted. I lost ALL long distance service, in and out-of-state.

Another call to GTC instructed me what to tell my local phone company to really fix the problem. I had long distance service again. I was a happy camper.

Then, this week came the letter from Sprint welcoming me as a customer! Uh oh. Who signed me up with Sprint?

Sprint, as it turns out, is the underlying carrier for GTC. I don’t claim to be a telecom genius but I think GTC buys in bulk and resells to folks like me. My calls go through Sprint but are billed by GTC.

For the past three days I have attempted to get in touch with GTC. The first time I got an announcement telling me not to even bother holding on and got summarily disconnected. The next time I did get connected but ran out of time before I reached a human. I waited until later that night, between newscasts when I’d have some free time. By the time I finally gave up the phone’s timer said I’d been waiting 61 minutes.

Right now I am on hold again. The readout shows 19 minutes.

Thankfully, at work I have a speakerphone. This makes the wait nearly acceptable. I can do other things, like write in the blog.

While waiting the last time I looked at GTC’s website.

Additionally, some customers who have line (PIC) restrictions established with their local service providers were not successfully switched to our new network. As a result, they may now be out of service for their toll calls. Our customer response team has attempted to reach these customers in order to lift the PIC restrictions on their lines and provision them to our new network. If you are out of service for your toll calls, Please contact us directly. Contacting your local service provider may result in your being placed on what is known as the open network, with toll calls being billed by a third party at traditionally high rates. GTC Telecom will be unable to help you with a third party bill.

Hold on! That’s what they told me to do… and what I did.

The same few songs keep repeating on GTC’s hold system. It’s some new age psychological torture.

Twenty six minutes now and smoke is pouring from my ears.

2 thoughts on “Never Ending Long Distance Saga”

  1. Geoff,

    Assuming you’ve got a broadband connection, switch to Vonage. I’ve been using it for 4 months now without a single glitch, and calls for peanuts, Infact, I am away from the US in South America for a few days and have taken my Vonage box (and NC number) with me! I am using it in my hotel (taken my NC office calls, voicemails, etc.) and it costs not a dime more.

    Seriously, look into it. Sooner or later, with stuff like this around, the telcos are going to have to wake up. They treat the customers like idiots, and as for all the taxes and optional charges… hmmm.


  2. Hey there,

    Read your note on the GTC Long Distance saga. You are not alone. I am having the EXACT same problem in fact. I got a bill from Sprint for $98 for long distance instead of the $7 it would have cost through GTC! Finally after dialing forever I asked to “Open a New Account” and got connected through to a human. She conferenced in with Sprint and they “re-rated” my bill to 10 cents per minute which is a lot better than the 40 cents per minute it had been. But to get it back down to 2.9 cents per minute I had to fax the bill to GTC. Unfortunately they gave me a !#$!@#$ fax number that has been disconnected.

    So now I am faced with the Enya hold music AGAIN. No luck so far and Sprint tells me I have anotehr $98 LD bill in the pipeline and they wont re-rate it again. Good Luck. I will post back if I gain any insight into this and will look to see if you have new entries. My guess is that GTC is imploding.

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