Category Archive: Customer Service

It Never Hurts To Call

I got dinged with a late-payment fee.

It happens.

Last month, it happened to me.  Twice.

I’m usually very thorough when it comes to paying our bills on time.  However, last month, something happened, and not one, but two bills went unpaid.  Once I realized that I had missed the payments, it was too late.  They were past-due and we had been charged late fees.

So, two days ago, I paid both bills, in full.  Then, today, once I checked that both payments had posted to the accounts, I called each company and asked to have the late-payment fees waived.

Both companies were super cool.  In less than 10 minutes, both companies had credited the fees back to my accounts.  That’s $50 in savings.  Not bad.

The moral of the story – We all make mistakes and it never hurts to call.  Both companies recognized that I was a long-time customer, acknowledged that I had a solid track record of paying my bills early, and were cool when handling the situation.

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Keeping A Close Eye On Those Medical Bills

I recently had to have a kidney stone removed.  The hospital estimated the cost of the procedure, and offered me a 20% discount – if I paid my portion on the day of the procedure.  I paid the estimated amount and had the procedure.

Today, I received the actual explanation of benefits from my insurance company.  I am happy to report that my portion of the cost of the procedure is several hundred dollars less than the amount I paid to the hospital.  When estimating my portion, the hospital included my full deductible, unaware that, due to several doctors’ visits prior to the procedure, I had already met most of my deductible.

I called the hospital and spoke to the billing department.  A refund for the overpayment has been issued.  I should receive it in a week or so.

It’s always a good idea to check – and then recheck – your medical bills.  Many insurance companies now allow you to view your account information online.  This makes it very easy to view recent activity and to check account balances.

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Laptop In Need Of Repair

This will be my last post from my laptop this week.  The hinge connecting the lid of the laptop to the base of the laptop is broken.  I contacted Lenovo’s customer support staff last week, and they sent a box, via FedEx, that I’ll use to ship my laptop to them for repair.  I purchased the laptop, a Lenovo y510, last June, and I really like it.  Hopefully, the repair will take just a few days, and I’ll have it back at some point next week.

For the rest of the week, I’ll be posting from my wife’s Acer Aspire One- an awesome little computer that I purchased for her last Christmas.  I really like the Aspire One, and while I wouldn’t want to depend on it for all of our computing needs, it should be just fine for a week or so.

I must say, I was pleasantly surprised with Lenovo’s customer service representative.  After looking up the customer support number on the Lenovo website, a task which took about one minute, I called the number, and a representative answered in less than twenty seconds.  Five minutes later, after assessing the problem and checking the warranty status of my computer, he asked for my email, my address, and promised to send the box to my home.  He even told me when the box would arrive at my house.  Sure enough, it arrived today, just as promised.  Man, it feels good to get good customer service.  Hopefully, the repair will go as smoothly as the phone call!

I’ve copied the contents of my computer’s hard drive, not once, but twice!  I have two external hard drives, and I simply copied and pasted the entire contents of the computer’s hard drive to both external drives.  I also removed all passwords from my browser, but not until first exporting a copy of them to an SD card.  Hopefully, they’ll just fix the hinge, but I wanted to be prepared, should all of my data be corrupted.

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Kroger Ending Baby Club Rewards Program

If you are enrolled in Kroger’s Baby Club rewards programs, be sure to check your mail.  I just received a letter from them, notifying me that they have decided to end their current Baby Club program, effective yesterday.  Inside the letter was a coupon, equal to the value of my current points balance – in my case $10.  I am a little disappointed with the fact that the program has been discontinued, but thankful for the $10 coupon.

As I have mentioned before, I actually enjoy shopping for groceries.   I use my grocery store price book to track the prices at Kroger, and I have noticed a definite uptick in prices over the last year, especially for their store-branded items.  The Baby Club was a nice way to save a few bucks, and now that it has been discontinued, I may decide to look for a new grocery store of choice.

As a final note, the last line in the letter from Kroger did mention that they will be sure to send special offers to my family.  My hope is, and only time will tell, that the coupons they send will compensate for the loss of the rewards program.  We shall see.

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