The only reason I decided to switch back to Safelink (from Assurance) even though i knew what hassle awaited me, was because i want to use the 2G (or is it 3G?) phone from last year, as i hate smartphones. And Assurance's tinkertoy phone-battery seems to be dying, yet they were unready to provide me with the phone & battery combo i wanted. So, predictably i've been enduring a huge hassle getting transferred to Safelink.
I'm still waiting to get re-enrolled, after emailing photo's i worked hard editing due to no scanner. ABOVE ALL HERE IS THE BEST TIP FOR DEALING WITH SAFELINK - Never believe a word they tell you. Believe ONLY the documentation which safelink's site generates upon final step of enrollment process. If the site states they require emailed-or-mailed proof of your med.card or other cards, and the Safelink gal or guy INSISTENTLY ASSURES YOU "don't worry, you're approved because you were enrolled with us last year" - do NOT believe a word the gal or guy tells you. I had HUGE hassle because i believed the gal back in July. INSTEAD - send safelink the proofs exactly as stated, even if it means you need to find someplace to scan them. YOU'RE ON YOUR OWN. SUPPORT FROM OUTSOURCED REPS. IS NEAR-ZERO! And even some Americans from the U.S. Lifeline agency are rudely-authoritarian (the type you get nowhere with).
Some numbers for the record:
NY Lifeline Agency (reps located in Carolina, Guyana etc) 866-806-1840
USA enrollment office 800-723-3546
Tracfone Corp.office 800-626-4883 ext.3324
Philipines (u need tranquilizers) 800-378-1684,1,2,6
WISH ME LUCK!
Now for some of my experiences: Earlier today, when i phoned USAC, i got re-routed to Lifeline (N.Carolina div. of NYstate agency) - and they said they need to conference-call me to Safelink but the call disconnected. That was a very rude call. The next agent in NC was more courteous, but still helpless. She said Safelink wasn't executing re-enrollment properly, because the Safelink rep. had erroneously NOT notified me that DESPITE being approved by them BASED ON LAST-YEAR RECORDS, the NY-lifeline Agency STILL requires me to send Safelink updated copies of med.card and so forth. But the Lifeline-Agency-woman could not get thru to them, so instead she told me she left my # with Safelink, to call me (as if i wasn't already put thru that a thousand times already!) ...well, the next call which came, i told the male rep. what the agency woman told me, so he asked me for the card number, then after that prolonged hassle, he said i anyway have to email it to them via photo, and make sure to put my enrollment # on subject line & my name in body of email. And send it to email@example.com.
As i said earlier, THE ILL-INFORMED FEMALE SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME THAT LAST TIME, INSTEAD OF ASSURING ME THAT EVERYTHING IS SQUARED AWAY! (at the time, i suspected something's fishy, and kept asking "are you sure?"I'd asked that based on the site stating "your application is ALMOST complete, you must now provide us with documentation proving eligibility via email/msg/fax/or-mail." U.S. AGENCIES WHO ARE SUPPOSED TO BE REGULATING THE CELL PROVIDERS (I.E. THE FCC, PSC, & USAC) ARE FAILING TO DO THEIR JOB, SO SAFELINK CEO'S ARE GETTING A FREE RIDE!
And yet earlier in the day: when i told Safelink i'd report them to the USAC, they transferred me to the Tracfone corp.office of 8006264883, and that woman proved useless, as usual
And yet earlier: It's now Aug.13, and after weeks, its still not resolved! Last week i reached a series of Safelink/Lifeline reps. who kept informing me that despite my enrollment ID number AND sim-card being sent to me, yet i'm still not enrolled, because the deadline is 10 days from July 24. Despite the 1st rep. saying Aug.6th is the deadline, yet the next reps (on Aug.6) insisted i call back Aug. 8th for activation, stating that's the deadline. All those calls involved LOTS of questions & LONG pauses, which is their frustrating style. Well, it's now Aug.13th, way past the deadline, so i phoned their 800-378-1684 number yet again. And yet again was asked for all sorts of ID numbers (with a zillion more long pauses).
And yet again was told i'm not yet enrolled! And was transferred to a supervisor upon request. The supervisor was even worse. He responded to my anguished fury with a minutes-long LONG silence. (He had insisted that it's not them, but rather the fault of the NY State Agency for Lifeline. He gave me their number (866-806-1840). Naturally, that turned out to be automated, asking me to enter my phone number "and i'd be phoned back within 15 min." Well guess who then automatedly phoned me back? It looped right back to that same useless 800-378-1684 number, where there's zero accountability because the NY State Agency doesn't allow them access to anything. So basically, the 866 NY Agency number which the outsourced reps are told to give you - HAS NO HUMANS MANNING IT and just loops you back to where you were originally!
And this was just today's experience. My July 24 experience was just as high-blood pressurizing. THIS IS OUTRAGEOUSLY UNCONSCIONABLE! The CEO's of these rackets are getting a free ride on gov't programs, leaving their lackey's in outsourced places to treat us to the silent-treatment, or disconnects, and so forth.
Is there anyplace left in today's world that has any conscience? Why are we having to go thru what our parents' generation could never have imagined?