Consumer Complaints & Reviews
Helen of North Wales, PA on Dec. 10, 2011 Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
This company is ripping off seniors. I bought phone from Best Buy on 12/7/11 and later that night around 10:00 pm, I called to activate with Greatcall. Around 11:00 pm, the rep said to keep the phone plugged in and it should be activated in about 4 hours and we would have the phone number appear on phone. The company is now billing for 2 months with one month before we even had service 11/7/11 to 12/7/11. I called to question them and they said it was their policy and even after I spoke to a supervisor, Tabitha, I was told they were not going to credit back month we didn't have.
We ended up calling back in about 5 minutes and told them we would cancel and only then did I get put on hold and then told it would be adjusted. I told them I would report them to all the agencies and I could also dispute with the credit card company. If you would like my details and names, let me know.
Beverly of Panama City, FL on Dec. 3, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 3/5
The unethical billing practices of Great Call needs to be dealt with. Billing customers for minutes beyond a shadow of a doubt not used and excessive regulatory fees is corruption at its finest. I was indeed excited about getting the jitterbug, however, the unethical billing practice and the company's very poor reputation have most definitely put a huge damper on that excitement. Regret not doing my homework prior to the purchase.
Contacting customer service has proven to be a total waste of time. When and where does all the corruption the consumer is faced with in our daily lives cease? Big, corrupt business has simply destroyed the economy globally. What a disgrace!
Donn of Vancouver, WA on Nov. 29, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
The product is inferior. My phone is less than six months old. The battery won't hold a charge for 24 hours even when I don't use the phone. They wanted an exorbitant price plus shipping for a new battery. They said the phone must be left plugged in all the time because the battery is only designed to last 24 hours. They refused to make good on the inferior product.
Ron of Eureka springs, ar on Oct. 30, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
I am giving them a no star rating. It was a total waste of money. Statements of accounts are not itemized. My husband has trouble hearing on the phones, so I thought this was the perfect solution. The reception is horrible and it kept cutting in and out. He never used the phone (he used my iPhone because he could hear better), and we still get outrageous bills. What a rip off to senior citizens. I got him an Apple iPhone and all is well and cheaper!
Beverly of Rockport, TX on Oct. 25, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
I ordered a phone and when it arrived, their tech department said it wouldn't work in my area (although it is in their coverage map). I returned phone but was not reimbursed for set-up fee or postage. Cost me $60 to learn of their fraudulent claims.
Amy of Middletown , MD on Oct. 14, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
I purchased a phone for my mother over two years ago once she was placed in a nursing home. She has Alzheimer's and eventually got to the point where she didn't' understand what the phone was, nor could she talk. In June I cancelled the account. A customer rep called back a few days later and left a message. I never returned the call. I continued to be billed and called again to cancel the account.
Now I have charges for July and August. I have refused to pay since they never followed through with my initial request to cancel the account. The customer reps have been very unhelpful and although they acknowledge my request to cancel in their "customer retention" file they still insist I pay.
Marjorie of Sacramento, CA on Oct. 11, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
Less than one star!
Their first bill had two activation charges!
I paid the bill and have not received one since. Then a rude representative phones me to let me know I am 28 past due and if I don't pay him via telephone now, in 2 days, the phone will lose service. I asked for an email or faxed copy of the bill because I wasn't following him. I asked him five times. He said he could only USPS mail it to me. I told him he is ** and hung up.
The nerve of someone trying to get over on me! He could shove the jitterbug phone and its service (lack of) up his rear!
peggy of weston, OH on Sept. 28, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
You cancel, they keep billing you. They are rude and con artist. Act like you didn't call to cancel, then you cancel again and they charge you again after you have canceled twice. They must be hurting for money to act so nasty and steal from innocent people. I wish they would go out of business. Their product stinks, to begin with, and doesn't work properly half the time. I don't want to rate them at all, they don't deserve one star. They deserve to be below rating.
Diana of Biloxi, MS on July 16, 2011Satisfaction Rating: 1/5
Ripping Senior citizens off. Ditto to ALL complaints about that company. Treat seniors like idiots, talk over them and LIE to us, very unprofessional, problems with phone that can't be corrected and given excuses.
Renee of Woodway , TX on July 7, 2011
Jitterbug debited my elderly mother's account without authorization causing her to inccur non sufficient funds fee. will not refund her & further more charged her for an entire additional month she didnot use.
Katherine of Denver, CO on July 3, 2011
We had a Jitterbug phone that we stopped service on in May of 2010. We wished to return the phone at that time but Jitterbug insisted we should keep the phone and they would restart the service at anytime.
Just yesterday (July 2011), we tried to restart the service on that phone and they said that they would not support that phone and we would have to buy a new phone for $79.99. Additionally, they also said they would not give us any credit on the old phone costs. After a second call complaining about this, they offered only a $20 rebate on the old phone against the $79.99 new phone costs.
Jeanne of St. Louis, MO on July 22, 2010
I am absolutely disgusted with Jitterbug Company. I was an unhappy customer for two years. I was unhappy about missed and delayed calls. I was unhappy about charges higher than competitors. I was unhappy about bills with no detail. The only draw you have is the ease of use of your phone. My daughter finally transferred my number to a new phone service on March 16, 2010. The company told us that once the number is transferred, the service would be cancelled with Jitterbug, since there would be no account associated with the number.
However, I received a bill in April. I called on April 26th and talked to an associate to officially cancel the account. In May, I received a bill for two months of service. I called on June 1 and spoke to Amy. She explained the overlap of service from March 17 to April 16. I immediately sent the $60.77 payment for that month, even though I had already transferred the number to my new account by then. Amy said the additional $60.77 was for service from April 17 to 26. First of all, it is ridiculous to pay for a full month, even though it is only for 9 days! Second of all, I did not use the phone. I told Amy this and she said she would refer the account to financial services, and they would contact me with a decision.
I received no response from them. Instead, I received another bill. On July 1, I called and spoke to Carlos. He told me that the bill was actually for Feb. to March, which is a lie. I told him I wanted to speak to a supervisor. Jason ** got on the line and told me no, that the bill was for the partial April month. I told him I didn't use the service. He said I did. I cannot know this because there is no detailed information on the bill. He said he would send me the detailed bill. I asked him to read me the numbers over the phone.
He said, "That would be an unproductive use of my time and I'm not going to give you the information I can send you. And my going over this bill with you is another hoop for me." These statements were condescending and offensive. When I said this to him, he hung up on me! I find this treatment deplorable. I believe your company takes advantage of elderly people by luring them in with your product and then treating them like imbeciles.
Susan of San Jose, CA on Feb. 2, 2010
Jitterbug should be shut down. Their billing is deceptive, if not illegal. They cannot provide accurate minute usage because they say it takes 3 days to collect the info from other carriers. They do not provide itemized statements.
Anne of Kennebunkport, ME on Jan. 5, 2010
I bought a jitterbug phone and then signed up for service only to be told they had no numbers available in my area code. After several calls and promises and phone numbers over the course of 5 months, including one that belonged to someone else, I gave up. Glad I disconnected my other cell phone service. Be sure to ask if they have a number in the area you want!
Deana of Midland, MI on Dec. 9, 2009
I too purchased two phones. One for my elderly mother and one for my husband. My mothers phone sat on the charger for over two months while I tried in vain to get the number from her old cell phone switched to the Jitterbug. The Customer Service is awful and the people are rude and nasty. They would never let me finish a sentence, they would continually talk over me. When my check did not reach the payment center on the due date they immediately cut off phone service and left my elderly mother without phone service. The bill's that have come are never the 14.99 plan that I signed up for. The last bill was 86.00 and I still can't understand why. I would not recommend this phone company. They have horrible customer service and I believe they are trying to con money from the elderly.
Karen of Roswell, NM on Dec. 1, 2009
I called about a Jitterbug phone for my elderly father. The first question I asked was about service where he lived. I was told it was the best. I also asked about the return policy and was told if I was unhappy for any reason I could return the phone within the first 30 days for a full refund.
I ordered the phone and had it shipped directly to my father. He was so excited to receive it until he tried to use it. The reception was horrid. He could hear us but be could not hear him it was breaking up so bad. There were several calls made to Jitterbug in an attempt to fix the problem. At one point he was "switched" to another carrier and was totally unusable for 6 days out of the 30 day return period. It still didnt work.
I called to cancel the service and return the phone within our 30 day trial period. Had to return with a RA number on the outside of the box or would not take it. We did that. Received at Jitterbug on November 12th and still have no refund. As a matter of a fact on November 20th they deducted another $49.00 from account. Clearly their mistake. According to them they forgot to stop the automatic withdrawal upon cancellation. So sorry for the inconvience.
Called them again today November 30 and still no refund. Refund of the phone takes 21 working days and 5 working days for the additional amount taken after cancellation. The 5 days will start from November 30th not the 25th when I made the first call about the "Mistake".
There are also "rules" about returning the phone. Only 30 minutes could be used, no scratches on phone, and the list goes on. They will adjust the refund accordingly. Here is the best one. When I asked for the number to the financial department I was told from customer service they don't have that number. Their only communication is e-mail or fax. Are you kidding me!
Anyone considering a Jitterbug my advise DONT. I added my father to my Sprint plan of shared minutes for an additional $9.99 per month and it is great! Phone works wonderful and Dad has no problems with it. He is once again happy.
Janis of Arvada, CO on Nov. 30, 2009
I recently purchased a Jitterbug phone with a Simply 29 plan (250 anytime minutes, 500 evening/weekend minutes) for my elderly mother. She tried using it for a month but was unhappy with the service for several reasons, so I decided to get her a landline. My mother has difficulty dialing numbers due to the rheumatoid arthritis in her fingers, so she used the Jitterbug operator service to dial her numbers. Little did she know, every time she dialed the Jitterbug operator, she was billed for 5 minutes of Jitterbug service! She though that this was a free service provided by Jitterbug. NOT! Be sure you READ THE FINE PRINT!
Then she gets her bill and she was charged for 120 minutes for dialing the Jitterbug voicemail retrieval number!!! After seeing the initial bill from Jitterbug, we decided that Jitterbug is definitely not "elderly friendly" as had been described, so we got a Comcast landline and changed the Jitterbug service to a basic plan (50 minutes per month for $14.99) for emergency use only. We made this change on the last day of the current billing period.
Here comes the next bill.....WHOA! We received a bill for $86.00 when we were expecting a bill for $14.99! Ends up they treated all the calls in that billing period (400 minutes) as if we had been on the $14.99 basic plan the entire prior billing period! We were never told that we should wait until the first day of the next billing period to downgrade our plan! UNBELIEVABLE!
In my opinion, Jitterbug preys on the elderly population. Many of the elderly will not be savvy enough to read the FINE PRINT and to question what is going on with their bill. Oh, and talking about the bill, did I mention that the bill does not include a call detail list that shows each call made? This information is not available on their internet site either! You have to call the Jitterbug operator (which you WILL BE BILLED FOR!) and ask for a call detail list to be emailed to you; it took them 72 hours to email it to me!
I cancelled my mother's Jitterbug service today. BYE BYE JITTERBUG! GOOD RIDDANCE! I'm out $200.00 for a phone and various accwessories that I purchased, plus an additional $71.00 in phone call charges that I should not have had to pay for.
Karen of Santa Cruz, CA on Sept. 24, 2009
Here are things I believe greatly need improvement with Great Call's Jitterbug's billing and website:
The monthly bill needs to show ALL calls made to help the customer reconcile the minutes used and be on the same page. Currently it only shows the minutes used and cost, but not itemized as other phone companies do. Isn't it a regulation to do so?? It takes 48 hours for the used minutes to show up on MyJitterbug?? The change to the phonebook can be put in right away, why can't not this technology be applied to the minutes?? The used minutes on the phone show TOTAL usage of the phone, not the recent minutes purchased - it's too confusing to NOT show usage of the CURRENT minutes last purchased only. This would greatly help in keeping track of current minutes used.
I appreciate the phone,it's easy to use for my mother-but the billing combined with the site, isn't, and these need some major improvements to catch up with the times.
I'm only a consumer, and some companies would rather ignore than deal with the issues. I have used the comments area on the site to bring my concerns, but pretty much ignored.
If Jitterbug/Great Call is now promoting a new phone, they had better improve their billing/website as well to accommodate, or folks will surely find other solutions!
Kevin of Glendale, AZ on Aug. 10, 2009
I bought Jitterbugs services for my parents as there phones are eaiser for elderly to use. I purchased 500 minutes for them, not knowing there was an EXPERATION DATE on those minutes of 1 year.
Parents do not use phone much so 190 of those 500 minutes EXPIRED.
In todays mobile phone business I thought those plans were history. Why would minutes EXPIRE? The only reason I can think of is take advantage of seniors?
lynne of Panama City Beach, FL on Aug. 5, 2009
We bought a Jitterbug for our 18 year old disabled daughter. She used a handful of times before it died. When it failed to recharge I made the mistake of calling the company instead of taking it back to the retail store. It was so new I could have returned it for a full refund. The service rep that I spoke to told me to send the phone in and against my better judgement I did.
After 3 weeks of not hearing anything from Jitterbug, I called them. They told me I would have to pay $150 for a new phone. I explained that it was a new phone. they basically told me tough! Shame on them. I am contacting AARP, the National Down Syndrome society, the national society for the disabled, retailers and advertisers. There are many stories similar to mine all over the internet. This company should not be allowed to cater to elderly and disabled. Shame on them.
Jeanna of St. Thomas, OTHER on June 8, 2009
I looked into getting a Jitterbug phone for my Dad. Jitterbug sent me a phone. Once received I called Jitterbug to activate to be told, that they do not offer service in my area, which is in the US Virgin Islands. They apologized and told me they would send me a prepaid enevelope in which to mail the phone back. After waiting for that envelope for about two weeks I took the liberty and sent the phone back using my personal funds for I did not want to be responsible if something happened to the phone. SO I mailed it back.
Kimberlee of Hailey, ID on July 29, 2008
I purchases a basically brand new phone from someone whose mother could not use it. I sent it in to Jitterbug to have it reprogrammed for my parents. The following is the experience I have had to date with Jitterbug: 6/11/08 Didn't hear from anyone from Jitterbug for 2 weeks, called to find the tech repair department determined the phone had "water damage" and no one had contacted me. I was told I would have to purchase a new phone. The phone I had sent in was basically brand new when I received it and I took it out of plastic. Nothing had happened to it while I had it and I sent it to Jitterbug extremely well packed and in a sealed bag. I had played with the phone before sending it to Jitterbug. All functions worked perfectly and it didn't have a scratch on it. Previous owner said it worked fine when she had it but very nicely sent me a complete refund. Asked Jitterbug to return the phone to me.
6/13/08 Called again to check on status and what I could do. Lady answering said didn't have any record of me asking for the phone back but she would re-request it. Goggled "Jitterbug water damage" and came up with several web sites stating Jitterbug often cited water damage and other problems when asked to reprogram phones and often overcharged customers. 6/30/08 Still haven't received my phone back. Called Jitterbug again and spoke to "Wes". He said that an email had been sent to repairs on 6/13/08 but it didn't look like the phone had been sent out for some reason. Said he would make a point to re-re-request it be sent back to me.
7/27/08 Haven't received phone. Called Jitterbug again. Lady that answered said they have no record of me in their database. 7/28/08 Shatika. Asked again about returning phone. She said she would send out a "followup" to everyone in Tech Department which is a step beyond what people have done previously and this should work. Pending. Very annoying to deal with. People that have worked for this company state that they often tell people they have to purchase a new phone on trumped up charges. I want the phone back to check it out. Spending a lot of time on this and now trying to find my parents a workable emergency cell phone with a more reliable company.
Dk of Choctaw, OK on May 24, 2008
Ordered a Jitterbug phone for my Mother that did not want a sophisticated phone. She simply wanted a product that would allow her the availability of emergency service, should she need it. I ordered a jitterbug phone for her, since the service that was offered fit her needs.
The equipment that was received was as expected. However, the service was not! It was virtually impossible to contact my mother when testing out the equipment to see how it worked, I ALWAYS received a busy signal. The Jitterbug rep that I spoke with apologized and said that, that does happen sometimes.
Unfortunately, I did not discontinue service at that point. It seems that if you do not cancel within 1 months time (after sign up), you will EAT the cost of the phone. SO, I have since cancelled my service, put my mom on my cell plan, and am stuck with a paper weight that I would even hesitate to try to hold down paper with! If you are contemplating a Jitterbug service for someone that you LOVE and CARE about... do not do it! Find an alternative! I have lost money on a service that I thought would be great for someone that wanted a simple, easy to use product. Thankfully, money is all that was lost! Buyer BEWARE!!
Penni of Elkhorn, NE on Dec. 8, 2007
I saw a newspaper advertisement for Jitterbug cell phone for seniors and called to order one for my mother in law. The ad said, As low as $10/month service. I called to get a phone set up, with myself set up to pay the bill. I requested the regular phone, a years service and 100 extra minutes. The salesperson said the cost was $168 and charged it to my credit card. I asked if this included everything. I asked this 3 times. Once she told me, well it actually is $147 but there is tax and shipping included. This seemed OK and fell within that general $10/month service described in the advertisement.
We got the phone, were pleased with it, but no billing statement came with it. I called again to verify that I did indeed get the years service and 100 extra minutes. Yes, we were signed up for this.....Then I got a bill for $255 which was for the years service, 100 minutes and $45 in service and regulatory fees. I was NEVER told about the extra $45. I called back saying that I had already had $168 billed to my credit card. This operator said that I needed to call back and talk to billing dept during the weekday. I did this. There is no special billing Dept. This operator said, Yes maam, this is all correct. The $168 is just for the phone. The $255 is for the service and extra minutes.
Sherry of St. Louis, MO on Nov. 19, 2007
Advertisement claims better to hear on a Jitterbug phone, I found that not to be the case. Extremely hard to hear incoming calls. More than once my daughter called and I never heard the phone ring. Hope this is not the case if I have to make an emergency call.
Carolyn of Russellville, AR on Sept. 6, 2007
We ordered a Jitterbug phone for my 91-year-old mother. When it arrived, the phone number assigned to it was outside our area code, meaning that every phone call placed to or from it entailed a long distance charge. When I called the consumer service number for the company, I was told that we had no choice of number assigned to the phone, that it had mistakenly defaulted to the area code closest in location to ours, and that our other option was an 866 number. None of this was explained on the website when we ordered the phone.
Janell of Seattle, WA on Jan. 28, 2007
I order 2 cellular phones from Jitterbug. I got them around 11/22/06 and the service was terrible. I tested them out and I could not call from phone to phone. One would ring the other didn't. I tried to call land lines and got busy signals when I knew they weren't. The phone would say it connected but the other phone wouldn't ring. The people who are suppose to help you by dialing zero only know how to transfer calls. There seemed to be actually a danger because it took longer to get to them. I was on hold for 10 minutes+ several times. The real service people were only available Monday through Friday. I emailed them twice..stayed on hold that following Monday twice and never got through. I emailed them again and all they send back is a cult type message saying welcome to the Jitterbug Family The charge to my credit card was $589.00 on 11/22/06.
Jane of Charleston, SC on Dec. 27, 2006
I ordered a Jitterbug phone at 1-866-278-8592. My phone came, I charged it up, and set about putting in a list of numbers via the internet site, 222.myjitterbug.com.
First thing I learn is that the setup via internet is not available. I called the operator and she informs me that "all the arrangements with the carriers are still being worked out" and that my calls will have to be placed through the operator at no charge until approximately January 15, 2007. I can't even dial a number on my phone! I can't even use the phone list (which is not even available until 24 hours after you give it to the operator) without going through the operator. I was just outraged.
Furthermore, the customer service number she gave me to call -- 1-800-733-6632 -- is NOT a 24-hour customer service number but is only available between the hours of 9 and 5, Mondays through Fridays Pacific Time. How can they sell a product for which service is not yet available? I don't know whether to wait until the middle of January to see if the problem is resolved or just go ahead and send the phone back and try to get my money back.