On December 29th, Verizon Wireless announced via official press release that “Starting January 15, a new $2 payment convenience fee will be instituted for customers who make single bill payments online or by telephone.”
A day later, on December 30th, after a barrage of consumer complaints and a possible FCC investigation, Verizon retracted their fee.
Verizon said it listened to its customers and made the decision based on customer input after many complained and some threatened to leave the service if the fee was instituted. A spokesman said that the company had just wanted to encourage consumers to pay their bills via different methods such as autopay, where they give Verizon permission to charge their credit card or bank account automatically each month.
Sigh, Verizon. You do realize you’re charging us to pay you, right? Just like Bank of America wanted to charge people $5 to access their own money? Maybe read one of the 17 behavioral economics books on the shelves right now. Suggestion: reward customers with a $2 discount for enrolling on monthly autopay instead. Yes, you could quietly jack up the monthly bill by $2 later on, but at least that way it’s easy to see when comparison shopping between carriers.