Well, I’m very embarrassed to say that I was late for my last comcast payment. It is one of the few bills that I have not put on auto payment. The usual thing happened where I did not get the monthly bill (or misplaced it) and ended up forgetting to pay it.
Well, an “urgent” mail came today from the Comcast billing department. This was what was written in the letter :
As of 4/25/07, our records indicate that your account has a past due balance of $126.12. Your last payment of $81.15 was received on 03/06. We understand that in the rush of our daily lives we sometimes overlook our bills (very polite to start).
Suspension – (getting a little nasty here). To avoid suspension of your service, payment of the past due balance is due by 5/07/07. If this payment is not received by this date, then your total balance of $222.39 must be paid by 5/11/07 or your service will be suspended. If your account is suspended, your cable channels and the internet will be blocked. Additionally, if you subscribe to Comcast Digital Voice, you will only be able to make 911 calls (what a consolation).
Termination of Service – Your account will be terminated soon after your suspension of service. If we do not receive your payment you will lose all television and Comcast High Speed Internet Services. If you have Comcast Digital Voice, you will lose all telephone service including 911.
……….If you wish to resume service with us after your account has been terminated, you will be required to pay the full amount due and will be subject to installation charges. You may be assigned a new Digital Voice number. (well, I guess if this happened, you should switch to Vonage instead!).
Well, I went into my online bank account and paid the bill (which was a genuine late payment). What bothered me was that Comcast (or even credit card companies) do not bother to tell you that you are late just after you missed payment (like a week after). Instead, they tell into after a month or so after stiffing you with a finance charge!
The language in this letter almost made it look as though you are better off with a credit card late payment than a Comcast late payment! At least with a credit card late payment, you are only charged finance charges and a late charge (possible interest rate increase). But you are normally given 60 days before any thing nasty (like reporting to credit bureaus) takes place. With comcast, you lose your cable TV! But thankfully, Verizon TV provides a viable alternative!