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New Fibre order and activation -- never ending problems!

4: Newbie

Overwhelmed and don't know where to start from...


I placed FTTP order on 12/1/2023, with installation appointment for 20/2/2023. I thought 1 month later is OK given the demand, etc.


Openreach engineer missed the appointment on 20/2/23. I called VF to enquire. As VF has joined the Automatic Compensation Scheme, they now owe me £26.24. They confirmed they owe me this amount already in a chat (a generic one first and one with Activations team later) in the evening of 20/2. They confirmed this was a missed appointment which will be automatically compensated for after activation and billing starts. The agent also asked me if I needed chat transcripts which I said yes to and also put my email in the box before closing the window. They never sent any transcripts. They didn't want to leave any trace, I guess.


Next morning, on 21/02, I contacted VF Customer Services on Twitter to enquire further on what next (activation or external works or anything else?) Cust Service confirmed next step would be activation and an Openreach engineer would get in touch with me directly for an appointment.


Next day, on 22/02 an Openreach engineer just showed up as a fairy without appointment. He started working on the outside segment (pavement). He also asked me to clear the area inside my property (a cabinet where my utility meters and current broadband termination box is) as he would pull the fibre in. I listened enthusiastically although I had never agreed to that 'appointment'. However, he detected a blockage under my driveway, and we discussed options how they'll fix it. He suggested contractors would dig trench to lay new pipe for fibre from pavement to home. He marked the ground with white spray. He filled in a consent form for the works. I consente on the condition I'd be present when the digging would take place. Nice chap, all seemed OK.


On 23/02, I received a text that someone from VF would call me to book the appointment, which they did. We booked the 13/4 over the phone and I have the details of the person I spoke to.


On 16/03, two vans from contractors "Clancy" showed up in the morning wanting to dig my driveway. I declined as I was on a work call and their visit did not respect any appointment I had booked through VF (13/04). They did some work on the street and they understood they have no consent to dig my driveway on that day. Further discussion with one of the team revealed that they were instructed to dig a hole on my driveway (in front of the entrance to my house!) and leave it open "for a few days". That''s very different to what the Openreach engineer had proposed (dig a trench from the pavement to my property, to replace the old duct which was blocked, "a half-day job" as I got promised). I never consented to any contractors leaving any holes open on my driveway which can be a hazard for residents and kids living in the property. I had an appointment for the latter job booked for 13/04.


Yesterday 21/03, I received an out of the blue SMS and email from Vodafone with an 'activation date' and 'engineer's appointment' scheduled for 21/04. There is a funny side to it: They are asking me to be in or I may have to pay a missed engineer appointment charge of £110! :Smiling: But, I already have an engineer's appointment for 13/04. I am assuming they intend to miss this one and owe me another round of £26.24? (BTW, why do they only compensate customers for a quarter of the charge they put on us?)


If this is not a pathetic activation service I don't know what is.


Back to the Twitter team this morning to enquire further. They have all the facts in front of them, but kind as they are, they are powerless. With all the respect, this is a useless service then.


Having browsed through the other posts in this forum I realise I am not the only one living this joke. Hopefully the general public will read one more testimony about the service (or lack of?) and think twice before they place their order with Vodafone.


Oh, and if anyone from VF cares to read this far, please do not ask me to figure it out with your Customer Service team on Twitter. They can't do much, their info is occasionally conflicting and their security questions every day are just a waste of time. That's in addition to the amount of time I have lost trying to resolve all the above. Time to file a complaint maybe and involve the Ombudsman.



16: Advanced member
16: Advanced member

A sorry tale indeed, there definitely always seems to be a complete lack of coordination between Vodafone and Openreach and their contractors.. Whether it is worse than with other ISP's I don't know.

You can find the complaints procedure here: Complaints Code of Practice | Vodafone UK, hope you are able to get some resolution.


@ritz wrote:

Back to the Twitter team this morning to enquire further. They have all the facts in front of them, but kind as they are, they are powerless. With all the respect, this is a useless service then.

Personally I would never use the social media route to try to resolve anything. Did you try live chat?

Thank you for the suggestions @Jayach , very useful.

I will look into the complaints and I will try the chat again.


There is more that happened with Cust Service yesterday on Twitter that is both entertaining and a good lesson for anyone who intends to sign up with Vodafone (be ware!)


A kind gentleman (who, to his credit, seems more switched on than the rest of the robo-team), called Activations on my behalf and acknowledged that I had indeed an appointment scheduled for 13/04. None of the agents wanted to mention the phrase "appointment cancelled" in their responses, though. They are just introducing a new activation date of 21/04, claiming VF has no control over Openreach's appointments, which is not true of course. What's the point of VF offering appointments over the phone if they cannot respect them? There is a clear breakdown of comms between VF and Openreach, with the customers suffering as they're kept in the dark.


As I have not officially received any notification that the 13/04 appointment has been cancelled, I will wait until 13/04 and claim another missed engineers appointment for £26.24 through the Automatic Compensation Scheme.


Another example worth exposing here is how the robo-team provides blanket responses that have nothing to do with my specific questions. Here is a quote: "If work is to be carried out on your property they will require consent from your beforehand. If this was a unscheduled appointment, work outside your boundaries will not require any authorisation. All this info can be located here." The context here is that contractors had showed up at my doorstep, unscheduled on 16/03, informing me they will start digging my driveway. This is contradicting what the Twitter agent is quoted saying in the above. I had provided no consent to their digging on that date. Let alone the type of work they said they were going to do was nothing as the Openreach engineer had indicated in his report!


Any further advice welcome (prospective customers beware!)

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

I'm not impressed. Similar long wait, 2 months plus and that's before any cancelled appointments!

3: Seeker
3: Seeker

I'm not impressed. Similar long wait, 2 months plus and that's before any cancelled appointments!

16: Advanced member
16: Advanced member


Posting multiple times, in multiple threads, won't help.

Only hit it once! Maybe this forum works as well as other things!

Community Manager
Community Manager

@ritz - thanks for taking your time to explain in detail what's going on with getting your line activated. This isn't the experience we expect you to have. 

I can see the conversations you have had with us on Twitter. I'm sorry you feel like you haven't been helped there. I understand your frustration and that you're now looking to make a complaint. 

My team can log this for you. Please reply to the last message we sent on Twitter and advise you'd like to make a complaint. 

@thevines - I've replied to your other post