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Tuesday, August 16, 2022
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Innovative, Can You Hear Me Now?

Dear Source:
Years ago, when I moved into my current residence I signed up for Innovative cell phone for my daughter. Because, at that time as explained to me, being new to the island I was required to pay a $150 deposit. Also explained to me, that the amount would be held for a year and then 100 percent would be returned.
With my daughter graduating from high school and off to college in the States, I cancelled her cell phone service in 2004. Well, of course I forgot about the deposit. In July of 2005 I remembered that Innovative had a deposit that had not been returned. My first attempt to recover my deposit was done by a simple phone call to the business office. The customer service representative was kind and gladly collected the information and promised that the deposit would be processed.
Happy with the conversation, I was satisfied and would wait for the check. Not receiving any check by August 2005 I called again. This time when I asked again and reminded the representative that this was my second phone call for this matter. Instead of a kind follow up I got a caustic comment "Innovative would return the deposits when funds were available!" With this, the attendant ripped off a phrase of profanity and hung up on me.
Always patient, I would wait some more. Noted that next time its best not to call on a Monday. September now rolls around and wishing that I had my deposit, its now time for a face-to-face visit. Going to the Tutu business office, I took my seat in the business lobby and waited my turn. Called to the back office area where representatives could discuss issues face-to-face, I could again explain my request for the return of the deposit. Having explained that I was told that Innovative did not have the funds to return the deposits but she could see my request and for me to be assured that it would be processed as soon as possible. Yes, I agreed to wait again. Now knowing that there are just some things on the island that cannot be rushed, I resigned myself to wait a more extended period of time.
November rolls around and I was really about to loose all sense of being calm and willing to just accept what I was being told, another visit to the Tutu office was scheduled. This time my first comment was more direct, asking to simply process my request at the cashier and give me back my deposit. No, this cannot be done, as explained by the representative as she examines her computer screen, "Oh! I can see that your check was processed on the 17th and you should be receiving it shortly." Shortly is the operative word here. Is this like "Soon" or Island time? Well, " the check is in the mail and so be patient." Sounds familiar?
As of this writing, the St. John Blues Festival over and my deposit would really be handy. Still no check.
Another phone call to Innovative, thinking it would be best not to be in person when I lose my cool, explaining the situation again, the Innovative rep (embarrassed and stuttering):" No, no. An investigation would have occurred, we would have discovered that your deposit did not get returned to you." The cheeky bastards are trying to never give me my money back. Innovative Rep continued (Really Long Pause) I am sure she was waiting for me to acknowledge that again I called and was told another story and with this I should be happy again for another month or so. Not!
So, there you go. The reality of the situation is that, it is not financially advantageous for Innovative to follow their own policy of deposit refunds. Story after story, month after month, and year after year, and my deposit still sits in Innovative's pocket.
A word of advice. If you have placed a deposit with Innovative and have been prompt with all your payments and wish to have your deposit returned, then start the process now. You may see it in your lifetime. Add a footnote to your Last Will and Testament leaving your deposits to your offspring. Let your children continue the battle. You have my address Innovative and yes I am STILL alive. Can you hear me now? Your Patient Customer,
Larry Boecker
St. Thomas

Editor's note: We welcome and encourage readers to keep the dialogue going by responding to Source commentary. Letters should be e-mailed with name and place of residence to source@viaccess.net.

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