Telco's recontract process raises questions

The recent failure of a well-known fitness studio emphasises the need for more transparency in contracts with service providers.

My experience with StarHub has been unsatisfactory. Monthly statements do not indicate contract expiry dates. Perhaps existing customers are taken for granted.

Several months after my contracts expired, I received a call from an agent claiming to act on behalf of StarHub.

She rattled off several recontract options but was unable to answer simple questions. In fact, when I called back, there was no response, only a recorded message stating that no messages could be left.

I called StarHub's sales line (1630) to report this experience. A supervisor initially said that the agency was part of StarHub, but later admitted that such services were outsourced.

Finally, a helpful member of the StarHub telesales team offered me clear recontracting options which I accepted.

However, when I requested e-mail confirmation, he said his department had no access to e-mail. After my insistence, he agreed to arrange an e-mail.

Several questions arise:

- Why is the expiry date of contracts not indicated on monthly statements and why aren't customers promptly offered recontract options which are at least as favourable as those offered to new customers?

- Why are third parties given access to StarHub's customer base ?

- Why can't recontract details agreed to on the phone be confirmed immediately by e-mail ?

Jairam Amrith