AIA customers upset after redemption letter for shopping vouchers was declared void

A redemption letter for a $50 shopping voucher that was sent to photographer Ng. -- PHOTO: GRACE TAN
A redemption letter for a $50 shopping voucher that was sent to photographer Ng. -- PHOTO: GRACE TAN

SINGAPORE - A group of AIA Singapore customers have been voicing their unhappiness online after a redemption letter for a $50 shopping voucher sent to them was declared void.

One of those affected was a photographer who wanted to be known only as Mr Ng, 35. He had received the letter from the insurance company dated Jan 16. He asked his friend Grace Tan to collect his voucher from Robinsons for him, as he was busy.

Ms Tan, a blogger, said that she went to a Robinsons outlet on Tuesday to collect the voucher, only to be told that the letter was not valid.

In a letter shown to her by Robinsons' staff, AIA said that the redemption letter on Jan 16 was "sent erroneously".

Ms Tan wrote a post on her blog detailing her experience.

"Honour those promises in the original letters. Otherwise it is really distasteful," she wrote.

When contacted, Ms Tan said a director at AIA had contacted her to offer her friend a replacement voucher and compensate her for the taxi fare she had incurred. The Straits Times also understands that Mr Ng's agent gave birth four weeks ago and is on maternity leave.

But Ms Tan was not appeased.

AIA should have notified customers earlier so they did not have to waste time trying to redeem the vouchers, she said, adding that some policy holders were informed of the error by their agents.

Mr Ng told The Straits Times that he thought his agent should have notified him.

"If you made a mistake, you should at least tell me, then I won't make an effort to go and collect it," he said.

He believes the voucher came with a health insurance policy he bought last year, but it was not a factor in his decision to sign up for the policy.

However, due to this unpleasant experience, he is thinking of switching insurers, he said.

In a statement to The Straits Times, AIA apologised to affected customers and said that the wrong letter was sent out due to a "technical error".

The company explained that two different groups of customers who were eligible for different promotions were sent the same letter, and as a result of the error, AIA had to declare all the letters void.

They will be sending out apology letters to all customers soon, AIA said. Eligible customers will also be getting replacement redemption letters.

"Due to a technical error, the letter dated 16 January 2015 for redemption of Robinsons shopping vouchers was erroneously sent to a group of customers who have participated in another promotion," the company said in statement.

"Letters of apology are being mailed out to the affected customers. Concurrently, customers who are eligible for redemption of the vouchers will also receive their replacement redemption letter."

Affected customers can call the AIA Customer Service on 1800-248-8000 from Monday to Friday between 8.45am and 5.30pm or e-mail them at sg.vitalitymoderator@aia.com for more details.

chuimin@sph.com.sg