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Thread: Sat phone rental issues

  1. #1
    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Default Sat phone rental issues

    So for the last 3 years I've been renting a sat phone for my hunts from a local company. I pay for the phone rental when I reserve it with a refundable $100 deposit when it is returned. The first time I rented from this company, upon returning the phone, I was told that it would take about 3-4 days for my refund transaction to happen on my credit card statement. About a month or so after returning the phone I remembered about the refund and thought, I better go back and check my credit card statement to make sure that I was refunded. Well, I hadn't been refunded the $, so I called the company and they stated the it was an oversight and I would see it in the next day or so. I was refunded the money and that was that. The next year the same thing happened only this time I only let it go a week or so, then called them and my $ was refunded within a couple days. Well now this year the same thing happens only this time I let it go almost a month then call the company and voice my concern regarding having to call every time to get my refund when they state every time that it will only take a few days to show up on my statement. I was told that the refund was given to me almost a week prior to me calling and that the guy would check into it and call me back. Well I never heard from the gentleman again but my $100 was refunded the very next day according to my credit card statement. Should I be irritated with this, or is this just common practice when dealing with companies that have a policy of requiring a deposit with a rental?

  2. #2

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    I would be concerned about this. While the sample size is fairly small, I doubt you would be the only person having those issues. It almost sounds (just from the explanation) that they are playing the system and hoping people won't call in to follow up. They make sure to take care of those who do quickly so they don't push the issue further, but are still way ahead by those who never call back to check. Maybe there is a way you could check with someone like the BBB (better business bureau) to see if they have heard of similar issues with the company. Maybe you are just the most unlucky person around where it happens to you 100% of the time and never to anyone else, but I doubt it.

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    Member logman 49's Avatar
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    Because it has happened to you every time, my guess it's an easy way to put an extra hundred in the till. Maybe 50% of the folks who rent forget about it.

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    Depending on how many people rent sat phones from them, $100 a pop could be good change. I wonder if they are playing the 'interest' game and holding the money for as long as they can. If they invested the money correctly and had a good size chunk is change, they might be able to put extra dollars into their till. Just a thought!

  5. #5

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    I bought a sat phone a few years ago and had my service through a certain Anchorage satellite phone business. The billing got really shifty and all of a sudden prices went way up. I terminated my business with them. My bets are it is the same company.

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    Recently I got a great deal on at Sat phone through ebay and set up for service with Surveyors Exchange on Springer St. in Anchorage who I had previously rented from. $199 for six months with 200 minutes that will rollover. $398 a year is worth it to me to have that phone wherever I go and not have to deal with renting it anymore. Sorry to hear about your troubles

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    I had the exact same issue this year.

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    I've always used surveyors exchange out of anchorage and never had an issue. They don't charge a deposit. Just a credit card on file in case you break or loose the phone.

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    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatt_lander View Post
    I've always used surveyors exchange out of anchorage and never had an issue. They don't charge a deposit. Just a credit card on file in case you break or loose the phone.
    I used to only use Surveyors Exchange....looks like I'll be going back.

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    I've also used Surveyors Exchange for the past few years, and never have had a problem. You will want to reserve your phone early before the season begins...I think they pretty much rent them all out.

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    It is a shame that in a State with as little a customer base as we have, especially for this service, that a company can not, or does not, provide better service. As an Alaskan, I do what I can to keep business local. Another thread talks about emergency communication, something I've found a need for, and take seriously. To know that a company is at a minimum, taking advantage, which might translate into somebody making a decision to not take other communication tools, does not set well with me.
    You might get their e-mail and send them a copy of this thread which puts them on notice that the issue is now in a public setting. I'm sure there are other avenues to use also.
    I'm not trying to strong arm the business, but their practice, as you've described, just is not acceptable. In today's electronic world, transactions are able to be completed immediately. They won't change unless they see a need. Or, ignore it, and just go to another provider. That would be easier, but is it "more right"? If there are enough other providers for this service, then perhaps it is all mute?
    ARR

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    I use Mobal, and they are excellent. Highly reccomend for rental or ongoing service. Check them out online at www.mobal.com

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    Yep had the same problem with the Anchorage Store by REI, I emailed their company headquarters with no response. Don't use them anymore, they area a rip off and are always hiring new people.

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    Member AK Troutbum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moose30 View Post
    Yep had the same problem with the Anchorage Store by REI, I emailed their company headquarters with no response. Don't use them anymore, they area a rip off and are always hiring new people.
    Well I guess I'm not the only one.

  15. #15
    Member Gr is for Greg's Avatar
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    I'd be cautious of any company that charges your card a deposit and claims they will refund it later. Any merchant should know that they can just as easily place a "hold" on your card for a certain amount of money and only cash it in if you damage or lose the phone. As I understand it, that amount of money is "set aside" on your account, but not actually billed. When you return the phone, they release the hold, and no money has ever changed hands.
    My signature is awesome.

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    Another vote for Surveyors exchange. Awesome, local company and exceptional service......every time.


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    I looked at Surveyors Exchange and didn't see sat phone for rent or for sale.......? Where do you look?

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    Surveyors exchange 907-561-6501

  19. #19
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    Their sat phone rental office is across the street (west side) from their main store.

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    Quote Originally Posted by knikglacier View Post
    I looked at Surveyors Exchange and didn't see sat phone for rent or for sale.......? Where do you look?
    I'm sorry...I just now noticed you were from MN...I wasn't trying to be sarcastic in previous post. Guess I should wait until my second cup of coffee in the morning before posting on the forum!

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