It’s amazing how a small inquiry at a nearby Vodafone store can create such a hassle.

My question was “How long is left on my contract and what are my upgrade options?” After giving my details the answer was inconclusive. “It looks like your’re out of contract but we aren’t sure and you may have to pay a fee to upgrade.” With such an indeterminate answer I put it in the too hard basket and left.

Fast forward to the 30th January 2017. Out of the blue I receive a call from the Firefighters Mutual bank. This is a bank I moved away from some months ago with the intention of closing the account eventually. Only a few dollars remained there.

I missed the call and it went to voicemail. I was unable to retrieve it till late and it sounded important. I logged into the Firefighters online portal to see if anything was obvious. Low and behold there was a Vodafone direct debit for $74.99 on the 29th December 2016. It had pushed my account to a negative $64.15 resulting in a $10 overdraft fee bringing the account to -$74.15. This was quickly followed by an end of month interest debit of $0.10 for a final account balance of -$74.25.

I then logged into MyVodafone. It showed the January bill had already been paid and my direct debit details had been reverted back to the Firefighters Mutual bank even though it should have been Qudos bank. Surprisingly neither bank showed the amount being debited.

First thing the following morning I rang the firefighters bank. The person who left the message was unavailable and the person I spoke to confirmed the overdraft and suggested bringing the account into the black ASAP. They also said there was no evidence that the January bill had been paid.

I next rung Vodafone. They said it had been paid by the Firefighters bank and only I can change the direct deposit details. I know I certainly didn’t change it back to the Firefighters. After the call I went online to MyVodafone and changed my details to the Qudos bank. As by now I was definitely out of contract I also changed my plan. A phone call from Vodafone followed and I cancelled my handset insurance.

I checked the MyVodafone site a few times through the day. In the late afternoon my bill changed from paid to overdue. Thanks Vodafone for the accurate details!!! I then did a BPay for the overdue amount.

In the evening, I received an email that the direct debit did not go through due to an account number error and all direct debit information had also been removed and I have to re-enter them. Oh great. On entering the Qudos bank details again it proceeded to tell me that the amount owing will be debited and not to make any other payments. Ohh well, bit late there Vodafone. I then deleted the direct debit details and will wait and see if I get charged twice.

Unfortunately, as another month had ticked over I was again charged an interest debit so another bank to bank transfer is required.

All this hassle from a small inquiry.



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