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Credit Control at the Restaurant

teedoff
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 29-12-2012

Credit Control at the Restaurant

There is this restaurant I used to really like, Pappa Nick's. The food was good though a little pricey and service could be a bit slow which was apparently because my table was too far from the kitchen and the waiter's shoes were too tight.  Anyway it was consistent with a good atmosphere and I ate there regularly for about 3 years - I even recommended a few friends to give it a try.
So last week after my pre xmas lunch ... horrors! I had forgotten to fill my wallet up and when Papa Nick himself came to get the money for the bill I was caught short. "Never mind" said PN helpfully "Come back in a week" (actually he said 6-10 days but hey) "and I'll take the money then." How sensible I thought.
However when I get home I see Papa Nick has sent me an email saying "YOU HAVE NOT PAID YOUR BILL"  So I rush back to the restaurant and when when I get there there is a sign in the window saying "YOU HAVE NOT PAID YOUR BILL - we're not talking to you!", odd I think, so I find Papa Nick and confirm that there is no problem and he will take the money in a week as agreed.
Later that same day relaxing at home I get an urgent SMS from Papa Nick's waiter saying "YOU HAVE NOT PAID YOUR BILL" ... cripes !
Then I get another email saying "YOU OWE US MONEY PAY OR ELSE"
Wow, it seems PN's Credit Control has not been told that he will be collecting the money in a week, a little annoyed I take a walk to the Post Office.
Just before I get there one of Papa Nick's waiters jumps in front of me with a big placard that says "YOU STILL HAVE NOT PAID YOUR BILL!!", seething, I ask him politely to go away.
All is quiet for a few days when enjoying a holiday lie-in I am awakened at 9am by an urgent SMS from Papa Nick's waiter to say "DON'T FORGET YOU NEED TO PAY YOUR BILL". I am fuming about how unnecessary and intrusive that is, when "bing" I have mail.. guess whoHuh..... Papa Nick's credit control saying "DONT FORGET TO PAY YOUR BILL.... OR ELSE". By now I wish I had never heard of Papa Nicks Restaurant and pick up the yellow pages to find an alternative.
Later that day I am subject to about 100 questions from my wife who was out shopping when one of PN's waiters leapt in front of her with a placard saying "YOUR HUSBAND HAS NOT PAID HIS BILL DON'T FORGET OR THERE WILL BE TROUBLE!"
So I get on the phone to Papa Nick's to ask what the hell is going on and does he not remember that he said he would take the money in a week. His waiter says "I know nothing, I from Sheffield" and "It's just the way it is", but he does tell me to hold the line a moment - then goes for lunch.
So I walk round to Papa Nick's and there is still the sign in the window saying "PAY UP OR ELSE!! (and we are still not talking to you)" At that point I wonder how I got from recommending my friends to this friendly restaurant to never wanting to see it again.
Of course this is just a story and no business would be daft enough to treat their loyal, expensive to get, customers like that in real life, would they Papa Nick?
Oh, wait....
http://www.plus.net/support/service/policies/failedbilling.shtml#card

11 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,100
Thanks: 437
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

I hope the subtlety of your amusingly told tale, although not so amusing events, is not lost on Plusnet, because there would be steam coming out of my ears if that happened to me, so Plusnet clearly need to get their system sorted out!
If I were you, I'd delete your mobile number from your account details, until such time as this is sorted, or some future point where having the mobile number there would be helpful.
(PS. I know what you mean by intrusive text messages when you are having a lie-in!).
joncooper
Grafter
Posts: 314
Registered: 07-09-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

most of that seems bad, but I really think contacting the wife is a bit much!
jockwav
Rising Star
Posts: 651
Thanks: 8
Fixes: 3
Registered: 01-08-2011

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

Well, pay your bill then. Grin Cheesy Grin Roll eyes
https://www.flickr.com/photos/james_bingham/
teedoff
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 29-12-2012

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

So Papa Nick sends me another email, saying "oh yes we know we are going to collect the money off you but the emails and the SMS and the waiters with placards are all controlled by the magic fairies that we have absolutely no control over. But don't worry..."
Next day 9.01am at work... urgent text .... "STILL NOT PAID YOUR BILL THEN I SEE",  - Love the uncontrollable magic fairies of Papa Nicks Angry
Oh no I think, the wife is shopping today the man with the placard might be out!  ... I hope she .... [Wagnerian ring tone] , "er yes dear, no dear, nothing to worry about, no honest it should have been sorted, sorry dear, just tell him to go away"
Then of course another email " ONLY 4 DAYS TO PAY YOUR BILL BEFORE WE BAN YOU FROM LEAVING THE HOUSE WITHOUT COMING TO US FIRST!!"  again apparently from those pesky fairies that no one at Papa Nicks can do anything about
I don't know why Papa Nick is picking on me, then hear from my neighbor that it could be worse  http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,110451.0.html  

Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

Hi there,
I'm sorry you feel this way. From what I can see the initial payment failed on the 17th and we received confirmation of that on the 24th, when we first contacted you. It seems from there even though you requested that the payment be taken again that a problem stopped that from happening, hence the second round of contacts on the 28th (and also the messages in your browser).
We're really sorry about the fact that that request didn't go through, it is something that's being investigated here, and I'm extremely sorry that it led to the messages that interrupted your holidays when everything should have been fine after the 24th.
It looks like the payment is now being taken through the direct debit which will stop any more messages regarding the missed payment from going through, however will make sure your feedback is passed on to the relevant people.
teedoff
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 29-12-2012

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

Actually THREE rounds of contact, each  via SMS, email and browser hi-jack, not including the original email saying it had failed.
None of this should happen at all, because in your original email it says
"If your payment should fail, we'll resubmit a payment request 6-10 days after the failure has been confirmed to us."
So I should not have to lift a finger, except to make sure that there is money in the bank.  However it would appear that harassment is the first way to go.  The fact that this can actually result in someone (luckily for you, not me!) not having internet access is appalling "customer service"

Luzern
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 3,165
Thanks: 305
Fixes: 2
Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

So the original payment request is refused by the OP's banker; yes?. Now DDs are for regular payments, are they not? Whose responsibilty is it to make sure that sufficient cleared funds are on the account to meet incoming debits?
As a retired bank man, I ask, once the OP has answered truthfully the above, who is the source cause of the trouble he has experienced?
Sorry OP, but PN it is not. You are responsible for having your finances in order.
I hope you can manage that sooner rather than later. Smiley
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,100
Thanks: 437
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

Whilst you make a valid point, Plusnet's PM's and emails as unnecessarily over the top, to say the least.
Luzern
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 3,165
Thanks: 305
Fixes: 2
Registered: 31-07-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

I do not disagree on that! But if  one's actions cause the OTT PN emails, the right to genuinely complain diminished severely.
PN have done nothing wrong
No one has to agree with my opinion, but in the time I have left a miracle would be nice.
teedoff
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 29-12-2012

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

You are in part correct - if a "little" troll like.
My actions in failing to ensure there was sufficient funds in the account caused the first email however the subsequent emails, SMS's and browser hi-jacks were caused by the faulty credit control system continuing to harass, once in fact the matter was sorted - as admitted by the PN rep above.
If you require further proof that the system is faulty (which is what I am complaining about) I received a snail mail letter today advising that the DD had failed and  I would be cut off in 14 days if I did not act - the letter was dated 14 days after the DD had failed.
jim:quote
Community Veteran
Posts: 19,100
Thanks: 437
Fixes: 21
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Credit Control at the Restaurant

Oh yes Plusnet have done something wrong, I was going to post earlier but got delayed. If an email is sent out saying the system will try again in 6-10 days time then user should not be bombarded with all that in the interim, after the first message. That is totally unacceptable. I'd be damned mad if that had happened to me (and even more so if it hadn't been my fault that the payment had failed initially which can happen).
But what is more, is that the sequence of events is not consistent Plusnet's stated Failed Billing Policy. There is no mention of the first email being about attempting payment being taken again in 6-10 days. It also says it will send a snail mail initially as well as all the rest. The only snail mail sent seems to be the second one and I question that even that was appropriate in view of the first email.
Just look at the timings - failed on the 17th, PN aware on the 24th, 2nd lot of contacts on the 28th according to Matt. According to teedoff the letter was dated 14 days after the failed DD. 14 days after the 17th is the 31st. So none of these dates fit together! The system is up the creek.
If a payment is requested on day 1 which then fails, PN told on day 7 latest (day 5 earliest). If a new attempt is in 6 to 10 days that means day 17 latest, so sending any second reminder before then isn't justified. The whole system needs to be revised, I always thought it seemed a bit over the top anyway, this proves it!