Why I will never be a T-Mobile customer again: a photo essay

There are few companies I don’t like: United, PEPCO, Chik-Fil-A and T-Mobile.


United = horrid customer service and stupid fees that change

PEPCO = heads up their collective big-money arses

Chik-fil-A = narrow-minded PR nightmare

T-Mobile = crappy phones, crappy fees and the most epic of all fails ever — no service.

During my cross-country road trip, I had the privilege of learning first hand just how terrible T-Mobile is.

At first, when I had no service, I credited it to the fact that I was driving, oh, through the middle of nowhere Nebraska

TMobile Sucks 2
En route from Nebraska to Illinois.

. Then, when I had no service in the cities, I started to get annoyed.

What’s worse? When I did have service, it wasn’t with T-Mobile so the data I was using was no longer unlimited. When I got a text message en route to Chicago that I had exceeded my data limit for the month, I nearly lost my marbles.

“You claim to have the largest 4G network in the world,” I said as calmly as I could to the customer service agent on the other end of the line. “How is it that throughout my entire road trip I have had little to no service and having to use another network’s internet? I’m driving across the country. What is the point of having a cell phone if you can’t use it?”

So, they did one thing right: they upped my data. Even the agent understood my need for being able to access the Web. “You can’t have no internet when you are driving across America.”


TMobile Sucks 1
When we were out and about on our dive bar tour in Nebraska
TMobile Sucks 2
Driving home from our night out in Omaha. Awesome.
Tmobile sucks 3
Driving from Nebraska to Illinois … no service, no internet.
Tmobile sucks 4
Thank you, T-Mobile. How am I supposed to have a GPS if I don’t have my internet service I PAY FOR EVERY MONTH?
Tmobile sucks 5
Downtown Chicago and no phone service??
Tmobile sucks 6
Loading and loading and loading and then an internet connection error. In Maryland. Notice I was on AT&T.
Tmobile sucks 7
At a friend’s house in Maryland. And, once again, no service.
Tmobile sucks 8
No internet connection. Maryland. At least I have fleeting bars to make a call.
Tmobile sucks 8
And more. The one good thing? In Thailand, I have DTAC and have not had services issues once. Even in the jungle.

The icing on the cake??

Wonderful T-Mobile slaps me with a $200 cancellation fee when I tell them I am leaving the country for an extended period of time.

My advice? Opt for another carrier, another phone, another anything … or take the risk and see how it goes. I promise you this: if you live in Nebraska, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, West Virginia or Maryland, you’re SOL for the most part.

Have you had similar issues with T-Mobile or another service?


Published by dtravelsround

Awakening the soul while traveling ... a story of being on the cusp of adulthood.

16 thoughts on “Why I will never be a T-Mobile customer again: a photo essay

  1. Hmm, very interesting to read this. I’ve been with T-mobile for 11 years. For the last 8 years, I had a slider phone – I could make phone calls and text. That was it. Finally in June I got an Android – HTC Sense. Best phone on the market! Why? Because I will be traveling all over the country in the Fall and need Twitter, Facebook, and the web.

    After reading this I am a little nervous. However, I really really hope this phone works well. I have a 5 GB data plan so I should be OK there. I just need service. Will you let you know how it goes.


  2. Service is crap … I suggest putting a hold on it. I had an unlocked iPhone that had fine service in Vegas with T-Mobile, but as soon as I left there, it turned to crap. I finally got them to allow more data, but data doesn’t matter when there is no service whatsoever. Keep me updated.


  3. I’ve been on Tmobile for 5 years and have some of the better coverage in SF, a notoriously hard place to get coverage.

    However — I have a dumb phone. That seems to make more of a difference than carrier ’round here.

    I’ve been thinking though of switching to a smart phone, traveling within the U.S., which I do a lot of, has become unnecessarily complex because of my lack of smart phone.

    But, knowing that you’ve had all this trouble with Tmobile around the U.S., I’ll definitely research other carriers before making that switch!


    1. I was so annoyed when we were traveling and there was no service. Smartphones are wonderful for traveling — they have definitely gotten me out of being lost more than once!


  4. I’m still on the fence. I notice you have an iphone, and I believe on T Mobile an iphone has extremely limited service. I think they can only get 2G. This may not have happened if you had a different phone, so I can’t really say 100% if I’m convinced (I’m getting a new phone today, thinking about T-Mobile).


    1. I understand your argument. I would agree with your belief if when I had gone to T-Mobile and gotten the mini SIM card, they would have said anything regarding their service not working. Instead, they gave me the run around, and even when I called them, they never said that was an issue, knowing I had an iPhone. Regardless, my experiences with them and their products in the past was enough for me to make the statement I would never go back to them.


  5. I have been with tmobile for over a decade and was very happy with it. Signed a new contract last year and got a phone, had 3 other lines I did not update. Was told the 2-year contract was for the 1 phone. Was told I could cancel the one line in January 2013 as its 2-year contract would be up. Tried to cancel that line, told no. Why not? I am not new to phone contracts. I understand the 2 years means you are paying for the “free phone” during that time and that is why you have a fee for cancellation. However, the line I wanted to cancel had already paid off its phone. Also, why lie and say I could cancel in January when I could not? After over a decade with them, as soon as I can cancel my lines, I will. Right now, they want $800. Can’t do it. But when it is down enough that I can afford to cancel, I will. And as I told them, they will not get another cent out of me. Beware their lies. They will screw you like they screwed me.


  6. I will never come back to T-Mobile. They are naturally stealing money! I have switched to Verizon for better reception and canceled my family plan almost a year ago. But T-Mobile continued to charge me for 6 (SIX) month after that. I have called them 4 (FOUR) times. They were doing cancellation with me on the phone EACH time, reassuring that everything is great now. But they have continued to charge my card after that month after month. After the 4th call they have refunded part of my money. But in the form of an AMEX credit card, which is not working in the places I’m shopping! And yes, they DID charge me for the canceled and refunded service a month later AGAIN! AVOID this robbers!


  7. yeah i agree tmobile blows plain and simple. They used to have good customer service but that tanked a few years ago. The coverage they have stinks almost everywhere you go. They do have decent service if you stay in the city but the whole point of a mobile phone is to stay mobile so tmoble really defeats the purpose of having a cellphone. Also, their data roaming gets a lot of people in trouble since tmobile phones roam so much.


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