FreedomPop quietly moving some free Sprint plans to paid plans, unless opt-out

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3 months 1 week ago #38069 by KentE

PEW wrote: Yep, no notification was given but the acct with $0 top-up was charged $20 top-up when I downgraded. No email was received regarding the change to a paid plan. I did receive email notification when I downgraded back to free plan.


I'm reading through Howard Forums & Reddit threads.....
It seems some have seen the $20 charge, and some haven't.....

So a couple of followup questions if you don't mind, PEW:
Had your account already been billed the $3.99, or did you catch it before the plan change took effect?

And, did you downgrade via the "Change Plan" route in the dashboard, or via the link that was included in the email that you should have received..... (but didn't).......

Just saw this HoFo post, with a response form Freedompop Support that the $20 topup charge can be avoided by downgrading via the link.....
www.howardforums.com/showthread.php/1914042-Freedompop-quot-upgrading-quot-free-plan-to-paid-plan-CHECK-YOUR-EMAIL!!?p=17077275#post17077275
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3 months 1 week ago #38070 by tech-stitch
I have not seen anything, but they sure can try and waste their time on the process. Those two accounts are old, had the automatic top up disabled, and they both have gift cards which have long had their balance used.

Worst case, they will suspend said accounts which I am feeling the itch to do now due to their funny practices. I mean, if they can't keep the business afloat using the free plans, just be upfront and get rid of the freeloaders (myself included).

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3 months 1 week ago - 3 months 1 week ago #38071 by PEW
It was in the "free trial" period of the $3.99 so no charges for the plan.
When I downgraded 2 lines...
the one that has a $5 top-up downgraded fine.
the one that has no top-up got charged $20 top-up. As mentioned in the Howard Forum post, there was NO WARNING that $20 top-up was being added.

Did not know about that special link that avoids top-up... mainly because I did not get the notification email. :(

Looks like FP is daring consumers to file chargebacks.

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3 months 1 week ago #38080 by KentE

PEW wrote: It was in the "free trial" period of the $3.99 so no charges for the plan.
When I downgraded 2 lines...
the one that has a $5 top-up downgraded fine.
the one that has no top-up got charged $20 top-up. As mentioned in the Howard Forum post, there was NO WARNING that $20 top-up was being added.

Did not know about that special link that avoids top-up... mainly because I did not get the notification email. :(

Looks like FP is daring consumers to file chargebacks.


I don't know for sure that using the link provided in the email would have avoided the $20 charge-- not enough well-notated data points to be sure. Some people think it does.

The unknown factors:
1) Timing: Did one manage to reject the upgrade before it took place, or (as PEW did) in the 'free trial' peiod, or after a $3.99 charge had actually been made.

2) Downgrading via dashboard, or downgrading via the (rejection) link.

Yeah, it does sound like they're inviting chargebacks. It's possible that FP is actually inviting this. If you do a chargeback, FP TOS allows them to cancel all of your plans, so they'd manage to dump the free Sprint plan + any free LTE SIM plans they can identify as related. If you're in that situation, and want to keep any related plans, probably better to try the customer 'service' route first.

It's a fine line to walk for FreedomPop-- they want to keep their customer numbers up, and also want to convert them to paying customers.....

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3 months 1 week ago #38088 by peterquinn
I checked my Freedompop Sprint account today. Nothing looks amiss (yet!) -- still on the free plan, top-up disabled, and it shows next plan payment as $0. I haven't received any email from FP either. So do you guys think that I have dodged the bullet for now? Or should I just go ahead and pro-actively cancel the account because I don't really use it much anyway?

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3 months 1 week ago #38089 by PEW
If a plan gets loaded, it will cost you $20 in top-up... Probably safer to just cancel.

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3 months 1 week ago #38091 by KentE

peterquinn wrote: I checked my Freedompop Sprint account today. Nothing looks amiss (yet!) -- still on the free plan, top-up disabled, and it shows next plan payment as $0. I haven't received any email from FP either. So do you guys think that I have dodged the bullet for now? Or should I just go ahead and pro-actively cancel the account because I don't really use it much anyway?


If you use it.... I'd wait, keep an eye on it, and have a contingency plan in mind.
If you get hit with the "upgrade", you can cancel the line instead of taking the chance on the $20 top-up if you want. Worst risk should be $3.99 if you don't catch it during the free trial period....

You can follow the discussion at the following links to see if more details become clear on whether there's a way to avoid the top-up charge....

www.reddit.com/r/freedompop/comments/bvzl42/psa_warning_freedompop_changing_some_free_sprint/

www.reddit.com/r/freedompop/comments/bwusgq/freedompop_customers_are_having_their_free_plan/

www.howardforums.com/showthread.php/1914042-Freedompop-quot-upgrading-quot-free-plan-to-paid-plan-CHECK-YOUR-EMAIL !!

From reading through those discussions, one warning comes to mind-- some folks were speculating that you could preemptively deal with this by going to the downgrade link that shows in the email, even if you had not received the email and/or your dashboard doesn't show an upcoming charge. From one comment, it's not certain at all that this will work......

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3 months 1 week ago - 3 months 1 week ago #38104 by peterquinn
Thanks for your thoughts, PEW and KentE! Now there's the new wrinkle with FP and Ting and RedPocket. Wonder how that will affect all of this. I think I'll just watch how this plays out for now.

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3 months 1 week ago #38110 by realLexusl21
Now we know why they were moving free plans to paid with no permission.

Wanted to make it look to redpocket that they had more customers.

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3 months 1 week ago #38112 by tech-stitch
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