Dealing with Argentine Services

During my original “temporary” Buenos Aires stay, I really didn’t have to deal too much with the Argentine service companies – phone, cable, etc. I just left that up to my landlord. Unfortunately, now that I am here semi-permanently, dealing with them is making me realize why so many others have complained before.

Let’s start with Arnet, the DSL Internet provider.  Since all my work is Internet-based, I have two Internet connections for redundancy – one from Arnet and one from Fibertel.  Unfortunately, the Arnet connection is on the other side of the apartment from my office, so it doesn’t do me much good.  We called Arnet in July and placed an order to move the line to the office. They initially told us that it would be done within 30 days and they would call back.

Now, once they say they will call you back, it’s never a good sign. Plus, 30 days is an awfully long time, but we figured we could wait. So, 30 days comes and goes and we haven’t heard from them, so we call back. They have no record of the order ever being placed! We place another order and they give us a 3 week timeframe.

You can see where this is going… It is now the middle of November and after 10-15 calls, we are still no closer to having our line moved.  Luckily, we spoke to an Arnet representative this week who was actually honest with us and told us that they prioritize installing new customer lines over doing work for existing customers. We were continuously bumped to the bottom!  She suggested that we hire someone to do the work for us. If they would have told us this from the beginning, we would have our line moved and would have saved countless hours of aggravation.  Ughh…

Now, onto Fibertel. They recently started offering a $99 peso 6 Mbps connection, so last month we called to sign up. They told us it would be active as of November 1. And yep, November 1 came and went with no upgrade, so we had to call again.  They actually apologized and told us they would finish the order and it would be upgraded within 2 hours.

Two hours later and my primary Internet connection stops working. They had succeeded in completely knocking it out, so we had to call back.  This time, they scheduled a technician to come out and look at the line – 3 days from now!  So, no Internet because of them and the earliest they can come to fix it is in 3 days?!?!?

Luckily, the connection came back up on its own and they told us the 6 Mbps upgrade was completed. Of course, after testing the speed, it was still at 3 Mbps. So now, we have to call back again.

Unfortunately, this is all too common of a problem here. It actually makes me realize how good the companies in the States actually were. Even though I had problems and complained several times, they fixed the issues and often offered credits or other discounts for the inconvenience.  That has never once happened here.

Ahh, the joys of Agrentina…