If we ran the Washington Post, we’d make subscribing to us less annoying

You would think that in a time when newspapers are in trouble a newspaper company would do everything they could do to get and keep subscribers.  Why that’s not the case at the Washington Post is beyond me.

As long as I can remember we’ve had a subscription to the Washington Post in my house and it is one of the things my dad cannot live without (if he could, the bs I dealt with would have been the end of this tradition).  There’s something annoying the Washington Post does (as do most subscription businesses I notice) where they give you a nice promotion rate but don’t make it easy to opt out automatically when the promotion runs out.  We were paying $1-something a week for a good part of 2010 and then from mid November to Early Feb, they were delivering at their $5-something rate.  For the past few years, I call after I notice this, and they adjust the price they charged post-promotion back down to a promotion rate again since I’ll be subscribing to them again.  This time, while they agreed to give me a promotion rate for the next 6 months, they wouldn’t lower the full price $5-something rate they had been charging me.

If I was able, I’d fight some more but a) my dad wants the service to resume right away b) dealing with Washington Post subscriptions is incredibly annoying.

1) they close at 5pm on weekdays so you better be prepared to spend your working hours on the phone with them
2) the website doesn’t work (at least for me) – I was stuck on the login screen:

I was trying to get in to make the payment, this meant I had to work with phone.  They didn’t do check over the phone (I didn’t have my credit card on me) so I had to mail checks to Richmond to make payment.
3) I was given the wrong amount due – I called back in AFTER I mailed a check in to confirm something and was told the amount that was due did not include the tax.  Luckily, after waiting on hold for the phone rep to escalate to her supervisor, I was told they would issue the credit
4) And this is the kicker – I have to call back in after 7-10 days to see if they got the payment and ask them to resume the subscription.  It won’t automatically start when they get the payment. They’ll take the money, pay for the amount that was due and sit on the amount I paid for the next 6 months of service – until I manually call back and ask them to start.

You’re lucky you’re so deeply ingrained into my dad’s daily ritual Washington Post, otherwise you would have lost yet another subscriber.

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