Tuesday, August 19, 2014

How to CANCEL Your Verizon Service on an Ipad, Without DELETING Your Account

This article will be helpful if you have an iPad with Verizon modem and am having trouble trying to suspend your monthly service with them.  I have an iPad3 with Verizon modem and just figured out how to suspend my service when given only the option on my iPad to DELETE the account -- a big no no if you want to keep your life easy.  

Short story -- if you can only DELETE your account on your iPad, then don't do it!  Go online to verizonwireless.com, log in with your iPad phone number and password, register, and then cancel/suspend your account on the Verizon website.

Update 3-15-15: 

Verizon now states when you suspend their service:

*Continue to use your data plan until it expires or you use all of your data, whichever comes first.

  *Your plan will no longer automatically renew at the end of the month.

  *After 4 months of inactivity, your account will be deleted from Verizon Wireless.


Note that Verizon will now burn your SIM card if you do not use it for four months, rather than the five months that it used to be. 

Update 4-27-16: 

Perhaps Verizon has fixed this problem in a bid to be more customer-friendly.  Today I tried starting up my iPad 3 with a Verizon SIM card that I had not used for 10 months or so.  I fully expected that the SIM card would be burned.  Instead, when I went to Settings-->Cellular Data and View Account, I was taken to a page that offered me a free 500Mb trial of Verizon cellular data for my Ipad.  I clicked through, and received the free trial as per this screen.  Verizon did not even ask for a credit card.  Wow.  Perhaps enough folks have complained to Verizon about the problem described here that they fixed the problem.  Maybe Verizon has lost enough customers and is finally starting to be nicer to their customers.  One can only hope.  


OK, here's the original post from August 2014:

When I tried to suspend my Verizon data on my iPad, I was given ONLY the one choice to Delete Account Now.  Doing this would cause a lot of problems down the line.  To suspend your Verizon account, go to your account at verizonwireless.com, where you will have that option.  Why Verizon only gives you the BAD option above of Delete Account Now is probably because it wants to sneakily make money by forcing iPad customers to buy their SIMs at a store and put them on postpaid, rather than prepaid, data plans, which involve charges for the new SIM, activation fees, 2-year contracts, early termination fees, etc.  A big part of the reason that I bought an iPad rather than an iPhone was so I could just use my iPad on months that I needed it, rather than being committed to a long-term contract.  Verizon is duplicitously trying to fool customers into "burning" their SIM and thus not being able to suspend and then start up their prepaid accounts later.  SNEAKY and downright dishonest! 

Read on if you want to learn the details of this problem: 

Verizon is appallingly sneaky, downright duplicitous. If you read various forums, you will find many folks like me who bought an iPad 3 or higher, with Verizon service, because Verizon allows folks with iPads to use their iPad as a wifi hotspot at no extra charge. The other promises from Verizon were that you could buy their data for a month at a time, could cancel your account anytime with no penalty, and there would be no activation fees.

You would never think to ask that if you chose not to use Verizon data on your iPad for a few months, that Verizon would inactivate (“burn”) your SIM card and then refuse to give you a new card unless you paid for it (and got involved in other costly complications, such as being forced to enroll in a postpaid plan that involves a two-year commitment, charges activation fees, etc).

I was happy as a clam when I first got my iPad3 with Verizon modem. I could use this in my summer home in Washington state and when traveling; and I could set up the iPad3 as a wifi hotspot, so I could compose emails and surf the internet on my laptop as usual.

Then I went home for several months and did not need to use the Verizon access on my iPad. When I tried to start up Verizon service again – I was unable to. My SIM card had been burned because I had not started up the Verizon service for more than 4 months.   The problem is described in many forums.  My favorite is MacMaven, who ended up suing Apple for these problems in small-claims court and won.


After reading these forums, I was going to buy a Verizon SIM on Ebay for $8 to solve the problem of my SIM being deactivated, but instead I happened to visit an Apple Genius Bar with this and a MacBook problem. The Apple Genius gave me a new Verizon SIM card at no charge, and I was set to go again. Great! I signed up for a month of data recently, the iPad and Verizon modem worked great in Washington state and when I was traveling, and I was literally a happy camper.

But I was careful. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice – not happening, at least this time. I used my Nikon camera to take photos of each Verizon screen that came up when I started up my subscription. Here are the screens that come up when you sign up for a month of Verizon data:

Tonight, I noticed that Verizon had charged my credit card a $35 activation fee (sneaky, they charged this on 8-18, 25 days after my first charge for 2Gb of data!). This is patent bullshit, incredibly fraudulent.

Verizon's own website states clearly that for tablet data plans, there are no activation fees!  Here's a screen grab from today, 8-20-14:

 I also quote from a CNET article:
That said, Verizon charges a $35 activation fee when you sign up for service. But this fee is waived if you activate your device using a credit card and pre-pay for the monthly service, according to a Verizon spokeswoman.”

Now suspicious and annoyed, I  decided to cancel my month of data a few days early, just to be sure that I would not be charged for another month of service that I did not need.  I show the screen grabs below.  All of you iPad Verizon users, take notice of what these screens say, and DO NOT choose the option "DELETE YOUR ACCOUNT"!!!

I had read this forum before, and so I was very careful when I saw only a DELETE ACCOUNT option.  Here's a discussion:


When you suspend your prepaid account you choose the DELETE LATER option.
This will stop automatic billing of you credit card and let you continue to use the remaining data you have paid for.
There will be a caption message that read ( after 5 months of inactivity your prepaid account will be deleted.
So be sure and use it at least every 5 months.

Now once your automatic billing has been suspended. If you go back to managing your account settings you will see that he only option you have concerning your account is    DELETE NOW
DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT  EVER CLICK ON DELETE ACCOUNT NOW . It will cancel your SIM card and you will have to go to the verizon store o get a new SIM card with a new phone number.

So when it comes managing you prepaid plan always when given an option choose DELETER LATER.If not given two  options ,then do nothing.
If you are only given one  option then do nothing for you credit card is not set for automatic bllling. [I disagree with this statement from the forum; I was given only one option and it was obvious that Verizon was going to keep billing me automatically!]

Here are the screens that appeared when I attempted to cancel/suspend my Verizon account on my iPad: 

Note that the ONLY option that Verizon gives on the iPad3 when you are trying to stop your month-to-month service now seems to be DELETE ACCOUNT.  There seems to be no way to simply cancel or suspend your account for a few months, then to restart it (see below for the solution that I eventually found).

I believe that Verizon is trying to fool its customers.  It is not offering the ability to suspend its monthly prepaid data plans on iPads, but instead only offers the option to nuke your SIM card.  This way, Verizon forces the customer to go to their stores to buy a new  iPad SIM card and to be sold into a postpaid plan that involves 2-year contracts, early termination fees, activation fees, etc.  It's downright fraudulent. 

I'll repeat -- I could not get the option to suspend or cancel my prepaid data plan with Verizon on my iPad.  I could ONLY get the option to DELETE the account.  DO NOT choose "DELETE YOUR ACCOUNT. " You will then have to go back to Apple or Verizon and ask for another SIM card.  Verizon will try to charge you all kinds of fees at this point, according to my experience and the collective experience that you can read about in forums.  Most Apple staff will not be able to help you. 

Here's the solution that I found:
I noticed in the legal language above, that the legalese presented when I started up my prepaid plan stated "If you are unable to log in from your device, visit verizonwireless.com and log into your My Prepaid account to cancel service."  I went to the site, entered my Verizon ipad phone number and password, selected an image, and entered my account.  My account details were there.  I was able to CANCEL, not DELETE, my Verizon iPad account.  Success!

Now I just have to deal with Verizon and my credit card company tomorrow to get that fraudulent, duplicitous, sneaky $35 activation charge removed.  This is how unethical companies are making money these days.  They sneak fraudulent charges onto a credit card hoping a customer won't notice.  There's no penalty to them when they get caught, and they waste the customer's time.

1 comment:

Dave R said...

Wow. So I just went to cancel my plan before I got renewed, as I have many times before. The software has changed. I hit the "Cancel Plan" button and it actually canceled my account, burned my sim. I'll repeat: "cancel plan" now means "cancel ACCOUNT, burn sim". I am so livid, of course this is intentional misdirection. Why on earth would I ever want a 2 year plan on an ipad??