Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Oh Etisalat...you drive me nuts!

I've said this time and time again, but there is a serious problem with customer service in this country...and this is applicable to almost anything, from moving companies, to banks, to restaurants...and of course, telecom companies. Given that Etisalat is practically a monopoly, it doesn't really make the effort to invest in its customer service.

Case in point, my sister wanted to get her phone service changed from prepaid to postpaid, AND she wanted to get roaming service as well. Did she manage to do both these things at once? Of course not. She had to change to postpaid first, wait for a couple of days, then go back to get roaming service. And of course, she had to present a passport copy every time, because God forbid Etisalat keeps these on record in their files.

A couple of months ago, I also switched to postpaid. I had a business trip during the month of April and needed to expense some of the calls I made. I waited for the bill but did not get it. I got an SMS from Etisalat telling me what the total amount was, but I did not get a detailed bill.

I thought it was an address issue or something along the lines, but then I got my May bill, and the address was fine. So I called Etisalat to ask them for a detailed bill for April. You'd think that it would be a simple request...I mean, how hard is it for them to contact their billing department and ask them to send me a copy of the bill? Or to give me access to my detailed bill on my online account?

Noooo....of course not...because that would make it too simple and far too efficient...

Instead, I have to go to an Etisalat office (and not just any branch at a mall...it HAS to be an actual office), with a copy of my ID of course, to get them to either give me a copy of the bill OR to get them to give me access to my detailed bill online.

Totally, absolutely ridiculous! Almost as ridiculous as having to go to a bank and fill up a form in order to set up Internet banking!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Is getting jailed for being drunk legal?

I recently heard the story, from a friend of mine, that his friend was found outside an Abu Dhabi bar by policemen, drunk, and was taken into custody. Granted, the drunk guy had fallen (or passed out), so he was found laying on the street. He was first taken to hospital to get his alcohol level checked, and was then taken to jail where he's still being kept to this day.

He's been there for 5 days now and does not know when he will get out. The police moved him from one prison to another then back to the first prison, then again to the 2nd prison.

Is this legal? I mean, the guy was not driving, and as far as I'm concerned, if there are clubs/bars in the UAE, it means that you are allowed to drink. The guy did not get into a fight and he did not hurt anyone. He is Christian, southeast Asian, but does not have a liquor license. I understand that the police would jail someone for a day or two, but 5 days??

Can anyone shed some light on what the law says about this?