We have a contract with Orange for internet and landline which comes to around €34/month taken as a prelevement on the 25th.
I have a reminder spreadsheet for all regular payments and receipts so that I can record them on the appropriate days in my accounts spreadsheets.
As I rarely bank online with La Poste, I don’t know till a statement comes in whether or not a sum has been taken. Orange send a standard email a week or so in advance telling me what the amount will be that month. Last month I received it as usual but it said I was €0.96 in credit and needed to make no payment. Puzzled but not alarmed I decided to wait for the statement to amend my records. Then yesterday another email in the usual form to the effect that the bill for March would be €56+. In addition it said that it must be paid on the 12th unless I had a prelevement stetup. Now alarmed I declined to connect from the links even though a ‘hover’ appeared to make them genuine and instead connected seperately. Took me quite some time to find the right place to click and when I did I discovered it was genuine. I wondered if they hadn’t taken a sum in February and that this was to make up for it, but 2 months would be around €64, not €56.
So I rang the English helpline and waited the 10 minutes or so of the same tune that has been playing since God was a lad until a very well spoken chap answered it. The explanation was simple and took all of 2 minutes. They had decided to change the date from the 25th to the 12th and thus had taken no payment in February but would take a 6 week, rather than the 2 month payment on the 12th of March.
Fully understood and accepted. But why the hell in this day and age of scams and frauds could they not have sent a simple email explaining that? Beggars belief and another half an hour of worry and confusion that I’ll never get back.