SFR leaving fees - Les frais de déménagement

Has anyone else had issues with SFR chasing you for
49 euros for terminating your account (after 9 years a customer)?

This is despite me informing them that I have sold and moved back to the
UK (one of the legal reasons to avoid this charge),
they still think it worth trying to get some extra money out
of me as well as all the hassle of having to send back 4
year old tv box etc.

All in all, I would advise against using SFR - they do not
respond to emails sent to and
so it is either a hopeful letter or an expensive phone call from


Yes, I had the same treatment when I left SFR ages ago. Thankfully Orange covered the leaving penalty for me as a new customer perk. Incidentally, as soon as the Orange internet was up and running my speed went from half a meg to nearly ten. Result! and it is cheaper.

Wern’t they previously Neuf?
They had an awful reputation and from as long ago as 10 years when we first came to France, people were advising to avoid them like the plague!


It was a Neuf box but always SFR to my knowledge. I originally went with France Telecom but they were truly awful, then a few months ago I tried a 4G box from Bouygues who sent me 2 of them by mistake and undoing that problem took forever so I suspect all of them are as bad as each other. The lesson I have learnt is try to avoid companies that you can’t easily reach their customer service department (e.g. by email or chat).


Our experience with Bouygues is quite different.
We have 2 mobile accounts with them and when we had a problem with one of them (being charged for a service we did not contract for) we dealt with their on-line chat facility and were given appropriate advice on how to resolve it.
We are very pleased with Bouygues and have extended both mobile contracts in consequence.
It is a shame that we are just shy of the 4G coverage because we would have liked to go along that route with them.
Our experience with Orange is satisfactory; I really don’t see the point in jumping ship for another wired connection (SFR, Bouygues, expat or whatever) because as Orange (aka FT) own the infrastructure, you are always going to be held hostage to fortune if things go wrong. On those (thankfully rare) occasions when our internet service has dropped short of expectations, Orange have been quick to respond and ‘up the gain’ or send out an engineer to investigate which has often involved the engineer visiting the exchange to give the equipment a swift kick in the proverbials :astonished:

SFR have been good to us. About three years ago, while with Orange, we experienced a loss of service for about seventeen days in one month. Orange tried to say the problem was in our house, which it wasn’t. I’m an ex-BT Engineer and told them the fault was not with us. The fault was eventually cleared and Orange stated we would be credited the following month with €25 for the inconvenience. Our bill duly arrived without the deduction. I contacted them and was told it would appear the next month. Then we had a loss of service for a further fifteen days. This time at my request they sent a technician as they again said the problem was in our house. The technician duly arrived and didn’t do a lot, but said we needed a new cable from the house to the exchange in the village. He said that was SFR’s responsibility as they maintained the network. Two SFR technicians arrived. The younger said that his partner was very good and if he couldn’t get the line working, nobody could. He identified the fact that we had several spare pairs of wires going back to the exchange from our house and asked if we minded if they were used to give service to two fairly new build homes over the road from us. We had no problem with this. One of the families we knew quite well and they had been told by Orange that it would cost them €20,000 to have service supplied to them as it would entail digging up the road! While they were there, the older technician went to see if he could solve the problem from the exchange. That didn’t work, so while at our house he called Orange and asked them to re-configure the line. This was done and our telephone worked normally again. Due to previous lack of service with Orange, we regretfully decided to move to SFR as my wife required the telephone and internet for her business. We used the letter of resiliation and gave Orange the required notice. Their final bill arrived, but still without the €50 that we had been promised. We boxed up the tv box as requested and it was posted back to them, recorded delivery. We paid their bill, minus the €50 we had been promised and that started a series of demands from Orange for the €50. The never replied to any letters (recorded delivery) saying that we were in dispute. I couldn’t find anyone to complain to, but eventually found an address for someone fairly high up in Paris, who actually replied stating the €50 they required was for the non-return of the tv equipment. I proved to them that we had returned it and said that now they had raised the issue, it was actually €100 they owed us as hey had not returned the deposit. No reply. The next thing was a letter from a debt collector. I wrote back to them, sending them copies of all of the correspondence that I had sent to Orange. They weren’t interested, just sent another demand. I called them and said that I was in dispute with Orange and they said that I had every right to be. I then received another bill. I called them again to be told that if I didn’t pay the bill, they would take our car. I paid.
We have never had a problem with SFR. On the anniversary of our joining, they called us and reduced the monthly charge by €5 for the telephone/internet service and a further €5 for my mobile phone. Not that I use it all, but I get a greater data allowance with SFR than I did with Orange.

SFR maintain 5he network?

That’s a new one on me… I always thought the lines/network belonged to France Telecom/Orange or whatever it calls itself now… :thinking:

I may have got the wrong end of the stick…

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That was what they told me. Later on when they came to connect our neighbours, it was SFR that dug up our garden after asking permission) to put in a joint for the new cable for our neighbours. I told them I was quite happy for them to put in a manhole in case they required access to the joint again. They asked why we would want that. I said, well it saves you digging up the garden again if you need access to the joint. They declined, then were back three weeks later digging again as there was a problem!
Maybe Orange contract them as it is cheaper than keeping their own staff to do that type of thing.
In 2008 I had a small shop not far away and asked Orange for a new line. Sometime after my order, I received a bill for Orange for my line. I called them to let them know that I would pay them when they completed the job and the line was installed. A few days later, two technicians turned up had a look and said that it was not their job and someone else would come. This was because the local distribution box was on the wall of the adjacent premises. All local premises both commercial and the houses above were served in this way. The box was about three metres above the ground and they said that special equipment was required. I offered them a ladder, but they declined.This went on for a long time involving several visits from pairs of technicians, none of whom would do the job. In frustration I asked them to give me the cable and I would do it myself, being an ex-BT Engineer. They declined. During this period, I was getting letters demanding payment. I phoned and refused to pay until they had done their job. On one occasion I had a lady shouting down the phone to me that I must pay as the line was in and working. In frustration, I called the English speaking helpline and asked if there was someone to whom I could complain as the chap had already told me that he couldn’t help as it was a commercial line rather than residential. He told me there was no complaints department, but asked me to wait. Sometime later he returned to tell me that he had found out what the problem was. I needed to drill a hole in the wall for access. I replied, ‘So; if I was a 90 year old lady, the hole would be my responsibility? Don’t worry, consider the hole made.’ I drilled a hole through the almost metre thick wall. Fortunately, I had a drill bit long enough, otherwise that would have been an expense! A couple of days later, a technician arrived. He looked at the job and where I had drilled the hole, ran the cable, using a ladder, not a cherry picker like the others wanted. The line was in and working in less than an hour. I thanked and congratulated him and asked him why after five months of waiting he was able to do what the others couldn’t or wouldn’t do. He told me that he was a contractor and only got paid for completed work. So that was his incentive!

No Stella, you are correct.