Verizon canceling FiOS installs and telling customers to wait a few months
Verizon is canceling many home-Internet installations and repairs during the pandemic, and some customers are being given appointment dates in November when they try to schedule an installation.
The November appointment dates appear to be placeholders that will eventually be replaced by earlier dates. But Verizon is sending mixed messages to customers about when appointments will actually happen and about whether technicians are allowed to enter their homes.
As of yesterday, a Verizon FAQ said, “At this time, our technicians will not be able to enter your home or business to install new services or to do repair work,” according to an Internet Archive capture of the page. The FAQ also said that customers who aren’t eligible for self-installs “may proceed with placing an order for a technician-required installation” and “will receive notification to select an installation date when we resume operations.”
All that language was struck from the page in its current version, which now says Verizon is “minimizing our in-home installation work to critical needs to keep our employees and customers safe and to reduce the spread of COVID-19.”
But Verizon’s official support account on Twitter was still telling customers just a few hours ago that because of the pandemic, “our technicians will not be able to enter your home to install new services or do repair work.”
We asked Verizon some questions to clear up the situation today and will update this article if we get a response.
When contacted by The Verge, Verizon said, “To reduce the spread of COVID-19 and keep our employees and customers safe, we are making every attempt to perform work without going into homes or small businesses and are limiting in-home installs to medical emergencies and critical installations.” There are self-installation options for “qualified service orders,” the company said.
As Business Insider noted, customers have gone on Twitter to complain of abruptly canceled appointments and appointments being scheduled for November. Self-install options aren’t always available:
When you’re moving and @Verizon can’t get you internet until November on a place already using Verizon. How is self-install not an option? Ridiculous. Reluctantly, #SwitchingtoXfinity pic.twitter.com/JL26oJG0c5
— Joe (@diamond_joe3) April 7, 2020
In one case, though, Verizon support told a customer on Twitter that a November installation date “is incorrect” and merely a “placeholder for customers in your area. We will contact you once we receive clearance to provide an earlier date.”
Since March 23, Verizon FiOS has been giving $20 discounts to new low-income subscribers. But appointment cancellations will obviously make it difficult or impossible for people to start a new FiOS service plan.