Things I Learned This Morning

First, Aliant’s selection of cell phones is still the pits. They seem to have an uncanny ability to select all the ugly, dorky, slightly non-functional phones from the myriad of those available in the marketplace. So while our cousins in other areas are drooling over the latest in cell phone wizardry, we’re left with the AMC Pacers of the phone universe.

That said, it’s nice to have real Aliant staff back on the job: I visited the Phone Center on Belvedere Ave. this morning, and the person I talked to was friendly, knowledgable, and ultimately quite helpful. I’m glad they’re not on the picket lines any longer.

Driving north, I found, by chance, that there are about 10 open WiFi access points between Aliant and the North River Road Tim Hortons. If you need a good place to pull over and check your email, the road in from North River Rd. to Charlottetown Rural is a good place, with two WiFi networks to choose from.

Stopped at Apple Auto Glass to get a stone chip in my windshield repaired (my first in 22 years of driving, so I’m doing pretty good on that front). I learned two things: first, stone chip repair is covered by my auto insurance, there’s no deductible, and making a claim doesn’t affect my rates. Second, the magical “we can fix a stone chip and the repair is invisible” rhetoric isn’t actually 100% true, and the Apple Auto Glass man admitted as much when he told me that I’d notice a “small white dot” on my windshield. Which I did. It’s still pretty magical, though.

I also learned that my auto insurance company — the one I’ve been with for about 16 of those 22 driving years, Dominion of Canada — still has a local Charlottetown contact number. Apparently a lot of other auto insurers force places like Apple to call national numbers in Ontario or Quebec where, I’m told “we have to wait on hold for 15 minutes.” My guy phoned Hyndman and Company, spent about 15 seconds on the phone, and we were ready to rock.

Looping over to the Ellis Brothers shopping area, I found the service at the Canadian Revenue Agency wicket quick and friendly — I was there to make sure my corporate payroll remittances were in by Nov. 15, lest I suffer the wrath of their huge penalties. Nice to know these folks aren’t on the line any more either.

Finally, I drove back downtown to pick up an ailing Oliver (he was running a mild fever, and has had a runny nose for a week, and the pre-school thought he should come home) and we stopped in at a very, very busy Formosa Tea House for lunch around 1:30 p.m. The place was literally packed to the gills, and Oliver and I had to shoehorn ourselves into a table for one in the back room. It’s nice to see them busy, but I got the sense that they were all a little run off their feet. If I had to guess, I’d say it was the pressure of all those teachers with a day off for “professional development” catching a late lunch.

It’s 3:00 p.m. and I’m back in the office now, ready to start my day.


Dave Hyndman's picture
Dave Hyndman on November 16, 2004 - 15:38 Permalink

Re: Aliant phone selection, a story appeared in The Guardian this morning about Rogers Wireless’ long overdue service expansion for PEI:…

Rogers is the only wireless provider in Canada with a reasonably up-to-date selection of phones. Unless I missed it, the article does not detail when these service improvements will begin … and end.


Darin's picture
Darin on December 9, 2004 - 15:47 Permalink

Aliant changed the structure of their “value packages” recently, and I wasn’t too happy… Here’s my letter to CRTC:

***I received notice from Aliant by mail that they had modified their packages, and that I had been changed to a new plan which included a long-distance package. I am not currently an Aliant long-distance customer, and was shocked that they could switch my long-distance provider without my consent. So, I called Aliant. I was told that if I wanted to keep the same service that I had before the changes,(i.e. keeping Primus as my long-distance provider), that my rate for Aliant High-Speed and Cellular Plan would increase by approximately 85%. It would go from the current $37.85 to $72.05 Did the CRTC approve an 85% rate increase for the exact same service? If you did, my complaint is to you. If Aliant’s application for a new pricing structure promised that there would be no increases for the same service, then my complaint is to Aliant for increasing my bill by 85% without approval.***