BUSINESS

Verizon reverses on $2 fee for one-time payments

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Only one day after announcing it would start charging customers $2 to make payments online and by phone, Verizon Wireless changed its mind.

The company reversed itself after word the FCC would investigate the fee, as well as a backlash from outraged customers.

The company had planned to charge customers who made one-time payments online or by phone the fee.

“I would have left them,” said Verizon customer Kashif Khan while shopping in Annandale Friday night. “I would have switched and gone to AT & T.”

Others WJLA talked to agreed Verizon made the right call in dropping its plans.

“I don't want to pay extra money just for being able to pay someone,” said Verizon customer Alexander Shvetsov in Rosslyn.

"They had to know there was going to be an uproar over it, so why did they even go to the trouble?” said customer and Annandale resident Mark Turney. “All they did was get bad press."

Verizon said in a statement that it was dropping the fee due to “customer input.” The company said it would still encourage customers to pay using other methods besides one-time online and phone payments.

Those other methods include electronic checks and automatic bank account withdrawals. Paying using those methods would have remained free even if Verizon hadn’t backtracked.

The uproar reminded some customers of the controversy this past fall when Bank of America announced it would start charging customers $5 a month for using debit cards.

It took Bank of America about a month to cave in to customer outrage; it only took Verizon about 24 hours.

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