Virgin Media ADSL broadband: total service failure

We’ve had an incredibly frustrating day today as our Virgin Media ADSL broadband service has disappeared.

At first I thought our Belkin router-modem was to blame. Using my wonderful 3 mifi device, I got onto Virgin’s website, which said everything was working fine. So I reset the modem repeatedly, to no avail. I then spent almost 45 minutes trying to get some kind of help from Virgin’s customer helpline.

This is a summary of the experience:

The automated telephone system asked for letters from a security question. I had no idea what the question was – and the system gave no alternative option of speaking to a human being;

When I managed to pass this groundhog day test (purely by getting onto the website by the mifi – heaven knows what anyone without this option would do), a customer service person told me she couldn’t tell my what my ADSL password was, as she could only help with email passwords. She told me I had to call another number;

I called this second number. It turned out to be a paid for technical advice line. When I got through, the agent said he had no idea why I had been told to call, as they only deal with software such as anti-virus programs. He also said the first person should have been able to confirm my ADSL password. He couldn’t. He said he’d transfer me back;

I was then stuck on hold with music playing for ages, with no indication that I was in a queue. I gave up and called the original number;

More endless music. I was asked to choose the music – not a good sign! When I finally got through to someone, he told me that there was a national ‘outage’, and I should reboot the modem every hour. He also said he would refund the phone charges.

Three hours later, there’s still no broadband connection.

It’s time to consider an alternative broadband supplier, after 14 years. Virgin’s service is becoming very unreliable, and it’s hardly the cheapest. We gave them a second chance after service standards collapsed two years ago, but I can’t face much more of his after two outages in three weeks.

PS: we got back online late this afternoon. But hours later, we’re barely getting 1MB/S.