Tigo is the Arch Nemesis of Helpful Productivity in Colombia

September 16, 2022

And that is putting it nicely…

Photo by Christopher Gower on Unsplash

If you live in Colombia and need internet service as I do as a digital nomad, you have heard of Tigo.

Tigo is an internet and phone company with a vise grip on Colombia’s balls, just like Comcast in the United States.

I hate Tigo with my entire being, and more than I hate reggaeton.

Here is why.

The installation experience

Photo by Mahdi Bafande on Unsplash

When I first signed up for service with Tigo, I needed fast internet for work.

Their customer service signed me up and scheduled an installation date.

Three technicians showed up to perform the installation many hours late.

I found this an odd experience as I have had many internet installations. It takes one person to install them.

How many Tigo employees it takes to install a light bulb?

After about an hour, they had me up and running.

They asked what password I would like for my router, which is typical for internet installation.

I asked them to set a generic password, which I would change later for security.

They lied to me and said I could never change the password on a router.

I begrudgingly gave them a password, knowing I could configure it later.

The installation experience was the first thing of many that left a sour taste in my mouth.

The experience of paying your bill…

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

I know that I am in Colombia and that I am not in the United States right now.

But holy shit.

Tigo’s service for its customers to pay their bills is one of the WORST that I have ever experienced.

Mind you; I have two Internets (one for work and one to help my family).

I went to pay for my internet for work, and it was like pulling teeth from a grizzly bear to get them to allow me to pay one.

My wife and I went through the grueling process of visiting their office, to which they had to print a bill manually every time.

And worse, to pay your bill by credit card instead of having to visit the office, you need to see a machine in the office.

You can also use the Tigo app, but don’t get me started on how glitchy people say it is. I never touched it.

Heaven forbid you are a few days behind when you visit the office machine.

Their ‘system’ is incapable of remembering bill numbers for customers after five days.

If you want to pay your bill at the machine, you MUST be there in that five-day window, or the machine will delete your bill.

The system is a massive pain in the ass because you must find paper money and re-visit the office if you miss the window.

Every interaction with them takes over two hours AT AN OFFICE

Photo by Siavash Ghanbari on Unsplash

Let’s repeat this; I am in Colombia. I am not in the United States.

I understand this.

Yet, most internet companies handle customer service OK.

Tigo does NOT.

They require you to visit an office to resolve any issues.

If you are someone who has a job, family, or other responsibilities, this eats your entire day up.

I have never been to a Tigo office where it takes less than two hours to speak with a person.

They have very long lines of frustrated customers.

It is a cold corporate-looking space that herds its customers like a cattle call.

And worse, they cannot separate a bill when you finally get to speak with someone.

They can also not give you your future payment amount because the ‘system’ does not tell them.

What company does not have automation to tell its customers how much they owe for future dates?

Seriously, Tigo. I might be better off with a stone tablet and carrier pigeons than wasting my time with your service.

Other internet providers in Colombia

Photo by Dave Weatherall on Unsplash

There are three primary internet service providers in Colombia.

They are Tigo, Claro, and Moviestar.

I have researched them all in hopes that I can tell Tigo a giant F-U and abandon ship.

Yet, as in the US, they all seem to have the same problem.

They want your money, yet their customer service sucks.

My family told me that Claro is even worse than Tigo.

I cannot fathom the thought.

For now, I have a fire in my stomach with strong hate for Tigo.

Yet, unfortunately, I need an internet service to work while my family and I are here in Colombia.

Entering a Tigo office triggers me.

I am not proud. One time it even pushed me over the edge to use all the Spanish curses that I know to express my dissatisfaction.

I don’t think there is an easy answer to finding an internet provider that cares about its customers.

Finding an ISP that puts the customer’s needs first would be excellent.

It would be nice to find a company that makes a customer’s life easier instead of more complicated.

Visits to the office waste the time of the customer and the time of the poor sales rep dealing with the customer.

The interaction happens while a greedy corporation laughs on the way to the bank.

Do you have a horror story with Tigo? Let me know in the comments.

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