I feel like such a fool. In May of 2013 I signed up for this Energy Plus promo with hopes of gaining additional points while joining an electricity provider that promised competitive rates. As my electric bills increased month after month, I assumed my growing family was simply using more electricity. Now in the dead of winter, with my electric bills hundreds of dollars higher than last year, I finally discovered that Energy Plus has been increasing their rates to over double what my previous provider currently charges. A search of the internet quickly reveals numerous complaints for deceptive business practices and consumer advocates filing lawsuits.
Shame on me for not doing my research, and not investigating my increasing bill amounts sooner. I am very brand loyal, however, and find it disconcerting that Marriott would partner with a company of this reputation. What's the deal Marriott? You're better than this...
Anything I would say would only rub salt into the wound. However, there is always a "gotchya" somewhere in the fine print and this is just one more example. I suspect had you read the details of the offer, there would have been some T&Cs that would have made you leery of signing up for the deal. Caveat Emptor.
Sadly, this is the corporate cultural change we have been discussing the past two years on Insiders. Marriott, in pursuit of maximum profit margin (and currently, quite successfully), has ever so slightly, drawn down some goodwill and credibility built up over the previous eight decades of industry leading integrity and customer service.
Whether it be travel vacation packages that bury elite night credit 19 lines down in the T & Cs; a pricing grid with multiple pricing options-some for no purpose other than to capture dollars at the expense of the "hurried/harried traveler"; or several other affiliated partnerships with outcomes similar to yours, I have observed that the Marriott name attached to a program is no longer a guarantee that the program will be run with the highest of customer service standards.
I'm sorry for your hardship - thank you for sharing. It reminds us once again, this isn't our fathers' (nor Bill's) Marriott.
Thank you both for the comments...there is no doubt that I freely walked into this one...no shifting of blame here. If my post keeps even one Marriott member from avoiding this pitfall, then it was worth the pixel space.
I would like to add, however, that I did contact this company with a calm but firm approach, and progressed through one customer service agent and three levels of supervision. Upon calling customer service, you must choose the options to sign up for new service (while trying the "existing customer" option, I was hung up on multiple times without even reaching a live person). I did receive a retroactive rate adjustment, and am expecting a check close to $300 (keeping my fingers crossed). I am grateful for the gesture, and don't feel like a complete sucker (just a partial sucker).
As erc suggests above, partnering with a company that uses questionable business practices tarnishes the Marriott name. I am suprised at the short sightedness of this approach, however I guess I am a little less naive.
I sure wish I had seen your post before I bit on this offer. The promotional rated ended and my price per kilowatt hour exactly doubled, without notice. Yes, it was a variable rate subject to market conditions, but doubling did not reflect market conditions. This was pure gouging. I did catch it after the first month. I have canceled the contract but am stuck for a second month. I also have registered my concern with Marriott for suggesting that loyal customers get involved with this. This is my second problem with a partner promotion, and I'm not likely to pursue one of these offers again. I am disappointed that others view this as the way Marriott does business.