If you’ve ever wanted to recycle your mobile phone, the chances are you’ll have come across a website called Cash4Phones. When you use those phone recycle comparison websites, looking for the best price for your phone, they’re the ones who usually come out on top as offering the most money.
However, before you leap straight into accepting their offer you should read what really happens, or at least what really happened to me and a friend of mine when we both sent our phones off to Cash4Phones at the exact same time. I’m not suggesting this is how Cash4Phones deals with every customer but, according to the reviews I have read online and the identical way both myself and my friend were treated, it’s a fair assumption.
I entered the details of my iPhone 4 on their website, to be presented with the offer of £131.02. This was higher than any other mobile phone recycling website was offering, so I accepted their offer and waited for their stamped addressed envelope to appear through my door. Sure enough, this came within a couple of days. I must confess, I was a little surprised to see the envelope being so thin (just a piece of plastic really) and offering no protection for a phone whatsoever.
Still, I sent my phone off (recorded, as they suggested, so I paid to send it) and waited for the money to land in my bank account.
I didn’t have to wait long before I received an email from Cash4Phones stating my handset was damaged, and they were now only offering me £45.85 – a fraction of the original offer.
Their email also contains the line:
If you feel that there has been a mistake with your Order, please do give us a call.
Of course there has been a mistake! However, there is no phone number in the email, and no phone number on the website. Alarm bells were ringing, and I felt pretty stupid for not Googling Cash4Phones before accepting their offer. Their website still doesn’t have a phone number on today, which is a clear sign they’re not to be trusted. Luckily by Googling I was able to track down a number on various other websites, where stories of their business practices were ringing in my ears. Their number, should you need it (and I suspect you do) is 0845 4601064.
I telephoned them immediately (recording the call, obviously) and this is what happened.
So, Cash4Phones offers the highest amount for a phone, then makes up ‘damages’ to your phone and reduces their offer, which you can either accept or refuse – paying them £10 to get your phone back. Was this a one off? No, because my friend had the exact same reduced offer for fictitious damages. Funny that eh?
Esther, from Cash4Phones, did indeed call me back about my phone. This is what happened.
Naturally I didn’t take that increased offer either. I’m not being ripped off by these crooks (and yes, I’m using the word ‘crooks’ because that’s what they are). It’s funny how they had made a ‘mistake’ with my phone and, strangely enough, the exact same thing happened with my friend’s phone too. Another mistake, and their offer was increased as well. The bloody crooks.
What’s even worse, and I’ve seen online this has happened to a number of their victims (sorry, customers) – when I logged into their website to ‘decline’ the offer I found it had been approved. Not by me it bloody hadn’t. That’s right, they automatically accept the offer on your behalf, before the deadline, and keep your phone anyway. The bloody crooks.
I phoned them back fuelled with a renewed anger and was amazed, and perhaps slightly disappointed, to find they caved and offered me the full amount for my phone.
It seems if you record your calls and broadcast them on YouTube, you’ll get results. Don’t use Cash4Phones, they’ll rip you off. If you have made the mistake of using them, call them and record it. Keep at them and don’t let go. They will cave.
Tell them Mr Daz sent you.
I’ve heard too that Cash4Phones is on BBC Watchdog tonight. That should be interesting, and it’s about time too. If you’ve come here after using Cash4Phones, or after watching Watchdog, tell me about your experiences. What happened? Did you get your full amount or your phone back?