Thursday, June 03, 2010

Delays and increases

So, two things of interest today.

One, I went to go and get the mail and, once again, failed to fine my Chapters order, my Amazon order and, most importantly, my pay cheque. Not really going into the details, but the circumstances of my work mean that my cheque is mailed to me. They send it priority post and all, but this scarcely seems to matter. In fact, I went to the front counter to inquire. Sometimes they simply forget to put a card in my box letting me know I have a package.

So I go up and ask if they have it in the system or if the crowd in Montreal have managed to kick it under the toilet or something. This is when I'm informed it may well be in the Iqaluit office, however they are so short staffed that it might in the back of the post office, they simply haven't gotten around to processing it.

I assumed I had a small stroke at that point, which is why I did not utter something along the lines of "Well, then, could someone pretty please, with sugar on top, hire some more fucking staff? I got a letter in the mail today that was sent from Edmonton 17 days ago. I had a friend pop up on Twitter and announce a t-shirt he ordered on May 3 finally arrived today. Come on guys. I know asking for competency from Canada Post can occasionally be like asking to feed thousands on a loaf of bread and a few fish, but it would be nice if it happened more often then once every two thousand years.


Oh, and I did receive another piece of mail, which brings us to point #2. As anticipated, NorthWesTel has decided to up their internet rates for Iqaluit as of July 1. Keep in mind this happened a year ago when they "upgraded" their service for Iqaluit. So what can people in town expect now for their internet?

1. Lite Package goes from $69.95 to $72.95. That's for 2 gigs of usage a month plus, I think, slower speeds.
2. Classic goes from $79.95 to to $84.95. That's for 5 gigs and "high speed".
3. This is where the real hit is, because this is what just about everybody uses. Ultra goes from $99.95 to $119.95. The cap is 10 gigs.

Oh, and they've also upped the overage fees from $20 for every gig you go over you cap, to $25.

All I can say is, I'm glad I bailed before the flood starts this summer to Xplorenet. A three year contract with them is the same as NWTel and there is no cap and the speeds are easily equal if not a touch faster. The downsides are the start-up costs ($600-700 for instillation) and rain tends to mess up the signal a bit.

I suspect The Source, which sells the kits, is going to be quite busy the next few weeks. But we shall see.

Last Five
1. Even in the quietest moments - Supertramp
2. Silvio - Bob Dylan
3. Untitled - Mark Bragg
4. You me and the weather - Hawksley Workman
5. A message - Coldplay


Vicky said...

Just for comparison, here's the specs on Rogers' highest tier of Internet:

- Our fastest residential service for those who want the ultimate in speed.
- Music, video streaming, downloading large files and playing games.
- Upload speed: Up to 2Mbps
Email addresses: 9
Additional usage charge: $0.50/GB
Monthly fee: $99.99
Monthly usage cap: 175GB

Melissa said...

I have heard about the shortage of Canada Post workers in Iqaluit all the way over here in Rankin Inlet.

They are extremely short staffed, as you said. But they cannot just hire more people simply because the people are not applying (as I have heard from a Canada Post employee who was explaining the situation and has been sent to Iqaluit to help clear up the mess).

The application process can be daunting and you have to 'pass' the interview in order to even be considered. The interview contains math questions that, if you get wrong, means an automatic fail. Many people applying don't make it past this stage.

The entire hiring process can also take up to two months, which can be difficult when you live in the North because you need to work in order to afford to live. I know that's what happened when my fiance applied to work for Canada Post in Rankin Inlet. By the time the whole process had come to completion, he was already working for the bank here in town.

I can imagine how frustrating it is for residents, though. Just thought I'd let you know a little bit more of the 'why' behind it.

Carly said...

I wish we had the options you have up in Iqaluit!! Us, who are in the smaller communities (Chesterfield Inlet) don't have options....we have 1 choice if we want internet...Qiniq, which makes NorthWestTel look like a great option. Currently the medium package is $126/month with a speed of 512kbps and a cap of 5Gb! Our overage fees are $25/Gb...If you want more, you can pay $400/month and get 20Gb! We have looked into other options, however nothing is available here. :(

towniebastard said...

I should know better than to complain about something. People always pop up and tell me they have it worse...;)

Iqaluit is always in the weird place of having amendities worse than down south, but better than anywhere else in Nunavut. You tend to forget these things when you go off on a rant sometimes.

I think you can get Xplorenet in Chesterfield Inlet, the problem being you would have to pay to have the person come to your community to do the instillation from Iqaluit, or maybe Rankin. I can't imagine that's cheap.

Anonymous said...

Passing the criminal record check is a big deterrant to employment with Canada Post too.

It's not a fun job, not much you can do until the mail actually arrives in your office, but the front-line employees are the ones that get the "Where is my mail??? Give me my mail you *%#@!#$ #$@#$#$@" when it is most likely in Ottawa or Montreal. The part where you get your door at home kicked in every now and then is a bit of a perk, though.

There's a reason CPost pays the Northern or Co-op to run the offices in the smaller communities, they really could do it themselves for a similar amount of $$$, but would have a rough time staffing/retaining staff.

That said, hope your parcels show up soon.

Jason in Igloolik

Carly said...

We have looked into Xplorenet, but unfortunately at this time it's not available for us. Oh well, like I say, at least we have could be much worse right? lol.

Don't stop's always interesting to hear what other people are frustrated about. :)

Aida said...

arrghhh, i saw that,i am debating if we should just going back to qiniq, since that is the cheapest option.

carly, you should be able to get netkaster in Chester. Same like xplorenet, you have to pay installation and stuff upfront. the guy who works for northwestel in chester will install your dish though you might have to book him in advance. you need to communicate it all with netkaster though.