Hello, everyone. We've been out a few times this summer with our Rockwood 8312SS (this is our 2nd full season). We've made a couple of mods and are enjoying it when we have time to take it out. Mostly, we use it for NASCAR races, as anticipated, although we are hoping to get to Myrtle Beach this fall.
My question today is about Dish Tailgater service. We've had ours since we got the TT and have used it successfully every trip until this last one to Richmond, VA, where we were sandwiched in between a very large motorhome and another TT. Even with the Tailgater on the roof of our Rockwood, it would not pick up all the satellites. There were also some tall trees that were blocking us pretty close in towards our line of sight to the southern sky. Our service was running, since we had just used it 2 weeks prior at Bristol, TN, with no problems whatsoever. I didn't want the hassle of calling to suspend service since we thought we would be using it again just a couple of weeks later, so we just left the service in place. When we got to the campground at Richmond and realized that we weren't going to be able to use it because we couldn't get a good enough signal, I called and asked them to suspend the service again, since it may be quite a while before we have the TT out. I told them multiple times that I didn't want to "pause" the service but rather to suspend it since I was aware of a $5/month charge to place service on pause.
I find now, though, that they have done exactly that--put our service on "pause." Before I call them AGAIN (it seems like I spend more time on the phone with these people than watching TV), I'd like to know what most people do (taking into account that we really want to watch TV when we have the TT out but that we mostly just take it out for long weekends maybe 4-5 times a year). I understand pay-as-you-go service is monthly and that you can only pay for the months that you use it, but that doesn't really help us since we may use it for a weekend, then a couple of weekends later, then not again for 2-3 months, and then not at all over the winter.
Every time in the past when I actually was successful in getting them to "suspend" the service, when I call to get the smartcard updated (because the receiver has been sitting disconnected for a long time), they charge me $50 plus (the difference between the credit on the account and the amount of a full month's service (we have America's Top 200 plus locals). So it's like it's always costing me more $$ just to watch TV for the 2-3 days while we're out. I'm not sure how the service charges work on "pause." Would I still have to pay the difference when I "unpause?" I can, and will, call Dish, but I get conflicting answers and reps who don't seem willing to listen to what I have to say.
I almost wish we'd never bought this thing. It's great to have the programming (and we've had good luck with the signal until this last trip), but so far it's been more hassle than it's worth. In the beginning, we (foolishly) thought we could pay up front for a month, use it for a couple of days, put it on hold, and then restart again when we were ready, use up the equivalent of 30 days of service, and then start and pay again. No such luck. Any advice on what would be best to insist upon when I call? It will probably be at least a month from now before we'll need the service again, just for a long weekend, and then it will be off until April or May of 2015. Thanks and sorry this was so long winded