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Published Tuesday 31 Mar 2020


The New Zealand telecommunications industry has a range of initiatives in place to support New Zealanders during the COVID-19 lockdown.

 

Telco services permitted under Alert Level 3

More telecommunications services, including installations, online retail stores and infrastructure builds will be available under Alert Level 3. Find out more here.

 

Getting the best from your home network

New Zealanders will be more reliant on their internet as they use it to work, learn, entertain themselves and stay connected throughout the lockdown period. The industry has created a factsheet with simple tips and tricks to enable people to get the best from their home network.

 

Essential installations and maintenance continuing

Connectivity, through both broadband and voice networks, is considered an essential service by the Government. As such, urgent repairs and maintenance of telecommunications networks will take place during this time to ensure that New Zealanders remain connected.


Depending on your broadband type, it may be possible to upgrade your connection or plan to get faster internet speeds.  Fibre installations are continuing during the lockdown for specific cases. Click here to find out more. 

 

Assisting Government

The telecommunications industry is working closely with the Government to ensure that services are provided to those areas where they are needed most.  For example, we are working with the Ministry of Education to deliver broadband connections to students who need access to the internet for online learning. 

 

Non-contact retail stores

In order to provide for hardware repairs and replacements, Spark, Vodafone and 2degrees have repurposed some of their retail stores to be non-contact collection points to allow New Zealanders to get the necessary items they need for genuine connectivity needs, without coming into contact with anyone.


If you need repairs or replacement hardware, please contact your mobile or broadband provider.  It is best to contact them using their website during this period.

 

Financial support

The level four lockdown will be placing financial strain on New Zealanders, so telecommunications providers are doing what they can to ensure their customers remain connected during this difficult time.

 

While each provider is offering slightly different support to their customers, most have removed broadband data caps. Some may also waive late payment fees for those who are unable to pay their bills on time due to financial hardship as a result of COVID-19.


Please contact your provider to find out what support they can offer you. 

 

Network monitoring

As the demand for telecommunications services grows, the industry is working collaboratively and proactively to manage traffic on the networks.

 

Assistance to healthcare providers

Spark, Vodafone and 2degrees have provided charging stations for staff at Starship hospital to enable them to keep in touch with their loved ones while they are working long hours.

 


 

Telecommunications Dispute Resolution

The Telecommunications Dispute Resolution (TDR) service is still operating during the lockdown. 


TDR is a free and independent service which helps resolve disputes between customers and their telecommunications company. 

 

If you have a complaint or issue with your telecommunications service provider, it is important that you contact them to let them know. Information about how to contact your telco about any concerns can be found here

If you have reached the end of your service provider's complaints process and your complaint has not been resolved or it has been more than six weeks since contact was made and a satisfactory resolution has not been reached, a complaint can be lodged with TDR.

 

Gardening advice

It may seem a little strange that the TCF is giving gardening advice, but the industry is asking people to be careful if they are doing gardening during the lockdown.


Some network cables are buried just below the surface of people’s properties which means they can accidentally be damaged when people are digging. 


Information on the location of underground cables can be requested at the website beforeudig.co.nz.

 
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