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DISH TV for RVers...?

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#1 tlbrown1



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Posted 08 October 2012 - 08:31 AM

With a KVH R-5 autotrack dome antenna on a Class A motorhome, I was subscribing to Direct TV service. We use the RV about four months a year, and were paying Direct TV for twelve months service.

After switching out all the OEM analog TVs to flat screen HDTVs, I was amazed at the over-the-air digital broadcasts available in our usual travel patterns. If it wasn't for specific HBO and other cable programs that we enjoy year-around, I would have stopped spending money on satellite TV service.

Then I was attracted to DISH TV's pay-as-you-go offer for RVers. I purchased a DISH receiver for the RV, and paid their one time fee to attach a 2tb external hard drive for DVR capability (780 SD hours worth!). I paid KVH to reprogram my sat dome, from Direct to DISH. I got authorization for Distant Local Stations (a paperwork drill that has to be repeated every time your RV registration is renewed).

Today, after my second season subscribing to DISH TV for RVers, I have concluded that DISH RVer service doesn't match up with their advertising. In the DISH TV corporate ocean, their RV division is a small fish that gets little attention. An extraordinary amount of time and patience is required to wade through their automated Customer Service phone system to find an agent even remotely knowledgeable about Dish for RVers and their pay-as-you-go scheme.

DISH claims that you can simply "pause" the service, and not pay for the months you don't need it. But unless you want to pay DISH a small monthly charge to keep your account "active," turning the DISH TV for RVers service on and off is more like administrative birth and death.... every time.
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#2 Born2travel



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Posted 08 October 2012 - 08:49 AM

After I had a debacle of Dish not being able to locate my documents proving I was in an RV, they changed me to "snowbird status" and I have never had to resubmit any documents. I simply call them and play push this push that until I get a human then I ask for an RV human. I give them my service area zipcode and I get locals at no extra charge.

I have no monthly fee to keep the account active. But I have had the pay as you go for 3 years and maybe I am grandfathered. I'm thinking you have to ask for an RV specialist. When I called the first time the person was clueless. She wanted to explain everything but what I needed and couldn't seem to understand the concept of a home moving down the road to another location. I finally asked if they had anyone that dealt with RV accounts and poof - everything was fixed.
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#3 wigginsjsr


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Posted 08 October 2012 - 09:28 AM

We have had Dish for 3 years with no problems. When we are not traveling, we just don't pay the bill. When we are ready to go on the road, we pay the bill and the service is restored. No phone calls or dealing with the customer service area. I usually pay the bill, and wait 24 hours, service always seems to be there. I do have to send in new paperwork each time I renew the license for the coach, but not a big hassel.

We also get remote off-air stations from New York and LA for $5 per month. This enables us to follow our regular network programming when traveling. We use our regular antenna for local off-air where we are located.
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#4 hermanmullins


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Posted 08 October 2012 - 09:30 AM

We have had Dish Network for many years. In our home we have 2 HDDVRs and one standard receiver. My 2 DVRs are at our home and the Standard rec. is at our farm. When we go on a trip, I just take the receiver from the farm and put it in the coach. Sometime we go less then 50 miles and can't get our locals. But sometimes we are 200 miles from home and we will get our home channels. When we plan on being in one place for several days I just call Dish and they will transfer us to the local channels where we are. Dish has always been very understanding and will switch our locals with out and hassle. I do not ask for a RV tech I just speek with whom ever picks up the call. At present time we are also changing out our coach TVs to digital and will get the Bat Wing adapter and we will see how that works on the locals.
One of these days when our ship comes in we might change our dish to a Hi Def. 3 LNB dish.

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#5 RVerOnTheMove


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Posted 08 October 2012 - 10:12 AM

It appears the OP only wants to use the Dish service for 4 months per year and does not use Dish while at home. The Dish PAYG program allows for this. However, it appears that the OP's Dish account was never setup properly for the PAYG service but instead setup as a standard account causing him his current issues. With the PAYG service you simply call and have the service turned on for a specified period of time (30 day blocks). At the end of that time period the service simply ends unless you tell them to extend it for another 30+ days. It does work, and work well, but if the account is not setup properly you can end up with a 2 year contract and the issues he is describing above.
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#6 McBrian


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Posted 08 October 2012 - 06:06 PM

I had DISH for one month last year. I told them that I was in an RV and wanted the "Pay as you Go" program. They never asked for proof of an RV. They said I would get my local channels but I did not after leaving my home area . When I called them about the local channels, they said they could not understand why I wasn't getting them. I tried to explain the RVing concept to them but with no luck. After nearly 30 minutes on the phone, I gave up. It would be nice if DISH provided a true description of their service and a dedicated phone number.
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#7 lewisedge



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Posted 09 July 2014 - 05:42 PM

My motorhome dealer installed a rooftop Dish-compatible dome antenna and a Dish TV receiver before I took delivery of my coach in May of 2012.  Shortly afterward, I opened a subscription to their satellite service.  After I subscribed and paid in advance with a credit card, they eliminated my local channels from their service but never offered to reduce their price for the lost service.  Although they require that I buy channels, that I never watch, in order for me to get the movie channels that I do watch, it was working pretty well until recently.  Pictures were HD and beautiful.

I dewinterized my coach this spring, after suspending my satellite service through the winter, then called Dish TV to activate my service.  First they incorrectly told me that they would need to send a technician to "adjust" my antenna at a cost of $135.00 before activating my service.  Since my antenna tracks the satellites automatically, that was completely unnecessary.  Finally, after reaching a supervisor to explain that my antenna was on the roof of my motorhome and needed no adjustment they finally agreed to activate my service.  On April 18th, I paid them $82.60 for a month of "premium" service with the understanding that I could pause my service when it was not needed and not pay for unused time.  Dish-TV acknowledged all of my payments via email and also acknowledged via email every time I paused and unpaused my service.  Until yesterday, I had used just nine days from my prepaid month having paused and unpaused the service three times.

When I called them on July 7th to remove the pause again, even though their most recent bill stated that I had a half-month credit balance, they demanded that I pay them an additional $104.69.  They refused to explain why I could not use the remaining time for which I had already paid but had not used.  When I tried to get an explanation they offered none, but repeatedly and robotically said that I would need to pay them $104.69 or they would not unpause my service.  There was also no explanation regarding how much additional time that the $104.69 would buy me.

At this point, I have a huge investment in an automatic tracking antenna, receiver and hard drive (which they charged me $42.40 to activatein order to digitally record satellite programming) but am being blackmailed for more money that I do not feel that I owe them.  Otherwise, all of that expensive equipment that I bought to receive satellite TV is useless.  If Dish TV is going to bill me for service in my RV, when it is not being used, then their vaunted RV pause program is a sham.  Have other subscribers had this problem?  I am beyond frustrated over this.


When I bought my coach from the Lakewood, NJ Camping World, their Website advertised the following:

"Enjoy DISH Network Pay-As-You-Go programming with the ViP211k receiver.

"Pay-As-You-Go is ideal for anyone wanting to enjoy satellite TV on a seasonal or temporary basis without having to commit to a long term contract.  Purchase the DISH Network 211K HD receiver and prepay for 30-days of programming at a time.  Stop and start programming as you need, without penalties.  The DISH Network 211k is an HD single-tuner satellite receiver that works with any satellite antenna compatible for DISH Network on both SD and HD televisions.  ViP211k is DVR ready so you can add our own external USB hard drive.  Own up to 3 ViP211k receivers. Programming package, HD upgrade fees, additional receiver fees, installation and satellite antenna not included.

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