Thursday, June 28, 2012

Why I *occasionally* HATE my bank

So my debit card was due to expire at the end of this month. I was a little concerned that I hadn't received my replacement card, so I called the bank on Tuesday to find out if it had been sent. I spent 5 minutes navigating the "if you are calling to do x, press y" menu before I got a live person. (my usual shortcut of pressing 0 to bypass all that didn't work for some reason) The oh-so-helpful genius that I spoke to told me that it had been mailed two weeks earlier and I should have had it by now and was I sure I didn't have it? Well, duh. I think the fact that I'm calling to ask WHERE it is should be a pretty good indication that I don't, in fact, have it.

Then he asked me to verify my address. I told him what it was and there was a looooong pause. "I'm showing your card went to a P O Box address." Well, that's just spiffy. The P O box that I CLOSED LAST YEAR because they closed my branch office and wanted to move me out to one 10 miles away from anything I needed to be near? Especially annoying as the bank was the FIRST place I registered the mailing address change with, and I have gotten every statement at my current address since then. The goober couldn't tell me how that happened, but assured me that the new card would arrive at my current mailing 7-10 business days.

Just freaking great. My card expires Saturday and I won't have a replacement for at least 4 days after that? One of my few acknowledgments to the digital era- I rarely carry cash or write checks any more. Not having my debit card is almost like not having oxygen. After a moment or 2 of panic, I realized that I could simply get cash & buy gas/groceries on Friday or Saturday, and I'd be fine for the few days it would take to get the new card. (most of the businesses around my home don't take checks anymore or make you jump through lots of hoops to write one due to excessive fraud in our area)

Heh. That's what I thought.

I was running late getting out of the house for work on Wednesday and forgot to get my lunch out of the fridge. Not a problem- I've been good about not eating out at work lately, so one night won't kill me. I ordered Chinese and went to pick it up. I handed my debit card over to pay for it and the cashier told me it was declined. WHAT?!? She tried it again. Same thing. I knew there was still close to $200 in my account, so it couldn't be insufficient funds. I've eaten at that restaurant so often that the staff know me fairly well and actually offered to let me come back and pay for it later. Luckily, I had picked up some things for Mom earlier in the week and she had given me cash in exchange, so I had enough on me to cover dinner.

In the meantime, I called the bank to find out what was going on. The card that was supposed to be good through Saturday? Had been cancelled when I called in to request the replacement for the replacement card that I never got. "It's easier for us to cancel BOTH cards" was the explanation I got. Well, I'm SO glad it made things easier for YOU. WHY wasn't I told this was being done? "I guess the person who helped you assumed you'd know we'd do that."


I got up early today so that I would have time to go to the bank and get a check cashed. My car was running on fumes, so I was praying it would hold out until I got the cash and could go to the gas station. It did. (I was hoping to make it to payday/Friday before having to fill up again, but the 100+ temps here killed that plan. My car a/c burns a LOT of fuel) The perky teller at the bank looked at the check I presented with my ID, dead bank card to prove that I'm a customer at that bank (they honestly ask for that, even when the bank name is clearly printed on the check with my account number and everything), and work ID and said cheerfully "You know, you can get cash from out ATM at any time with your card, right?"

I resisted the urge to kill her...barely.

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