Monday, April 6, 2009

Customer Service or the Lack of It

I had a problem with my B*ank of Ame*rica credit card last week (I had my card declined at two vendors, despite the fact that I hadn't come close to reaching my balance.) When I called BoA to find out what was going on, I was told that my card wasn't activated - this is a card I have had since 2001, mind you. The problem was eventually identified when the BoA representative realized that their fraud department had put a hold on the card after I had tried to buy my new television. (I ended up using another card to make the purchase.) Oddly enough, despite the hold, I was still able to buy stamps at the post office, books at, and food at Trader Joe's - so much for the fraud alert, about which I was never contacted.

I tried calling today during my lunch time to talk to someone at B*ank of Ame*rica about my unhappiness with the situation. I waited on hold for 26 minutes and still didn't have my call answered. (Fortunately, I was able to use my headset, and I was able to do some filing while I waited.) When I realized how long I had been listening to the classical music, I finally hung up, completely frustrated.

Twenty-six minutes of hold time on top of the errors they made with my account is entirely unacceptable. At the least, they could have customers enter their phone number in the automated system and have someone call them back, like other banks do. (There is a reason that I refer to BoA as "Satan's Bank"; lack of customer service is a big part of it.) The irony of this situation is I had to listen to several pre-recorded adverts about the embarrassment of having one's credit card declined and how one doesn't have that with BoA. Yeah, riiiight.

I am going to make that call again tomorrow. Except now I am not going to call to complain; I am going to call to cancel the card. And take my business elsewhere.


  1. Go to a branch. They are much more helpful in person. Every time I try to talk to someone on the phone I end up crying. One time I got charged for an overdraft even though my balance never went below zero. When I talked to someone on the phone she kept changing the story of why I got charged. I told her that she was a liar and hung up on her, after it took me 45 minutes to actually talk to her (I was 7 months pregnant and a bit hormonal). I got the whole thing resolved quickly talking with someone directly in the bank. Good luck!

  2. I used to work at Starbucks, and it was amazing how regularly customers left their credit and debit cards at the register, or dropped on the floor. I made a habit of calling the card company so that they could call the card holder and tell him/her that the card was at Starbucks. I did this on a Saturday, within ten minutes, the customer came rushing back to pick up his card. He did not have a BoA card.
    The one time I found a BoA card, I called, as usual. First the guy wouldn't help me. I had to explain again that I did't want the cardholder's phone number, HE should call the cardholder. He didn't get it. He had to call a supervisor. ONE OF YOUR CUSTOMERS LOST HIS BANK CARD. YOU SHOULD CALL AND TELL HIM HE LEFT IT AT STARBUCKS, I said. The BoA customer service guy said-- I hope you're sitting down -- he said I SHOULD HOLD ON TO A CARD THAT DIDN'T BELONG TO ME, UNTIL THE CARDHOLDER REALIZED HIS CARD WAS MISSING. I cut up that card and vowed never to give my money or financial info to BoA.



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