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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The National Australia Irony Bank

I hate banks; not because of all of the historical reasons to hate them, but because they work in such an arse-about customer service manner.

Case in point: my new card does not work all the time. It doesn't scan at most EFTPOS machines and even the odd ATM hurls it out.

So I asked for a new one via the secure email:

Hiya,

Seems my near-new credit card is faulty- it's only a few months old and the stripe rarely works in EFTPOS machines (though ATMS are ok)

Can I order a new card? Dear god don't make me visit a branch....

Tom Reynolds


I thought that was fine, if a little sarcastic. (I really hate going to branches)

The reply:

Dear Mr. Reynolds,

Thank you for your request for a replacement credit card for account number : XXXX-XXX-XXXX

On reviewing your credit card we are unable to re-order a replacement card since your account is currently over the credit limit. Once your account is within the credit limit of $XXXX, we will be able to re-order a replacement card for you.

Upon reviewing your accounts, we would also like to extend you an invitation to have a complimentary meeting with one of our financial planners in your local area to review your current financial situation and future financial goals. Financial Planners also specialise in tax effective investment and insurance strategies, superannuation, retirement income, life insurance and income protection.

If you would like to meet a NAB Financial Planner, please reply via a return message with your contact number and the best time to contact you and we will organise for a Specialist to call you.

Should you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us via this secure messaging service or by calling National Australia Bank on 13 22 65 or IDD +61 3 8641 9083. Monday - Friday 8.00am till 8.00pm, (Melbourne time, GMT+10).


Now lets get a few things clear: yes I am overdrawn: by about 1.4%. For a week. The bank have previously offered an even higher limit (I refused).

They have recently supplied me with a faulty card (my previous one lasted until it expired), but refuse to send me a new card until I pay up. I always make the minimum payment (usually more thanks to my random consumerism), so they hardly need to take the big stick approach (especially as they earn whopping great loads of interest due to my mad, ceaseless consumerism). Refusing me a card until I pay a pitiful amount is just classic. And rude as hell.

But they are not done, they decided to "review my accounts" (I asked for no such review to take place) and then "offer" me the opportunity to see a financial planner. Let's not fool about people: the financial adviser is not going to do the following:
  • "Teach" me to save.
  • Encourage me to lower my credit limit.
  • Change my banking set up to reduce my fees.
The FA will however:
  • Talk about home loans
  • Personal loans
  • Business loans
  • Increasing my credit limit
  • Increasing my number of accounts (and therefore fees)
So NAB, riddle me this: why would you say "no card until you pay" on the one hand but then try to get me to borrow more on the other? Why would you complain about me being 1% over my limit for such a short amount of time when I get to pay interest on that at about 18%?

Why? Because you have hard and fast rules and you would place making more money out of me ahead of serving me as a customer.

Rachel and I are in fact in the market for a home loan, but this experience means I will not go with you. Well done. a $2 piece of plastic just cost you 1 million over 25 years.

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posted by thr at 12:32 pm

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