Right now I’m pretty angry with my bank. I’m currently traveling and to my great surprise I couldn’t get any cash from any ATM in Boston when I arrived there on Saturday evening. Kind of inconvenient to be without cash if you are traveling. Luckily my credit card still worked so I managed to get into my hotel and get some food (one of the nice things in the US is that you can use your credit card everywhere). Also, some colleagues were kind enough to borrow me some money.
Anyway what pissed me off was the following:
On Sunday morning/night (jet lag), I called the phone number listed on my bank card to find out what the hell is going on.
This lands you in the standard useless menu where some very tedious computer voice slowly guides you to your destination repeating every choice you make and asking whether that was really what you wanted. This one was particularly annoying because they insisted on my full account number (they had speech recognition though) and branch number of my local bank office, which is apparently very important in Germany. Naturally, the first questions I got when I finally got a human to talk to me were what my branch and account number were.
Then the misery started, nobody on the other side of the line could do anything useful for me. Lady #1 who luckily spoke English connected me to Lady #2 who didn’t and quite rudely told me to go away (in German). So, I had to go through the above mentioned menu again to talk to Guy #1. I then asked him “do you speak English” and he said yes but added “I’m not allowed to speak to customers in English”. Eh right. He clearly detected my anger/amazement and then proceeded in English anyway, for which I’m grateful, I guess. He then figured out that I probably wanted to talk to someone in my branch office. So he gave me a number for Lady #3 who of course would not be reachable until Monday. So, I was stuck for another 24 hours without cash on me and I still had no clue why my card was not working (e.g. somebody might have skimmed my card and is emptying my account).