Saturday, August 25, 2007

Bank of America Collect

After my experience with the Bank of America collect phone numbers a few days ago, I went right to Jajah to make the call to find out why my PIN is not working. Not only can you not make toll-free calls from Europe, Jajah would not accept them either. Call the regular number, get through, get put on hold, wait, wait, wait, "Your call is important to us, please stay on the line." If my call is so important, why don't you have someone answering it sooner? Even if Jajah is cheap, I don't like using all of my credit on one call while on hold. Just as I am about to hang up, I get a person asking for my credit card number. I am not calling about a credit card, but an ATM card. "Which bank?" Duh!! I called the number on the back of my Bank of America card, that should be a no brainer. Bank of America!! "I will have to transfer you to someone in the ATM division. Click, music, hold. Wait, wait, wait. Ten minutes pass. Getting ready to hang up again, "Hello, my name is Sherry, how can I help you?" I tell Sherry about the new card, the assurances that nothing has changed and now I cannot access my money. "I am so sorry to hear that, we will fix that right away." Well Sherry, I sorry to make you sorry. I hope you are not going to lose sleep over this tonight. Sherry is working away and I can hear her typing, then beep, beep, beep. I lost Sherry and her sympathy; we were disconnected. I call back, the same hold time, I get a person who is in credit, not ATMs. I am wondering whatever happened to cross-training. Does one need separate degrees in credit cards and ATMs where they cannot all do the same job? She transfers me, the wait time is shorter, but I get a phone tree. "If you want to know your account balance, press one. For other options, press two." Press two. "If you want to know the last check that has cleared your account, press three...." No choices for a live person. "For more options, press nine." Press nine. No good, no live person. I press 0, hoping to get an operator. "I am sorry, that function is not operational." Hang up on mechanical Joe. I call again. Tell the first person I am calling from Europe, I am paying for the call, and I don't want a phone tree that is not going to offer me the option I want without wasting my time and money. "I am so sorry for your inconvenience." Really, well then reimburse me for these calls. Transfer. Phone tree, mechanical Joe again. Hang up. I try once more. Get the credit division, tell her calmly that I am going to close our accounts due to the poor service; I get the same scripted sympathy yet again and then transferred. I speak with a live person. I tell her the whole story, unabridged. I want serious concern now, not the phony crap I had been getting. She sounded like she really wanted to take me for a drink to make up for the hassles and share her own customer service nightmares. We hit it off; she is going to help me. At last I have had success. She is asking me questions, I am answering them. She tells me this can be resolved over the beep, beep, beep. We get disconnected. I scream, pull out a few hairs, rant, rave, cry for a few minutes and then log onto Bank of America's web site. Contact us. Lost or stolen cards, call us collect at ##### 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call collect. The AT&T robot does not recognize the B of A robot that is stating clearly how much they love collect calls and will accept the charges. AT&T robot says "Your party is not answering, please try your call again later." Click. Call the AT&T operator who always sound pleasant when you reach the recorded voice, but when they answer for real, they sound disgusted that you could not place this call without annoying them. She places the call and connects me. "Welcome to Bank of America. Our hours are Monday through Friday, 8am-5pm and weekends from 10am-5pm. Our office is closed now. Please call back again between office hours." So I guess if you lose or have your card stolen, it should only be within their office hours or you are out of luck. Make sure you check the time zone differences too, so plan your loss or thefts accordingly.

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Anonymous said...

I found this blog when I was searching for the number to tell Bank of America that I'll be abroad for a few months. My story is eerily similar to yours...several connections to wrong departments, automated menus that do not offer an option to speak to a real live human, and plenty of aggravation. I literally searched every single link on their website and in the end cried to a guy in the credit card fraud division, which resulted at last in the correct number to call. Thank god! As soon as I can, I'm giving BoA the boot. You are not alone in hating their customer service!

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