Goodbye, Bank of America

I finally left Bank of America today, after months of saying I would. I just liked my Hello Kitty card (it accentuated my asianness). The fact that there was a photo on my card was convenient, too. But no more. Large corporate banks like Bank of America are fucking evil. All the times I was ripped off and taken advantage of makes my blood boil. Every time I receive a wire transfer from my parents in Asia, BOA takes $20. Every time I touch my savings account more than the limited amount, BOA takes $20 (which I didn’t realize till the second time around). Every time I dip lower than my balance, BOA takes $35.

I’ve never voluntarily gone below my balance. The only time this happened, it really wasn’t my fault. I used my debit card to purchase a plane ticket that cost $1800 from Alitalia (don’t EVER buy a ticket from this airline, trust me on this one). Alitalia charged me TWICE. That’s $3600 I didn’t have. Imagine my surprise when I checked my account balance and it said something like -$1600 in red. Obviously, BOA charged me the $35 for overdraft fees. I called Alitalia, enraged. They gave me the usual apologetic bullshit and refunded me the money. Then I called BOA to undo the overdraft fee. Their response? Not our problem. Get the $35 from Alitalia. I call Alitalia again. Can you guess their response? NOT OUR PROBLEM. Sort it out with your bank. Are you fucking kidding me? And this is after holding on the phone for a long time (which I’ve already expressed that I absolutely despise doing). I was very, very, very angry.

The main reason why I cancelled my account at BOA was because I thought my bag was stolen. Since there was an unused check in my wallet, the dude on the customer service line told me it’d be best to put a complete hold on the account for the time being. At the state of panic, I agreed. After I got my bag back, I went into BOA to get rid of the hold. What pissed me off the most was that the people at BOA couldn’t do a single thing to help me. They said I needed to call customer service. WHY, WHY, WHY FUCKING WHY? Why does this have to be done over the phone? I called at the bank, and they said they couldn’t release the hold because of the checks. It was some kind of “special” hold. They told me that I needed to cancel my account altogether and set up a new one. While I was waiting for the lady to set up a new account, I was deep in thought. Maybe this is a sign, I thought. Besides, they weren’t doing the Hello Kitty cards anymore. That really upset me. I really loved that card.

Since they weren’t going to give me a new Hello Kitty card and I hate the shit out of BOA, I decided that it was time to cut the cord. I told the lady I changed my mind; I want to cancel my account and get all my funds in cash. Walking out of BOA with a thick envelope of cash, I felt free. No more bullshit. I’m in the process of researching for a less evil bank. I’m thinking a small to mid size one. I’m not sure exactly. The important point is, I’M FREE!

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Your Call is Very Important to Us

I hate 1-800 numbers. I hate calling customer service. I hate being on hold. I hate listening to the stupid elevator music and the automated message that says “Please stay on the line, your call is very important to us.” If my call was indeed that important to you, you wouldn’t have me waiting on the line for fucking 30 minutes, robot bitch.

A few weeks ago, I was trying to lock down an apartment. The bank was (obviously) closed, and I needed to get a grand out of my account to put down for deposit. I went to the ATM, and tried to withdraw $1000. I had plenty of money in my account; I just needed to access it. It didn’t let me. I withdrew 500. When I tried to withdraw another 500, I was barred from my own damn account. Fuck you very much, Bank of America.

Then the dreaded process of calling customer service began. First time around, I waited patiently. I stayed on hold for around 10 minutes, and got through to somebody. I explained my situation, and she asked me the usual crap, name and birthday and blahblahblah. She then asked what she could do for me. For the second time, I explained my situation. She then said that she doesn’t handle these types of calls; she’ll need to transfer me to another department. Why couldn’t she have transferred me earlier? I bit my tongue, and said okay. When she tried to transfer me, the line went dead. Confused, I looked at my phone. The phone call had ended. Are you fucking serious?

I called again. Another 10 minutes of piano music and stupid robot bitch. When I got through, I hastily went through the name birthday process and asked to be transferred. The dude transferred me, and I successfully got through to someone else (who, of course, asked for my information all over again). I explained my situation, and the woman said she’ll see what she can do about it. A long pause. More questions. Another long pause. I was pacing outside the bank, chain-smoking. The pause had gone on for a little too long. Hello? HELLO? WHAT THE FUCK? I checked my phone. The call had ended. By this point, I was screaming into my hands, about to tear my hair out.

The third time, the call was dropped again. Over 30 minutes had passed. I was done. Passerbys were looking at me like I was crazy. I had no idea why the call kept dropping, and that probably wasn’t Bank of America’s fault (I blame AT&T), but I had had enough. I couldn’t believe I was going through so much stress in order to get my own money out of my own account. I gave the landlord the 500, and gave him the other 500 the next morning.

Another time that comes to mind was when I was trying to book a plane ticket to Australia. I couldn’t purchase the tickets online for some reason (United Airways), and I reluctantly called in to see what was wrong. I hated the irony of the robot bitch telling me to go visit their website – I was on the damn website, miss robot bitch, it doesn’t work. Now put me through.

When I got through, this lady took forever looking for the flight I was looking at on the screen. I told her – round trip from JFK to Melbourne, date and time of the flights. She still couldn’t find it. After a few minutes, she realized I was talking about Melbourne in Australia, not in Florida. She then said she needed to transfer me, because she only handles domestic flights. TYPICAL.

The international flight lady couldn’t find the flights either. What the hell was I looking at on my screen, then? Mysterious flights that can only be seen by certain people? She then went on to explain that the website may be delayed, because it shows that the flights I’m looking at are completely booked. I was puffing steam out my nostrils. That is it, United Airways, I’m going to Delta. You not only just lost $2400, but lost a customer FOREVER.

As you can probably tell, I have a lot of pent up anger about this subject. These are only two accounts out of I don’t know how many. Nobody wants to take responsibility anymore. Oh I can’t help you, I don’t handle those calls. Oh I must transfer you, you’ve called the wrong department. In China, if you have a problem, you call and yell at them until they get the job done. Or you just go and yell at them. They’re not too nice about it, but that’s okay, because you’re not being nice about it either and they get the job done. None of this fake niceness, fake apologies, fake phrases like “your call is very important to us.” Enough already. Not another word out of you, robot bitch. Enough.