Rant For The Day

I am getting so I really hate Chase Rewards Visa. They are the only credit card company that I have trouble with. Most banks and credit card companies have instituted new security procedures recently.

I have several that present a sign-on screen and then present you with a second screen that has a photo you have to choose and then enter a password. No problem. I am all for better Internet security.

Chase’s procedure has you sign in with your sign-in code and password and then takes you to a second screen. Supposedly, if you have been there before, it will sign you right in because it has hidden a cookie on your PC. This site never finds my cookie (No I don’t delete my cookies and all other sites have no problem).

When it doesn’t find its cookie, it tells you that you need a new activation code and to request it by clicking on a button. I do and it says I will receive an email within 2 minutes with the activation code and to enter it on the current screen.

I wait and wait and wait and no email. I did this last l week and had to do something else and forgot to check back, thinking the email would remind me. Last night, while I was in bed it hit me. I still hadn’t paid the visa bill and it was now over due. Damn!

So this morning I go to the site and wade through the same drill again and and again do not receive an email. Thinking that this has gone on too long, I called the credit card company. An international call that is going to cost me more money. Fairly quickly, I was connected to a lady that was obviously in India. Now I don’t have any problem being assisted by a person in India except it still chaps me that they are replacing possible US laborers in the call center. Don’t bother telling me that there aren’t any US laborers that want the job, I don’t buy it.

After asking me a myriad of security questions, she tells me she will transfer me over to their website area so they can help me. I ask if, before she does that, she can go ahead and issue a payment with the bank account on record and she says she would be happy to do that, but there is an extra fee for her to do that. Well what a bunch of blood suckers.

I tell her to go ahead and transfer me to the website area and begin my 10 minute wait to be assisted again. When the fellow comes on, again in India, he begins with all the security questions again. Passing the test, he asks how he may help me. I explain that I am not receiving the emails with the activate code and because if this I can’t pay my bill. He said he will be happy to give me a new activate code and does.

I am now able to enter my account and see that they have indeed charged me with a $39 late charge. I tell myself, to just chill and pay the damn bill and do. Within seconds I receive an email thanking me for paying my bill. I still have not received any of the emails with new activations codes.

It sure makes me wonder if Chase has put in a new annoyance factor so that it has a high probability of collecting an extra $39. As I said when I began this post, I am getting so that I really hate Chase Rewards Visa. I think they should change their name to Chase No-Rewards Visa.

I try not to use my Visa card and don’t if I buy anything on the Internet. I use Discover. I always get great service from Discover. I have called Discover in the past and guess what? Their call center is maned with US employees. I guess that is why Visa uses people in India. Discover has hired the very last US citizens that want to work in a call center.

14 thoughts on “Rant For The Day

  1. Good topic. The big guys are gouging as hard as they can. If you take time to look, in all probability your interest rate also went up because your payment was late. And if you have other credit cards with other biggies, their interest rates probably are going up, too, because your Chase payment was late. It’s pretty amazing! And no anti-trust actions going on by the real biggie. Lots of campaign contributions buying the Federal government off. Signs of the greed in our times.

  2. I usually don’t pay much attention to the interest rates because I never leave a balance. I wish I could use Discover all the time, but it is only good in the US.

  3. Don Ray,
    You have struck a chord with me. I used to bank with Bank One (now Chase) for over 25 years. I dumped them like a (wait, this is a family blog) uh.. a hot potato (bank accounts, credit cards, LOC, etc). They couldn’t have cared less about how long I have been a customer. There were “nickel & dimeing” my accounts all of the time with various fees. I would guess that I would spend one to two hours a month on the phone with those low normals trying to get things worked out. And when you call them, they want to charge $$ for any transactions that they did over the phone. I don’t miss using them at all. Also be aware that Chase is taking over other organizations credit operations (for example Kohls stores) and implementing more fees, higher fees, etc. And you say that those English sounding nicknames used by the Indian call center folks ddin’t fool you?
    I also use Discover for US & Internet purchases. Also have a Credit Union Visa card that is administered by the CU – reasonable fees, they work with me when there are issues, etc.
    One of my US friends works for a bank and she has told me the banks make a large percentage of their money on fees. Somehow I’m not surprised.

  4. I have a recuring charge on Chase. I need to get it moved. If it were moved, I would only use them in an emergency. I agree with you. They have passed my tolerance level.

  5. Don Ray,
    I know this is slightly off topic, but my ex used to manage a large call center for US WEST – she had about 1,200 employees. Given the union demands, work rules, OSHA rules, state regulations, federal regulations, etc. It’s not that you can’t find Americans to do the work, it is more the work environment that you are forced to operate in. I don’t blame any company that outsources its call centers.
    I work with Oracle all of the time so have gotten used to the Indian accent. Some US companies use Panama, Costa Rico and a couple of other South / Central American countries for Spanish speaking help centers. I wonder how they are working out…

  6. I have had a call center operations group in an account I was responsible for in a past life. Call center operations are not for the faint hearted, still the technology for call centers has improved enormously and I think any US company that can break even owes it to its citizens of the US to provide the work opportunity rather than outsourcing.

    Unfortunately all companies are too bottom line conscious and could care less about their employees anymore. I think the US govertment should provide incentives to use US citizens.

  7. By regulation US WEST had to use call centers based in its telephone region and could not outsource (Public Utilities Commission requirements). The issue was not economic – it was the government regulations, union rules, work rules, etc. that makes it such a nose bleed. All of these programs are expensive, not including the normal wages, overhead and G&A. The technology improved significantly during her tenure and the best result from that was that she was able to shrink the workforce.
    Regardless, I don’t think one can hire enough qualified people in the US to staff call centers with the current economy. You can’t go into a retail store, bank or restaurant without seeing a employee wanted sign. In some cases outsourcing is the best economic choice by far.

  8. Dear Don Ray,
    I too never have a balance on any credit cards so I’m listed as a “deadbeat” in their jargon. I love the convenience of not having to carry cash and mostly have avoided all their traps on fees so far but they are getting more creative. FRONTLINE ran an excellent piece a few months ago on just some of the creative tactics being used:
    I currently have a Chase Visa but I routinely close old accounts and open new ones just to keep them busy tracking me. The old logic of building a long term business loyalty is sadly no longer wise.

  9. I am having the same problem with Chase, except they tell me that I need a new activation code because I am using a different computer. I only have 1 computer and I haven’t changed it in a year.
    Then they go through the whole process of mailing me a new code. What used to be easy is now really time consuming as I have 2 cards with Chase. And these are not active cards. I recieved a letter from Chase about 6 months ago that said I had 2 choices: cancel the cards and keep the “guaranteed” low interest rates on the balance transfer or use the cards and the low interest rate goes away. I’ll be so glad when these cards are paid off!!!!!

  10. You can change the activation online. I did in the past, but for some reason last week, it did not work. I keep mine paid off, but this new activation code thing is not working and I have one recurring charge on this card. This is the second time I have had to pay a penalty for a late payment and it is Chases fault not mine.

    I have made a note to myselg to have the charge moved to my MasterCard. When I get conformation that Visa is no longer being billed, I will be happy.

  11. Another to add to the list of reasons to choose another card:

    3% fee for international use.

    They will tell you that VISA adds the fee. Not true from what I see on the web.

    When I return from my trip to the UK I will switch to the Capitol One card or the Wachovia VISA which charges 1%.

    Read your cardholder statement on the web BEFORE signing up!!!!!

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