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Banks II

The plastic card from my new bank turned up yesterday. It had to be activated. I could do it in a bank machine, go into my branch or phone up. I had a slot of about 15 minutes between lessons at work so I thought I may as well ring. How tricky could the Spanish be in the process of activating a debit card?

It wasn't tricky but once we'd done what I wanted to do the telephone person started trying to sell me card insurance, I said I already have some, which I do. The sales pitch was delivered with too many first name references - especially for you Don Creestofer we're offering an introductory price of just.. - in that bored to death, reading the script at break neck speed manner that you get at the end of adverts for financial products. 

Having said no to card insurance she warned me how dangerous it was not to be legally protected and went on to try and sell me a sort of legal insurance. I stopped listening, I was getting cross, the bank wasn't paying for this phone call, I was, or even worse, my employer was. I tried to stop her but she just kept going. I made the occasional noise down the phone and then she seemed to be telling me that I'd agreed to buy this product. I said, as clearly as I could "I don't want to buy anything, do you understand? I do not want to contract for anything, do you understand?" By now my boss was waving at me because the phone call had gone on for 20 minutes, my students were waiting for me and I was shouting down the phone at this salesperson. I got away but I suspect I'm about to have the headache of cancelling some scheme that she signed me up for.

Oh, and my credit card people dropped my credit limit without telling me or giving me a reason. Their Customer Services people told me that it had happened to thousands of customers, that it was nothing personal, that it was a decision of Financial Services and so they, Customer Sevices, couldn't tell me why. My email to Financial Services remains unanswered after their "we guarantee to reply within 48 hours" period.

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