I blog when I go abroad, and occasionally when I do stuff in the UK too. There's a nicer interface over here.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Financial institutions and me (again)

Still fucking hate dealing with most of them. Britannia are a particularly honourable exception and if they did current accounts I'd be with them like a shot, but they don't.

When I "switched" from NatWest to Nationwide all my direct debits moved across. I saw them in online banking on both accounts, cancelled on the former and set up on the latter. So far so good, until Kingston Council sent me a letter complaining I hadn't paid the last month's council tax. And then Orange called me up complaining I hadn't paid the last month's bill. And then PayPal sent me 4 emails in 5 minutes telling me a subscription payment had failed to fetch the cash out of the old account.

Went to PayPal. I have a "Backup Funding" credit card set up, and it's a credit card I use all the time. I've used it a few times in the last couple of days, in fact. PayPal claim that my card issuer is refusing payment, however, and that I need to call them. Thankfully a different card worked, but still. Fucks sake.

I'm at home today, because someone was coming round to value my flat. I thought I'd make lunchtime useful, and go to HSBC to close down 2 bank accounts. I had previously been told I could do this by going into any branch, see. Queued up, got to the front, was told I had to submit something in writing. Queried this and they said ah, OK, go upstairs and speak to one of their advisors. Went upstairs. There are 4 little booths with desks in. Only one had an advisor in it, and as far as I could tell she was sat there with her mum. They saw me, but did nothing. Maybe it was another customer, but the snippets I could make out earwigging didn't convince me. Either way, there was no little reception desk to that floor, just a waiting area with a coffee machine. I sat in one of the chairs for ~10 minutes and didn't spot a single other member of staff -- just another customer who popped their head up, saw there was no-one around, and fucked off. After those minutes I fucked off too. So I still have 2 HSBC accounts to my name, neither of which I want.

After spending so long on the phone with Tesco last week I ended up requesting the signature verification form again, in the post, so I can send it back to them. Today's post has come and gone and I still don't have it.

I fucking hate this shit. It winds me up so much that I shake and almost feel tearful, for fucks sake. I utterly dread dealing with any of them, and my experience nearly always vindicates that feeling. They make me feel depressed and angry and helpless all at once.

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