Wednesday, February 06, 2002

Here's the tale of two customer-service departments--rant warning. Wells Fargo has a long voicemail hell and finally one reaches a somewhat grudgine customer-service rep, who admits that a shorter call is a better one. Finally, with a little prodding, she consults someone else, who consults someone else. As always, there are discrepancies in what the caller is told. If these people don't do what they promised, it's bye-bye. I've about had enough; and I'm sure not going to settle for going from a totally free checking account, one that earns interest and returns checks (inherited from a predecessor bank, and I've never been foolish enough to fall for their inducements to change the terms and am sure not going to settle for a unilateral change), to something that charges $2.50 per month or else truncates the checks, charging an outrageous amount for a copy of any individual check. The positive contrast is the Chase outfit, which always has cheerful, peppy voices on the line. It sounds as though the Chase call center is somewhere in the New York-New Jersey area; where the call-center from hell of WF is, I don't want to guess. Chase has a sensible punch-in tree plus, mirabile mirabilis, one of those stupendous systems that lets the caller enter information by voice, thereby saving users of rotary telephones from voicemail hell. All was taken care of immediately, even though referral to a supervisor was required. The only minus point here, is that the monthly statement no longer carries that wonderful toll-free number, but--hah!--I have it from last year. I'm surprised that more people do not ask for waiver of their annual fee. Somebody in Canada cares about the touch-tone scam.


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