L.L. Bean Is Breaking Up With Bank Of America, Effective July 1, 2008

Reader Tim scanned a letter he got from Bank of America announcing that the bank and retailer L.L. Bean were breaking up.

“As a valued customer, you should know about an important change to your Bank of America L.L. Bean Visa credit card account. L.L. Bean and Bank of America, the provider of your card, have agreed to discontinue our relationship effective July 1, 2008.”

Bank of America says they’ll be sending you a non-L.L. Bean affiliated replacement card. But will a regular old Bank of America card ever fill the hole in your heart?

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  1. azntg says:

    Great, now Tim can take another hard pull if he wants to keep a L.L. Bean card in his lineup.

  2. Coles_Law says:

    Oh, perfect. This is the one credit card I have, and I have little interest in continuing on with BoA. Time to hunt around.

  3. nrich239 says:

    Now let’s see how many new BofA cards are sent to all the former LL Bean cardholders, just so BofA can show all the new account holders or not have to show the loss of all the account holders.

  4. chiieddy says:

    I only kept that account open for the free embroidery when I went up to Freeport. Guess I’ll be shutting it down. I hate BoA credit cards. Any word on who LL Bean will use as a replacement?

  5. skc15 says:

    I suppose this was bound to happen after MBNA was acquired and started pulling out of Maine. The shame was that L.L. Bean card was actually kind of useful (what with the monogramming and the shipping and the cupons). I don’t need another B of A card.

  6. kumquat7 says:

    I adore my LL Bean card. I just checked their website, and there will be a non-BofA LL Bean card. (Bank is TBA.) Applications will be accepted starting July 1. If they still offer the coupons & the free shipping, they’ll have my business…

  7. BlackFlag55 says:

    Whoa. LL Bean was smart enough to cut the cord? Wow. Don’t often see that anymore. (bought my first pair of LL Bean hunting boots in 1960, back when it was more outfitter and less Buffy and Scooter oriented)

  8. catskyfire says:

    Damn. I have a B of A Card already, the LL Bean one was secondary… But that’s the one I like…

  9. NotATool says:

    Ha, I have the LL Bean card too.

    I just love all the BofA puffery — “we remain dedicated to providing you great products and exceptional service…award winning banking…” blah blah blah.

    I had the LL Bean card because of the free shipping and coupons for LL Bean! I could give a rats ass who the bank is/was behind the card. That’s not where my loyalty is. For some funny reason, BofA thinks I really care about them.

    I’ll be cancelling the new BofA card as soon as I get it, and applying for the “new” LL Bean card.

  10. ukthom says:

    Having worked for LLBean, I know how much effort they put into putting customers first, and how tied they are traditionally to the state of Maine. Given BofA’s horror stories you can read about all over the place on here, plus the fact that LLB holds itself up as a beacon of Pristine Customer Service, this separation seems nothing new to me.

    BTW, I loved working for The Bean – it was so nice to be someplace that both valued it’s employees, and never thought twice about making decisions that enhanced the customer experience, even if it meant taking a hit in the checkbook.

  11. rox1129 says:

    I’m not sure what I’ll do with the new BoA card. My husband and I already have two BoA credit cards we don’t use. We never cancelled them because we’ve had them so long. We now favor our American Express blue since it has the best rewards for us. We used the L.L. Bean Visa for L.L. Bean purchases (of which there are a LOT) and whenever the AMEX isn’t accepted. As long as there are benefits to the new L.L. Bean card, we’ll be getting one of those. My loyalty definitely lies with L.L. Bean and not BoA.

  12. Carencey says:

    AAA broke up with BofA on their Money Market accounts, but so far not the Visa card. will have to keep an eye on it.

  13. tahamaki says:

    My money’s on Citibank taking over LL Bean’s Private Label cards, given that LLB is owned by Sears, and Sears’ cards are issued through Citibank. Most likely BofA/FIA/MBNA had an agreement before Sears bought LLB that’s expiring and is being non-renewed.

  14. ludwigk says:

    this happened to me when boa purchased mbna and my Charles schwab card became a fia cardservices card. Initially, it really scarf me because my statements and “identity theft” cheques looked like someone had printed them on an inkjet printer or something. I never use those things, but if someone presented me with that, id be highly suspicious.

  15. OKJeff says:

    I am an LL bean cardholder as well. If you look at LL Bean’s website,
    They say they will be starting a new LL Bean card.

    The letter from BoA never says you will receive a replacement BoA card, just a replacement card. Perhaps it will be the new LL Bean card from the new bank.

  16. Antediluvian says:

    @tahamaki: (says “LLB is owned by Sears”)
    You’re probably thinking of Lands’ End, which IS owned by Sears.
    LL Bean is a privately held company, mostly family (Bean) owned. No Sears connections that I’m aware of.

  17. Antediluvian says:

    @OKJeff: (says maybe new card will be non-BofA card)
    I first hoped this too, but then re-read the letter and concluded that it will be another BofA card. Reason: letter says “As a reminder, you will continue to receive (list of alleged this offered by BofA),” and “BofA will continue to service your account.”

  18. MadameX says:

    This is actually good news for me. I wanted an LL Bean card but refused to do business with B of A after all the horror stories I’ve heard.

    Now maybe I can apply worry free!

  19. marshstomper says:

    You don’t suppose that this breakup had anything to do with a compromised data base? A couple of weeks ago I had a letter from BofA telling me to check my transactions, then late last week received a new LL Bean card and number from BofA because of that issue. When I called to activate the new card number, the BofA person tried to sell me on taking a big cash transfer to my checking account at really low interest. Now, three days later I get the letter that LL Bean was severing its relationship. Hmmmm!

  20. trujunglist says:

    A long time ago I went to Maine on a school trip (it actually had to do with making connections with another school by the same name via the new fangled interwebs) and we went to L.L. Bean. That store was fucking great! My mom had bought me a backpack from them (very nice, the best I’ve used, won’t fall apart, able to carry 50+ lbs of books with no problems, I still have and use mine). I snuck off and bought a slingshot, which I thought was incredibly cool at the time. My friend did too, and we went around Maine shooting things with our new weaponry. Good times.

  21. trujunglist says:

    @MadameX:

    L.L. Bean is proud to announce that the credit card company taking over for B of A will be Chase! Hooray!

  22. Wormfather says:

    @skc15

    I heard that L.L. Bean is going to play the field for a little bit and just get used to being by her self.

    Then again, I just got of the phone with Crate & Barrel and they said that LLB is planning on getting hammered this Friday and that Wells Fargo is planning on comming along. So maybe it’ll be rebound sex maybe something more, who knows.

    Hope that helps.

  23. Wormfather says:

    Sorry skc that was for chiiedd

  24. chiieddy says:

    @kumquat7: Excellent news. I’ll just cancel the old and apply for the new. A hard hit, but I’m not applying for a mortgage anytime soon.

  25. chiieddy says:

    @ukthom: LL Bean is probably one of the best places I shop in terms of customer service. We drive the 2 hours to Freeport, ME about twice a year. They guarantee their products forever. I’ve had a zipper rip in a 10 year old coat and they’ve replaced it for free.

  26. tahamaki says:

    @Antediluvian: Oops. Lands End, LL Bean… both places I don’t order from, so I got them confused.

  27. ccman says:

    The L.L. Bean card is being taken over by BarclaycardUS, which used to be Juniper Bank. Barclays has been working on the transition for months now. Barclays has always given great customer service so I am happy to have them over BofA.

  28. sportsfreakmama says:

    Go to the LLBean website and click on Visa credit card(top right side of web page). This will give you lots of interesting information about the change including a slam against the service that BOA was providing their customers. The letter to BOA customers states that the two companies are discontinuing their relationship. On Bean’s site they state that “LL Bean has decided to discontinue its relationship with Bank of America.” Interesting!!!
    I am loyal to Bean, certainly not BOA who treats their customers poorly, cranks their interest rate up for no apparent reason and is certainly not customer friendly. I can’t wait to hear about the new card. My guess is neither Chase nor Citi but something with a Maine flavor, maybe a home grown bank, or maybe even Bean’s bought a bank of its own???? Whatever it is, I’m certain that it must have passed muster with standards for customer service or it wouldn’t get the account. I’m happy they dumped BOA.

  29. blackfly says:

    Lots of info on LLB’s web site. (Click on the Visa Card link below the tote in the upper right hand corner.)

    I didn’t see anything about the new card being issued by Chase. (Sorry MadameX) Curious to see the “exciting new benefits.” If I know LLB, they wouldn’t say something like that unless they were really good! Good bye (and good riddance) B of A.

  30. MainerInDC says:

    LL Bean has been an huge part of my life since birth (having grown up 20 minutes away)! My Father worked there for 19 years before retiring this past year, and I can say from personal experience that they treat their customers and employees with the utmost respect. I can’t even tell you how many things I have returned over the years, no problem, from ripped seams to broken zippers they always want to make you happy and satisfied. I’m sure that this split with BofA will do nothing but good things for the level of customer service that LL Bean customers are used to.

  31. mamacat49 says:

    well pooh. That’s the one CC I use for online purchases, including LLBean just for the free shipping. Most importantly, it’s the one I have memorized. But I’ll just wait for my new LLBean affiliate card when it comes out. Don’t cancel and lose your coupons from LLBean though.

  32. raremoth says:

    LLBean just announced that their new partner is Barclay’s bank. I have no experience with Barclay’s. Anyone want to offer notes on their experiences?

    More info here: [www.llbean.com]

  33. catccc says:

    Somebody above said that Barclaycard US is the new partner. That is true, it was announced on 7/1/2008. I’m pretty sure the benefits are the same, PLUS free return shipping, which I think is an awesome benefit!

  34. Santolina says:

    I ‘Googled’ Barclay’s Bank a while back and found the following. Besides being another HUGE bank it is linked with, if one can believe Wikipedia, Zimbabwe’s Mugabe regime. Go to: [en.wikipedia.org] and scroll down to ‘Controversy’. Any thoughts?

    Santolina

  35. Sackajacka says:

    It is, in fact, Barclays: [www.llbeanrewards.com]

  36. Felix the Cat says:

    Everyone should break up with this bank! To bad there are so many idiots working at this institution, here is my little problem FYI:
    [bankofamericageorgiasucks.blogspot.com]