Kyle was having some problems with Bank of America. He decided that his Alaska Airlines credit card was no longer worth the annual fee, so he decided to cancel it. Bank of America didn’t want to let him go. Instead of shutting down the card immediately, they left it open long enough that he got charged the annual fee. It seemed hopeless…until he name-dropped his favorite consumer affairs blog.
I recently ran into problems with Bank of America (surprise, surprise!). Last year I signed up for their Alaska Airlines card as I was planning on going to Hawaii and they offer a $99 companion ticket with this card. I realized at the end of my year, that I likely wouldn’t use the companion card this year and didn’t spend enough on this card to warrant the $75 annual fee.
I called to cancel the card prior to my renewal rate (and being charged the annual fee). A week later, I was charged the annual fee and immediately called them to ask them why. I was told that my card was flagged for cancellation and that it would be done today and the charge would disappear. Two weeks later and the card is still active and the charge still appears on my online account. I finally gave up on calling and thought I would try the online chat option to see if they could help me.
Attached is the transcript of my chat – you will see that the representative was not going to help me and told me I needed to call them (AGAIN!) to cancel the card. You will also notice that I told her that I would call them, but also contact consumerist and let them know of BOA’s incompetence. Next thing I knew, I was transferred to a chat specialist who was actually able to help me!
Lesson learned…..if I ever need to get better service at Bank of America, just threaten to contact consumerist!
I guess we should be proud that the mere mention of our name can get competent customer service, but ultimately it just makes us sad.
Here’s the full transcript of Kyle’s chat, in case you’re into that kind of thing.
[BoA Rep]: How may I help you with your personal credit card account today?
You: I called to cancel this card on July 5th to avoid the annual fee since I never use this card
You: on July 9th it looks like I was charged the annual fee
[BoA Rep]: I will be more than happy to assist you regarding the status of the card and the
annual fee assessed.
[BoA Rep]: Let me pull up your account, first. One moment please.
[BoA Rep]: Thank you for waiting.
[BoA Rep]: I see that your account is still active.
[BoA Rep]: Please note that the account is structured to have a $75 annual fee.
[BoA Rep]: With this card, our goal is to provide you access to your line of credit and maintain
the benefits and features you currently enjoy on your account.
You: I called to cancel this card on July 5th
You: I do not use it enough to warrant paying a $75 fee
You: that is what I told the representative I spoke to
[BoA Rep]: I will be right with you.
[BoA Rep]: I am sorry if the closure request is not processed. If you wish this account to be
closed, I can provide the number of our specialized department dedicated to complete your closure request.
[BoA Rep]: Would that be alright with you?
You: I’ve already called them twice about this
[BoA Rep]: I’m sorry for the delay. I’ll be right with you.
[BoA Rep]: I have read your concern and I understand where you are coming from. To ensure that your request will be completed properly, let me give you the number of our team of accounts experts best equipped to handle your request.
[BoA Rep]: They have the power to close the account as per customer request.
[BoA Rep]: You may contact them at 1.800.770.6459, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET Monday through
Thursday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Friday, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. ET Saturday, Closed Sunday.
You: what is the status of my account right now?
You: I was told last time I called that it was processed to be closed
[BoA Rep]: It remains active.
You: and it was just not completed yet
You: why is it still active?
You: does it even show on the account that it has been requested to be closed?
You: I don’t even have my card anymore, I cut it up
You: I called on July 5th
You: and then called again on the 10th after my card was charged the $75
You: why isn’t my account closed?
You: I would like to know
[BoA Rep]: Thank you for waiting. I’ll be with you in just a moment.
[BoA Rep]: Was it confirmed to you that the account was closed and were you able to informed of the disclosure on account closure request?
You: I was told it would be closed
You: on July 5th
You: I don’t’ recall what else was said
You: I didn’t realize I was going to questioned on what I was told You: when I called I would’ve expected the account to be closed
You: as requested
[BoA Rep]: I’m sorry for the delay. I’ll be right with you.
You: so are you going to help me or not?
[BoA Rep]: I am doing my best to assist you with all of your inquiries. To ensure that this time your request to close your account be processed properly, I would request you to please contact
1.800.770.6459, Our experts are available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET Monday through Thursday,
8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Friday, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. ET Saturday, Closed Sunday.
You: I will be contacting them
You: and also be contacting consumerist.com
[BoA Rep]: Thank you. I appreciate your understanding in this regard.
You: they love hearing stories about BofA incompetence
[BoA Rep]: May I please offer you to speak to a senior chat specialist who will be able to discuss this further with you?
You: only if they can help me resolve this
[BoA Rep]: Yes, our senior chat specialist will be able to help you with account closure request.
[BoA Rep]: I will be transferring you to a Senior Chat Specialist who will be able to review our conversation and assist you further. Please remain online while you are being connected.
Please wait while I transfer the chat to the best suited Bank of America Specialist.
Thank you for choosing Bank of America. You are now being connected to a Chat Specialist. For security purposes, please remember to close your chat window when completed.
[Supervisor] Hello My name is Brian and I am a Senior Chat Specialist. Please allow me a moment
while I review your previous chat conversation.
[Supervisor] Thank you for your patience. I have reviewed your previous chat conversation and see that you wish to close your credit card.
[Supervisor] One moment please while I access your account information.
You: I requested this be closed on July 5th, prior to being charged the annual fee
You: I have called twice and chatted twice with people
You: 4 different requests and this account is yet to be closed
[Supervisor] I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused to you in this regard.
[Supervisor] I am able to process the account closure for you.
[Supervisor] May I have your permission to close the credit card?
[Supervisor] We are sorry to lose your business on the consumer card account, the account has been closed.