Even Reporters Can Not Get Capital One To Act Responsibly

Capital One is so evil that not even media inquiries phase it. Around here we tend to roll our eyes just a little bit at consumer reporters who praise companies for doing the right thing post-media inquiry. After all, what company wouldn’t fix a situation rather than suffer a public shaming by a newspaper? Finally, the answer has been found. That company is Capital One.

Over at the News & Observer staff writer Dennis Rogers cannot get Capital One to respond to his calls. He’s inquiring about a woman who is trying to close her husband’s credit card account because he no longer uses it and is currently deployed in Iraq. She’d like to close the account because for some ungodly reason this particular Capital One card comes with a monthly fee of $6.95. Since her husband has no balance on the card, and is currently fighting in a war, she’d rather not have the account. The story that unfolds includes mysterious disappearing letters, unreturned phone calls, and lies about the Soldiers and Sailors Relief Act.

Will Capital One ever explain itself? Will they ever call the reporter back? The real question is, why on earth does anyone use Capital One? —MEGHANN MARCO

Wife beat corporate horde [News & Observer] (Thanks, Myron!)
(Photo: bluepoint951)


Edit Your Comment

  1. tedyc03 says:

    People use Capital One because they listen to their advertising. They forget that people who employ barbarians have to keep them busy when they’re not filming commercials…

  2. elizaD says:

    I use Capital One because they had the best offer out of all the junk mail I get when I was looking for a new card. 0% and no fees. I never carry a balance and I’ve never had a problem with them. If they start charging a fee or screw something up I’ll switch, but until then, why would I?

  3. ikimashokie says:

    Well.. it’s my mom’s card.

    Not only that, but it protects me from the barbarians that tedyc03 mentions. :D

  4. MostNutsEver says:

    What’s in your wallet?

  5. tvh2k says:

    Personally I use Capital One because (a) they are one a few cards that don’t charge fees overseas, (b) they give me “purchase checks” each month which let me withdraw my full credit line and toss it into a high-yield savings account, (c) because they were my first credit card (applied from “pre-approved” mail offer) so they add to the length of credit history.

  6. eldergias says:

    What’s in my wallet? Not Capitol one. I had one of these cards as my first card. I canceled it because it sucked and I got much better deals elsewhere. To top it off, Capitol One hurt my credit report by marking my account as having paid two of my payments late… even though looking at the depositing of my checks one could easily see they were paid properly. They told me not to worry about the mistakes as they would fall off my credit report in 7 years (way to fix your own mistakes). Now, 3 years later, since I’ve become much more savvy in these matter (thanks to the Consumerist) I’m going to be sending challenges to the credit reporting agencies (already tried Capitol One again to no avail). Way to keep/bring a consumer into your fold, screwing up their credit score. Thanks Capitol One, thanks a million.

  7. joeblevins says:

    Holy crap, you have a savings account that accrues more interest then the credit card charges?

  8. timmus says:

    Capital One also inflicted revenge on my credit report after I decided to close it. They’re a shitty company and I’d be curious to know if they have any subsidiaries or imprints with different names, so that I can avoid them in the future.

  9. glomm says:

    @joeblevins: Presumably he gets a special rate on those balance transfer checks, like 0% for 6 months or 1.99% for 12 months, and then deposits them into an online savings account such as HSBC Direct or Emigrant Direct that offers 5.05% interest.

  10. cudthecrud says:

    I have capital one because they bought Hibernia. I miss my Hibernia.

  11. Starfury says:

    @MostNutsEver: What do I have in my wallet? Cash. When it’s gone no more spending for me.

  12. Ryan Duff says:

    Isn’t their slogan “No hassle”?

    Talk about a blatant lie!

  13. capturedshadow says:

    No foreign currency transaction fees is a big deal if you are going to be overseas for any length of time. It can save 3% of what ever you are paying for. Like those air asia tickets from Medan to Kuala Lumpur. That is why I use it. Plus anyone can get the small business visa with any business name they want. Telstar Logistics ring a bell?

  14. Mills says:

    I used Capital One because they gave me a 5000 dollar credit limit at the tender age of 16. I
    canceled the card for the same reason.

  15. mantari says:

    I transfered most of my balances to a Capital One platinum. Apparently, they have many different programs with tweaks (so if someone complains about _X_, they have a card with _X_, although they don’t tell you that you might get stuck with _Y_).

    No monthly or annual fees. 5% fixed on balance transfer, then 7% on purchases. Great, isn’t it?

    The trick with this card is that if you transfer a large balance for that 5% fixed, don’t use the card for anything else. No purchases. Ever. Once you start charging other items, after a while, your non-balance transfer interest rate will go on an inclined treadmill. And you can’t pay off just your purchase balance.

    Ends up your effective APR will go well beyond that 5% because of the ever increasing interest rate on the purchases, which you can never clear out, without emptying your entire account.

  16. solmssen says:

    not trying to be a pedant, but I think you meant:

    faze, as in http://www.meriam-webster.com/dictionary/faze

    not phase, as in http://www.meriam-webster.com/dictionary/phase.

    It’s an error I’ve been seeing a lot lately. Oh well. You know what I like a lot? Cake. Delicious cake.

  17. mopar_man says:


    Excellent! I’m glad I’m not the only one.

  18. Buran says:

    @capturedshadow: Early commsat. Looks like the Death Star.

  19. MadMolecule says:

    Just for the sake of being a usage Nazi, it’s “faze.” As in: “Capital One is so evil that not even media inquiries faze it.”

  20. bostonmike says:

    I got my Capital One card specifically because of the 0% fee on foreign charges.

  21. mac-phisto says:

    i like my capital one card. it has fruit loops on it. plus, they don’t screw me on balance transfers like boa.

  22. Nighthawk Foo says:

    phase -> faze

    Sorry to nitpick.

  23. synergy says:

    Two years with Capital One and no complaints. That’s a loan and a card. *shrug*

  24. pestie says:

    I, too, have a Capital One card and I’m quite happy with it. It’s a platinum card, which comes with extras like rental-car insurance coverage, but the really cool thing is that the interest rate is 4.99% (yes, four point nine nine, that’s not a typo), and there are no monthly or annual fees. I’ve had the card for about 4 years now and they’ve never screwed me on anything. The interest rate is not an introductary rate, nor is it only on balance transfers, etc. Maybe it would go up if I made a late payment, but I never have.

  25. krunk4ever says:

    @capturedshadow: just what i wanted to say. since there’s no currency exchange fees and they even cover the 2% that Visa/Mastercard charges, this makes it an ideal card to use when you’re traveling abroad.

  26. mantari says:

    @pestie: Read my comment above. It is very likely that the 4.99% isn’t fixed for purchases. If you’ve got a good amount of $$$ going in a balance transfer at the fixed low rate, and then you make some purchases on the card, they’ll run your purchase APR up (which is not fixed) like a treadmill. (I call it the ‘dreadmill’.)

    Your only way out of that trap (assuming you didn’t avoid it) is to clean out your entire balance and start over, not making any credit purchases.

  27. TPK says:

    Does Capital One offer the service where you can have a passport-type photo embedded on to the front of the card?

    How about virtual account numbers?

    Citibank offers both of those for no extra charge.

  28. royal72 says:

    @krunk4ever: shush! you’re talking publicly about something they’re not making money off of. surely within the next six months that policy will be changed.

  29. islander65 says:

    I made the mistake of aquiring a Capital One credit card in the mid-1990’s For several years I paid my balances ontime, with out issue. Then in 1998 I had Credit Card Fraud. It was a re-occuring charge on my card. I first called Capital One and report the phoney transaction. They sent me a form, filled it out, sent it back. Next month same transaction, same call, requesting they resolve this issue. This continued for 14 months. Finally they resolve the issue. then had the gall to claim I’m a credit card risk and reduced me to a $500 limit. I also put on my credit report that I was 14 months late in paying off my card. It took me another 3 years with multiple letters and phone calls to cancel my credit card. Pray you never have fraud. They try to ruin your credit history.

  30. pestie says:

    @mantari: I did avoid it. None of that was balance transfer. I had decided that I wanted a platinum card, so I kept pouring through the junk-mail offers I got (and I got a lot after I bought my house) until I found one with terms I like. I read the fine print carefully, and Capital One had the best deal – no fees, 4.99% interest rate on purchases, forever. I never use my credit card for cash advances and I never make late payments, so I’ve kept that interest rate to this day.

  31. Papa Midnight says:

    No wonder people tell me to stay away from Capital One…

  32. MellowCat says:

    We cancelled them for their blase attitude towards fraud. I received an invoice from Dell showing I used the card to purchase some five hundred dollars’ worth of computer equipment. It apparently was shipped to someone with my exact name in Ohio. I live in Texas and never ordered these products. Immediately I called Capital Scum to report the fraud. “Just call Dell,” the rep said. “Uh, no. IT’S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO TAKE CARE OF IT.” I had to instruct them to cancel my card IMMEDIATELY, too. They sure didn’t want to. I had to be transferred all around to finally get them to handle the situation. And instead of cancelling my account, they sent new cards with new id#’s. That’s not what I requested. It took several days and literally several hours on the phone to get the idiots to do anything. It was as if they were all on quaaludes over there. Carnies are more lucid than these people.

    We went back to our good old AA Citibank Visa, which is very pro-active on fraud and their IQ’s seem reasonable, too.

  33. Jorn Knuttila says:

    Me too. And, today, I got my “We’re jacking your rate to somewhere near 30%. Suck it” letter that so many others have received. Just wait, your turn is coming.