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pjf (2464)

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I run Perl Training Australia [].

I help with Melbourne Perl Mongers.

I spend an awful lot of time talking about Perl, and have had my picture in the Australian newspapers with a camel. That's rather scary.

Journal of pjf (2464)

Saturday July 24, 2004
01:03 AM

Banking Pragmatism

[ #20029 ]

Ask Bjørn Hansen, in response to this journal wrote:

Unless you already used all the time you wanted on it, then write a letter to the CEO explaining why you are now using a different card.

I'm certain that with sufficient effort I can have the matter resolved to my satisfaction. However, when you look at the total benefit of doing so, in this case it's not worth it.

The total cost in having to wait a month for them to reverse the fee is about $0.46, representing unrealised interest from having to shift other assets into the card. The cost of writing a letter to any person in the bank is greater for just the stamp alone, let alone the time I would be spending which I could otherwise work on client projects. Any sort of emotional satisfaction aside, it's much much more effective for me to shrug and continue on.

I will be writing to the bank asking for a pro-rata refund of the annual fee (rather than a rebate in exchange for points), because if I'm cancelling the card, then I am no longer gaining any benefit from paying that fee. However that's a different dispute, with a greater chance of success and a higher gain.

My motivation for initiating a change in my personal banking details goes beyond this relatively minor matter. It includes a continual reduction in the accessibility of the bank from closing branches, reduced staff, and non-standards compliant web-pages. The time cost to me in interacting with the bank has just grown too high.

The bank I'm looking at moving to (and I need to read their offer carefully before accepting), is a smaller, more agile, and more customer-focused bank, who I've been using for my business banking for a number of years. They also have a few extra cool points for having a one-time-password system, and some of their business staff members actually knowing of Perl.

This doesn't mean that I'm swearing off my old bank permanently in all areas. Their business banking staff have been very helpful, honest, and accessible, and it's clear the bank places greater value in this area of service.

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