SUB-STANDARD CUSTOMER SERVICE WITH STANDARD BANK – SOUTH AFRICA

standardbankI  was truly hoping that it  would not come to this but sheer frustration and a lack of any other options has brought me to this point. I have never in my life experienced such a callous and inconsiderate banking institution whose customer service has been less than below par.  I have been seriously considering changing banks after it took no less than two months for me to get an emergency banking card while travelling in west Africa in 2012, but I decided against it (foolishly) thinking that perhaps something will change… this time I am left hungry and destitute in another country because standard bank has no customer CARE services to speak of.

I arrived in Senegal on the 28thof 2012having  told them that I would be travelling to Senegal for some time and would need to have easy access to internet banking, and asked them to change all my notifications to on email.  On the 3rdof January I went to a local mall C plaza to withdraw money and my card was retained (swallowed by the ATM) thinking nothing of it I followed up with the local bank to have my card returned.  The bank told me that they had my card (VISA DEBIT CARD) but since it did not have my name on it they would require standard banks verification that I was indeed the authentic and legitimate card holder. After several calls and emails  every day for about 7 days  the local bank had still not received any correspondence or communication from my bank despite my having provided them with the necessary information via email and  by telephone.  On the day that I eventually got my bank card back the lady who was “assisting” said to me actually said “So what do you expect me to do?” I was angered by that and told her that I expect her to provide the local bank with all the relevant information that I am the legitimate the bank card in their possession is mine as I had no other card I could use to access my funds.

After faxing my Proof of Identity and spending a least three to four hours back and forth   with a local banking consultant I got my card back. The lady who was helping me even managed to say “hurry up its knock off time” After I had spent almost two weeks trying to get the issue resolved.  I answered all the security questions did everything I could to prove that I was not a fraud but a customer in a foreign country trying to gain access to my funds.  She then gave the banking consultant the go ahead to give me back my bank card after which she told me everything was fine.

My bank card was retained on the 3rdof January; I only got it back on the 10th from the local bank. In desperate need of money, I went to another bank to withdraw money and again my bank card was retained.  I called my bank again to find out what the problem was and after being referred to this one and that one and that one I was told that it was a hot card, but no one could explain what hot card meant. I asked for the bank to call me back as I had not enough credit available to stay on hold and they repeatedly told me, consultant after consultant that they are not able to do that.  With my card declared illegal I had not use for it.  On Friday I spend not less than two hours on the phone, trying to find a solution to my increasingly frustrating situation, after explaining my story to no less than 6 different consultants who each referred me to someone else for assistance, I was told that I could not get an emergency bank card, as I would need to transfer funds from one account to another in order for an emergency bank card to be issued for have emergency funds sent to me via other financial institutions. I would have to transfer the money myself via internet banking in order for them to help me. I again explained my situation to yet another call center agent saying because use my bank card had been blocked I could not make the necessary transfers on the net otherwise I would have save myself the trouble and did that the first time around.   She then transferred me to someone else who I had to explain my whole story to again, by this time it was three hours on the phone and I had run up a phone bill I could not even afford in the hope that I would finally resolve the situation  at the end of it. The lady then put me through to another consultant who deals with internet transfers; the man on the phone answered and kept me on hold without anyone picking up my call for at least 20 minutes until I could not hold on any longer because my phone bill was beyond affordable.

This week I called again on Monday to find a solution to my problem, I asked the consultant again to please call me back and he told me the same story they cannot make calls to customers, I explained my story from the beginning and the consultant told me that they cannot help me I would need to go to my local branch to get the issue resolved! I almost creamed at the poor guy saying I am in a foreign country in west Africa Senegal he told me he understood and would forward my query to my local branch and have them call me after I had given him all my details I waited for a call.  The bank still hasn’t called me back and I have no more funds to make the call to try to get access to my money that I worked hard for it is inexplicable that the treatment I have received at a bank that claims to be a leading bank in Africa, they don’t even know where Senegal is.

I may have stayed with them out of blind sense of loyalty.  I  really  don’t care anymore if the bank cares about its customers or not. A ll I want is for them to give me all my two cents and let’s call it quits.  I don’t know what else to do. Calling and  emailing has so far been fruitless and left  me with little options on what to do next since I don’t have loads of money to spend all day on the phone speaking to 10 different people  with whom I have to repeat the same story again, answer the same questions with not solution at the end.. I am still waiting for a call.  I am left trapped unable to do my work and live my life because of no one seemed to resolve the problem. There’s a simple solution.

Can someone at standard bank please give me a call??? It’s an AFRICAN NUMBER  ( DAKAR SENEGAL  WEST AFRICA) 00221773384105   I repeat  – 00221773384105  and please  give me access to my money and I promise NEVER to call  Again.

Regards

From a very disappointed customer.

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