Credit One Bank / overall experience is disgusting
I know that when you begin to take the steps to repair bad credit because of poor choices in the past, you have to face obstacles such as high APR's, low credit limits, and upfront fees; however, one experience you should never have is poor customer service. I opened an account with Credit One Bank less than six months ago. I am in good standing financially, but my credit is poor, so typically I will charge something on the account and pay it off within the same month just to create good credit history. My two biggest complaints with this company are the website and the customer service department. The website doesn't update itself like most credit card websites, there are fees to pay your bill online, and they are always trying to get you to sign up for optional programs, even calling your home to make sure you are aware of their offers. When you make a payment online, it doesn't show as pending, so many months I have made a payment, and was nervous a few days later when it wasn't showing a payment had been made. So then, I have to call customer service...
Oh customer service, how I wish you could do better. I am a Customer Experience Manager for a major security company in North America, so I am always observant of the good, bad, and ugly when it comes to how other companies provide service in person and over the phone. I have high standards personally, but still try to interact from the perspective of the common man. So, recently I have been getting calls from Credit One Bank with a recorded advertisement for a credit protection program. Tonight, I decided to stay on the line to see if I could speak to someone about flagging my account so that I would not be called any more. The lady on the line...well, let me first say, I am a Mexican American, very proud of my heritage, and enjoy the fact that America is full of various cultures; however, when you live in America for an extended period of time or are born here, you understand, truly, how Americans speak to one another, conversationally. So, when I speak to someone at a call center that I know is not located in the U.S., that piece of my experience is missing. No matter how hard that representative tries, the American connection is not there, and when you are dealing at times with technical and detailed matters, it is imperative that the conversation be easy and fluid. Needless to say, the Credit One Bank call center is not located in the U.S.
So, here is the breakdown:
1. First lady I spoke to would not listen, went ahead and enrolled me in the credit protection program, even though I told her not to numerous times, and pretty much hung up on me before I could verify with her what changes had occurred on my account.
2. Called the credit protection department back within 1 minute of the previous call and received a recording saying they were closed. I laughed. It's funny, really, it is.
3. Called customer service and the young lady advised that the credit protection department was open, and that she would need to transfer me. I was transferred, and quickly heard a recording that they were closed. I ate some pizza and laughed again, maybe not as much as the first time.
4. Called customer service back, and spoke to my nemesis, "Amber", which by the way, isn't her name. It just isn't. I tried to tell her about my issue, and she said that she couldn't help and that I needed to speak to the credit protection department. I asked to speak to a Supervisor, and she told me no, and continued to emphasize that I needed to talk to the right department and that they were in fact open. I told her she was misinformed, that they were in fact not open, and again requested a Supervisor. She placed me on hold and came back advising that THE Supervisor, I guess there was only one, was on the phone with another customer and I would need to call back in an hour to try again. I asked if the Supervisor could just call me back when she was available. Amber was not on board with this idea. So, I then gave the option to just hold on the line, so that when the Supervisor was available, I could just be transferred over. Amber must have really not liked that suggestion because she hung up on me. Oh Amber, why do you have to be like that?
5. Called back and spoke to a much nicer gentleman, and asked to speak to a Supervisor. He asked what the issue was regarding, I told him, and he placed me on hold. He came back in less than a minute, advised that ALL of the Supervisors were busy, but he could take down my name and number and someone would call me back shortly? I must tell Amber this good news. I gave him the information and hung up, ate some pizza, and waited.
6. Less than 5 minutes later, I received a call from a Supervisor, who listened without interrupting, apologized, advised the calls would be reviewed and that Amber would be reprimanded "severely", and offered his assistance for any further questions. I asked if he could tell if I was enrolled in the credit protection program, my original question 800 calls ago, he said I was not. I asked him what the direct number was for the credit protection department, he gave it. And, I then asked what the hours were. He placed me on hold, came back, and said, "Thank you for staying on the line. They are open from 8am-8pm EST." I thanked him and ended the call.
So, you be the judge. Could all of my questions been handled with the first call? How can a department call me to enroll me in something that I don't want, when they technically aren't open? The original call to my home was at 7:33CST. I live in Texas. These are the mysteries of the world. I do know that this is strike two for Credit One Bank. I had a previous billing issue that invaded my time and day off, and it took forever to resolve. One more strike, and it's curtains for this card. I have built my credit up enough with other companies, so to lose this one, while I do love the look of the card, would not be detrimental to my financial soul or credit score.
Be warned future cardholders. Do your research before you make a final decision. Be prepared, and be firm. You are in charge of your credit, your finances, and your life. I hope someone finds this helpful, or at least entertaining...
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