Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

(no) Fun with Banks

As it is the UK custom to drop the interest rate on all bank accounts, and then open new ones each month with a higher rate (to screw customers out of money) anyone who keeps an eye on things in the UK and doesn’t like rip-offs has to constantly change bank  accounts.

As a result, I recently tried opening an account with citibank. I should point out I’ve been a UK citizen for all my life and have been a company director for over 10 years. I have had a number of different bank accounts, and never been in any financial trouble that would put up a warning flag. In short, I am a good customer. Here are the highlights from citibank:

send us one document from each of the two lists below to our freepost address by 26-Dec-09.

Proof of Identity (a certified copy)
Current signed passport.
Current UK photo card driving licence (a non photo driving license is, unfortunately, not acceptable)  [sorry, non got one. mines too old]
Current signed national identity card issued by a member state of the European Economic Area (EEA). (Click here for a list of EEA countries)  [ we don’t even HAVE THESE IN THE UK YET!]
Please send only certified copies of your documents, and not the originals. Certified simply means documents that have been signed and dated by a lawyer, notary public or banker using an official stamp, and with their name and address written on it.

They actually expect me to go find a f****g lawyer to get the lawyer to say ‘yes that looks like the passport of a guy I met 10 seconds ago!’ (lets dwell briefly on the idea that the most trustworthy members of society are lawyers and bankers shall we? not a heart surgeon or a priest or a social worker. They are obviously corrupt and evil, unlike the banker…) They also wanta  utiltiy bill which does not exist because mine is online. yay! Also I love the word ‘simply’ in there, just ebfore the bit that makes it stupidly involved. Hardly cutting edge NLP…
And the highlight:

We look forward to welcoming you as a Citibank customer.

Note: Please do not reply to this email, because this email address is not set up to receive incoming email.

Classic. In other words. “we want to hear from you!. But not really. Sod off.”

Citibanks correspondence now lines my cats litter tray, where it is at least of some practical use :D. It amazes me how companies get so big by treating their customers as an irritation. I treat my customers as partners and as a major benefit to the company. Some of the best feedback I get on my games is direct from customers. There is only one email address ending in that gets auto-deleted:

I’m sick of crappy recruitment companies that don’t even update their database every decade…

5 thoughts on (no) Fun with Banks

  1. I think it’s well researched that the worst banks in EU are in Italy. They don’t take any special care hiding their fees, since it’s not like you can be better off going to competitors. Also, I remember that the procedure of opening an account in Italy took me more or less answering 50 different questions (e.g. which university I graduated from). I never managed to enable internet access though. That was too much.

  2. ING.

    They used to just be a good place to have a savings accounts but their offerings have been getting better and better. And they still have higher interest rates than regular banks.

  3. Well, I invest in Gold and Silver. Much better than being invested in British Pound. It’s a sure fire wealth loss investment at the moment. Go check out all that money printing! Got Pound Sterling? Go spend it quick, before it loses another 30% value.

Comments are currently closed.