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those bloody people

(16 Posts)
MuffinToptheMule Thu 11-Jun-09 19:56:06

I'm so annoyed with Lloyds Bank and The Post Office and their stupid lazy staff.

Last week I went to the post office to ask about some foreign currency. The woman behind the counter said that I could order Colombian pesos. She said just to make sure I come before 2pm and I could collect the currency the following day. I double checked with her that she would actually able to order it, as Marks and Spencer don't do it. She assured me that because she had a picture of it in her currency book I would be able to get it.
So today I went to order the money and the woman does a little 'tap tap tap' on her little computer and says 'Oh, actually we don't exchange Colombian Pesos, it looks like we never have, sorry about that.'
I think I must have stood there for a whole minute with my jaw hanging open. I couldn't stop thinking, 'you bloody incompetent idiot'. If she had just tapped tapped tapped her computer last week I would have gone elsewhere.
AIBU to think that The Post Office should have just employed a pot plant instead of this lazy bum?

So, off I trudge to Lloyds bank. This is how the conversation unfolded:

Muffin: Hello, I'm here to inform you (the bank) that I am going on holiday.

Bank: That's very nice. I hope you have a nice time.

Muffin: Do you need the dates and destination of my travel so that when I try to use my card it does not get sucked into the machine?

Bank: Why are you telling me this. I hope you have a nice holiday.

Muffin: I thought I had to inform my bank if I plan to use my card abroad so that it won't get blocked?

Bank: Okay, thank you for informing me. Have a nice holiday.

Muffin: Do you not need my card details?

Bank: If you have a problem when you are on holiday we will text you.

Muffin: Text me on what? I won't have a phone. Also, I don't want there to be a problem with my card that is why I am notifying you that I am going on holiday.

Bank: Okay, have a nice holiday. I hope you won't have a problem with your card.

At this point I actually gave up. The other people in the queue who had heard this interaction were all as confused as me. One man even told me that he had been in the bank the week before to do the same thing and there was no problem.

AIBU to think that Lloyds would be better off employing a bog brush holder than this woman?

ruddynorah Thu 11-Jun-09 19:59:22

the post office woman should have checked yes.

the lloyds person was maybe just being nice and trying to stop you worrying. you don't need to inform the bank you're going abroad. people go abroad all the time.

curlygal Thu 11-Jun-09 20:02:31

Good lord I am amazed you kept your cool.

poopscoop Thu 11-Jun-09 20:03:24

yes but ruddy they stop transactions at the LLoyds if it is used in an unsual place and you have hell of a job to get through to them from another country. I have had it myself. They ask that we tell them, which muffin has tried to do.

silverfrog Thu 11-Jun-09 20:06:02

I assume you were informing the bank because you are off to a particular card fraud hotspot (unless you want colombian pesos for another reason wink)

I had similar issues when I visited South Africa (was a regular trip, prob every 2 onths or so).

My bank would not accept me informing themin advance I would be there, they insisted that if they thought a transaction was fraudulant, they would phone me. Not ideal, but I did have a phone which worked there, so not the end of the world.

Unitl the nbank just stopped my card without phoning me (they had phoned on average 3 times a week, and so were obv bored by this point)

they stopped it over a £1.50 sandwich purchase hmm, and didn't bother to let me know either, which meant I went back home (to kenya) and had to sort it out form there, with no decent working phoneline or internet access.

was a total nightmare.

so no, YANBU at all.

tribpot Thu 11-Jun-09 20:09:35

Yup, always tell the bank when I go to Amsterdam as they will routinely stop the card if they see transactions there because of the risk of it being fraud.

TwoIfBySea Thu 11-Jun-09 20:10:41

I had my card cloned last year and as a result had to go through a lot of fuss, although they were very quick in making sure the fraudsters didn't get to use my card they didn't tell me. I panicked when my card suddenly stopped working and phonebank couldn't help.

Now if I go abroad I have to tell them or my card will be stopped.

The bank is Bank of Scotland, now taken over by Lloyds, oh dear.

MuffinToptheMule Thu 11-Jun-09 20:14:18

DP banks with Bank of Scotland and we went there just before we went to Lloyds. They were more than helpful and thanked us for informing them.

I really don't want to be stuck in Colombia without any money which seems likely now as both Lloyds and the Post Office are useless.

NanBullen Thu 11-Jun-09 20:24:54

I bank with Barclays and they take your date of departure and the date you com back and inform their debit card people, regardless of which country you are going to. have never had any probs. the woman in Lloyds obviously didn't have a clue!

i think all you can do is make sure you have a number you can call lloyds on from overseas and then get them to refund the telephone charges when you get back.

ruddynorah Thu 11-Jun-09 20:28:29

oh well i used to be a branch manager for one of the big banks, things must have changed.

Seabright Thu 11-Jun-09 20:31:01

I'd write/email the bank and tell them, then they've no excuse for messing up your cards

makipuppy Thu 11-Jun-09 20:50:03

Muffin you are better off taking US dollars to Colombia and changing small amounts for pesos as you need them. Lots of places will very happily take your dollars anyway and offer you a good exchange rate. That was my experience anyway.

The notifying your bank thing is hugely irritating. I bank with them too and try to minimize contact. They may well stop your card. Try calling international services 0845 3000101 I think, forgive me if I'm wrong.

dawntigga Thu 11-Jun-09 21:04:04

I work in the merchant services for a card company and can tell you you NEED to let them know or they will block your card if they can't contact you.

This is especially good advise if you are going to France as they have a tendancy to call the police if your card refers!


MuffinToptheMule Thu 11-Jun-09 21:35:16

Thank you all for confirming what I thought. I will try and phone Lloyds and if that doesn't work than I will go to a different branch tomorrow to try and sort it out.

Stigaloid Fri 12-Jun-09 09:27:47

YANBU and i shout 'Gah' on your behalf! How frustrating. I'd phone the car company direct on the number on the back of the card and inform them over the phone. Also inform any credit card company you plan on using. Incidentally - you can alway get a FairFx credit card

You pre-pay on it with your euros or US dollars and it does not charge you any percentage on purchases like a normal credit card does. Not sure if it will help in Columbia but useful if travelling to States or Europe.

Stigaloid Fri 12-Jun-09 09:48:40

erm - i meant card company!

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