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OFSO
13th Mar 2015, 17:28
A close friend received a letter from his bank on the sunny isle of Jersey two months ago, telling him that as he no longer was resident there they would be closing his account and he would have to shift his money elsewhere.

He telephoned the bank and asked them not to close the account as he still received a Jersey-based income. The lady at the bank replied they would "consider" his request.

Last week he received a new debit card for the same account from the bank.

Today two letters arrived from the bank. The first one he opened, dated February, said that as they had received no communication from him, they were closing his account effective the 8th of March.

The second one he opened, also dated February, said that in response to his telephone call of two months ago they would not close his account.

Well, one or the other, I guess.....

390cruise
13th Mar 2015, 17:53
How to understand banks,

Senior people are low caliber stupid and fired by immense greed.

Junior people are just low caliber.


So does it all make sense now?

oldchina
13th Mar 2015, 18:04
Maybe they think they're posh, from Westminster

But the owners are from Scotland

Claiming to do business in Jersey

With staff based in the Isle of Man

Confused? Explains a thing or two ...?

beaufort1
13th Mar 2015, 19:08
Well, the reason banks in the Crown Dependencies are closing down accounts to people who have no connection with the islands is down to pressure from places like London, EU and the OECD. Who keep screaming about tax havens. Ironic really, in view of Millipede's verbal attack a fortnight ago. :hmm:

OFSO
13th Mar 2015, 20:24
My dad had the same first initial as I do. He had an account at the RBS in a southern English town. When I went to the same bank to open an a/c for myself, the bank said there would be too much confusion, two Mr "OFSOs" with the same first initial. They suggested opening an account with their bank but in a very distant place. So I opened my a/c in the Channel Islands.

That's why I am there.....

ExSp33db1rd
14th Mar 2015, 01:21
.... places like London, EU and the OECD.

and the USA, who really started all this with their FATCA decree, and now demand that foreign banks report all such activity,so the local banks are now deciding that they can't be bothered, so if you don't live just around the corner, work 9 to 5 Mon. to Fri. and watch Coronation Street every night, they can't be bothered with you.

( FATCA ? FatCats ? )

They are only harrassing the basically honest, ( most of us, anyway ) who happen to have decided to reside somewhere else, the real rogues and money launderers are just laughing at us - and carrying on as before.

World's Gone Mad.

ExSp33db1rd
21st Mar 2015, 22:25
and another one ...........

Mrs. ExS recently joined our local airline "points" scheme using a new rip-off run by American Express for airmiles, or similar, with Air New Zealand. She now has a new Amex. card - having once sensibly abandoned them years ago.

More then 50% of retailers show you the door when an Amex card is produced - Amex charge them too much commission on sales - so its value for anything, never mind Airpoints, is questionable anyway.

I'm some sort of accessory to this arrangement, having an auxilliary Amex card with my name on it, but the basic account is in Mrs. ExS's name, however, for personal reasons of no consequence to Amex. we decided that I would pay the monthly account by a direct debit from my local bank.

NO WAY said Amex. and returned my direct debit application with undue harrassment, YOU aren't the account holder so we can't accept this payment. ( their inference being that I am some sort of Al Queda money launderer - OK, I'm exaggerating, slightly, but you get the point )

Why the fcuk do they care who pays the bill, they get their money, which is the only reason for them being in business?

We now have to remember passwords, names of first dog, etc. to enter the website to pay the bill every month, or risk penalties and interest charges.

World's Gone Mad.

P.s. we're about to cut up the cards and say stuff you to Amex. Airpoints as well, why can't the airline just knock a few bob off the price of every ticket and save everybody, including themselves, the aggro, advertising, accounting costs etc ?

Donkey497
21st Mar 2015, 22:42
And with Gorgeous George's latest wheeze creating the presumption of tax avoidance for not having already declared all overseas accounts and any interest accrued since established, I am now awaiting the three a.m. knock from HMRC's finest as I have had a bank account in Canada for many years that I feed from my UK account for spending money on my annual holiday, feeding my nieces' college funds & paying membership fees for various local clubs that I've become a member of over the years.:sad:


I wouldn't mind if I was actually trying to avoid paying tax, or if there was a huge amount of cash in involved, but not being an investment banker it's only a couple of grand per year. If it was a couple of million, no one would bat an eye.:(




I'll be open to receiving a file in a cake when I end up in the Bar-L or the Scrubs........:ok:

Fox3WheresMyBanana
21st Mar 2015, 23:00
I think they x-ray all cakeboxes now, so 'personal concealment' is the order of the day. I'll be happy to shove a large rasp file up GG's @rse for you, how's that? ;)

thing
21st Mar 2015, 23:09
They are only harrassing the basically honest, ( most of us, anyway ) who happen to have decided to reside somewhere else, the real rogues and money launderers are just laughing at us - and carrying on as before.

World's Gone Mad.

I'm a bit of a stude of English history post Normans and you will be if not glad, at least content to hear that the same complaints have been presented for the last 949 years.

I've no doubt that it went on before that as well but I'm not really qualified to make a judgement.

ExSp33db1rd
22nd Mar 2015, 04:08
...............the same complaints have been presented for the last 949 years.

At least they didn't have Amex cards, or contactless credit cards 949 years ago ( or did they ?)

I guess stashing the Danegeld under the bed was all they had to worry about?

Solar
22nd Mar 2015, 05:34
ExSp
Few years ago I had a company Amex.
Was offshore Egypt longer than expected, ask Mrs Solar to take the Amex bill into the bank when it arrived, show the teller (friend of ours) the Amex statement and to transfer money from our joint acc to another acc I had set up for CC payments.
Mrs Solar and the teller both misread the amount so slightly less than was required was transferred.
Arrived in Cairo, overnight in Movenpick paid with Amex, went to the airport, tried to change my ticket found the Amex was blocked. Used personal card to get home.
Phoned Amex (mrs Solar had tried but they wouldn't speak with her as she was not the acc holder despite her trying to explain) and asked them why did they not take the available funds as opposed to leaving themselves open to a much larger loss if I was a bad person. Lots of mithering about how they could not take payment in dribs and drabs.
After several minutes I asked why they would not deal with Mrs Solar yet they were dealing with me, they had not asked for any verification other than the acc number. Person on the phone said but you are the acc holder, I asked how do you know, your speaking to a voice, silence ensued for a brief moment and I told them that I would be canceling the card after payment and that possibly Diners could offer a better service.
I cancelled the card and to this day they are still renewing my card, I find them useful for applying body filler !!!!

ExXB
22nd Mar 2015, 09:09
Apparently Swiss Expats are having problems getting and/or holding Swiss bank accounts without having a Swiss address. Parliament tried to direct the government owned PostFinance to give accounts to any Swiss national, regardless of residence, but that failed.

Apparently the potential for money laundering is too high.

radeng
22nd Mar 2015, 10:40
I have a TSB account with a balance of zero. It's been like that for some years. They won't close it unless I go to the trouble of writing to the branch where it is......Why should I spend time and money on doing that?

ian16th
22nd Mar 2015, 11:10
possibly Diners could offer a better service.This is so far removed form wishful thinking to be in the realms of fantasy!

I used to have a company Diners card, I became an expert :sad:

radeng
22nd Mar 2015, 11:14
The only problem - so far - with Amex was the other week when I wanted an increase in credit limit. Following the web site instructions, it didn't work - a button to click didn't appear.

So I telephoned the 0800 number and after the usual security questions - I always have a problem with which email address do they have! - got the increase immediately.

Gertrude the Wombat
22nd Mar 2015, 12:09
I have a TSB account with a balance of zero.
I have a building society account with a balance of £1. This account is held between four people, and was set up for a particular purpose, which ceased to exist many years ago.

The BS would not accept my instruction to close the account, nor to withdraw all the money, despite us deliberately having set the account up as an "any one signature" account. They would however accept my instruction to withdraw all the money except for £1, so that's what I did.

Closing the account would involve posting the form around the four of us to collect signatures, which would cost more than £1 in postage, so you can guess whether we've bothered.

Meanwhile the BS continue to spend more than £1 each year sending us out statements etc.

Lon More
22nd Mar 2015, 12:16
I have a TSB account with a balance of zero. It's been like that for some years. They won't close it unless I go to the trouble of writing to the branch where it is......Why should I spend time and money on doing that?
Similar with Barclays in IoM. If they want to waste their money sending me a quarterly statement it's OK by me.

Do UK banks use IBAN and BIC numbers? I just paid someone in the UK using these but incurred a charge of 25 quid from the UK because they claim the BIC was faulty. It's the only one I could find on line

Diners seem to be closing down ops in several countries. Out of habit I renewed mine only to get a letter stating their operation in the Benelux was going. No refund offered.

Kelly Hopper
22nd Mar 2015, 12:17
Amex increased their sub to €690 a year for Platinum card holders last year! And without any notification. This was almost a 100% increase on the previous year. After many many years with them decided I would not pay this and asked to be downgraded to Gold member which is cheaper. They informed me that I would have to make an application as per a new customer! :D

That was the end of a near 20 year relationship with them and they seemed content to let one of their customers walk away. It's no wonder the banks are [email protected]@ked up!

ian16th
22nd Mar 2015, 12:21
Radeng

The problem with Amex and Diners is that the merchant pays the highest commission, higher than Visa or MC.

Amex and Diners have done a good job in cornering the Corporate Market, this is how I had a Diners card.

I had a case in France where while I was sorting out the company Diners card, the hotel manager saw that I had a MC and he asked me to use the MC. I had to convince him that he had accepted the Corporate booking so he must accept the Corporate card.

For personal use, I've always found Visa and MC to be fine.

radeng
22nd Mar 2015, 13:14
I have Amex because it's free and I get miles on my American Airlines account. Having one that gives BA (Avios) cost money......

But Avios are very difficult to cash in on BA - trying going to the US in September - and American miles are rather easier to use.

wings folded
22nd Mar 2015, 14:17
Amex increased their sub to €690 a year for Platinum card holders last year! And without any notification. This was almost a 100% increase on the previous year.

A card in a different currency, but the unannounced increase was to a roughly similar amount. But in my case it was triple the cost of the previous year.

The travel insurance conditions which came with the card were surreptitiously hardened such that you had to have paid for the trip using their card to be eligible for the benefit.

Not really feasible when you travel with friends in their car for a trip to Venice.

I did not ask for a downgrade. I just cancelled the sodding thing. Nobody is willing to take it anyway.

axefurabz
22nd Mar 2015, 15:13
But isn't it just a bit OTT to ban OFSO for having a Channel Islands account?



I mean, there couldn't be any other reason, could there? :E

Gertrude the Wombat
22nd Mar 2015, 15:50
But in my case it was triple the cost of the previous year.
Do people really pay for cards? Why??

G-CPTN
22nd Mar 2015, 16:09
Many years ago, I relinquished my Barclaycard when they introduced annual subscription charges.

I still don't have a Barclaycard.

Keef
22nd Mar 2015, 20:10
Do Barclaycards still exist? I stopped mine for the same reason.

I don't pay for my platinum card, and even get a tiny refund on every purchase using it.

Capot
22nd Mar 2015, 20:34
I have a TSB account with a balance of zero.

I have a building society account with a balance of £1

Yes, OK, but beware; I suspect they make it difficult to close an account so that if a vestige of an excuse occurs for them to place a charge on the account, you will suddenly find that you owe them the charge, the punishment of going overdrawn (probably a daily charge), interest at a usurious rate etc etc.

It can mount into the £hundreds within a month, in the worst cases.

MG23
22nd Mar 2015, 20:52
Amex increased their sub to €690 a year for Platinum card holders last year! And without any notification. This was almost a 100% increase on the previous year.

Same over here. After nearly twenty years, I finally cancelled it.

That said, the fee over here was roughly half what I used to pay in the UK. I just didn't use it enough for travel insurance, airport lounges, etc, to make the cost worthwhile.

Not quite sure what they're thinking. I'd guess they expect to lose many of those who didn't use it much, while keeping the ones who use it a lot (and make them more money in the process).

Gertrude the Wombat
22nd Mar 2015, 22:15
It can mount into the £hundreds within a month, in the worst cases.
!Shrug! - I'll see them in court, my attempts to close the account are all documented, I don't throw paperwork away.

axefurabz
23rd Mar 2015, 00:21
... I relinquished my Barclaycard when they introduced annual subscription charges.I've had one of these for many years and have never paid a penny. Nor have I been asked to do so. Perhaps you didn't use it enough ;)

axefurabz
23rd Mar 2015, 00:31
Yes, OK, but beware; I suspect they make it difficult to close an account so that if a vestige of an excuse occurs for them to place a charge on the account, you will suddenly find that you owe them the charge, the punishment of going overdrawn (probably a daily charge), interest at a usurious rate etc etc.

It can mount into the £hundreds within a month, in the worst cases. Scaremongering! It would need to be an account which may be overdrawn in the first place, and that is not a foregone conclusion.

I too have experience of a club account held with a building society which couldn't be closed without a load of bureaucratic nonsense. The "irony" was that one of the signatories was actully the branch manager but he'd been promoted many hundreds of miles away by the time the account had outlived its usefulness. So the Spanish shareholders ended up £1 better off I guess.

G-CPTN
23rd Mar 2015, 00:46
Quote:
... I relinquished my Barclaycard when they introduced annual subscription charges.
I've had one of these for many years and have never paid a penny. Nor have I been asked to do so. Perhaps you didn't use it enough
I'm talking about several decades ago.
At first Barclaycard was free, then they (and only them) decided to charge annual fees.

That's when I moved to Access who never charged fees.

Soon afterwards, Barclaycard dropped their annual charges.

If you joined after that date then you wouldn't have known about the fees.

ukc_mike
23rd Mar 2015, 12:40
Do UK banks use IBAN and BIC numbers?

Yes, but they didn't quite understand the concept when it started. They wouldn't put your IBAN on your statement because it was a security risk.:ugh:

rans6andrew
23rd Mar 2015, 22:26
My bank wrote to me to advise that I had to use my savings account if I wanted to keep it, there had been no transactions for some while. There is about £700 in it. The letter was slow in the post and I was even slower getting on to it. I tried to access the account last Friday and found it could be viewed for balance but I don't have sufficient privileges to move the money around.

A bit piqued, I used the website messaging service to remind them that there was account activity when they used to add interest regularly but since they no longer.........

Their response is that I need to provide them with a whole load of security info to get my account control back. Most of the stuff they "need" me to supply they have already.

Address - they wrote to me.
Nationality - from when I opened the account
UK tax payer ? - they can see my payments to HMRC

What a load of nonsense. I am still pissed off with changes they made to the login user interface more than a year ago which their customer pacifier agreed had ruined it but said that they couldn't repair.

Can someone recommend a competent UK bank?

Rans6.....?

Gertrude the Wombat
23rd Mar 2015, 23:16
Can someone recommend a competent UK bank?
Never had any (significant) trouble from the Virgin One account.

But it doesn't seem to be open to new punters.

ian16th
24th Mar 2015, 10:05
Can someone recommend a competent UK bank?

If, like me you are an ex-pat, it is virtually impossible to open a UK bank account from overseas.

VP959
24th Mar 2015, 10:26
... I relinquished my Barclaycard when they introduced annual subscription charges.
I've had one of these for many years and have never paid a penny. Nor have I been asked to do so. Perhaps you didn't use it enough

The same thing happened to me.

I'd had a Barclaycard for around 20 years when they introduced charges. I called them and asked if I could cancel the card please, mentioning that I was going to switch as there were plenty of cards around that didn't charge their customers. As if by magic they withdrew the charge request and upgraded the card from a gold to a platinum one.

I've never paid a penny in charges to them since.

radeng
24th Mar 2015, 18:26
TSB can't (or won't) even tell me - in writing or otherwise - what the account number is.....

ExSp33db1rd
24th Mar 2015, 23:38
Quote:
Can someone recommend a competent UK bank?
If, like me you are an ex-pat, it is virtually impossible to open a UK bank account from overseas.

Or any other country - we are all clearly International Money Launderers and must be punished accordingly.

World's Gone Mad.

mixture
24th Mar 2015, 23:44
The problem with Amex and Diners is that the merchant pays the highest commission, higher than Visa or MC.

There is that .... but the biggest problem with Amex is for the cardholder.

They really screw you on forex....

Let's say your Amex card home currency is EUR.

Go buy something in USD ... fine, you get whacked typical card forex spreads, but you get a direct USD/EUR conversion.

Go buy something in GBP .... Amex convert as follows.... GBP->USD->EUR .... and screw you on both legs....

Thus Amex only really makes sense if :
(a) You don't travel much
or
(b) You're a Yank and so you don't have the double leg screw because your home currency is USD

G-CPTN
25th Mar 2015, 01:21
Thus Amex only really makes sense if :
(c) It's a company card and they pay the bills (and the extra forex charges).

mixture
25th Mar 2015, 01:27
(c) It's a company card and they pay the bills (and the extra forex charges).

Indeed. Well spotted G-CPTN !

G-CPTN
25th Mar 2015, 01:37
Yes, it was only whilst I was working that I had Diners and Amex charge cards.

The company paid the bills when they arrived.

ExXB
25th Mar 2015, 11:39
Mixture,
It has been some years since my company used American Excess - but all billings were converted from local currency to CHF at the prevailing mid-market rate of the day of transaction.

Perhaps my (former) employer was a little more savvy in negotiating the corporate deal (Now, THAT would be a surprise), but ...

They abandoned them after complaints from many of us that it either wasn't accepted, or we were constantly being asked to use another card when we presented it. I recall a hotel in Rio that wanted to add a $100 surcharge for using their card to pay a bill for a two week stay.

mixture
25th Mar 2015, 14:00
all billings were converted from local currency to CHF at the prevailing mid-market rate of the day of transaction.

That does sound like a stonker of a corporate deal ... currency conversions at mid-market rates with no spreads ! :eek:

Although poking around the AMEX Switzerland website, it looks like their Swiss cards are issued indirectly via CreditSuisse/Swisscard.... so that might explain the more generous terms you've seen ? I'm having a poke around the Amex CH website at the moment.

However the current conditions for Amex France and Amex UK certainly seem to still support what I'm saying.....


Amex FR:
Si le débit n’est pas effectué en Dollars US, la conversion sera effectuée en passant par le Dollar US, par une conversion du montant du débit en Dollars US, puis par une conversion du montant Dollars US en Euros. Si le débit est effectué en Dollars US, une seule conversion sera opérée en Euros.

Amex GB:
If the Transaction is in U.S. Dollars, it will be converted directly into Pounds Sterling. In all other cases, it will first be converted into U.S. Dollars and then into Pounds Sterling.

Capot
25th Mar 2015, 20:26
As sellers of various fairly expensive goods and services over the last two decades, we have always resolutely refused to include AMEX and Diners (does Diners still exist?) in our "accept" list, due mainly to their outrageous charges and T&Cs, but also in the case of AMEX the arrogant incompetence in actually paying us that we experienced before we ditched them, which I understand has not changed a bit.

No customer has ever walked away as a result, everyone has an alternative and seem to be familiar with the rejection, almost expecting it.

I can never understand why people bother with AMEX.

Ancient Observer
25th Mar 2015, 21:39
Amex did do very good deals for big corporates when Amex were expanding in the UK.
I used to work for an inter-galactic corporate, (clue - they were, for a number of years, BA's biggest customer, and the BA boss class used to appear once a year to get a long set of moans from us about their monumental incompetence).

Anyway, that corporate got the deal that ExXB talks about. great exchange rates, and no charges.

Beats the 3% that they charge me now!

mixture
26th Mar 2015, 00:11
I can never understand why people bother with AMEX.

About the only reason is if you're on one of their higher-end cards which has travel insurance bundled on it which has quite generous terms, and also gets you status-match onto various loyalty programmes that may or may not suit your needs.

But the terms of their travel insurance have changed over the years, you used to be able to get away with only booking one component of your travel on Amex in order to get cover. But now you have to book all components (flights & accommodation) on the card in order to have valid cover.

Plus these days, better insurance cover can be had elsewhere .... some of which don't even have terrorism exclusions ... which is a bonus for peace of mind in this day and age !