Monday, April 23, 2012

"This is Peggy . . ."

You know that Discover credit card commerical, where "Peggy" is the male customer service representative with the thick accent and he gives the confusing run around to the consumer's credit card problem.  Well, I had a similar problem with Capital One and as a result I have closed my Capital One account.

As you probably know if you read this blog regularly, we don't use credit cards for day to day expenses.  But we do have a credit card and we do use it for travel expenses.  Back in May 2011, I went on a girls' trip to Las Vegas and ended up charging an outing on my credit card.  We didn't get what we contracted for and I learned a few lessons that I wanted to share. 

First, and I'm not sure if this is actually a tip that will work, but I learned not to sign a credit card slip for an outing before the outing is underway.  The company used the fact that I signed the credit card slip against me in the credit card dispute.  I had been drinking, we were in Vegas after all, and the slip was presented to me to sign before we got on our way.  When you sign the slip you are, evidently, aknowledging receipt of the services and since the service had not yet started I should have said I won't sign until the end of the night.  However, I'm not certain that we would have been able to go on the outing until I signed the credit card slip, so perhaps the suggestion should be to make some notation on the slip that I was being asked to sign before we got underway.  

Second, we did a charge back and when I received the letter from Captial One setting forth the company's response I should have responded in written form with my evidence.  Instead, I opted to call Capital One, which was an option presented in the correspondence that I received, but then spoke to a "Peggy" person, who did not speak English as a first language and told me that that I did not need to do anything that the dispue had been resolved.  I had plenty of evidence that we did not get the service we paid for, but I never presented such evidence in writing because I was told I did not need to.  Unfortunately, the person who was telling me what to do or not to do, was wrong or did not understand my questions (because of the language difficulties) and the end result was that Capital One counted my failure to respond, in writing, as agreement to the company's position (which again consisted of presenting a copy of the contract and a copy of the credit card slip signed by me).  Going forward, I will always respond in writing.


TB at BlueCollarWorkman said...

I think the "peggy" commercial IS a Cap. One commercial, too! It's not really fair that you were mis-informed by both them telling you a call was okay, and by the rep. you spoke with. that really sucks!

Dwight Groves said...

Sorry to hear that you were treated so poorly and that you were taken advantage of by the merchant. Terrible customer service by both groups and it is strange to hear of such a story when most companies bend over backwards to combat negative press.

I read, in the first paragraph, that y'all ended up canceling your card. It made me curious and I was wondering if y'all opened up a new card and whether that was a difficult decision.

Keep making great things happen,

Sam said...

TB - I think you are right, that makes it worse for sure.

Dwight, I did cancel the card although it has not stuck and sadly I'm going to have to call Capital One and cancel it again.

We did open up a new credit card with Chase, I went with a Chase Freedom card, which provides cash back on certain categories of goods and services that rotate. I have no real faith that Chase will be any better than Capital One, but I liked the rewards plan and we do need a credit card for travel purposes, and based on my research it got pretty good reviews.