crapBehind the media guff about “the credit crunch” crisis am I alone in failing to see the most relevant headline being used:

Banks are CRAP

Here’s my experience of a crap bank – Nat West – feel free to share yours – add your twopennyworth to the comments at the end.

It takes little to please me – give me a fresh-from-the-oven Pasty at lunchtime with flaked pastry and proper filling served quickly and politely and that’s me happy well in to the afternoon.  What I don’t want to spend my lunchtime doing is standing in a twenty deep queue waiting to be served by one of three cashiers at NatWest only to find that when my turn eventually comes around they are unable to process an electronic money transfer to an RBS (same group of bankers) and tell me to join another long queue for the “information” team who should be able to fulfil my request but for a fee!

Now I wouldn’t want to promote the theory I always view things from a negative aspect – yes I have written at length about crap jobs and am want to highlight crap supermarket price offers but my recent experiences with Crap Bank NatWest forces me to once again wag a finger.

Natwest Lose Cheques – Sure Sign of a Crap Bank

Earlier this year I had the good fortune to receive a cheque payable in US dollars from the small online store Amazon.  It has continually been a frustration that all UK banks charge an extortionate fee to process these foreign currency cheques claiming they are risking the liability of the cheque not being honoured once sent back to the States for clearance – highly possible with fly by night set online setups such as Amazon.  NatWest somehow manage not to notice the huge written message to emphasise the $ sign and my statement revealed the the sterling value had been credited instead of the exchange rate.  Two daysl later the transaction was reversed but there was no sign of the correct value entering my statement.  Phone calls were dealt with by empty promises of “we’ll call you back”and for the first time I had to endure the Natwest Branch Queue – a chilling experience to be surrounded by posters and displays offering a variety of credit cards including a new product that beggars belief 0% credit cards (check the small print) and mesmerising deals to encourage balance transfers.  To cut this rambling tale to the chase natwest lost the cheque and although they obviously acknowledge possession of it were unable to make good their failings leaving me to request a copy cheque

Crap Bank – NatWest

At the beginning of this post you will have read about the unacceptable length of queues at NatWest bank and the woeful short staffing only serving to make the whole high street bank experience worse.  “There is another way” Sure – close your NatWest Account.

If only I had gone to the branch armed with the following news articles that announced the implementation of fast (same day) cash transfers between banks http://news.icm.ac.uk/business/faster-bank-transfers-start-today/482/ and http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7417303.stm

As I was less than impressed that  I was expected to rejoin another long queue and then be expected to pay a fee for an electronic transfer I protested and to give credit where its due the young fellow behind the counter did offer “Another Way” – “Err you can withdraw the cash here from me then wander over to RBS and pay it in” which is precisely what I did.

Perhaps these are small contributions to the bigger picture of banking chaos – the crap banks have had it good for a long time – getting away with daylight robbery and lining their pockets.