Today I tried to renew my student overdraft. I don't really use it that often, but it's nice to have for those "end of the month" moments.
So, I thought, I shall phone the bank's phone banking service; it will save me a tramp.
Oh, fool me. A tramp I should have undertaken, for it would have saved me much anguish and time.
First: I am bad at remembering security details. Cue 10 mins of resetting my security numbers.
Then, I get through to a person. Aha! Sense.
Or not. "I have to check with a manager about your overdraft".
Hold music... hurrah. Not Greensleeves. This is Good.
This is new. Much better than "hold muzak".
Oops. No, they just hung up on me.
Right. Dial again. REMEMBER NEW SECURITY CODE! YES! HURRAH!
"Hello. I was just in the process of renewing my Student account overdraft, when I got dropped by the phone. Can you help me?"
"No. You've been declined. You're not allowed an overdraft".
"But I have a student account. That's part of the deal"
"Sorry. You've been declined by a manager. I am just a paid monkey. You'll get no help from me, and there's no point asking anyone else because we all have the same information - which is to decline you"
"Well, can I speak to a manager?"
"They'll tell you exactly the same thing. We all hate you"
.... and so on ad infinitum.
So. I phone my local branch. Who are lovely, and tell me that anyone in a branch will help me, so I can go to the local one. When I do this, it takes 2 minutes, my overdraft is renewed, and I'm being told that the phoneline people are morons.
Why is this? I mean, each of these people had the same information available to them. Yet the people on the phone just refused to accept that I was entitled to something that I had signed up for in their own terms and conditions.
I guess the moral of the story is that trying to avoid a walk ends up costing you more time. Or something.