So, I’ve been busy travelling around Europe over the last few weeks experiencing all the beautiful sights, sounds and pleasures that this fine continent has to offer. Picture the scenario…..tranquil walks around Paris, cool dreamy breezes flowing through my hair, the smell of freshly baked baguettes scenting around each and every charming little ally way….ahhhhhh……
A little piece of heaven on earth.
Well that is until you get to the ATM Machine and try to withdrawl money using your Commercial Bank of Kuwait Card – only to be greeted by a nice ‘request denied’ response. I thought back over my last few days…..Well, I hadn’t gone overboard with any shopping expenses, I don’t remember buying any food that was laced with gold – and I certainly hadn’t bought any Exclusive Qatari Phone numbers…..SO WHY THE HELL AINT MY CARD WORKING!!!
On to the next half-dozen machines….where I was greeted by the same rancid message….”Sorry your bank has blocked this transaction….Have a nice day.”
I looked to the skies and knew there was only one hope left……the dreaded call into the Kuwaiti “Customer Service department.”….Perhaps we should rename this department “We’ve got your money, now go away please….ohh..and have a nice day.” Anyone who has lived or worked in Kuwait will know that ‘Customer Service’ generally ranks very low on a companies priorities list.
In fact, it’s safe to say that ‘the customer is always wrong.’
After navigating through 55 menus, redialling 8 times because their computer wouldn’t recognise my dial tones, I finally got in touch with a ‘CS rep’ who told me there was nothing wrong with my card and I should simply “Try again in an hour…” The airs of Paris suddenly started to smell bad, the walkways suddenly seemed over-packed, my irritation level was growing – and I now wanted a damn bottle of water to quench my thirst – but had absolutely no money.
An hour later….still no ATM Access….(Come on you didn’t think it was going to be that easy did you?)
Needless to say, I was back on the phone…..only this time the answer from the CRM had changed……”Well sir, why don’t you use your Credit card?” ….A very useful answer when all you want is a bottle of water for 50 fils. (I didn’t feel like getting into the futile “Taxi’s don’t accept credit cards argument”)…
4 days later, after spending at least an hour a day arguing back and forth on a roaming Kuwait line, I finally got my answer as to why my card was not working.
“Your card was used in a Kuwaiti ATM which was suspected of fraudulent behavior last week – so all cards which withdrew money from that particular machine have now been suspended.”
Great Work CBK. Thanks for bothering to call me – to tell me what had happened and at least arrange a suitable replacement card to be sent out. You seem to call or text me every other day to tell me about some useless new investment product which you are launching – or some car you are giving away in a raffle….but I guess a simple call to tell me my card will be suspended is just too much trouble.
A week on, I am still without my CBK card….and I still have no resolution to the problem.
God bless International Bank Accounts…..never leave home without one.