Bank of America Does It Again 7

Everybody remembers the furor caused by Bank of America and several other banks when they proposed a $5 per month fee for debit card use. This was an affront to everyone’s senses because we were already saving the banks millions of dollars by not writing checks. We were being charged for saving the banks money.

Lately, my Bank of America debit card was becoming difficult to use. You know how it is. You stand in line at the grocery store and watch while the clerk rings up a couple of hundred dollars of chips, nuts, dips, and beer. When you try to use your debit card, the darned thing won’t work. Then, the clerk tries the old plastic bag trick with your card, and it still doesn’t work. In frustration the clerk sighs as she keys in the debit card number, manually. The people behind you have grimaces on their faces. Your day is going down hill.

Today, I had a little run-in with Bank of America over my defective debit card. I called Bank of America customer service and told the agent about the problem. She was thoroughly empathetic with me, and suggested ordering a replacement card. No problem kemosabe, I says. I should receive the card within five to seven business days.

“A $5 charge will be added to your account to cover the replacement card.”

She actually said that, even when I asked her to repeat her statement. Yep! BOA will now gig you for five bucks to replace your defective debit card. Debit cards save them millions of dollars annually and now they charge for replacing defective cards. When I asked how long the card was supposed to last, mine was supposed to go until the year 2016, a full five years after I received it. I think BOA has found another guaranteed revenue stream. There’s no way a plastic card using a magnetic strip will last five years.

Bank of America is doing this because they can. My only recourse is to change banks. Of course, that is more trouble than paying $5 for a replacement card, and BOA is banking on that.

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7 comments

  1. I have know people who do this, and it is starting to get through my thick skull that I can get points, too. Thanks for the comment, Linda.

  2. I use Discover, and get cash back. I bought a new baby car seat for our newest granddaughter from Amazon. It was a $300 seat (obnoxious price), on sale for half, and with the cash back bonus, I got it for $84, and no shipping or sales tax! Pays to us the card!

  3. I had a devil of a time opening a bank accout is the states, even with the help from sister. I finally did get an account, which was necessary to receive my Social Security cheks. However, they would let me have a debit or a credit card unless I went there personally which was out of the question. So, for the last fifteen years, I have neither a credit or a debit card. Although I wold like to one in order to buy off the internet, I find I can live quite well without them.

  4. Interesting about trying to have a bank account in the US while living in another country. It seems to me that there should be no problem is the money appears. As for a credit card, they used to give those things away to college kids. After all, banks rob people legally with the 20% plus interest rates they are hitting people with.

    By the way, that’s a great story on your blog about Mr Oppenheimer. Maybe you can tell the rest of the story, someday.

  5. I have had some problems with Bank of America but nothing like what you mentioned. I was one of those customers that complained and griped about the $5 charge. And thank goodness it was dropped. However, my husband recently lost his debit card, I need to see if we were charged $5?

  6. I didn’t ask them when they started charging for the replacements. It is still a money grubbing tactic. It makes me think terrible things.

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