Sunday, May 28, 2006

Annoyed at Credit Card Company

I was buying groceries today and my credit card was refused. Luckily, I usually carry two credit cards, so I could still pay for the groceries, but when I got home, I called the credit card company and asked them why it was refused. It turns out that the reason it was refused was that there were two charges made at approximately the same time on the card, from vastly different parts of the world. They refused the card in both locations because of this. The problem is, this was an extremely inopportune time for them to do this for the first time.

Background: My younger daughter has had a second card on this account for over a year. She is normally in Illinois; I am in Alaska. We have, in the past repeatedly charged things at similar times - and there was never a peep from the bank.

Problem: A couple of days ago, she had her purse stolen - and she is now in Uganda working on a summer internship. Fortunately, her passport, her ATM card, and her credit card were not in the purse that was stolen. But she wanted to get some more cash, since she is traveling away from the capital, Kampala, soon. I found Ugandan banks that would supposedly give her a cash advance on the credit card. And she wanted to buy a new camera, since the one she had was stolen with the purse. But, evidently the credit card bank has refused these purchases. And I am really annoyed. Why hasn't this problem ever come up before? Why wasn't I aware that the credit card bank might refuse a card for this reason? Am I clueless or is it the bank's fault? I feel so bad for my daughter. She is trying to recover her equilibrium after an upsetting event and the credit card company adds further upset to her circumstances. And it makes things very hard for her. She simply doesn't have time to go back to all of the merchants and buy the things she needs now that the credit card is working again. And, since email and phone calls have been very erratic and cut off unexpectedly, it is hard to even let her know that the credit card is working again.

And I am trying to figure out if it is the bank's fault or my own ignorance.

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