12 June 2007

party of one

Yesterday I had to call my Icelandic credit card company to sort out an incorrect charge, only to find that the person who deals with this type of issue was not there. I started the make-a-mental-note process so I'd remember to call the next day when the lady on the other end of the line said, "I'll just tell her to give you a call when she gets in, shall I? Your number is xxx-xxxx, right?"

This morning, just as promised, the woman I needed gave me a ring, so early that I was still asleep. She apologised and said she'd just call me later, not to worry. After my experiences in the US with these kinds of things requiring endless hours of crappy on-hold music, "oh, you're talking to the wrong department, let me transfer you" meanderings, and more recorded voices and press-a-button menus that never have the option you want, it's almost fun to call a bank here, even when involving a matter that will result in the company losing money. Yesterday it was no voicemail jail, just a cheery morning call from just the person I need to talk to. The small size of this place does have its advantages!


tsduff said...

When my traveling companion had his credit card cut off whilst in Italy, he had a devil of a time connecting to the correct department - just as you said. He had informed the bank before departure of his trip, but when he finally did connect with a live person, she told him "Someone is using your card in Italy"... ! Yes, Iceland has a refreshment to it no matter where you turn. Nice to visit your blog again - I've been away for a while.

Anonymous said...

The longest I've waited on hold was a total of 6 to 7 hours to www.phoneclaim.com
and yes stupid me, I used my cellphone and used up all my minutes :( I was being optimistic.
The longest I've waited for AAA was 12 hours in a snowstorm. They came 3 times by, and one time they said the street was too narrow for them to enter. Just 2 minutes later a huge fire engine went through the street. I'm beginning to think that some people in America are on Prozac :(

I've learned, if you owe them money, they'll hunt you down till you're dead.
If they owe you money or correction, you'll have to hunt them down, till you're dead and out of breath.

Yes indeed the convenience of small cultures :)

sb said...

the above comment is mine

the scientist said...

How wonderful and relaxed life must be in Iceland! It's great if you don't really have to wate time on those annoying phone lines!
Then you have time to do important stuff... Even if it's just relaxing and doing nothing!
Advantages of living in a small country! :)

Angel said...

heh- sounds refreshing after I spent days and days chasing down my computer through Dell and DHL's customer service reps. Well as you can tell, its back- because I am now online- complete witha new hard drive, heat sink and keyboard.

ECS said...

tsduff: sounds like my experience the first few times with my Bank Boston card that kept saying "the PIN will work fine in France" as I stood in the bank emblazoned with international flags. Every time I found myself in Paris, it proved to not work. I ended up learning a lot of French banking vocabulary in college as a result.

SB: that's how it is with the they owe/you owe. I had to deal with that for almost a year after I moved here due to health insurance changes. The collecting people were brutal, and persistent.

scientist: I'm not sure I'd go quite that far as to say that it's a totally stress-free life, but there are certain things that I used to worry about more that just don't exist here. Of course, there are new things here that I didn't have to think about when living in the US, like the vigilance required to keep visas & paperwork all up to date.

angel: welcome back! Glad things are starting to look up for you, and I hope you get to enjoy the summer a bit this year.