Bible Verse

Beg as loud as you can for good common sense. Proverbs 2:3

Friday, July 11, 2014

The Credit Card Chaos

My husband, bless his heart, bought me a pair of pants while were in Columbus, Ohio (we live in Alabama).  I wasn’t with him, but I had given him very clear instructions on the pants I wanted. 

I really didn’t want him to even attempt it, but he had nothing to do while I was in a workshop for two days.  I encouraged him to go out and see the sights of Columbus. I’m sure there is something of interest to see.  I mean, for Pete’s sake, even my little town has a silver-plated fire hydrant on display at the Chamber of Commerce!

But to buy me any sort of clothing was not what I had in mind.  We gave up giving each other clothes 40 years ago when it was apparent that neither one of us would be seen dead in what the other had given.

So it was with real trepidation that I went to my workshop, knowing he was out there doing only God knows what.  I was praying about it, but God wasn’t telling.

Now here’s the scary part:  While he was there, he signed up for their store credit card. 

I don’t say “Oh my God!” very often, but OH MY GOD! 

This man, who keeps a close eye on our two credit cards, paying them both off each month, who throws away all those “great” offers where we’re pre-approved that come in the mail every day – this man opened a store credit card because (and this is the only thing that makes sense) he got a 10% discount right there, and then a 15% discount on his next purchase, either at the store or online. Bless his heart, he just couldn’t resist. 

I was horrified!  I know all about store credit cards because I also have signed up for one just to get the discount. It never works out for one reason or the other. 

The last one I had a couple of years ago was a disaster because the store and I just weren’t on the same wave length.  I’m used to paying all my bills online.  So I went to their site to set up an account, but I found that I couldn’t pay the bill on that site.  I would have to go to another site, set up an account there, and then pay my bill.

Really?  Here I am, a customer wanting to pay my bill, and you insist that I go to another site, one I have never heard of, put my personal information in there in order to pay my bill of $58?  No, thank you.  Frankly, it seemed rather amateurish.  If Discover and Mastercard can take your money in the easiest way possible, I’m thinking these people can, too.

So, in an act of rebellion against these dolts, I requested a paper bill to come in the mail. 

The first month, everything was fine.  I wrote them a check and sent it back to them – or rather to their billing company.

Then I made the mistake of actually using the card again, this time for around $30.  At the appropriate time, my bill arrived in the mail.  I put it in a place where I would see it and pay it.  Except I didn’t pay it.  At least, not on time.  I didn’t do this on purpose; I just never got around to it.  My thinking is to pay online.  Writing a check just seems like too much trouble. I kept putting it off until it was too late, and I had to pay a late charge.

Their late charge is $25.  My purchase was $30.  I ended up paying $55 for a $30 purchase!  I vowed not to use that card again.

You know what’s coming, don’t you?  Yes, I used the card again about a year later, knowing full well I would need to pay that sucker the minute I got the bill in the mail.  Except I didn’t pay it the minute I got it in the mail.  I paid it late, so I was charged a $25 late fee.  This time the purchase was $20, so I ended up paying more money than I had originally charged in the store for the merchandise!

So my reaction to David signing up was not encouraging at all.  He wanted me to go online immediately and order more pants because he wanted that 15% discount on his next purchase. 

So here I am in Columbus, OH, getting online to start the arduous journey of setting up this credit card account.  I felt the weight of impending doom.

I did all the stuff as quickly as I could, but, of course, I ran into a problem.  The thing would not give me the discount.  So I called them and a nice lady tried to help, but she didn’t know how to give me a discount without an actual credit card number.  The clerk had given David a number that was supposed to work until he received his credit card.

This poor customer service lady went round and round with me speaking on my own, and with me repeating what David was saying.  Finally, completely out of self-defense, I’m sure, she gave me free shipping.  We gratefully accepted that offer.

Exhausted, I then went to bed.  I’m guessing the customer service lady went on an extended break.

When the card came in the mail, David offered it to me.  No, no, no.  Don’t give that thing to me.  I can see only heartache and frustration down the road.

David ended up shredding it.  A fitting end, don’t you think?

Image Courtesy Of foto76/

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad I'm not the only one who's done this! I no longer apply for any store credit card, no matter how much they beg or how much discount they offer. That 10-15% off can get expensive after a few months of "oh yeah, I forgot to pay this new bill."