I'm a twat. I took myself off on holiday to Spain without reading the bloody awful reviews and the bloody awful terms and conditions for the Post Office's bloody awful Travel Money pre-paid Debit Card.
So, I thought that the bloody awful Post Office might like to hear my opinion, whether they like it or not. Freepost.
Dear The Post Office®Not a real letter? Oh but it is - and it didn't even cost me a stamp this time.
Firstly - congratulations on registering your name and address as a trade mark. Nice touch. If you don't mind - and before we get down to business - I'm going to do the same with mine.
So, The Business: We went on holiday to Spain this year, and - foolishly, I now realise - we believed your advertising and got hold of one of your Post Office® Travel Money Cards.
If only I knew what a massive pain the whole thing would be, I frankly wouldn't have bothered.
If only I had read the terms and conditions which magically only fell into our hands after we got the card.
If only (and I blame myself for this woefully inept oversight) we read the pages and pages of poor reviews littering the internet.
Because when we arrived home with the best part of 400 Euros in our account, we were told by your helpless help line operators that it would take 15 working days to get a refund, and then, only after we receive a letter telling whoever-it-may-concern that we are entitled to retrieve our money.
That's fifteen working days. Or, in real-life-normal-people-count-the-weekends-as-well-oh-and-don't-forget-the-Bank-Holiday terms, twenty-two days.
Twenty-two days in which you task some learned scribe at a remote monastery to write a beautifully-illustrated letter of release on hand-made vellum, sealed with the wax from the very ears of St Julian of Norwich, before being sent - post haste and don't spare the horses! - on the Mail Coach to our residence in Dorset. Provided, of course, Dick Turpin or his lackeys don't get their hands on it.
In these days of computer-based and internet banking where moneys are debited and credited to accounts at the touch of a button, why - in the name of Satan's wrinkled testes - does it take the Post Office® three weeks to give me back MY hard-earned blunt which you so gleefully took from my savings account before the ink was even dry on the agreement?
I understand that times are hard, and record numbers of posties are living under railway arches, warming themselves in front of the flames of discarded Amazon mail cartons, waving signs saying "Wife and faithful cat Jess to support" at passers-by, but, if you'll excuse the rhyming slang, you're having a giraffe, right?
There has to be a perfectly logical explanation that doesn't involve the need to keep up with the interest payments on the Post Office®'s accidental and ill-advised purchase of the Russian Navy's entire Pacific Fleet, and I wouldn't mind hearing it. Please use simile, obscure cultural references and Google Image Search to illustrate your reply within the next - God, I love irony - fifteen working days.
It's a lot worse than that.
Your complaint was just against the delay in refunding your unspent dosh. This is my little tale.
A friend in South Africa asked us to top up his teenage daughter's Travel Money card with £500 (he would of course refund us), because he couldn't find a way to do it from South Africa. She and a girl friend are travelling round Europe. It took 5 calls to customer service and 7 visits to the local Post Office; I had to get details of her birthday, registered address, etc. The card had to be registered before it could be topped up; the top up had a maximum which she'd reached and which I wasn't allowed to increase "because of money laundering": only she could authorise the top up. We couldn't contact her because she didn't have the money to top up her mobile phone. So there were two young vulnerable girls wandering round Barcelona with no money, no communication, no instructions. I thought it was outrageous.
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