Friday, March 19, 2010

Card Troubles

Well, it's happened. I was sent a notice late last year and now it's taking effect.

My FIA card is charging an annual fee.

I have not gone down peacefully.

I've been on the phone with six (yes, SIX) different "customer service associates"who claim different stories for why my card was even chosen for an annual fee. Some say it's because I don't have accounts with the bank. Some say "someone else makes that decision" and then when I ask to be forwarded to that person or people, they somehow can't figure out where to send me. Some say they have no clue why my card was chosen and side with me on the reasoning that I don't deserve a fee. Still others claim less than 1% of users were chosen to pass extra charges onto. (Lucky ME! I don't win anything except the very best prizes)

They all tell me I will have to close the account to see the fee disappear. Oy vey.

Let's clear some things up, first of all. (this is similar to my nicely phrased rant to all of these "customer service associates":

- I have great credit (okay, not perfect, but nothing absolutely terrible)
- I use this card (as in, all the time)
- I've paid interest in the low double digits on this card since I've had it
- I've had this card for over 10 years (it was one of my very first)
- This card does not offer any benefits (the whole point of an annual fee)
- I don't usually pay this card off every month
- FIA makes more money on my interest each year than they would with my annual fee

I don't want to close this account, because I have a high available balance and a 10 year track record. Differing reports online tell me it won't ding my credit score that badly or it will take a while for any dinging to seriously affect my score. I just don't want to be forced into closing an account.

One service representative tried to break the annual fee down into months and tell me it "isn't really that much". I nearly died. My response was along the lines of: "Well, hey why don't we break it down into days or minutes or even seconds... it's still the same amount per year!!" Are these people really that dense? It's as though she was trying to make me feel stupid for arguing about "so little an amount". Of course, I had to use her own argument against her and said "Well, if it's such a small amount, why do I have to pay it? Why doesn't FIA pay it for me?" To which she daftly replied: "This is our policy on annual fees". I swear I could hear a breeze blow through her brain. She was just that dumb. Or just that bad at customer service.

I just want to WIN. It's not really even about the annual fee, now. It's about breaking them down.

If I cannot win and I have to close this account. I vow to never EVER use FIA again. I got their card when I was young and impressionable (a market they're losing out on now). They dropped me when they didn't care for me anymore (aka: couldn't make enough money off of me). My only move after 'losing' would be to boycott them. For the rest of my wonderful life.