My credit card company has charged me £20 for missing a payment. It's made me really mad with anger. I have been a loyal customer of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation for all of two months: it was'nt the sort of welcome I had anticipated from the HSBC who kept sending me letters to take out one of their credit cards. My relenting to their mail shots has cost me dear.
I was reminded of a discussion I'd had with a Which? employee at a Liberal Democrat conference drinks party in the Spring of 2005 - this watch-dog group are a superb organisation who stand up for the consumer when poor service is offered by large corporations. We had talked over a number of glasses of wine about the abuse of bank-charges and how Lib Dems nationally were concerned at the increasing debt people are getting themselves into.
So have Which? acted on consumer assistance against the big banks? They certainly have. Studying their website, I have fired off a letter to my credit card company and await some recompense. The Office of Fair Trading also issued a statement in early April saying big banks issuing charges in excess of £12 are ripping customers off.
There is a snivelling and predictably hilarious response to the OFT statement by the British Bankers Association (should that be spelt with a W?).
Mouth pic from http://unkemptwomen.blogspot.com/ - a great artists blogsite