Won’t Let You Bring Home The Danish Bacon

, , , | Working | April 5, 2018

(I live in the US and need to transfer money to my Danish bank account. I decide to bring a paper check with me on a vacation trip back to Denmark, because the exchange rate will be slightly better and the fees less. My Danish bank, where I have been a customer for 42 years, and where my dad has worked since I was born, has lately decided to charge fees for just about everything. Also, while I have lived in the US, I have been shuttled around between at least six different “advisors,” none of whom have I met. This incident starts as I try to deposit the check for a value of $5,500 into my Danish account.)

Me: “I’d like to deposit this check into my account with the number [account number].”

Teller: “Okay, but this is a lot of money. I need contact your advisor, and since he’s in a different branch that could take some time.”

Me: “Sure, okay, but I have never met him, so I don’t know what he can tell you about my account that you cannot see for yourself.”

Teller: *looking at me suspiciously* “I still have to do it. We cannot just accept such a large deposit. Can you wait while we call him?”

Me: “Sure.”

(Thirty minutes later, the teller comes over to the waiting area to get my wife and me.)

Teller: “Well, we got it sorted out, but really, in the future you should just make an electronic wire transfer.”

Me: “I prefer to use a check.”

Teller: “Well, you really should use a wire transfer. It is the easiest way.”

Me: “Yes, and I also know the fees are really high, not just from your side, but also from the American bank that sends it, plus the exchange rate is not very good. I prefer to avoid the fees.”

Teller: *waving the check at me* “Oh, that’s nothing compared to what I’ll be charging you in fees to deposit this!”

(I happen to know the check deposit fees are lower than the wire transfer fees, the exchange rate is the same, and there’s no fee to the American bank for issuing the check. Also, my dad has offered to cash it for me for free and get me the employee exchange rate. I just figured I’d try and take care of it myself. However, the teller’s attitude really annoys me.)

Me: *reaching for the check* “Can I have that, please?” *teller hands me the check, looking confused* “Thank you, but you know what? I’ll just ask my dad to do it for me. He works in the [City] branch of this bank, and can do it for no fees and at a better exchange rate.”

Teller: *looking surprised* “Eh, okay. So, you don’t want me to do it?”

Me: “No. Not only can I save money, but I’ll also get vastly better service! God knows you charge outrageous fees now, but you almost seem to take pride in rubbing the customers’ noses in it. Goodbye!”

(Later, when I told my dad about the teller’s attitude, he encouraged me to report it to her branch manager, but also warned me that nothing would likely come of it, as recent personnel cuts had mostly left those behind who didn’t care much to provide good customer service. As soon as my student loans are paid off, I’ll be closing that bank account.)

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