Why I Cancelled My Amex

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bcm
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Why I Cancelled My Amex

Postby bcm » Mon Jan 19, 2015 11:46 pm

Amex has always been about placing the consumer above all else which means a lot these days with the plague of identity theft. I decided to be a card member because of this promise of customer protection and advocacy they so highly tout. Unfortunately this has been the worst experience I've had with any card company.

In late August of 2014 I took my car into Firestone to get a front driver's side tire repaired under warranty which they ended up charging me half for a new tire. Not ideal but but it ended up being around $240. Drove it home and in a few days noticed it was flat. Took it back to the Firestone place and they said the valve-stem was leaking so they fixed it. Another couple of days and it's flat again. Back to Firestone and they put it in a water tank and say there's nothing wrong with it.

At this point I'm becoming a little annoyed because of all the excuses of "not having time to do it today", me swapping the spare myself, and them even telling me someone was probably deflating it on purpose. No worries, I bought this on my amex and they take care of their customers. I called and spoke to a rep and told him what was going on and said I was escalating this through Firestone but wanted to make sure they were aware of it and was told no problem, they would take care of it and opened a dispute.

The tire held for a little while. Throw in a family emergency and we're now in November. On a long trip from said emergency I ended up having to refill the tire 3 times on the way back. At this point it has become unacceptable. I have not been able to safely drive my car over 55 for over 2 months. I also drive a convertible sports car, not exactly the vehicle you want blowing a front tire. I also notice around this time that amex has resolved my dispute in favor of Firestone. I call and ask about this and they say there's documentation but they don't know what it is and cannot tell me anything about the case.

Now I have no other choice. I have to be able to safely drive my car and take it to Mercedes who installs 2 new front tires the same day with no problems. I'm also escalating my case at Firestone which had closed my case when they gave the tire back to me the last time. I call amex and tell them all of this and rehash my story. The reps response was basically "wow, we will open up a new dispute".

Today I am notified that my dispute was once again resolved in Firestone's favor. When I call amex I'm told once again that there was documentation but they couldn't tell me what it was. I asked why I was never requested to send any documentation as I had begged them to do if there were any questions. I was told I can upload stuff on the site. That's nice. Perhaps next time they can give me an idea of what to upload. There is also no one I can talk to about the dispute, just the poor CS rep I'm yelling at at this point.

After being told amex is just an arbiter and there's nothing they can do, I ask to be transferred to a manager to close my account. The manager then begins quizzing me on the terms and conditions of Firestone. Since I couldn't recite them off the top of my head I am told that it's basically my fault. For the record, the terms state that if the work is not done correctly then they will fix the issue at no cost. This is great when they are competent enough to actually fix it, otherwise you understand the reason we have lemon laws. I would expect amex to take the side of the consumer in these cases.

I ended up closing my account because there is no reason for me to put purchases on a card whose response is "you should take up your issue with the merchant" with absolutely zero input into the dispute process. It is exactly these kind of scenarios that I expect that extra customer care to shine through and say "this sucks, if we can't fix it then let's see if we can at least help". I honestly want to be an amex customer but if this is what I can expect if I ever have a problem with a purchase then I might as well pay cash.

I still have an open case with Firestone so I can only hope that pans out.


takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Tue Jan 20, 2015 9:53 am

Keep in mind that CS varies by product with AmEx. Don't rely on generalizations such as "AmEx has excellent CS".

benhollberg
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Postby benhollberg » Tue Jan 20, 2015 11:22 am

I too have lost a dispute with AMEX and The WSJ. Amex provided me with documentation and contracts from WSJ with dates about canceling subscriptions and all. The situation was about several subscriptions and canceling all of them. Either I forgot to tell the WSJ about one or the WSJ employee forgot to cancel one, the disputed charge was a $29 charge on my Business Gold card. I was amazed at the amount of documentation AMEX mailed me.
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bcm
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Postby bcm » Tue Jan 20, 2015 11:43 am

takeshi wrote:Keep in mind that CS varies by product with AmEx. Don't rely on generalizations such as "AmEx has excellent CS".


Very true. This was a blue cashback card. I understand there should be different levels of customer service than the platinum cards but I've honestly gotten more help from joe blow visa cards. Doesn't exactly inspire me to pay an annual fee for a platinum amex.

jeffysdad01
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Postby jeffysdad01 » Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:05 pm

Ditto this.

bcm wrote:Very true. This was a blue cashback card. I understand there should be different levels of customer service than the platinum cards but I've honestly gotten more help from joe blow visa cards. Doesn't exactly inspire me to pay an annual fee for a platinum amex.

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CarefulBuilder14
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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Wed Jan 21, 2015 3:36 pm

I called Amex recently to let them know in advance about some unusual upcoming spending on my PRG. It probably wasn't essential to do but I wanted to be safe. And I did call the PRG number, not the BCE one.

I was waiting on the phone for about 4-5 minutes to talk to a CSR. The CSR made a note of my upcoming spending, but seemed more interested in having me add a bunch of AUs.

So not exactly a nightmare story, but not a great experience for a card with an annual fee - especially one of $175.
Keeping indefinitely: IHG, SchwabPlat, CSP, Discover, Freedom, ED, BCE, Hyatt
May close or PC: Prestige, Arrival, BrooksBros
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Might add: Proper business card, CSR, Ritz, Delta Gold, First Tech
Letting new accounts cool off since May

whit
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Postby whit » Wed Jan 21, 2015 4:05 pm

I'm surprised that Amex has made this such a hassle so far

Personal experience; it really is about what person you get on the phone

i had to help a colleague with a situation, also on cc, after hes tried to resolve it on his own and also another colleague helped as well (I was on vacation) and neither of them was able to get it resolved, I'm still trying so *knockonwood* it's not finalized yet but based on my last conversation I'm pretty confident.

It's about how you present the situation, and how far the cc specialist is willing to go for you.

If you truly believe that you're done an injustice you can explain it in a logical way to try to get it resolved

I know that at this point you're about all done with Amex but they're not the only company that will tell you to resolve the issue with the merchant (although I would say I'm surprised)

Document everything, every phone call you make, every rep you speak with at Firestone and Amex

Let Amex know that the product is faulty and you have tried to resolve it at x,y,z times with Firestone and you haven't had a resolution and it's not fair you pay for tires that doesn't work--worse, it puts you and your family in danger but driving around in a car on tires that could potentially blow

If you have logic on your side it's very hard for the other side to come back and combat with that

yfan
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Postby yfan » Wed Jan 21, 2015 5:55 pm

I don't understand. Why should Amex return the funds to you? This is not a case of a fraudulent or unauthorized transaction. At the time, you admit you $240 on your Amex to Firestone. It is also not a case of you not having received the product, which would in effect be fraud - you got the tire. That Firestone is refusing to consequently honor a warranty on the product is a different problem that a fraudulent or unauthorized transaction.

Amex does resolve things in favor of the customer. I can say this from personal experience. But in cases of transactions that are not authorized at the time they are made.

bcm
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Postby bcm » Wed Jan 21, 2015 7:05 pm

whit wrote:I'm surprised that Amex has made this such a hassle so far

Personal experience; it really is about what person you get on the phone

i had to help a colleague with a situation, also on cc, after hes tried to resolve it on his own and also another colleague helped as well (I was on vacation) and neither of them was able to get it resolved, I'm still trying so *knockonwood* it's not finalized yet but based on my last conversation I'm pretty confident.

It's about how you present the situation, and how far the cc specialist is willing to go for you.

If you truly believe that you're done an injustice you can explain it in a logical way to try to get it resolved

I know that at this point you're about all done with Amex but they're not the only company that will tell you to resolve the issue with the merchant (although I would say I'm surprised)

Document everything, every phone call you make, every rep you speak with at Firestone and Amex

Let Amex know that the product is faulty and you have tried to resolve it at x,y,z times with Firestone and you haven't had a resolution and it's not fair you pay for tires that doesn't work--worse, it puts you and your family in danger but driving around in a car on tires that could potentially blow

If you have logic on your side it's very hard for the other side to come back and combat with that


You would think. I told them all of this multiple times so I don't know if they just weren't writing it down or what. I was so angry at that point it was easier to close my account than to keep going round and round about this.

I did get a response from firestone and after running it up fairly high in corporate they're going to refund the money. So 5 months, 2 disputes, and hours of yelling later I'm finally getting a refund for a tire that never worked. Technically I'm still out the $250 that WAS covered by warranty since I had to buy a brand new tire but at this point I'm ready to just sell my car, ride a bike, and pay cash for everything.

bcm
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Postby bcm » Wed Jan 21, 2015 7:11 pm

yfan wrote:I don't understand. Why should Amex return the funds to you? This is not a case of a fraudulent or unauthorized transaction. At the time, you admit you $240 on your Amex to Firestone. It is also not a case of you not having received the product, which would in effect be fraud - you got the tire. That Firestone is refusing to consequently honor a warranty on the product is a different problem that a fraudulent or unauthorized transaction.

Amex does resolve things in favor of the customer. I can say this from personal experience. But in cases of transactions that are not authorized at the time they are made.


If that's the only thing they're interested in resolving then don't call it a dispute department, call it a fraud department and don't waste my time. Also might want to inform the cs reps about this policy since both of them told me after hearing my story that it was something they should be able to take care of and had no reservations about opening a dispute.



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