Is Amex typically this infuriating?

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CitationV
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Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby CitationV » Thu Nov 03, 2016 8:06 pm

Good evening everyone!,

Had to sign up after living through probably one of my most frustrating (commercial) experiences of recent memory. It's a long read, so I apologize beforehand. This forum has provided me a lot of great information.

Backstory; I've haven't used a credit card since college that's been paid off sitting in my office drawer for years. Cars, airplanes, etc were always cash purchases. Have strong earnings, no blemishes of any kind.

Have a personal goal (for no particular reason) of a Centurion. It's a ridiculous and childish goal, I know.

After much reading and due diligence the normal course seems to be a $250k annual spend on a platinum. Ok, I'll apply.

I apply through the website, fill out appropriate information, etc.

Goes to the "cancelled" status. Fair enough, I place a call and am greeted by foreign customer service (odd for a card of this caliber). New accounts team they say, my application is in further review, please call back in 7-10 business days. 10-4, is there anything I can do or provide to facilitate a timely and meaningful turnaround? No, call back in 7-10. Ok.

Call back in 7, told to call back in 3 days.

Call back on the tenth day. We sent you a 4506-T form in the mail, please fill it out and send it back.

2 days later, it arrives, I fax it back. I call the next day to confirm it arrived. Yes it has arrived. Give us 3-5 days to review.

Call in 5 days (learned from my first time calling) and am told we need proof of residence. A power bill. Ok, did the 4506-T work? Yes, we have sent it to the IRS.

Fax in power bill. Call the next day to confirm it arrived. Yes, but we can't accept it, has to be an original copy (uh, that's an oxymoron). Ok, go down to my provider and get an [original] copy, mail it in.

Wait, nothing. Wait, nothing. Call again, yes we got the power bill. Thank you. But we had a problem, your 4506-T form was filled out wrong. I thought you already received it?, all was well? No, I don't know who told you that. Uh, ok. They send another. I fill it out, fax it back.

Wait, nothing. Another phone call. Your power bill isn't enough, we need official bank letterhead signed with your name and address. I go to my bank, BofA. We don't do that. Have Amex call us. I call Amex back, they said they won't sign that but you can call them. Sorry, if you don't provide a signed bank letterhead, we cannot process your application. So I'm the only BofA applicant this has happened to? Foreign CSR starts raising his voice, talks over me. Says if I can't provide that, there's nothing more to talk about. I asked to speak with a supervisor, he said he was busy, I said I'll wait. He asked why I wanted to talk to one and I said to discuss this process. He said he can talk to me about that. I again asked for a supervisor and said sorry he's busy.

I hang up, call right back hoping for a different CSR. He says yes, this has happened in the past and they usually call the bank or have the bank call in- but before that, my 4506-T form didn't come in. They have no record of a form ever coming in. I commented, that's worrisome as my personal information went rogue in a foreign country and no one knows where it went?

At this point I tell him to terminate my application. I've never experienced anything like this in my life before.

Called Chase, applied for a sapphire reserve. Got a call the next day to verify my information and was approved over the phone right then for $35k for the first 6 months and could request a cli after 6 months.



Has anyone ever had this big of a problem with Amex? This was truly a terrible experience. I don't get it. My app with chase was a breeze.


ingramjuan
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby ingramjuan » Thu Nov 03, 2016 10:47 pm

CitationV wrote:Has anyone ever had this big of a problem with Amex? This was truly a terrible experience. I don't get it. My app with chase was a breeze.


I've been with amex since 2013. I have not had any issues, and i have two amex cards
CARDS:
Capital One Platinum (2001) |Capital One QuickSilver World (2002) | Amex Gold Delta (2013) | Best Buy Visa (2013) |Discover It (2015) | Amex Platinum (2015)

Gardening Since: June, 2015

Next Cards:
Personal: Chase Freedom Unlimited
Business: Amex Plum
Store Card: Lowes

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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 1:34 am

That's definitely not a typical experience.

With limited or no recent credit history and high reported income/spend, it's understandable that they would want to verify your income and/or address.

Now, as to why they couldn't be organized and efficient about that process, I have no idea.

If they put me through that ordeal, I'd probably close my Platinum, too.
Warranties and sketchy merchants: Schwab Platinum
Price rewind: Costco
Travel insurance: Prestige, CSP
Perks: IHG, Hyatt
Rewards/Offers: Discover, Freedom, ED, BCE
Taxes/Misc: SPG

Limited value, might close: Arrival

Might add: First Tech, proper business card

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kcm7
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby kcm7 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 9:48 am

I'd be so tempted to Tweet a pic of me and my new CSR with:

Image

My sister had a similar issue with Capital One (kept faxing stuff, they kept 'not receiving' it, sorry ma'am we don't know what happened to that document with all your personal information on it, yadda yadda). But I think even she got it all cleared up within a week.
Cards:

-Capital One Quicksilver
-Barclaycard Arrival (no AF)
- US Bank (no rewards)
-IHG

CitationV
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby CitationV » Sun Nov 06, 2016 6:06 pm

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:That's definitely not a typical experience.

With limited or no recent credit history and high reported income/spend, it's understandable that they would want to verify your income and/or address.

Now, as to why they couldn't be organized and efficient about that process, I have no idea.

If they put me through that ordeal, I'd probably close my Platinum, too.


Fortunately I no longer have an interest. In any event, I believe this course will work out better for me.

Bacon
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby Bacon » Tue Nov 08, 2016 1:56 pm

That sounds pretty bad. I got an amex card a few years ago (premier rewards gold) when they were running a 100,000 point incentive. I have not had any customer service issues with them. I still have the card although I don't use it much. Sapphire Reserve is my new card.

rockyrock
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby rockyrock » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:50 am

Wow, that is pretty bad.

I spent 30 minutes and four transfers the other day just to PC my BCP to a BCE. It was the most ridiculous experience I'd had in a while. Customer service was convinced I needed to apply for the BCE so he transferred me to to the application department. Those clowns don't know anything other then how to fill in an application. After getting no where with him, he transferred me back to customer service. I went a few more rounds with them and finally was transferred to another department--I forget which but they deal with late payments. Surprisingly enough she actually listened to what I was asking and said, "oh yeah, that's easy, I can do that in two minutes..." A few days later I had my new card in the mail.

It was such a frustrating experience I almost just closed the account. I was PC'ing it because I hadn't used it in six months but it has a $26k limit and I like to keep the cards with >$25k open if I can. Not to mention it's been open since 2005...
Sapphire Reserve: travel & dining
Blue Cash Preferred: groceries & gas
Freedom: 5% cats
Double Cash: everything else

mountaindewvoltage
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby mountaindewvoltage » Mon Nov 14, 2016 9:48 am

rockyrock wrote:Wow, that is pretty bad.

I spent 30 minutes and four transfers the other day just to PC my BCP to a BCE. It was the most ridiculous experience I'd had in a while. Customer service was convinced I needed to apply for the BCE so he transferred me to to the application department. Those clowns don't know anything other then how to fill in an application. After getting no where with him, he transferred me back to customer service. I went a few more rounds with them and finally was transferred to another department--I forget which but they deal with late payments. Surprisingly enough she actually listened to what I was asking and said, "oh yeah, that's easy, I can do that in two minutes..." A few days later I had my new card in the mail.

It was such a frustrating experience I almost just closed the account. I was PC'ing it because I hadn't used it in six months but it has a $26k limit and I like to keep the cards with >$25k open if I can. Not to mention it's been open since 2005...


Perhaps when they [AMEX] fire their CEO (about three years overdue), they'll make some big changes around the company so that way they actually come across a premium brand with higher rewards than the competition again.

#1 = Move customer service back to America and make them bend over backwards for customer again.
#2 = Get rid of Green and Gold cards because they're worthless and fragment their card offerings.
#3 = Add extra bonus category to Delta Sky Miles cards.
#4 = Get rid of Plenti and Blue Sky cards because of same as #2.
#5 = Add more benefits to Platinum card to surpass Citi Prestige and Chase Sapphire Reserve.
#6 = Remodel website so it's simpler and easier to navigate.
#7 = Partner with Disney and offer a Disney vacation card by stealing them from Chase (5% back on Disney purchases including tickets and vacation purchases, 3% on non-Disney dining, 3% on non-Disney travel, 1% on everything else, $50 annual airline fee credit, trip cancellation insurance, baggage insurance, $95 annual fee). Amex needs a cash back card with better dining rewards.

#8 = Raise the 6% supermarket cap on Blue Cash Preferred to $15,000 yearly (up from $6,000), raise annual fee to $125.
#9 = Provide a 2% cash back card with trip cancellation benefits, $75 dining yearly credit after $10,000 in spend, and $50 annual fee.

Of course if I were Irish80 I'd have to jump on and quickly comment that AMEX would be losing money from these ideas, but the problem is they're not.

Tubpbs
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby Tubpbs » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:05 pm

mountaindewvoltage wrote:
rockyrock wrote:Wow, that is pretty bad.

I spent 30 minutes and four transfers the other day just to PC my BCP to a BCE. It was the most ridiculous experience I'd had in a while. Customer service was convinced I needed to apply for the BCE so he transferred me to to the application department. Those clowns don't know anything other then how to fill in an application. After getting no where with him, he transferred me back to customer service. I went a few more rounds with them and finally was transferred to another department--I forget which but they deal with late payments. Surprisingly enough she actually listened to what I was asking and said, "oh yeah, that's easy, I can do that in two minutes..." A few days later I had my new card in the mail.

It was such a frustrating experience I almost just closed the account. I was PC'ing it because I hadn't used it in six months but it has a $26k limit and I like to keep the cards with >$25k open if I can. Not to mention it's been open since 2005...


Perhaps when they [AMEX] fire their CEO (about three years overdue), they'll make some big changes around the company so that way they actually come across a premium brand with higher rewards than the competition again.

#1 = Move customer service back to America and make them bend over backwards for customer again.
#2 = Get rid of Green and Gold cards because they're worthless and fragment their card offerings.
#3 = Add extra bonus category to Delta Sky Miles cards.
#4 = Get rid of Plenti and Blue Sky cards because of same as #2.
#5 = Add more benefits to Platinum card to surpass Citi Prestige and Chase Sapphire Reserve.
#6 = Remodel website so it's simpler and easier to navigate.
#7 = Partner with Disney and offer a Disney vacation card by stealing them from Chase (5% back on Disney purchases including tickets and vacation purchases, 3% on non-Disney dining, 3% on non-Disney travel, 1% on everything else, $50 annual airline fee credit, trip cancellation insurance, baggage insurance, $95 annual fee). Amex needs a cash back card with better dining rewards.

#8 = Raise the 6% supermarket cap on Blue Cash Preferred to $15,000 yearly (up from $6,000), raise annual fee to $125.
#9 = Provide a 2% cash back card with trip cancellation benefits, $75 dining yearly credit after $10,000 in spend, and $50 annual fee.

Of course if I were Irish80 I'd have to jump on and quickly comment that AMEX would be losing money from these ideas, but the problem is they're not.


These are just things that are good for you, not Amex.

Getting rid of 25% of their card offerings isn't helping them...
Amex - BCP, Platinum, Business Gold
BoA - BankAmericard Cash Rewards
Chase - Freedom, CSP, RC, Ink Plus
Citi - DC, Prestige
Discover - It

mountaindewvoltage
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Re: Is Amex typically this infuriating?

Postby mountaindewvoltage » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:47 pm

I don't have any of their cards, I never go to Disney World, and I don't ever fly. Trimming the fat cards that isn't needed is a good thing for the company. They don't need both the Gold at $160 and the Premier Rewards Gold at $195.

Most of the items I've listed should've already happened.

Chenault is an idiot for letting many partners go out the door while not bringing any in. He's also an idiot for coming out with an underwhelming "improvement" for the Platinum after the Sapphire Reserve was released. If he wanted to out-do the Sapphire Reserve he would've said the card is now made of metal, 5x on airfare, 3x on dining worldwide, primary rental insurance, and now has a $350/year airline credit to beat it.

FWIW with the exception of one or two cards, there's no excuse for AMEX to have the same rewards as the other networks and outsourced customer service when you're both the processor and the network PLUS you charge merchants higher rates than Visa, Disc, and MC at the same time. I understand AMEX has to spend a bit of money on benefits, but that's what the AF is for. Make money on the AF, interest, and other fees, and leave the interchange income to pay for the rewards, even if you're losing a little bit with the bonus categories.

The decisions AMEX makes these days are pretty questionable. Example: raising the BCP AF from $75 to $95 and placing a cap on the 6% in rewards while excluding certain supermarkets that should be categorized as supermarkets but aren't isn't going to help you gain or keep card members.



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