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May 23, 2009

Credit Card Horror Story

Felix Salmon of Seeking Alpha writes:
And the elision is largely the credit card companies' own fault: they don't make it easy to pay your bill in full each month...

I agree with Felix, it is mind bendingly difficult to pay the card in full. I do my business with my credit card on line. The first incredibly difficult thing is to find my laptop amid the clutter on my desk. If it is on my desk's top, why do they call it a lap top? It's not on top of any lap that I can see. Anyway, after finding the thing, I have to push a button to turn it on. Then I have to turn on the Wi-Fi thingy. Then I have to start Safari. Once Safari is up and running I have to find the credit card's website. Now the real hurdles start. They ask me for a username. How the heck am I supposed to remember that? I go in search of my note pad and look up my username. Holly macaroni, now they want a password.

Success, I have finally arrived at a most confusing web page with dozens of choices that I have no clue about. Hunting desperately I discover a menu item that says "Make a payment." Ahhh! That page is terribly confusing as well, instead of a single choice to just pay the bloody card, I have to decide if I want to make a minimum payment, a full payment or some other, non-specified payment. Come on credit card people, don't make life so difficult, tell us what we should do instead of putting so may hurdles in our way.

Minimum, full or other, what a conundrum. I think about this long and hard and finally I make up my mind to pay in full. As I search for the appropriate button to click I see that the screen looks rather different with red lettering on it. It says that my session has expired to protect me. Oh goodness, do I have to go through this circus again? Maybe I should punish the card and not pay in full.

Is there a way to be compensated for all this wasted time? If I ever manage to log in again I'll see if there is a complaints department I can talk to.

Yes, Felix is right, it is so confusing to make a full payment that card companies should be punished by the Congress. Maybe they can produce 1000 pages of new credit card regulations that costs these horrible companies million of dollars. That will teach them!

It was really nice to get that off my cheat. Thanks Felix, without your help it would have stayed bottled up inside me probably causing ulcers or worse.

Denny Schlesinger

What Do Credit-Card Interest Rates Reflect? by Felix Salmon

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Last updated March 8, 2009.