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If your going to make us wait, at least give us something to do!
Member Name: jade22green
Advantages: friendly staff
Disadvantages: long waits, poorly trained staff
I have been a customer with another bank for years. However I wanted a completely seperate joint account with my partner where we could write cheques and use a cash card, so we went with Abbey National.
Our reason for choosing them is because it said we could do it all online and by post and didn't have to visit a branch. The other reason for choosing them is because their bluewater branch opened untill 8pm on weeknights and was also open on Sundays, making it mcuh easier to get to if we needed to pay money in etc.
We set up the account, which was not as easy as they had told us it would be. We had to fill in a lot of paperwork and provide lot's of ID documentation, which had to the originals, which is fine, but I would have gone to a branch and done it all in an hour rather than all this at home.
Our account took ages to get set up, but once it was it was fine and we were very happy with the account and the services provided.
The first problem arrouse when we wanted to pay some money in. We went to the Bluewater branch which was supposed to be open untill 8pm and found it had shut at 6pm. They had changed their opening times, but not informed their customers or updated their website information. We couldn't pay our money in that night and had to walk around bluewater with it.
The next time we tried to pay the money was on the following Sunday. Again we went to the Bluewater branch and again it closed. After this I now call to make they are open if it's outside of normal banking hours as we have been let down by them.
So, almost two weeks after we had first wanted to pay into our account we went to Abbey on a saturday morning. It was ridiculous. The queues were out of the door and around the corner. We had no choice but to wait as we really needed to pay this money in by now. After waiting almost an hour we found out why the wait had been so long. On a Saturday morning when the banks are really busy they only had 2 cashiers on. The rest were there but not serving customers, which I find very annoying. Surely they could help out to get the queues down a bit, that's what seems to happen everywhere else!
The other problem I have had with Abbey is in trying just a few weeks ago to close my account with them. they will not acept a letter, I have to go, and wait, and queue so that I can tell someone I want to close my account and why. Whilst I am doing this, as I'm sure you will understand,everybody waiting to be served, out of boredom will be listening to why I want to close my account with them, and this is something I do not want to discuss in front of a lot people.
Although the service is slow, the staff have always been polite, but not very well trained in some cases. They are well dressed and do try to help when you finally get to talk to them. I have never walked into an abbey where there hasn't been a queue and think they really need to work on this as other banks do manage to keep the wait down much better.
Summary: Great, if you don't mind waiting
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