Now I Hate The Bank of Montreal, Too


Today I went to withdraw some cash from the Bank of Montreal near my apartment. In a society gone mad with “convenience fees,” this was the only bank in town that I knew of that still allowed me the privilege of getting my money for free.

But not today:

This institution will charge a $1.50 convenience fee in addition to whatever fees charged by your institution. Would you like to continue?

Oh boy. So I go over to the financial services counter to find out what’s up. There is a peon sitting behind the desk, and a bankhead in trendy clothes and heels leaning over the counter discussing something with her. I stood nearby, and when they finished talking, tried to get an answer to a simple question.

Me:
Excuse me?
Bankhead In Trendy Clothes and Heels (BITCH):
(walking away, looking back over her shoulder) Mm-hmm?
Me:
I’ve been withdrawing money here for months, and today your machine is trying to charge me a convenience fee because I’m with another bank. I’m wondering when that started?
BITCH:
Oh, what bank are you with?
Me:
A Credit Union.
BITCH:
Oh, gosh, well we’ve always charged a convenience fee, haven’t we (condescending tone, looking at peon)?
Peon:
Yes, master.
Me:
Actually, that’s not true. I’ve been using your machines for months now, without any fees. Something must have changed recently, I just want to know when it changed, and maybe why.
BITCH:
You must’ve been getting charged for it, we’ve always charged for it, haven’t we (looking at peon)?
Peon:
Yes. Yes. Please don’t hit me.
BITCH:
You should go look at your statements. The fee is probably showing up on your statement, because we’ve always charged a fee.
Me:
It’s not on my statements. I update my accounts online every month, and I know it’s not on my statement. If I withdraw $60, the statement says $60, not $61.50. Besides, you can’t charge me unless you ask me on the screen, right?
BITCH:
(scowl)
Me:
And the reason I’m talking to you now is that this is the first time I’ve been asked about a fee.
BITCH:
(through clenched smile) Well, I guess you’ve just been lucky then.
Ed’s Note: Seriously, that’s what she said. Lucky.
Me:
What?
BITCH:
You must have been lucky. Alright then? Goodbye! (turns and walks to the back-office doors)
Me:
(shouting to BITCH as she departs) Are you kidding?!? That doesn’t make any sense! It’s a computer! There’s no lucky!
BITCH:
(clacking of Heels, closing of doors, sliding of steel bolts)
Peon:
Have a nice day!

I would have written a complaint to customer service, but I suppose I’m not officially a customer (gee, wonder why). Still, would it have killed her to just say she didn’t know?

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  1. #1 by POed Senior - October 30th, 2010 at 07:43

    A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business. Henry Ford #BMO

  2. #2 by Chris - October 31st, 2010 at 22:52

    My guess would be that your Credit Union had a deal with BMO to allow their customers to use BMO ATMs without paying the convenience fee. If that agreement is no longer in place it’s most likely that your CU didn’t renew the deal. There is an inherent cost to running ATMs and any institution would want to recover some of those costs from whoever uses it.

    Bear in mind, BMO has about 30,000 employees. They can’t all be gems.

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