Show me the money

Congratulations to Gulf News’ team for the excellent effort, where most of the readers’ issues are resolved with banks and financial institutions simply because of the newspaper’s intervention. I too have an incident to share.

I spent Dh24,405.98 in my Najm Visa card, as I was attracted by a text message from Najm cards on June 12, 2013, which read: “Get 5% cash back on a minimum spend of Dh2,500 on your Najm Visa credit card from June 14 to July 13, 2013. T&C apply. Ref:007”.

Prior to spending, I called Najm’s call centre (8006256) on June 15, 2013, for the terms and conditions for five per cent cash back. I was told all I have to do is to spend a minimum of Dh2,500 on my Najm Visa credit card, so that I could get 5 per cent cash back after 60 days. Furthermore, I was told there is no upper limit for the cash back.

But guess what happened?

The Najm card management unilaterally took the decision of not giving the much advertised cash back, saying it was an error from the part of their call centre, as the call centre employee failed to inform the customer about the upper limit!

After a long chase with the card company, I got a total cash back of Dh300 instead of Dh1,220.29, which means that Najm has taken me for a ride for Dh920.29.

I have a few questions for Najm cards:

1. What prevents Najm from giving the full terms and conditions via text message or a web link so that card holders can read the same?

2. Why should cardholders shoulder damages for mistakes made by a Najm employee?

We all know mistakes can occur at times, but it is corrective action that makes an organisation great. Why is Najm so adamant in its decision, even after 10 months?

From Mr George Thomas, Sharjah

A spokesperson from Majid Al Futtaim Finance LLC responds:

Kindly be advised that we always treat our customers with segmented and exclusive offers every month. Each offer has its own clear and transparent terms and conditions, which we clearly explain to our customers should they like to participate or benefit from any offer. Not to mention that each segment of our customers might have a different offer depending on their needs and lifestyle. These offers are applied only on their personal purchases done by their personal Najm Credit Card.

In this valuable customer’s case, we have met our commitment as per the terms and conditions of the said offer and the customer has availed all his entitlement of his eligible cashback within the terms and conditions of this offer. The customer has been met and attended by more than one member of our customer service team at the time, and all the details have been explained to him more than once and his case was closed.

He is particularly referring to a transaction that has been made with a large amount in an optical shop and he came after 10 months with handwritten invoices that he was not willing to share for further investigation and verification needed from our side, as per our compliance and credit policies; the transaction did not seem to be a personal purchase and the customer mentioned that it was for a corporate purpose; the customer was not cooperative to adhere to the procedures and refused to handover any valid invoice or share a copy to prove this particular transaction’s validity and that it is done for personal use, which was sceptical to us.

We would like to confirm that he was treated and credited his cashback on his personal purchases.

Please note that all the details mentioned above are documented and recorded but for confidentiality and protection of our customers, we are not allowed to disclose any details about any transactions or amounts without their prior permission.

Many thanks and please let us know how we can be of further help.

Mr Thomas updates:

Thank you Gulf News for taking up my issues with Najm.

Najm claims that each offer has its own clear and transparent terms and conditions and that this is explained to consumers. I don’t think they are practicing the same. Furthermore, Najm claims that in this case, they have met their commitments as per their terms and conditions, which I believe is untrue.

After over 10 months of chasing the issue with them, I had an opportunity to meet Najm representatives on April 29, 2014, at their Dubai office.

As per mutual agreement over the phone, I showed them the original bill in question and they verified the same during the meeting and returned it to me. In return, they played out a recording from their source, wherein the Najm representative explained the terms and conditions to the cardholder well before spending and my points were crystal clear, as well as the claims.

Towards the end of the meeting, a Najm representative asked me to provide a copy of the above referred “original purchase bill”. I agreed to same only if they could give me a copy of the recording they had played for me during the meeting. But the Najm representative summarily rejected providing me a copy, rather they insisted on a copy of the invoice for something to be done about the case!

Najm must understand that customers don’t have a choice but to accept proof of purchase (invoice or bill) irrespective of whether it’s computerised or handwritten, as long as the bill carries all the required information, including the name and contact numbers of the shop.

A spokesperson from Majid Al Futtaim Finance LLC updates:

Thank you very much for your efforts in trying to champion consumers’ rights. We at Majid Al Futtaim Finance appreciate the organisation’s active role in this noteworthy endeavour.

Having said that, this card account was obtained on the basis that the customer is going to use it for personal expenses and not for business (corporate) use, for which there is another product to meet those particular needs.

The promotion was designed to encourage our customers to shift personal cash expense to the card. In this case, the individual involved has violated not only the terms of the promotion but made an obvious attempt to improperly profit from it by paying for large and unusual business expenses using this personal card account. This is not what the promotion was all about. Considering these facts, the decision that the company has made is the right and proper one and we stand by it.

We remain with our best regards.

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