Charges piling up
I took a personal loan from Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) in May 2015, and the banking agent told me the loan would have to come with an ADCB credit card, with a limit of Dh10,000. He said the card would be free for life and without any hidden charges. This information was confirmed by the sales agent and she also confirmed that the card could be used without maintaining balance.
During my very first statement, I paid the minimum payment. However, I have utilised almost 99 per cent of the credit card limit, amounting to Dh9,982.11. I received an SMS on November 18 from ADCB, saying that I have over-used my credit card and that I would have to make a minimum payment of Dh851.74 before December 10, 2015.
The shocking part is that my outstanding balance on my credit card showed up as Dh10,334.99. Immediately after receiving this SMS, I called up ADCB to check and get an explanation. The customer service personnel explained to me that I was charged for the normal minimum payment interest, since I am only able to pay the minimum payment for the last two months. They also explained to me that my card went over the limit due to the recurring over limit interest, when in reality, I have not gone over the limit. I was advised by the agent to visit the branch to make a payment of Dh10,334.99 before December 10, 2015, if I wished to terminate the credit card.
On November 23, 2015, I went to a branch to make the payment and close the credit card at the same time. I have waited for almost one hour in queue at the customer service desk and went through yet another shocking experience, when I was told that I would have to make the payment, including the next month’s interest charge. I made the payment and after four hours, upon getting a confirmation through SMS that the payment had been received on my credit card, I called the call centre to cancel the credit card. Yet again, for the third time and to my surprise, I was asked to make a payment of Dh328 for the remaining interest charge before closing the card. The conversation didn’t go well, as I had to explain myself for the third time, which was really frustrating. Despite the explanation, they said that the card cannot be cancelled till I pay the recurring interest charge.
As a customer, I feel I have been cheated as I was not informed about these hidden charges.
From Mr Eric Vincent Placido
The management of ADCB responds:
Thank you for your cooperation and communication with us in the endeavour to best serve our customers and resolve their issues.
Customer satisfaction is at the very top of our agenda, which is why we have an established Service Quality Unit that is dedicated to handling all customer enquiries and complaints. While we cannot comment on specific customer cases, we do take finding a solution for our customers very seriously and approach every situation with the best interest of the customer in mind.
With reference to Mr Palcido’s issue, please be advised that our Quality Unit has investigated the matter and confirmed that the customer was offered by the sales agent a credit card, which was delivered to the customer along with the price guide that shows a list of Finance fees and charges, which is also available on the bank’s website. However, the customer was only paying minimum payments and hence was charged interest every month. Therefore, there was an accrued interest charged on his credit card plus the over limit fee. As a service gesture from the bank, the charges have been refunded and the card was cancelled by sending a credit card cancellation letter to the customer. The case is closed.
We continually urge all customers to contact our Service Quality Unit 24/7 by phone, email or web, should they need any further clarification regarding their issues.
We would like to thank Gulf News for bringing this issue to our attention and hence giving us the opportunity to further our servicing to our valued customers.
Mr Placido responds:
Thank you Gulf News, for taking my case forward. ADCB had contacted me and settled my case.
(Process initiation: December 7, 2015. Response from organisation: December 15, 2015. Process completion: January 4, 2016.)
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