Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Very Poor Service at Bank of Commerce

I opened a personal bank account and a corporate bank account at Bank of Commerce about a month back. I intended to use both for Dragonpay. Bank of Commerce was a small-time bank until it was bought by giant San Miguel Corporation a couple of years ago. So I figure with SMC's backing, its only a matter of time before Bank of Commerce would join the big league.

The bank staff seemed pretty excited to get me as a new client. The bank managers were very friendly. But I was caught a bit off-guard when they couldn't seem to agree on what is the correct maintaining balance for a corporate account. From P10k, to P20k to P25k, they cannot seem to agree among themselves. Maybe that should have been a sign of things to come.

When last I inquired, they told me it was P10k. So when I came to open the account about a month ago, I only brought P10k with me. Then they tell me that the minimum opening balance is P10k, but the minimum maintaining balance should be P20k to avoid getting penalized. Huh? Why didn't they just tell me P20k to begin with? Why would anyone want to open anything less than that minimum if they were going to be fined? As my voice started to increase in pitch and volume, the manager pacified me by saying that she will give me up to a month to bring my balance to P20k without any penalty, and gave me some freebie organizers. That issue was resolved for now.

From the time I opened both accounts, it took them about 10 working days to produce my ATM card. That's terrible! The major banks can give it to you in a couple of days. Some like Citibank and PSBank even give it to you on-the-spot. 10 days?! That's so 90's!

Then came the biggest problem -- the corporate Internet banking facility. They dragged this for almost a month giving me all sorts of lame excuses why it was not yet activated. Until finally, they admitted they cannot offer it. It seems that among all their corporate clients, only San Miguel was actually given this facility. No other corporate clients can actually use their corporate Internet banking. Huh?! Then why even bother to offer it at their site?

I finally got fed up today and went to the branch and closed both my personal and corporate account. I returned my unused checkbook and had them refund the cost to me and waive all early closure fees. San Miguel Corp. should do something about this. It was just a plain awful experience doing banking with Bank of Commerce.

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