Premium Credit Cards

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Scott Dautel, Feb 8, 2006.

  1. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    Here's what I want to know ... Is there a premium credit card that I can sign up for that will guarantee me I will NEVER speak to a customer service rep in India? I'm willing to pay a premium.

    That's all I ask ... what a huge opportunity for CC companies looking to differentiate their offering. I call customer service MAYBE 1x or 2x per year, thats it. I'm not a problem customer and I usually pay my bills in full every month.

    I have asked AMEX the above question regarding their Platinum card ($300/yr service fee) and they can NOT assure me I'll never get an off-shore call center. Can you believe that crap.
     
  2. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    according to the credit card companies, problem customers DO pay their bills in full every month!

    CJ
     
  3. LewB

    LewB Screenwriter

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    It's called 'globalization'. Usually marketed to us dummys as a way for America to sell her goods and services to other countries. What is usually sold to these other countries are our jobs !
    I love telling the story about how I had a problem with my wireless connection on my work laptop. I opened a 'problem' with our IT support. Soon I was IM'ing with 'Doris' from workstation support. Doris's ID was in India. Doris is most likley her 'nome de net'. Soon Doris decided this was a networking issue and not a workstation problem (something I already knew). Next thing you know, I'm IM'ing with Wilfredo in Brazil ! To cut to the punch line, I wound up calling a guy in the next building who does wireless support. He helped me fix the problem in about an hour (I needed a new driver for my wireless hardware).
    My suggestion is to find a no fee credit card and pay the bill on time. That is the only way to 'hurt' a credit card company for whatever your reason. You will be providing them with the least amount of income from your account.
    You name the job, and it's being sent overseas. About the only thing safe anymore seems to be a job in 'the trades'. It's kind of hard to outsource a plumber or electrician !
     
  4. Hunter P

    Hunter P Screenwriter

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    If you call the infrequently then is it really that much of an issue?

    I have had to deal with India quite often when I worked as a buyer in my current company. Our Accounts Payable was outsourced to India. Whether on the phone or through emails, there was no communication issues.

    The only problem I did have was when the rep's name was unfamiliar to me and I couldn't tell if he/she was male or female. Usually I just referred to the person by their full name to avoid using pronouns.:b

    Another thing, sometimes I cannot tell the difference between a given name and a family name when dealing with people in Asia. Especially since the order of the name is abitrary to the individual. Some will put their surname first. Some will put their given name first knowing they are communicating to an American.[​IMG]

    Anyway, sorry for the thread hijack.[​IMG]
     
  5. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    as long as you need a license to practice the trade, i agree. otherwise, it's free reign.
     
  6. Jason_Els

    Jason_Els Screenwriter

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    AmEx Black cards are managed and supported out of the NYC office (used to be out of WTC). Any call you make to them would begin and end there.
     
  7. Peter Kim

    Peter Kim Screenwriter

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    Not familiar with the Amex black card...how is it obtained and what are its benefits?

    I've got the Amex Gold Rewards, and without the rewards program, I would've canceled long ago for the poor CS.
     
  8. Michael Harris

    Michael Harris Screenwriter

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  9. Bejoy

    Bejoy Stunt Coordinator

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    Why do you have a problem with talking to Indians? Did you have any prior bad experiences with them? Or, are you saying that you don't want to talk to anybody outside of US?
     
  10. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    I have no specific problems with the Indians, or any other nationality. However my general experience with ALL off-shore call centers is that the people you speak can only reply with pre-scripted answers and have ZERO ability to make decisions or judgement calls. Their US managers are being careful to control all decision making. I'm OK with this, but when I pay a big premium for a card, sorry, but I dont want to deal with the peons.

    Also, often they are a little slow to understand what it is I want ... this is probably due to dialect nuances, english slang, whatever. I dont care about ethnicity ... what seems to make the difference for me is if they are living & working in the USA or Not.

    Then there is the community thing ... for me, I like it when the person on the other end of call is personable and loose and sounds like my next door neighbor. I like to be friendly, maybe lightly joke with them ... sorry, but it's just not workin' for me with the off-shore call centers. The minute my question cant be answered by their script, I have to wait for them to transfer to a manager. Sorry, but my time and effort are valuable to me.

    If I'm willing to spend a little more to avoid aggravation, then the free-enterprise system should accommodate my desires, by allowing me to pay a premium for the "luxury". The Premium Credit card company that realises this first and plays it out correctly could be a big winner ... that's all I'm saying.

    Did you ever call Disney Central Reservations in Florida ... notice how nice and friendly and "typical American" they are? [OK, call me an America-centic bigot]. Disney understands that a part of the overall "Disney experience" is lost if you had to deal with India to make a reservation at the Grand Floridian Resort ... I'd be really surprised of they change this anytime soon ... because they "get it".
     
  11. Bejoy

    Bejoy Stunt Coordinator

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    " ZERO ability to make decisions or judgment calls"

    That should be an issue with that particular off shoring model and not to be blamed on the person answering your call.

    "dialect nuances"

    I have this problem (maybe just me), even if the call center is located in US, based on which part it is.

    In the globalized economy(or other wise), your next door neighbor could be an Indian or Chinese :)

    Comparing Disney with a credit card operation is not fair. One is national and the other multi national and will have a bigger customer base/call volume.
     
  12. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    have you read the rest of this thread? he doesn't blame anything on a person.

    CJ
     
  13. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    This tells me that independently of any practical issues you may have with foreign call centers (they don't seem as empowered to help the customer I agree), you may need to broaden your horizons a bit as well.

    --
    H
     
  14. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    what's wrong with what he said? i dont think this has as much to do with his "horizons" as you suggest. i never thought about it in terms of next door neighbors, but i agree with who he wants to talk to when calling for support

    CJ
     
  15. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    I don't give a damn what the person I am dealing with sounds like. ALL I care about is their ability to resolve the issue in question. As long as their english and accent does not hinder communication, what they sound like matters little.

    The OP's issues with overseas call centers goes beyond any and all practical considerations for the situation. He is uncomfortable with the reps because, among other things, they do not sound like "typical American", in a setting where I would think such matters would be utterly irrelevant - it's a fucking credit card. My suggestion very much stands.

    I would agree with this (Disney is a as quintessentially an american product as it gets, expectations of the "american experience" are reasonnable, people come from all over the world for that) if I did not strongly suspect that your definition of "american" is actually a subset of the whole thing.

    And yes, I find it regrettable that in this day and age, one should be willing to pay a premium (!!!) to avoid hearing a foreign accent during the "MAYBE 1x or 2x per year, thats it" times they have to suffer through the ordeal.

    --
    H
     
  16. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    Like all good debates, this one seems to be generating some emotions and lots of concerns for political correctness.

    I'm going to ignore this if it gets twisted into a issue of prejudice against the Indian people or any other race or nationality. Simply not true. But I do travel the world and I'll tell you ... there's no place like the USA.

    My original point was that I would like to see the CC market provide choices to customers. Let the free market play out. Nothing more, nothing less.

    CJ ... It's crystal clear to me that you understand my points.
     
  17. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    If Scott is willing to pay extra for his "American Experience", that's his choice, but I'm more with Holadem on this one...all that matters to me is competence and communication, not an accent.
     
  18. Bejoy

    Bejoy Stunt Coordinator

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    "have you read the rest of this thread? he doesn't blame anything on a person"

    You may want to re-read his post. He is complaining/blaming "a person"( Indian Call center employees) for not being able to make decisions. (Which he himself agrees that it may not be their fault)
     
  19. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    so he agrees it may not be their fault (thereby placing blame elsewhere). you contradict yourself in the same post. i dont think he's saying that indian call centers are staffed with dummies, but when he needs an executive decision to be made, they can never do it. i'm not sure how it is, because i rarely have to call anywhere.

    i can understand both views on this one, and if i was given a choice between two equally qualified people, i'd choose the one i could understand better. but i'm quite good at understanding indian accents, half of my professors speak with an accent. with everyone offshoring everything now, i'm surprised some companies arent advertising "domestic only" products.

    CJ
     
  20. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    It's not nearly as 'select' as it used to be, and the spending requirements have come way down.

    It does carry a big fee, something like $2500'ish IIRC. But you get a whole bunch of rewards available to you, book travel through AmEx and you get free upgrades on flights (coach to first class), hotels (book a cheap room get a suite). Plus there is a nice concierge service that is part of the whole package, they can call and remind you about important dates (birthdays for instance), you can get last minute reservations at a number of fine places to eat, etc.

    In the end it's really useful to those travel a lot.
     

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