My most embarrassing phone calls

Posted on February 14, 2013 by in Travel Deals

This hobby, which we all cherish, tens to put you into a number of awkward situations. Calling credit card companies, where you usually pretend to be an average customer, but often do know about the company's policies than the company's employees itself.

This can create some odd situations – two calls stand out for me.

My US Bank fun with the reconsideration line

I applied for the US Bank Lifemiles Visa a while back.

Although my Experian score is 800+ I got denied for too many recent inquire as you may have expected.

I called the reconsideration line and they told me to call a different department once it opens the next day. I asked what department would work on the reconsideration for me and was told that it has no (particular) name.

Now I got a CSR named B. who wasn't exactly friendly and first asked me where I got this number. She wasn't happy about my call and I should have used the chance to hang up – but I didn't.

She looked at my app and decided that I have too much unused credit. She suggested to apply again when I have less outstanding credit and a higher credit usage ratio! As you all know this would decrease my credit score drastically. However I thanked her for her hard work on my application.

Of course this just prompted my ambition and I called again.

I called underwriting a couple of minutes later and they connected me to agent J. He gave a me a friendly greeting at least – good start! I started the call with my my usual reasons why I'd like to be reconsidered. He immediately responded why I would call again when B. just told me that I'd be no candidate for reconsideration. Apparently he overheard the whole conversation as he was completely aware of what she said without looking at any CRM notes.

I was stumped and wished him a good day! I hold off on US Bank cards since than.

My Chase interrogations

The second set of embarrassing calls were both recently with Chase reconsideration. In earlier rounds of applications I always had very pleasant experiences with Chase.

But my last application for a business card was very much CIA type. It took 45 minutes and the agent was friendly but determined to find holes in my speech. Now I really have (a number) of small businesses so I did not have to make anything up. It was rough though and I honestly gonna think twice if I'll be doing that again for 50,000 miles. The agent wanted to know details of customers, their opinion of our service, revenue projections. Most venture capitalists are easier to pitch 🙂

Even more embarrassing was my latest call where the agent went through all my private credit cards with Chase to find way to move credit (I have reached my limit with credit at Chase some time ago). Now this was all expected but he moved through my cards with:

– United Explorer Visa – not used
– Priority Club Visa – not used
– Hyatt Visa – not used

I began to fear for the worst, but no he was just looking for candidates depending on usage and time of opening the account. I was so glad this call ended quickly and with a card approval.


About the author: Torsten is a serial entrepreneur who started almost a dozen ventures on four continents. Torsten's love for travel has brought him to 130+ countries and travel with most of the world's airlines. You can reach Torsten at [email protected]

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