The credit card bill is due to be paid.
We always pay it off in full at the end of each month, no problem, using it for all our monthly spenditure in order to gain more Sainsbury points (and hence more spending power).
Usually there is more than enough in the account to cover the total, but every now and again, the dates of my salary and Martin's salary going into the account dont match up and we have to have a temporary 'loan' from our savings account to pay it. This month was one of those, so I went with Mart to pay our dues.
We drew a cheque from Nationwide, made out directly to pay the cc bill. Sainsbury have an odd method, you have to make the check out to yourself and then add the cc account number. No problem, we have done this loads of times. In fact the only difference this time round is that we chose to go to a different branch of our bank to pay the bill instead of our own branch.
When we presented the bill and cheque the girl took one look and said they couldnt accept it as they had no agreement with the Nationwide. Confused we asked what she was talking about. 'Its not a HSBC cheque and its not a HSBC bill so we cant accept it.
Stumped, we went back to the Nationwide to ask them about it.
'I dont understand' said the Nationwide girl. 'That makes no sense at all, we dont have agreements, its just a cheque'
We dont have a current account with Nationwide so they couldnt take the payment, but Sainsbury is a Nat West account, so we tried there. No they couldnt do it because we weren't Nat West customers, but our own bank should do it.
Back to the HSBC
Still they insisted (and by now a very 'job's worth' manager had also joined in) that no bank would do it, because there was no connection between the bill and the cheque (aside from the account number written on the cheque, obviously thats not enough of a clue) so should the two bits of paper become seperated there would be no protection for us.
By this time, we had been walking between banks for an hour, and I was rubbed up the wrong way by the 'attitude'. I pointed out we had been doing this for years with no problem. No you havn't, yes I have, it was now turning quite childish. Its a cashier's mistake and they shouldnt have done it. For 5 years?????
How do we pay the ^%^^&&% bill then?
Ahh we will accept the cheque into your account (even though its blantantly NOT made out to you) and then you can pay by one of our cheques or by cash.
Flabbergasted we payed in the cheque, and then after stopping on the way to collect the cheque book, Martin went off to pay at our own branch.
The fun doesnt end there though. When he arrived our branch had had some communication with the other branch because he overheard the cashiers having a conversation about Nationwide cheques. He asked if they were talking about his cheque and they replied that they were just about to send off an email pointing out the bit in their policies which said they DO accept such cheques and that it was the other branch in the wrong!!