So, which bank should I move to?
I used to bank with The Woolwich until Barclays bought them out and then scrapped my debit card - when I went to reapply I was told my credit rating wasn't good enough (as I refused an overdraft facility). That meant while I was previously able to make online purchases with my Visa Electron card, the Barclays replacement Savings card was literally useless to me. Needless to say I will never go with Barclays ever again.
I then applied to Halifax, again turning down an overdraft facility - I was rejected. Finally I applied for a Natwest account and ticked the box for a £1400 overdraft facility and suddenly I was accepted with open arms. However, over the years I've been unimpressed. It started with an iPhone banking app being heavily hyped, yet with no Android equivalent in sight. It took years for them to finally support Android, despite it having a much larger user base - it was more important for them to be trendy that address the needs of their customers. Then recently I spoke to a financial adviser at Natwest and asked about setting up an ISA, only to be told that as an existing customer I couldn't get a decent interest rate - they then advised me to go to another bank, set up an ISA and then come back to them to transfer it, at which point I could get the highest rate. Treating your customers like dirt is a bad way to do business.
The latest fiasco is just too much, as it was entirely self-inflicted. If a company keeps cutting its ICT staff - especially with the severity talked about here - it will almost inevitably end in disaster at some point down the road. I appreciate that banking systems are incredibly complicated but aggressive cost savings clearly took things too far. We have plenty of qualified ICT workers in this country, yet RBS would rather sack them and save a little bit of money by shipping everything off to India. It's super-capitalism gone mad.
I'm looking for a bank that has online banking, a mobile app, that wasn't part of the banking collective that destroyed the economy and that treats its customers with a modicum of respect. That's probably asking too much but what are the real options? I'm interested to see what Virgin Money does when their current account is launched next year.