I went to a nearby RHB Bank branch earlier to help NIA top-up her savings account, for auto-debit purpose, since when she went to the Shah Alam RHB Bank branch last week, not only was the cash deposit machine (CDM) out of service, the IT system was also offline. Guess what, the CDM at the branch I visited was also out of service, & I waited about 20 minutes for the branch to open.
Upon filling up the deposit form & queuing up, my turn came. After I passed the deposit form & cash to the bank counter staff, I was surprised when informed that since NIA's account was opened in one of the states of (those that I can remember the lady mentioning) Perlis, Kedah, Penang, Kelantan, Terengganu & Johor, this over the counter (OTC) cash deposit will incur a 50 sen fee. She further said if I used the CDM, there will be no 50 sen fee. I stated with a matter of fact look that their CDM is out of service, to which she said there is nothing she can do as the system registers the fee the moment she inputs the savings account number. Go figure!
I duly paid the 50 sen fee, settled the transaction & as I left, I saw the CDM being repaired. It got me thinking whether this CDM out of service thingy is part of a plan by RHB Bank to gain from such fees. I do recall that Maybank imposes some similar fee if a customer insists on doing an OTC transaction that can instead be done via the automatic teller machines or CDM. However, this OTC charge for out of state or out of zone accounts in new to me (perhaps this has been going on to my obliviousness). Even several months back when I reactivated the CIMB Bank savings account I opened in Kuantan during my student days, I was not charged anything for the RM10 contra transaction (maybe coz it was still in the same whatever zone?). Perhaps mOAm readers can update via Feedback on some of this (I shall use a nice word) 'unique' charges that Banks levy on us customers.
On a final note for this musing, no doubt in this competitive financial environment, financial institutions fight to get customers by offering products that benefit the customers. Instead, financial institutions try to gain via other creative methods. However, there are some practices that are not transparent or looks fishy need to be addressed. In cases like what happened to me when the CDM is out of service thus forcing customers to do OTC transactions, any fees or penalties if I must say that result from not having the cheaper option should be waived.
Alrighty then, on to more important business.
Till later, live long & prosper.