Friday, January 25, 2008

Why won't other people do what I want

I recently paid for something over the internet. And as it happened, because two different groups didn't do what I wanted them to, it's ended up costing me 50% more. And right now, I feel like ranting.

The first troublesome group is paypal. I have a paypal account. I set it up when I first started buying a few items off of ebay. When I buy stuff on the internet, I use my credit card. One because it's easier, and two, the things I buy on the internet are usually luxuries, not essentials and my wants don't always mesh exactly with my pay cycle. Even when I use paypal, I want to use my credit card. This shouldn't be a problem, except I also have my bank account linked in to paypal. Why would I do this? Because I have occasionally been paid by people via paypal, and while you can send money through paypal by credit card, to get it out you need a bank account.

OK. I can handle that. Money goes out of paypal into my bank account and when I pay by paypal they take the money from my credit card. No Problem. But wait, if you have a bank account linked in the default payment method is they take the money from your bank account. If you want to use another payment method, then you have to choose it for every single purchase. While you have a bank account linked in, you can not change your default payment method (I wonder what happens if you link in two bank accounts. Surely you must be able to choose between bank accounts. Why not bank accounts and credit cards?).

So they took the money out of my bank account instead of my credit card. What's the big deal. Why am I so angry? Well, I don't live in the same country as my bank account and credit card. I mainly still have a bank account so I can pay the credit card easier. If other people could deposit money into my credit card and I could deposit funds from overseas into my credit card, I wouldn't use the bank account at all (Also, it will be handy having an existing bank account if and when I return to Australia). For the last year or so the typical balance of my bank account has been $0.

So, when paypal decided I wanted to pay from my bank account instead of my credit card, guess how much money was in my bank account. $0. Now what should happen when someone tries to take money out of a bank account with no money in it. They should tell them fuck off. Indeed, that's what I want my bank to do when I try to take money out of my bank account that I don't have (I have different expectations of my bank account and credit card. They are different beasts and should be treated differently.) What I don't want my bank to do is to is to give the people asking for money I don't have is to give it to them and then charge me a $40 fee for doing so.

So now I have to sort out what I'm going to do to avoid this problem in the first place. I think I shall take my bank account off of paypal (If I need it again in the future I'll set up a separate account for payments received), and Westpac is going to get an annoyed call demanding I have a $0 overdraft on my regular bank account.

God damn it.

End Post
Writing time: 34 minutes
Time since last post: 2 days
Current media: Eurotrip (it has Michelle Trachtenberg in it)

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