I love my credit union. I've been with them for ages and we're a good team.
I got a letter from them offering me overdraft! protection! plus! Apparently I can get automatic overdraft protection on my debit/credit card, just like paper checks.
Wow. We have to identify checks as paper checks. I feel old?
The P.S. on the letter reads, "Think of overdraft protection plus as your "insurance policy" for being able to access funds in an emergency."
What sort of emergency requires me to withdraw huge amounts of money from all of my accounts - checking, savings and money market in this case - in such a hurry that I cannot even make one single phone call to the credit union first to transfer funds?
I'll tell you what kind of emergency. When someone has a gun in my ribs and is making me withdraw every.single.penny I have deposited at said credit union.
Am I the only one who sees the mistake in this? For years credit card companies have been telling me I need to have high credit limits in case of an emergency. The only person who is having a $14,000 emergency is the person who has stolen my wallet.
On the page included within upon which I place my signature because I won't get this fabulous benefit unless I ask for it, I am told that this option links my checking account to my savings account or even a line of credit so that funds are automatically transferred to cover the overdraft.
Automatic, eh? So no one will ask me why I'm buying a ticket to Rio and a little condo on the side? Fabulous. Sign me up.
And then there's fear-based marketing. The first paragraph tells me that by signing up, I "can avoid the embarrassment of a declined card and ensure that critical purchases are made even when funds are not immediately available."
Honestly, the last critical purchase I made with my debit card involved a package of Oreos. I'm serious. It was a matter of life and death.
Besides, I was 20 once. I've suffered through the embarrassment of having a declined card. I lived through it. Whoops! If it happens these days, which I guess it hasn't, but I'm a lucky one in this economy, I would still shrug it off. Math mistake? You betcha. Forget to register debits for the last 5 weeks? Been there. Always assume there's more in there than there really is? Guilty.
I want them to decline my card! If I don't have the money in the bank I then 1. won't spend it and 2. know it is time to sit down and come to grips with my checkbook register.
On the other hand, I got an email from Betty Crocker this morning. I get their newsletter, so you know, I signed up for it and all that technical stuff. So when I click on the one recipe I've wanted to look at in the last 18 months, I was told that to see the recipe, I had to log in.
I couldn't. Who remembers the password after that long? I went through the regular passwords I use for things like recipes. None of them work. You hear what I'm saying? Recipes. They're recipes. They are not state secrets, classified documents, instructions for making doggy wee-wee pads, love potions or the formula for making co-workers be nice to each other.
I had to send myself an email to get another password. The email told me that if I hadn't requested to reset my password, I could simply delete the email and "don't worry; your account is secure."
So you may (please, go ahead) pull every dime out of my bank account, but you absolutely may not (how could you even ask) view my recipe for black bean and corn enchiladas.