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Embarrassing "your card has been declined" stories

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Valued Contributor

Re: Embarrassing "your card has been declined" stories

Not really embarrasing, but kind of amusing.

 

I was eating at a restaurant alone at the bar while shopping for Christmas presents and I gave bartender my SeaFirst credit card and it came back declined.  It was actually a secured card because at that time I did not have the greatest of credit, but the regular card would have worked just the same.  I used to think then that using the card to the maximum amount of your credit limit was the best way of getting the best score.  The bartender had ran it twice without even telling me the first time it was declined, which is where the humor adds to what I did.  

 

So he puts the card on the counter in front of me and tells me it was declined.  I said ok and said hold on a moment and quickly pulled out my phone called the automated number and paid the credit card bill using my phone.  This took all of about two minutes.  While I am doing this I also pick up the card and hand it back to him and tell him to try it again.  He then tells me that to be safe he had already tried it twice, you know just to make sure it wasn't a glitch or something.  I hang up the phone and said to humor me and try again.  He does and it works.  He comes back to me and asks me what did I do since I never spoke to anyone.  I simply told him that I paid my bill, he was amazed because it never works that quickly with any of his cards.  We talked about how SeaFirst (which was part of BofA) actually allowed for instant payments to be posted and allow for the cards to work right away.  (This is no longer the case with them!)

 

 

I never get embarrassed when a card gets declined.  There are just too many reasons why this could happen that even if I am with someone I can shrug it off and simply hand over another card and say something like I should never have loaned my that beggar at the bus station my card to buy his ticket back to Albuqurque.  

 

 

The other amusing, well to me anyway, was simply trying to get the waiter to use my Discover card!  I was in Beijing and I asked the waiter if they took credit cards.  He told me yes they did, they took Visa and MasterCard, but not Amex.  So I gave him my Discover card.  He told me they don't take that kind of card.  I asked him to simply try it.  He said there was no point in trying it, as they did not take anything but Visa and MasterCard.  I had convince him to try.  When he came back with the receipt he was surprised it worked as they only take Visa and MasterCard credit cards unless the credit card was from a Chinese bank.  I told him that Discover uses the same system as Chinese banks, so while it isn't a Chinese card, they system thinks it is.  Hilariously, this does not work in Hong Kong, because even though they use the same system, Hong Kong is not part of China, well for banking anyway.

It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.....
Always follow these rules: Only take a HP for a new account. Always use the best rewards card for that reward category. Don't close a card unless you know you really should. Never use more than 35% of a credit limit. Recon as much and as best you can. Use the introductory period to the best advantage. Get the signup bonus. Whenever possible PIF or balance transfer so you pay less in interest. Never give an excellent rating when it is actually the norm. Always look for a discount as more is always better.
Always accept candy from strangers because they have the best candy or from people you know have good candy.
Message 41 of 44
Valued Member

Re: Embarrassing "your card has been declined" stories

Two years ago, while dining at a divey Chinese restaurant, I tried to use my AMEX to pay the bill.  Our waitress returned to our table indicating that my card was declined.  I was more angry than embarrassed, so I paid with a Visa.  So upset, I called AMEX from the parking lot and asked the CSR for an explanation.  CSR said that my card was never "declined".  He explained that on his end, their system showed that the merchant ran my card, then immediately cancelled the transaction.  I mentioned to the CSR that the place of business had signs clearly posted that they accepted AMEX...


7/12/2019


"Not everyone who helps you is a friend, and not everyone who challenges you is an enemy."


Message 42 of 44
Established Contributor

Re: Embarrassing "your card has been declined" stories

Where do I start...

 

I had just moved to Long Island, NY back in the 90's and had yet to change my address from my parents house in CA on anything. I only had 3 major cards at the time (Citibank Visa, MBNA MC and Great Western Bank Visa) I had ran up MBNA driving cross country and mailed a check to them which would take a while to show. My fiancee and I went to spend the day in NYC and ate at some hole in the wall Chinese joint on Canal St. (I learned that Dim Sum adds up faster that you think!) Citibank declined. twice.. I gave them Great Western and it also declined. I'm thinking WTH! I left my fiancee as collateral and went to hunt for a payphone around the block. Called Citi and they asked if I'd just an hour earlier tried to use my card in a gas pump in Anahiem, CA? Nope! wasn't me! (Someone had attempted to clone my card, but there was something off in the mag strip coding according to the Citi rep.) Card cancelled and they were kind enough to overnight new cards to me in Long Island. This still doesn't fix paying for the food we just ate. So I call Great Western in California... They're alogorythm declined the charge due to being out of CA/NV and no travel notice... UUGHHH! They rep was extremely sorry and flipped whatever switch that needed flipped, and also raised my limit $2500-3200 while I was on the line. (This changed my mood! Smiley Tongue ) Ran back and Great Western worked and I never had a problem with that card again anywhere in the country.  This was also before debit cards carried Visa/MC logos and it was a pain finding places that accepted a Great Western ATM card in NY.

 

Maybe a year ago I was eating with co-workers and I was buying for 3 of us at a Hawaiian Joint in the SF Bay area. Bill was about $65. I gave Sapphire, declined. I gave Bof A, declined (WTH again!) Amex PRG came through. About 20 minutes later I get a text from BofA asking if it was me, another 20 minutes I get one from Chase.... Evidently, because the restaurant uses mag strip instead of chip, card issuers get spooked easier.

 

Just recently I ordered the legacy Discover card and forgot that I hadn't activated it until it was declined at Home Depot and just used CFU. Went to the car and activated it through the app.

 

Cell phones have made managing credit cards sooooo much easier!

Amex PRG (NPSL), Amex Blue Cash ($8K), Amex Simply Cash+ ($4K), Discover ($20.7K), Cap 1 Union Plus MC ($2500), Chase FU Visa Sig ($12K), Chase CSP Visa Sig($5K), FCB/Elan Rewards Visa Sig($10K), Buckle ($1.3K), BofA AAA Rewards ($65K), Paypal credit ($6.5K), BBVA Clearpoints ($7.5K), Cap 1 Savor ($10K)
Message 43 of 44
Established Contributor

Re: Embarrassing "your card has been declined" stories


@Gunnerboy wrote:

Two years ago, while dining at a divey Chinese restaurant, I tried to use my AMEX to pay the bill.  Our waitress returned to our table indicating that my card was declined.  I was more angry than embarrassed, so I paid with a Visa.  So upset, I called AMEX from the parking lot and asked the CSR for an explanation.  CSR said that my card was never "declined".  He explained that on his end, their system showed that the merchant ran my card, then immediately cancelled the transaction.  I mentioned to the CSR that the place of business had signs clearly posted that they accepted AMEX...


Chinese restaurants are some TIGHTWADS when it comes to accepting Amex! I've had 3 here ask for a different card when they have an Amex card on the door!

Amex PRG (NPSL), Amex Blue Cash ($8K), Amex Simply Cash+ ($4K), Discover ($20.7K), Cap 1 Union Plus MC ($2500), Chase FU Visa Sig ($12K), Chase CSP Visa Sig($5K), FCB/Elan Rewards Visa Sig($10K), Buckle ($1.3K), BofA AAA Rewards ($65K), Paypal credit ($6.5K), BBVA Clearpoints ($7.5K), Cap 1 Savor ($10K)
Message 44 of 44