I have banked with Smile.co.uk since 2002. They're not my only current account but they are my main one. Up until fairly recently I've been happy with them, their customer service has always been pretty good. However, I am in the process of doing my tax returns and I need to see statements from April 2011, I'm not asking for much... I was shocked to discover that I can not see statements more than 12 months old online and if I want access to these I need to pay £10 a statement (by the way these are not monthly!). I'm appalled because my current account with another bank lets me see statements for up to 6 years online for free and has done so for many years and this is a High Street bank. I would have assumed that if you don't post out statements, as a basic right you should be able to see these online and 12 months is simply not long enough. Smile.co.uk (though owned by the Co-op) is in itself an online-only bank so does not post out statements and never has. Other points...
- the online user interface does not look like it has changed at all in the last 10 years that I have been a customer, no seriously. It is starting to feel really outdated compared to other banks online services (and I have banked with many).
- The statements appear to be produced in an ad-hoc manner, sometimes I get them every 9 days, every 12 days, every 21 days (this is from the last 3 statements) and it is a headache to find transactions. You have to click on each statement one by one and look through it. Other banks are far more sophisticated with various search tools and at least produce regular statements!
After this tax return fiasco, where I can not see essential transactions unless I pay £100 for statements I should have access to anyway, I have decided to switch to another online-only bank who will also let me see 6 years of statements online free of charge. Smile.co.uk haven't updated their systems in the last decade which is inexcusable for an online-only bank. Customer Service is on the whole good though. It's a shame, they have good ethics, but they have let themselves down by not keeping up to date and in line with the rest of the industry on basic features.
With regards to the previous review about loans, this has not been my experience as they have tried to sell me loans and increase my overdraft in the past (last time October). But maybe they have got a lot tighter with their lending in recent years, I haven't asked for a loan from them so I couldn't say.
Admittedly I ordered from them a while ago so I hope things have changed. However I was absolutely appalled by their customer service. I ordered a BBQ Chiminea from them, initially I was told it would take one week for delivery. 3 weeks later... nothing. I then had to go on holiday, so I called Customer Services to tell them I have been waiting this long but now have to leave, can you hurry up and deliver. They said they will arrange for the delivery to arrive on a date when I am back from holiday. Fine. Come back and what do I find... the BBQ Chiminea dumped on my drive, not signed for, and the box looking like it had been there a long time (it was dirty and soggy from rain). I asked my neighbour when did it arrive and they said the day after I left for holiday. I had been gone 10 days. I was absolutely furious. Nonetheless I sent them a reasonable e-mail saying that before I open it, I want a guarantee that if there is any problems with it, I can return it for a full refund. NO REPLY. I gave up in the end. Needless to say I will NEVER be ordering from this company again and I will tell everyone I know to avoid it.
RESPONSE TO GARDENECO'S REPLY:
Gardeneco, please reread the first sentence of my review. Unfortunately your disappointing reply has only served to solidify my opinion of Gardeneco. You have not taken responsibility for your behaviour, regardless of when it happened and your reply was a somewhat childish statement attempting to undermine my experience of your company. My criticism, which should be taken constructively, and not emotionally, would be to be more professional in your communications.
Really glad to hear it... As for the customer service communication skills I was complaining about I don't need to say anything more on it as you have expressed yourself so well on here. :)
P.S. The chiminea is rusting away nicely thanks, despite buying a cover purpose made for that chiminea. For an outdoor product it doesn't like the damp much even when protected and in storage for 9 months of the year!
All the best...
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