Over the course of the years, USAA has declined my credit card transaction at critical times. For example, once I was traveling from a planning meeting late at night and low on gas. It was cold and raining, and the neighborhood I needed to stop in was sketchy. It was close to midnight.
Thankfully, as I attempted to purchase fuel, USAA was there to decline my card. After calling USAA and obtaining triple-check authentication, with my USAA number, calling from a phone in my profile, entering my pin number, and then using a phone password to again verfiy my identity with a call rep, I managed to explain my predicament and about 20 mintues passed midnight was on my way. I wish I could do this every time just to keep things exciting.
Just today, as a snowstorm began to hit the area, I stopped at a Target to purchase supplies. Not just any target, but the one about 300 meters from my address of record with USAA, the same one I've made countless purchases at and USAA was there to decline my transaction, after waiting in line for 15 minutes. There was no notification that USAA thought something was amiss -- they just flat out declined the transaction. This was the thrid in two days.
USAA has done this perhaps a half-dozen times in the last five years. I'm always amazed at the bank's ability to decline a transaction precisely at the moment when you need them the most.
Of course, I called USAA, and the representative was kind enough to try to convince me that USAA is actually helping me.
It has no bearing that every time USAA has thought fraud was involved they have been wrong. It is of inconsequence that when USAA flags a transaction, they tend to flag it during purchases where I've had a long history with a given vendor. Nevermind the fact I have nearly a 20 year history with the company, and the fact the bank probably has better insight as to when and what I purchase than I do. Never mind that when USAA declines a recurring bill -- say with a utility provider that I've established a monthly payment with for years -- that the vendor then barrages me with collections callls, emails and messages via the US Postal services. That's just the price of business.
Ultimately, USAA's time is more valuable than mine, so customers should be delighted to remain on hold while customer service bounces you from one person without answers to the next. Well, I don't have the time, but that representative so got under my skin today, I'm going to make time to address this; I cannot be the only customer irate over this nonsense.
Funny story to add to the thread. This exact sequence happened to me a couple of times: I would stop along the Garden State Parkway to get gas on my ~40 mile journey from my home to White Plains NY. Then I would pay for parking in White Plains, and then purchase something at the Target pharmacy - and the card would be declined at Target. This was all before the big Target security breach. I've since discontinued using my USAA card for such transactions and will be totally shelving the card.