Do you know that we have to explicitly request to close a short-term deposit account? If it is a joint account, you need to send the same request duly signed by both account holders. If you are sending this after so much of online life where you have never signed, better check your old passport signature or send a updated signature duly notarized. If you have NRE SB account if your deposit is NRO account, when it is closed, it cannot go to NRE account, so you need to open a new NRO account. It took nearly 4 months to learn all these. That is the sad part of this information.
I have an existing ICICI bank account with their JP Nagar branch in Bangalore. The bank has deducted an amount of Rs112 twice for a single statement availed by me. When the customer support was contacted, they gave a false reason saying that the statement was taken twice once on 12/08/08 and on 20/08/08, when in fact I had taken only one statement on 12/08/08. The bank did not revert the amount. Subsequently I decided to close the account.
After paying 281 rupees towards the same and handing over my ICICI cheque leaves and the ATM debit card, I observed that the account has not been closed even after a month. At the time of closure request (06/09/08), they acknowledged the closure (after payment of 281 rupees towards closure) with an acknowledgment receipt and assured me that the account would be closed in 2-3 weeks.
Since the account was not closed by the bank even after a month, I registered a complaint regarding the same. After lodging a complaint with customer support and through my net banking support, the customer support contacted me saying that 500 Rs more would be required towards the same.
When questioned why wasn't this intimated when I had earlier visited the branch in person on 06/09/08 for closure request, they reverted back saying that I would be required to coordinate with the Bangalore JP Nagar branch. I have been harassed too long by this ICICI branch at 75/A, 100 FEET ROAD, 6TH PHASE, JP NAGAR, BANGALORE, 560 078 KARNATAKA. My patience has been really tested by this fraudulent bank.
DALLAS, TEXAS -- My story here is about an NRE account opening process from US with ICICI. I came across this site in my search for some straight answers. I have to tell you that I am extremely frustrated...enough to call it quits on my attempt to get anything done with these folks. Below is my issue with approx. timeline.
Feb 1: Application for NRE Savings account sent to US P.O. Box. Feb 23: Received e-mail indicating that account was in operation. Feb 23: Realized that I had provided a P.O. Box address in US that could cause issues with courier. Feb 23: Sent out a change of address form providing an alternate address in US with all necessary support documents as required for address change. Feb 24: Received delivery of debit card and cheque book in spite of P.O. Box delivery address... Apparently DHL will call the phone number of the receiver. (NOTE: THANK YOU DHL! Great Service!!)
Feb 27: ICICI received my change of address per FedEx courier tracking info. (NOTE: Never received a single piece of email from ICICI indicating that they had received my request and would update the address.) Feb 28: Still no sign of Net banking and Debit card pin information. The assumption on my part is that since I received the cheque book I should probably get the other stuff as it would come via DHL. Called ICICI at Toll-Free US number and they have no information available...not even about package ever being sent. In fact, the Service rep told me that I needed to send a separate app for Net Banking.
Mar 01: I continue to have no email from ICICI indicating an issue. Mar 02: Called ICICI and they can see that a package was in fact sent on Feb 25. Got a tracking number on courier. Apparently they used ICCWorld. Mar 02: Tried tracking package on courier site but site provides no status info. Called courier to see what happened to package and why I could not track it...courier service indicated that the packages from ICICI are special and no tracking info is available on them. They told me that they would call in 48 hrs. with some info.
Mar 05: No call from courier. Called ICICI to see what happened to courier. They have no info available but asked me to wait a day. Asked ICICI whether my change of address had been entered in the system. They indicated NO. (NOTE: ICICI seems unconcerned that I have not received my packet with important personal information. So much for a sense of security. Moreover, no one in ICICI seems to know the value of informing customers when they send stuff out or when the stuff is not delivered or whatever the case might be.)
Mar 06: Called ICICI to ask about courier and change of address. No information on former but they think that ICCWorld might have returned the packet to Mumbai because of their inability to deliver to P.O. Box address.
Mar 06: They opened an SR# on the change of address request. Told me that I would receive info from them in 48 hrs. (NOTE: The operative word on the courier is "think" not "know" and they still seem unconcerned.)
Mar 08: No call or status email from ICICI. Called ICICI number in US. They are telling me that in order to accept my change of address in US, I need to have a permanent address in India. They claim that RBI requires that I have a permanent address in India to accept a change of address. (NOTE: There is NO such RBI rule for regular accounts though there is when it comes to Home Loans. Moreover, ICICI application for NRI accounts clearly states that Address info in India is not Mandatory for NRIs. Address Change Request form has no request for this info. But I cannot talk the guy on the other end of the phone through this discrepancy.)
My problems: (1) No account or issue status ever received via email. (2) Use of poor courier service which cannot provide tracking information or status of delivery. (3) No follow-up or follow-through on important things such as documents sent esp. Net banking ID/pass and debit card PIN. (4) No follow-up on a priority SR opened to understand why request for change of address has not been initiated. (5) ICICI application clearly states that NRI does not need address in India (not mandatory it states). Is the application incorrect? No one can tell me...
(6) ICICI change of address application never requested India address information. So is the application incorrect? (7) ICICI service desk in the USA VERY UNHELPFUL asking me to send another courier with India address information before a change of address can be initiated and any banking activity can be achieved by me on this end. Claims that it is an RBI requirement though cannot provide me a reference for this quoted rule.
My current situation: no Net Banking info, no debit card PIN, no foreseeable resolution to address change as I cannot fulfill request for permanent address in India, no foreseeable access to account via Net Banking services.
Very scary view of future dealings with ICICI in cases where problem resolution is needed from intelligent phone representatives. At this point, I have an account which I have no view into and no understandable reason why this is the case. My current options seem to be LIMITED.
Having barely informed and burger-flippers for service desk representative/manager who kept saying the same thing ("Sir it is an RBI requirement") hardly helps a customer. I asked him to provide me further details on this requirement and he would/could not. He could not explain why the application form clearly states that the address requirement is not mandatory for NRI. He could not explain why I was not receiving direct communication from ICICI on my issues. The saga continues ...
USA -- Hi, I saw one review saying that ICICI Bank sucks. My esteemed friend, you are making a gross mistake. Sucks is too mild a word to describe the awful service they provide. I will fill in more details over the next few weeks, but today I will write an abstract.
I applied to open an NRE account with ICICI in August 2005. After enough harassment and waste of my time, these idiots opened the account in Jan 2006. Should they not be entered in the Guinness World records for their excellent quality of service? First off, their application is not very clear on what they want. Plus they lost lot of customer (my postal) mails (probably another Guinness record would go for them on this count). Every document I sent them had to be sent twice.
Thirdly, they cannot understand English. They can simple not decode what the documents contain. Fourthly their emails also reflect their lack of English understanding. They would give some weird statements like Annexure blah blah needed, when you would have already sent them all the relevant details. It is up to the customer to waste her time to find what the bank really wants. Mind you, I make it a point to send all details I have to confirm my identity to the bank.
It is April and still they have not got me the welcome kit and check book, even though my account has apparently been opened in Jan, and I have contacted them several time with my new address. Now even the check I sent with my application has not been encashed, causing me to get no interest on them for almost a year, and losing because the dollar has weakened in the meanwhile.
Finally after many emails, they say the check has been sent to my old address, even though they should be sending it to my new address. They say the check is stale. Now, they also say I have to cough up with maintenance charges, because I have not maintained the minimum balance of 10K RS for this quarter.
(Remember for no fault of mine, had sent the check for 1010$ in August itself. That money it was just blocked, because I could not fathom when they would encash it.)
Such banks deserve to be closed. I just hope RBI takes steps to close them. No doubt they will be behind all scams like the Yes Bank IPO scam. I hope the bank does not close suddenly one day, taking away all customers money. Dear readers, if at all you have to open an NRE account, go to HDFC Bank or even SBI (SBI, although a govt bank, is a much better bank than the useless private ICICI). Citbank probably offers best customer service, even though their exchange rates might not be that good. Rest later.
INDIA -- ICICI NRI Customer Service SUCKS!!! In the first place, the online access to my ICICI NRI account was locked/disabled even though I used the login/password that was provided to me. I tried my best to reach the support on the toll-free number (1-866-ICICI-4U). Every time it takes more than 5 minutes to talk to a representative. And they just say that they will not be able to service on the phone, and ask me to mail to email@example.com.
I live in US and have been waiting to access my account for more than 10 days. And after 10 days and many email exchanges, I am told that the passwords would be sent via postal mail to my Indian address, and not via email!!! This just doesn't make sense to me, as there is no one to access my account in India, and I cannot ask someone to go open my mail and send me the password!!!
Dealing with ICICI bank is driving me nuts. And I am seriously thinking, why I should do business with ICICI bank? The following policies/features are JUST UNACCEPTABLE to me. I have few bank and financial accounts for many years now, and I never had to spend more than 15 minutes to get any issue resolved.
No FULL-SUPPORT via telephone, especially to activate disabled accounts. Email-based support with 24-48 hour response time. And this is misleading, as 2 days is taken to respond, not resolve issue!!! My issue is not resolved even after 10 days, and each 2 days is taken to just respond with counter questions/answers. The responses from the Customer Service representatives is just ambiguous (I was asked to "answer below 4 questions", when I actually saw 6 questions listed below the statement!!! I had tough time to correctly interpret each sentence.)
There is no way to reach a higher official/manager via phone/email to express my anguish, and get my issue resolved. The website is not user-friendly, and there are many broken links. And sometimes, the error messages are just ridiculous (I got the message: "Unknown error occurred", instead of the something like, "The Social Security Number you entered does not match our records. Contact Customer Service.")
Don't ever sign blank forms of ICICI bank. At every ATM and branch, you have smiling marketing guys approaching you to apply for credit cards, insurance, current accounts, demat accounts and what-not. The project themselves as helpful. They explain to you the product they have, just ask you to sign on the application and they fill up the rest, thus save you precious time and hassles. We feel these guys are living up to the slogan "Hum hain na" and some of us do sign and leave the rest to them.
I have had a nasty experience while opening a current account. After understanding the various current accounts, I told the marketing guy I would like a Rs. 25000/- Quarterly Average Balance account. He said no problem and asked me to sign on the necessary spaces and since he does not want to waste my time, he could fill up the rest.
10 days later I got my account number and immediately I deposited Rs.25,000/- cash. Six months have gone by, I have made sure my balance is never less than Rs.25,000/-. Now in my September bill I get a charge of Rs.771.40 for non-maintenance of QAB (Quarterly Average Balance). When I spoke to the customer care, the charge is because I had not maintained a QAB of Rs.50,000/-. When I told him, I have an Rs.25000/- QAB account he says nope, you have an Rs.50,000/- QAB account.
When I approached the M.G Road, Bangalore branch where I had opened the account. I was directed to the solutions manager, he told me he will get back in 2 days time, which he did not. I again visited the bank and met him, he retrieved my application and told me since you have signed on it, you had accepted the Rs.50,000/- QAB account.
When I got pissed off, he told me there have been instances where the marketing guys have used white ink to tamper applications. And why do they do that? To earn higher commission. The higher the QAB account they sell, the higher commission they get!
He has asked me call in a week's time to let me know if they can reverse the charge. But told me it is doubtful. And also told me, if my application was tampered with white ink, he would definitely support me cent percent. The marketing guy who sold me the account was **. The manager I approached is designated as Area Head, Business Banking Group and his name is **. My advise to you all is, if you want to buy any ICICI bank's product, look at them as con artists and take all precautions. And please, please don't ever sign on blank applications.
MUMBAI -- I am a NRI and have visited Mumbai in Sep 2005 . I tried to open ICICI NRE accounts for myself and my family, totaling three accounts by paying 1000 $ on 19th Sep 2005 (by completing all the process). Money in cash was handed over to ** and ** who were on duty. As per me, those were opened successfully, since I received check books, ATM CARDS and various PINs. These accounts belonged to ICICI Andheri Branch.
After that I left India within few days. When I tried to make some transactions, I found funds missing from all my three accounts. The money I deposited did not appear in bank records. I tried to call Bank Manager Ms. ** and **, but no one was ready to talk or interested to reply. Moreover on my further attempts calling them failed, as they do not pick up phone. There is no one in bank who is ready to answer about the whereabouts of my money (foreign currency) deposited, for which I have some receipts which looks fake.
I believe there is some scam or fraud going on in bank on the name of opening NRE accounts. So called ICICI staff - feel that it is easy to cheat non-residents and easy to make money out of foreign accounts which involves foreign currency. It looks like foreign currency racket/scam. Such foreign currency has huge demand in domestic market as far grey market is concerned.
If everything was right then after 20 days, I wouldn't see zero balance in all the three accounts. It clearly show bank's dishonesty. When I acted strong, these scammers started blaming on defect of my documents meant for opening accounts.This claim came after I started trace/investigation of my funds.
I feel lost as I do not know what to do since no bank staff is responding to whereabouts of my money and sitting 10000 km away, I feel that I have been cheated by ICICI Bank Andheri, Mumbai branch. I feel shame on such banks. BEWARE OF ICICI BANK. NRI's need to be extra careful before opening account with ICICI BANK to protect their hard-earned foreign currency.
CHENNAI, TENNESSEE -- ICICI Bank is interested only in making money from its customers, without providing actual service for the money earned. Customer service is non-existent. The only person who can make any decisions is probably their Chairman at Mumbai. Bank Managers are nothing but dumbos occupying the chair, chatting with friends and relatives. The few active staff are so overworked they have no time to sort customer's problems.
Your complaint letters are mostly used as tissue papers for cleaning their tables. They have standard replies for email queries, "we are looking into the matter" or occasionally you might be asked for info which will take weeks to collect and after submission they will have the same fate as your complaint letter. I can only summarize my experience with ICICI as follows: inconsiderate, inhuman, callous, couldn't care, income first - customer last, indifferent bank.
COPENHAGEN -- I would like to share with you one of the worst banking experience I have had. It is with ICICI Bank. I am an NRI working in Denmark and as per the ICICI Bank website, I transferred 10,000 Danish Kroners to an account in Danske Bank, Denmark. This account is supposedly operated by ICICI who collect the money and transfer them into the Indian accounts of the respective people. It is nearly 2 months and I am yet to get the money into my Indian account (**).
Because I too have a local bank account with Danske Bank, I did a normal account-to-account transfer. Now ICICI Bank asked me to ask my local bank to send a SWIFT message. When I approached the local bank, they said that SWIFT messages are only for wire-transfers and not for account-to-account transfers within the same bank. But ICICI refuses to acknowledge this simple fact. They acknowledge that they have received the money and know it is from me, but still won't transfer the money. They just keep on insisting on this SWIFT message which I repeatedly told them that the local bank won't give.
This message is to warn all people who remit money through ICICI Bank. They must realize that when they transfer money into an account operated by ICICI, they are at the mercy of the ICICI. Even if they want to get back the money, they cannot unless ICICI decides to give it back because they have willingly given the money through online transfer. I hope you will carry this incident on your website. I think the only hope I have is the Banking Ombudsman Scheme started on 1st January 2006 by the RBI. **